April 13, 2012
Our tastiest event of the year happens this weekend. Can you believe it’s already our 10th Annual Grill Expo?
This Saturday, April 14 and Sunday, April 15 at all Warners’ Stellian Appliance stores (except Minneapolis Outlet), you can see – and taste – the difference among the
latest models of quality gas, charcoal and smoker grills during grilling
demonstrations by experts on top brands, like Weber Grill, Holland Grill, Vermont Castings and DCS Outdoor.
Joe Warner talks grilling trends with Tim McNiff and Kim Insley of KARE11 Sunrise.
So what’s new in grills? Japanese Kamado-style smoker grills like the Big Green Egg and the Primo Grill have soared in popularity. This ceramic charcoal barbecue and smoker can reach extremely high temperatures (past 700 degrees) to quickly fire a Neapolitan pizza, but allow total control — maintaining accuracy within a few degrees. They can cook a hotdog in four minutes or smoke a brisket low and slow overnight.
Like we’ve seen with ranges, gas grills are becoming bigger, more powerful and more feature-heavy (i.e. built-in rotisseries, side burners, sear burners and sleek stainless steel styling).
Warners’ Stellian will have discounts on all grills, plus free assembly and delivery on grills priced $499 and up. Better yet, buy a grill $599 and get 2 certificates for complimentary products from No Name Premium Meats & Seafood (Twin Cities locations only) or a $50 gift card to Ye Olde Butcher Shoppe in Rochester.
WHEN: Saturday, April 14 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. & Sunday, April 15 from
noon to 4 p.m.
March 29, 2012
If you haven’t noticed, along with shorts and mosquitoes, grilling season got an early start this year. Follow these tune-up tips to make sure your gas grill or charcoal grill is BBQ ready.
Clean the interior using a putty knife to scrape off burnt-on food particles inside your grill. This isn’t just aesthetic. Build-up prevents your grill from heating correctly.
To clean your grates, Weber Grill suggests putting them in a dark-colored plastic bag with a cup of ammonia into the bag. After a day in the sun, residue should easily hose off (hat tip Shelterpop).
If you have a grease drain, make sure it’s unclogged by running a coat hanger down it. Just keep your hands away from the grease bucket, because the grease will drain out fast and could burn you.
Season the grill. Use nonstick cooking spray to oil the grates, drip pans and inside of the grill. This helps keep food from sticking to the surfaces and speeds cleaning. Light the grill and let it burn empty with the lid closed for 30 minutes to burn off the preservatives.
Level the grill. If one side of your grill burns burgers while the other leaves them raw, it’s probably not level. Check both side-to-side and front-to-back to ensure even heating.
Check for leaks by inspecting connections for tightness and hoses for cracks. Another good way to scope out leaks is by brushing non-ammonia soapy water around the fitting with an old toothbrush. Turn the gas on and watch for bubbles.
March 27, 2012
No, I’m not offering tips on expediting meals with mise en place. I’m talking about ways to save energy when cooking.*
Stoves, cooktops and ovens aren’t Energy Star rated, because most models use about the same amount of energy. But there are certainly ways to use less gas or electricity when cooking.
Here are 4 tips to help you become a more energy-efficient cook:
1. Keep your burner caps and drip pans clean
Maintaining a tidy cook surface isn’t just about impressing company (or your cat).
Dirty surfaces don’t reflect heat as well as polished surfaces, thus wasting energy and potentially your time. Read my manageable daily cleanup plan.
2. Match pots and pans to the size of your burners
Unless you’re using an induction cooktop or range, you’re heating a lot of air while you try to heat your food. Induction cooking is 20% more efficient than electric and 70% more efficient than gas.
To mitigate energy loss, choose the appropriate sized pot or pan for the size of burner you’re cooking on (i.e. don’t put a 1-qt saucepan on a ginormous “power burner”).
3. Cover your pots while boiling water
When you think about it, it makes no sense to boil water in an uncovered pot. Using a cover helps water boil faster while creating pressure and preventing evaporation.
4. Skip preheating
Unless you’re baking and require precise temperatures, you don’t need to wait till your oven reaches 350 degrees to throw your food in.
