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Category Archives: Aggressive News

Dining in the Dark

What happens when you combine 2 outstanding Non-Profits, a SWAT Team with the Orlando Police Department, 3 Top Chefs and a completely dark dining room?
 You get a phenomenal event called Dining in the Dark.

As a partner, supporter, and neighbor of Second Harvest Food Bank, we often are privy to all the awesome events that take place in their beautiful building. We have had the pleasure of sponsoring a table at Dining in the Dark for 3 years, it has been an incredible experience to share with our clients and some lucky staff members.   The most recent Dining in the Dark was on July 27th, and it did not disappoint.

Our esteemed Chefs for the evening….Kevin Fonzo, Jill Holland, and Kathleen Blake….also pictured is James, our SWAT team member that took care of our table, he was very tolerant and kind.

The Chefs prepared the tastiest food….including lobster bisque, fried green tomatoes, a goat cheese salad w/beets, citrus and pistachios, a corn cake w/pickled vegies and watermelon, and a delicious pork dish w/farro and cranberry, just to name a few highlights of the meal.
 

This unique dining experience benefits the non-profit, Lighthouse Central Florida…and is an enlightening evening that incorporates fine dining while focusing on your senses of taste, smell, and sound…all taking place in total darkness.

 First, we hold on to each other’s shoulders and are led into a pitch black room, our SWAT team leader patiently guides us to our table and makes sure we get in our chairs without hitting the floor. We then try to get our bearings and locate our glasses, napkin, silverware (which I didn’t really use), and get an idea of who is seated next to us. Our server makes sure we know when food is in front of us and we begin to try to eat and drink in complete darkness.  We all tend to speak louder, attempting to connect with those at our table,  and soon realize how precious our sight is and how we often take it for granted…everyone is affected in a different way, and hopefully we all left a little more sensitive and aware of the issues surrounding vision loss and those in our community dealing with hunger.

The SWAT Team of the Orlando Police Department volunteers their time to act as servers and guides the night, all while wearing their night vision goggles in the completely dark room.  It is so inspiring to see men that have serious and often dangerous jobs… lend their time to take pictures, wait on tables, tolerate our screams for assistance (for some, more wine), and willingly help us safely navigate around the room.
We are thankful for their service in our community and appreciate the opportunity to meet them in a fun atmosphere.

 

While it was fun for us to eat with our hands, try to determine what the components of each course were, and experience all the feels of eating in compete darkness….the goal of the evening was to shed an important light on the needs and reality of those suffering from vision loss and chronic hunger.  I encourage you to take some time to go the websites of Lighthouse Central Florida and Second Harvest Food Bank.  Take a moment to see if either, or both of these organizations have a mission that speaks to your heart….there are many ways to help – with your time volunteering, or through monetary donations.

 

 

 

Click on the logos or any links in the blog to learn more…..

The Attendees for 2017

 

Cookies Make Everything Better !

 

 
 

It’s time for a great cookie recipe….trust me, this cookie is the most popular one with our staff and many of our customers.

It is the Compost Cookie….also a fancy word for garbage cookie, but the words compost and garbage aren’t what come to mind when you eat this cookie.

There is a basic dough recipe and the fun (compost) part is…you choose 3 savory and 3 sweet ingredients to add.   For example, you could add potato chips, pretzels, goldfish crackers, fritos, etc….or chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, raisins, cranberries,etc…your choice!

 

 

There is a cool place in NYC that made this cookie famous, Momofuku Milk Bar…recipes are all over the internet, but the one that our resident Chef Cheryl uses is this one,   Momofuku Milk Bar Cookies.

Click on the link and make some, let your kids help select the ingredients….the crazier the better, you just can’t beat that salty and sweet combo.  I mean, aren’t our favorite people a combo of sweet and salty, too?

 

Your friends and family will be so happy, and hopefully grateful, if you make these and actually decide to share them.
We even have a customer/Designer that loves them so much, I make him a goodie bag and let him know every time these cookies make an appearance in the showroom.
I won’t name any names…Mark.

Enjoy…..make some people happy and bake some cookies !

 (…and if you need an awesome new oven to bake them in, come see us, we have the perfect oven for you)

 

 

***click on our Clearance page for the latest sale prices…

The Language of Appliances

The Language of Appliances…

French door isn’t just an option to replace sliding glass doors, Columns aren’t just an architectural element to hold up a ceiling, Built-In isn’t always a term used in building bookcases, Steam can be a type of  appliance, and not just what we see on the hot asphalt on a lovely muggy rainy Florida day…..

