Friday, March 30, 2012

Reopening Williamsburg Pottery features Blue Crab Stoneware

Our friends at the Williamsburg Pottery will host a grand reopening on Thursday, April 5, with 100,000 items in more than a half-mile of new buildings. Check out our Blue Crab Stoneware when you visit!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The fear factor fades

From our president, Pam Barefoot:

Last fall, I was honored to receive the Tayloe Murphy Resilience Award from the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. I won my choice of a week’s worth of executive education at the Darden School. My accountant recommended that I sign up for Strategic Sales Management.

Keep in mind that a week’s worth of executive education costs in the nine grand range. My small business never could have afforded to pay for such a benefit. However, large corporations frequently offer these courses to their staff as part of employee development programs. I anticipated a class filled with folks much more experienced than I am. In fact, I feared going … how would I ever fit in? (We co-workers can vouch for this – Pam sounded nervous in her first e-mails and calls to us back home!)

Last week on arrival at the Darden Inn in Charlottesville, I met my classmates: 10 men and one woman. Most were from the East Coast; one was from Brazil, and one was from Saudi Arabia. We were a diverse group with businesses ranging from General Mills and T. Rowe Price to cloud computing. Of course, I was the only one with silver hair. And, at age 61, I was older than most of the professors!

Classes started promptly at 8 a.m. We were highly discouraged from touching our cell phones or Blackberries. We shared breakfast, breaks, lunch, cocktails, and dinner together for five days. We were totally immersed in education, and after dinner we met with our teams to discuss the following day’s case studies. There was absolutely no personal time: Whenever you turned around, there was another 24-page case study to read. We studied the sales strategies of businesses such as Edward Jones and Red Bull.

The first afternoon, we discussed each participant’s burning issues. I confessed that I had won the course and that I was a very small business owner challenged with managing all aspects of my company, not just sales. I was warmly received. My female counterpart told me I was her new hero. I began to fit in. As the week went on, my fellow students grew more and more appreciative of my participation and viewpoint in class. They said my contributions to our discussions made the program so much more meaningful. One of my professors said that my presence really added to the class. I got over my earlier apprehensions fairly quickly. (We second that – by midweek, Pam was into it!)

As I mentioned before, one of our case studies was the Edwards Jones' model of business, which sells “trust.” A member of my class said that after learning about my business, he could say that Blue Crab Bay Co. sells “pride” ... pride in the Eastern Shore and our region.

Two lessons I brought back with me to work are the need to develop a strategic sales plan and a structured sales pipeline. Before this class, I didn't even know what a pipeline was!

These are now two of my challenges. And now I have a help line: All of my fellow classmates as well as my professors offered assistance when I need it.

I also hooked them on Blue Crab Bay products. Each afternoon I brought out two tins of our coastal snacks. I hope I created some new customers. And the food and beverage director at the Darden School seems highly interested in cooking with our bloody mary mixer!

The bottom line is no matter what your age, there’s no need to think you can’t learn something new. I’d love to take the marketing class at Darden … maybe that goal will inspire me to increase sales so we can afford it!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

What a Dahl!

Listen to Blue Crab Bay Co.'s owner, Pam Barefoot, on "The Steve Dahl Show." Steve Dahl is a broadcasting legend, a podcasting pioneer, and a huge fan of our products, especially our nut snacks. Check out the audio clip at to the Steve Dahl Podcast Network at We promise you will love Steve and his network as much as you love Blue Crab Bay!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Get in the spring spirit

We couldn't help but encourage you to revel in the beautiful spring images on the home page of Home is Where the Boat Is at - they certainly made coming back to work on the day after the time change a little brighter! While you're visiting the blog, be sure to check out a "post from the past" that includes information on our founder and company when they were featured in an irresistibly lovely coffee table book called "Women and the Sea" by Claire Murray:

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Go nuts in the kitchen!

Celebrate National Peanut Month with us by trying this terrific recipe at home!

Guinness® Stout Pork BBQ with Blue Crab Bay Co.® Sea Salt Nuts®

1 tbsp. olive oil
1 lb. pork roast
Salt and pepper
20 oz. Guinness® Stout
½ c. brown sugar
½ c. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. garlic powder

BBQ sauce:
All cooking liquid and juices from the pork
½ c. ketchup

4 tbsp. Blue Crab Bay Co.® Sea Salt Nuts®, roughly chopped

Heat the oil in a heavy skillet on high. Season the pork with salt and pepper, and sear the outer edges for about a minute on each side. Mix remaining five ingredients in bottom of a slow cooker. Add the pork, turn on low, and let cook 6 to 8 hours. Remove pork, and let it rest for about 10 minutes. Using a fork, shred the pork and set aside.

To prepare sauce: Move cooking liquid from the slow cooker into a heavy sauce pot.  Heat on high, and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, whisk in the ketchup, and reduce by half, or to desired consistency. Remove from heat and chill. Sauce will last 7 to 10 days in the refrigerator.

Top the bottom half of a Kaiser or your favorite roll with BBQ, add sauce, then sprinkle about 1 tablespoon of chopped Sea Salt Nuts® on top for crunch. Add the rest of the roll, and go for it!    

Award-winning* recipe created by Johnny Mo the musical chef
Mallards at the Wharf
Onancock, VA
*Best Dish & People’s Choice Award, 2010 Taste of Hampton Roads