I start cooking my casseroles as soon as I start my oven, and not only do they still turn out, they often turn out faster than if I wait for the oven to heat up! Better yet, shut off your oven a few minutes early and let residual heat finish off your dish. Even better yet, make two pans to freeze leftovers and reheat in the microwave later.
*If you’re trying to cook faster, use the microwave (coincidentally, using the microwave as an alternative to the oven cuts energy use in half).
March 21, 2012
You know how sometimes you microwave food and it ends up smelling like something you made last week?
No one wants broccoli vaguely reminiscent of burnt popcorn or that super greasy pizza.
But as much as you clean it, you just can’t get rid of that darn stinky odor in the microwave.
Frigidaire passed along this odor-removing solution that requires little more than pushing buttons.
- 1 cup water
- juice of 1 lemon
- grated lemon peel
- several whole cloves
Combine all ingredients together in a glass measuring cup and boil for several minutes in the microwave on full power. Allow the hot mixture to sit in the microwave until cool (this is when the magic happens).
Wipe interior with a soft cloth.
March 19, 2012
Do you really know how to use your dishwasher?
Earlier this month, in-house dishwasher whisperer Angela Warner visited the KARE 11 studios to share some dishwasher DOs & DON’Ts.
Like the picture shows, people often don’t use the right amount of soap. There’s also a trick with your faucet that I swear by.
>>Watch the video
March 13, 2012
Warners' Stellian is proudly hosting Gov. Mark Dayton as keynote speaker of the Metro Independent Business Alliance's Annual Meeting Wednesday night.
Did you know that three times as much of your money stays in the community when you buy locally?
And why wouldn’t you spend here; The Twin Cities is home to a unique crop of businesses that add so much to our community both economically and philanthropically.
Along with hundreds of other local, independent businesses, we partner with the Metro Independent Business Alliance, a nonprofit that working to support and preserve businesses like us in the Twin Cities region.
MetroIBA’s mission is to help the Twin Cities maintain its unique community character, provide continuing opportunities for entrepreneurs, build economic strength, and create an environment where locally owned, independent businesses grow and flourish.
Every year at our annual meeting, we celebrate our accomplishments and (not ones to rest on our laurels), share our goals for the next year.
MetroIBA Annual Meeting
Wednesday, March 14
Warners’ Stellian Appliance Corp. Headquarters
550 Atwater Circle
St. Paul, MN 55103
Gov. Mark Dayton will give the keynote address to our alliance and guests as we enjoy refreshments from fellow members of our local, independent business alliance such as:
- Aesop’s Table
- Flat Earth Brewing Co.
- Key’s Cafe
- Peace Coffee
- Mama’s Pizza
- Sharrett’s Liquors
I’ll be there listening to the guv over a slice of some of my favorite St. Paul treats: a slice of Mama’s and a glass of Flat Earth Cygnus X Porter.
March 12, 2012
Thank you to the thousands of people who braved the beautiful weather to shop the Warners’ Stellian Appliance Extreme Warehouse Sale this past weekend.
Here’s the recap, in photos:
Hundreds of Minnesotans (and some out-of-staters) lined up for the doors to open to our warehouse sale March 12, 2012. Sure it was nice, but I've seen a similar size line in blizzard conditions. We're hardy here!
My dad, Jeff Warner - president of Warners' Stellian - wears the same ugly striped knit hat he's been wearing since before I was born while serving delicious Peace Coffee to the second half of our customer line before the warehouse sale started.
...And they're off! Our appliance warehouse sale doors opened at 7 a.m. on Saturday, March 10, 2012.
Me & dad mug for a post-coffee serving photo. But now that the sale had begun, we needed get inside to help!
A view from inside the Extreme Warehouse Sale March 2012 right after the doors opened.
Another view of the warehouse sale. It's so big, it's impossible to capture it in one frame.
Though we had well over one thousand customers, we moved quickly and kept the longest check-out wait to only 15 minutes.
Thank you to all of our customers and friends for making this our most successful sale to date. We truly couldn't do it without all of you, so we're EXTREMEly appreciative.