If you have been appliance shopping recently, you most likely heard a lot of new terms relating to appliances and their features and functions….and, if you are getting ready to be on the hunt for a new appliance, refer to this handy guide to help you with your shopping experience.   This is by no means a comprehensive list, but a few terms to get you started……

COOKING :

– A Range is a unit with either burners or a glass cooktop and an oven, they are made to slide in, or can be built in.
Induction is not new, but is getting more popular and is being offered by many brands.  Induction cooking heats a cooking vessel by magnetic induction, as opposed to heating from a flame or an electrical heating element.  Induction cooking requires pans/cooking vessels to contain a ferromagnetic metal.
Dual Fuel appliances use both electricity and gas.
Speed Cooking is a feature using Advantium technology to cook food through the power of light.  Radiant heat is produced by halogen bulbs above and below the food, adding a boost of microwave energy, cooking food quickly and evenly.
Cooktop/Rangetop is a stand alone cooking surface that does not include an oven, is installed in the countertop.

Steam Ovens basically cook with steam….shocking….typically there is a water reservoir and most also use Convection, a cooking method that circulates hot air around food to cook it faster than conventional ovens.
French Door wall ovens have 2 doors that open on a single oven, creating an ease of accessing the inside of oven without having to reach over the drop down door.
REFRIGERATION:
Built-In/Counter Depth refrigerators are the same depth as your counters so they sit flush.
Freestanding/Slide-In appliances simply slide in the space and they don’t require cabinet alterations.
French Door refrigerators have 2 doors and 1 drawer below containing the freezer.
French Door Refrigerator
Side by Side refrigerators have 2 doors, one side is refrigerator, other side is freezer.
Under Counter refrigeration applies to wine coolers, beverage centers, and ice makers that are made to fit under the counter.
Columns are freezer and refrigerator units that can be installed separately from each other.
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Wine Column
Integrated appliances have panels installed on the front and disappear into the cabinetry.
Have you walked in an appliance store saying I just want a Refrigerator, an Oven, or a Stove….only to find out things have changed…. so many types and choices now.  Please visit our showroom and let one of our sales associates answer your questions, and  guide you through 10,000 sq ft of beautiful shopping space.

37 years young….

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We just turned 37….

Typically, the majority of us are not so ready to share our age, even though everyone says age is just a number…but, every time a business turns another year older it hopefully signifies positive attributes like Stability, Trustworthiness, and Integrity.
We are striving to get better, not just older.

 We opened our doors on June 13, 1980…under the name Aggressive Appliances and Fine Furniture.  The furniture aspect didn’t “stick”…now, we focus solely on residential appliances, and have undergone many changes over these last 37 years.

Some of us have had some laughs looking at photos from the past, mostly enjoying the changing hairstyles and mustaches of our staff.

old staff picOur showroom has changed dramatically over the years, starting with a small building on Hwy 50, and now we get to share state of the art “live” kitchens and 10,000 sq ft of shopping space with our customers.

Yep, lots of changes over the years….things got a little sleeker, kitchens are a little more contemporary, designs change and technology is constantly updating.   Change is good, but one thing we don’t want to change as we age, is our commitment to our customers.  The goal of our company is to improve in all areas, we strive to get better in everything we offer to you involving…
Sales – Service – Installation

 Thank You to our customers for your loyalty….we so appreciate your business and before we know it , we will be in our 40’s !

Second Harvest…..Our Favorite Neighbor !

Remember the Mister Rogers Neighborhood song with the line….won’t you be my neighbor?   Well, if you clicked on the link, that song will be playing in your head for awhile…you’re welcome for the walk down memory lane of forgotten tv shows.

Our favorite neighbor is Second Harvest Food Bank. A few years ago, one of our customers invited me to a graduation for the Culinary Training Program at Second Harvest.  Since then, we have developed a partnership that has brought us great friends and experiences.

It has been wonderful over the last several years to learn about all the accomplishments of Second Harvest in the community….and even better, to be able to help spread the word, and educate others about this great organization.

We have enjoyed the talents of the chefs of Second Harvest, as well as the culinary students.  We often involve the students in our “food” events in the showroom….it is always our pleasure to have a small part in contributing to the culinary training program.
The Second Harvest Culinary Training Program provides qualified, at-risk and economically disadvantaged adults with the culinary and life skills training needed to pursue a sustainable career in the food industry.

Students enrolled in the program gain valuable “hands-on” experience learning in our production kitchen assisting in contract meal prep and catered events during their lab time with our team of award-winning chefs. The life skills component of our program prepares students for work-readiness, focusing on the importance of appropriate work behaviors, resumes and interviewing techniques, as well as household budgeting, stress relief, and time management.

Just last week a graduate of the program stopped by to say hello…one of my favorite things is getting to know these students, attend the graduations and hear that everyone has received employment or is in the process of interviewing for a job in the culinary field.
One of the latest groups we have had in the showroom is in the picture below, under the supervision of Chef Israel, serving great food for our customers and staff.

Here is a peek at the meal….

It goes without saying….we love great food and the people cooking, grilling, baking, sautéing, and preparing that food !

Another fun benefit of knowing our neighbor is participating in the Chef’s Night Dinners throughout the year.  Aggressive loves to sponsor a table and invite some lucky recipients to a fabulous evening right at Second Harvest….the most accomplished chefs in the area create an outstanding menu and they never disappoint.  Anyone can buy tickets to these events and help support the Culinary Training Program….simply go their website and check out all the ways you can be involved.

We recently attended a Chef’s Night just this month, Ruth’s Chris was in the house with their top chefs from around the state….the meal was perfect from the beginning appetizers, to the take home box of bread pudding…perfection !

In addition to getting food to families, children and seniors, Second Harvest has many services that benefit the community.

There is a beautiful Community Room available for rental,
a Catering Program, Distribution Center Training Program, Kids Programs, and too many services to list here.
Take a few minutes, go to their website and see for yourself how Second Harvest Food Bank is transforming lives, right in our own backyard.

It’s a good thing to be their neighbor.

Yes, we are an appliance store and we love to talk about and sell appliances….but, we also love our community and the people that use those appliances.   Thank you for letting us share about our neighbors.

Spring Cleaning Time is here…..

Spring has sprung…March 20th was the first day of Spring, bring on the pollen, allergies, sneezing, blooming flowers, and college students flocking to our state.   Spring is also the time we think we should traditionally clean and get a fresh start after our ‘harsh’ winter.
At Aggressive, we support spring cleaning of your appliances….as much as our Service Department loves to visit you and your appliances, we will offer some suggestions to keep your investments running smoothly.

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I love the Dishwasher….the kitchen can be trashed, dirty dishes everywhere, and in minutes they are hidden away in the dishwasher and not seen until they are sparkly clean.   To keep your dishwasher as your best cleaning friend, try a few proactive maintenance moves so you can prevent dishpan hands.
–  Make sure the drain is clean, periodically check it and clean
out the food debris to keep it draining and running smoothly.
–  Place a cup filled with white vinegar on the top rack and run your dishwasher through a cycle on the hottest setting.
****  And remember, do NOT over-rinse your dishes the newer dishwashers need a certain amount of grease and grime in order to do their job.

 The Microwave
– Pour a cup of vinegar and a cup of water into a measuring cup
and place in your microwave, set timer for 5-10 minutes
on med-high setting and when time is up, carefully remove
container with an oven mitt.  Wipe down the interior with a wet
rag, steam from water and vinegar will loosen any spills or
splatters.

**** Vinegar….is a recurring theme, it will be your best friend,
buy it by the gallon.

The Oven
Newer ovens have wonderful self-cleaning modes, use your
owner’s manual, go online and follow the directions…yes,
sometimes we need to look at the directions…it will save you
money and time.

Please refer to a past blog on Self-Cleaning Ovens, if you don’t
want to click and open it….then, just trust us when we say do
NOT use oven cleaners, they will most likely damage the
interior of your oven during self-cleaning mode.
If you have an oven with a self-cleaning option, use it, and that
task is done.

 The Refrigerator
– Clean behind and under…sweep, vacuum, whatever it takes to
get rid of pet hair, dust, and anything responsible for
blocking airflow or getting the coils dirty.
– A simple cleaning to do is just empty the fridge, throw out
expired items, wipe down the shelves, check water filter and
see if need replacing or order and have on hand.

 For any glass surfaces, use some rubbing alcohol….take a spray nozzle attachment, put on the bottle of alcohol and simply spray surfaces and wipe clean, this works best with a microfiber cloth….on Glass surfaces.
For Stainless surfaces we recommend an oil based cleaner.

 The internet is full of great spring cleaning ideas….simple is best.

Outdoor Kitchens
Aggressive has a tech assigned to just cleaning grills….it is a
tough dirty job, call our Service Department 407-295-4489 or fill
out a service request online and get all the details to set up an
appointment and check this scary job off your list.  It will be
done correctly and efficiently while you and your
outdoor kitchen area stay clean…letting us do this will also
promote great harmony between those living in the home, no
dirty, greasy, sooty, clothes or shoes tracking through the
house.

 Happy Spring….use these simple ideas and reminders to clean and maintain your appliances, common sense is always best, and call our Service Department for any repairs or maintenance appointments, then enjoy your kitchen.

 *** If Spring involves looking for great savings, take a look at our
Clearance Page.

Happy New Year !

Happy New Year

 HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU !

I hijacked a few of our employees to pose and help wish you all a Happy New Year….some were easier to convince than others (note Bo appearing in several photos).

There are many team players at Aggressive Appliances… including administrative, service  department, installation, sales, warehouse, marketing, delivery and all the others who are involved in making our company stand out from the competition.  It is our goal and a directive from our owners to go beyond what is required~ give the extra attention, create solid relationships and continue to build a strong family business.