March 7, 2012
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I’m reposting this now-classic blog because hey, why reinvent the wheel? These tips remain relevant for the Warners’ Stellian Extreme Warehouse Sale 2012. Measure twice and cut once, people.
What is it with us Midwesterners and our deal-bragging? You know: upon receiving a compliment we gloat about the gasp-worthy low price we got it for, unsolicited. Perhaps it’s because we fancy ourselves pro deal hunters.
But our Extreme Warehouse Sale 2012 this Saturday and Sunday is no Macy’s clearance rack. I’m talkin’ big-ticket items at huge discounts: you need to prepare a bit. The savings are so hot, all sales are final.
Luckily for you, I’ve compiled the secrets of the pros — tips that will prepare any appliance rookie for the big league.
Before the sale
Don't be a fool; Use this tool.
Measure your space
Don’t learn the hard way: there is no “standard” in appliance sizes. Use a measuring tape on the available space — not the existing appliance — and write down dimensions to bring to the sale.
Also — and this is HUGE — measure the width of the doorways and staircases the appliance will need to travel through. Some door frames can be removed, but it’s often that someone buys a washer only to find it doesn’t fit down her narrow basement staircase.
Know your fuel type
This might seem obvious if you’re buying a cooking appliance like a range or cooktop (is it flat, coiled or does it have grates? Duh.). But you should double-check whether you have a gas or electric hookup when buying a dryer or oven.
Consider your hinges
For example, some refrigerators on sale will be left hinge only. Wouldn’t it be terrible to find a great deal on a fridge only to get it home and not be able to open it? Also know what side you want the hinges on a front-load washer and any type of dryer, in case there’s an option.
Do some research
We’ll have more than 2,000 appliances available at the start of the sale, so have something in mind to avoid frustration. The best tip? Know what you like and don’t like about your existing model. Check out our website for more ideas on what features are important to you.
Don’t pay till 2013
You MUST pay for your purchase at the time of sale, though we have 12 months no interest financing options to help you pay. Save time by getting approved online at home. Just make sure to bring in your approval slip with your new account number for our files.
Also, even if you’re financing the purchase, you must pay the sales tax at the time of sale.
The day of the sale
Bring a hauling vehicle
Usually, we offer free delivery on purchases $499 and above, but this sale is anything but usual. Our warehouse is full of products, so we encourage customers to take their purchases with them the day of the sale. We’ll help you load it up and everything.
If you do choose to have it delivered, it’s $75 and you must take delivery within 14 days.
Know your schedule
We’ll arrange for delivery and any installation for built-in appliances (available for additional charges) at the time of sale. We’ll call you the day before the delivery with an AM/PM estimate and our crew can call you before they arrive if you need to meet them at your house.
Pack a stroller
Our warehouse is a warehouse. It’s clean and safe, but it’s also big and crowded and without a play area. Strollers work well to keep small children nearby when you’re shopping the selection. We have coloring stations and movies once you get to checkout to keep meltdowns at bay.
After the sale
Receive delivery/install time estimate
You’ll receive a call with an three-hour window estimate the night before your scheduled delivery and/or install.
Apply for rebates
You could qualify for even more savings by rebate. Once you receive your product, you can fill in the serial number (the delivery crew can help you locate this) on your rebate forms and submit them promptly, as they expire.
Don't waste your investment because you lack product knowledge.
Read your manual
Knowing your new product can help you save time and improve the quality of your cooking and cleaning. Stow it somewhere memorable to refer to for troubleshooting and general operation questions.
Don’t ignore accessories
If you get a dishwasher, buy rinse aid to help dry your dishes. If you buy a smooth-top electric range, you’ll want cooktop cleaner to keep it looking new.
Your refrigerator water filter will need to be replaced every six to 12 months. And please, for the sake of your breathing, don’t overstuff your vacuum bags!
Visit my blog
I attack the FAQs plaguing our industry. Hard-hitting issues like, Troubleshoot (almost) any dishwasher problems and HOW TO: change a refrigerator water filter. It’s also an easy way to reach me if you need help. Plus, you’ll be the first to know about the next Extreme Sale!
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