We value the personal relationships we develop with our customers and we are always striving to literally bring something new and innovative to the table.  We have a new kitchen being completed in January (be sure to visit and see the improvements), and we are always anxious to display and share the latest and greatest appliances on the market.

We look forward to working with you in the new year and have appreciated your referrals and kind words.

Thank you and Happy New Year….cheers to a great 2017 !

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Wanna save some money?

Last spring I wrote about clearing out your freezer: removing the unknown, the expired, the unwanted, and then planning your next week’s menu around the food remaining in your freezer. It was a time for savings and serving creative meals for dinner. Making space in my freezer was rewarding and fast too. It allowed me to create space for the spring and summer harvest.

Aggressive Appliances has the same issue that my freezer had last spring. Our warehouse has several appliances that were older models, dented and scratch, mismatched, and returns from clients for various reasons. WE NEED TO CLEAR THEM OUT!

We have brought many of these appliances to our sales floor. Our clearance equals great savings to you! Come check them out!

-Jim Balano

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Keep the Magic Alive

In January 2015, every Thursday around 8:15am, I began email blasting this blog with the help and input from my fellow appliance geeks here at Aggressive. During that time we’ve shared appliance adventures, food pictures, appliance glam shots, reviews, recipes, stories, and food holidays….and I’ve loved every minute of it even if my un-subscribers didn’t…..(that must have been an accident, right?!?!?!).

Now the time has arrived to pass the torch on to the next Editor. As of Friday I am moving into a new position with a major appliance manufacturer (for fairness sake will remain un-named). Maybe I’ll ghost write? Maybe Jerry will take over with appliance or non-appliance words of wisdom? Or maybe a new Editor and writer will take over and make your appliance world shine even brighter?

I do know this much….it’s been my pleasure to open up the appliance world to you during this time and ignite some spark of magic into your kitchen imaginings. Your kind thoughts, visits, encouragement, and cookies (Thank you to the Surprenants!) have been so greatly appreciated.

It has been so much fun giving you reasons to get excited about appliances because after all….they are the heart of our homes. I will still be calling on Aggressive as a rep. I hope to still see you in my travels. This is THE greatest appliance location in Orlando.

From my appliance home to yours……preserving, cooking, and washing up…..Keep the magic alive!

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Aggressively Cooking at the Gourmet Soiree

FHGourmetSoireeLogoImagine being in a room filled with 70 chefs, 700 people cooking amazing food, and Robert Irvine…….. 

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How fun was it for Aggressive Appliances to be involved in this years Gourmet Soiree held at the Rosen Shingle Creek?  It was incredible! This evening of fundraising, fun, and interactive dining hosted by Food Network’s Robert Irvine included live and silent auctions, and a healthy meal prepared by 70 local chefs with assistance of 10 guests at each table.  

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Our table chef was Cheryl Jaskot and our guests were from VCNA Prestige Concrete Products. Each person had a hand in creating an amazing dish to be submitted for judging….and they only had 30 minutes to prepare and plate a delicious, creative dish that would make the judges stop and take notice.   Ultimately, congrats went to Chef Laurent Hollaender with The Boheme Restaurant, but all the tables presented dishes that made it difficult to pick just one. All the guests were able to sit and dine together, enjoying the entrée they just created. Wonderful side dishes were provided by the resort. Our table guests had a great time and left with swag bags filled with goodies from Aggressive and our top vendors.

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The great food, chefs, and fun evening of cooking was just a backdrop to the real reason for the Gourmet Soiree….to raise funds for Florida Hospital and their Children’s Mission Fit Possible Program.  Fit is an educational program focused on promoting health and wellness and preventing childhood obesity among kids ages 2 -18.  The Culinary Community came together and raised over $250,000 and counting (!!!) making a significant investment in the health of our community’s children.gs2016-4

The perfect ending to this wonderful evening was an endless array of desserts from local vendors that filled the lobby with everything from Sprinkles cupcakes to yummy frozen yogurt complete with an abundance of toppings to choose from. 

We have to say thank you to the 2016 Chairperson Extraordinaire, Kendra Lott with Edible Orlando and the Talented Chef for the night and Vice Chairperson, Gary Appelsies with YMCA of Central Florida. Props also have to be given to Whole Foods for providing the freshest pantry items and to Sysco for supplying the protein.  Plus, it is always a good event when the lovely Emily Ellyn is there! She is an Honorary Committee Member and was a judge for the event. 

It goes without saying, that Aggressive Appliances was honored to be a part of the 2016 Gourmet Soiree, and we can’t wait for next year!

~Blog Content Written and Photos provided by Tina Wilson (pictured below on the left)

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