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I skied Taos yesterday, where there was a small demo day going on.  All the usual suspects were there: Rossi, Salomon, Volkl, etc...  I was skiing my Rossi Experience 100s, which were about the perfect ski for the conditions, so I had no desire to waste my ski time by trying out a bunch of demos... Until I noticed the Parlor tent.  I had never heard of the brand, but they billed themselves as custom, hand built skis -- how could I pass up taking a pair out?  (I'm a sucker for bespoke goods)

 

Anyway, I opted for a ski that had virtually the same dimensions as my E100, so I could really compare two similar skis.  (The model was called Cardinal 100 in a 178, r=19m).  Well, to cut to the chase, the Parlors were the most exciting pair of skis I have ever been on, flat out.  There's been an ongoing discussion on this board lately about the difference between "lively" and "damp" -- this ski was massively damp but had more "pop" out of a turn than any other all mountain ski I've been on.  The edge grip left the E100 in the absolute dust -- no comparison, and that's saying quite a bit because the E100 is no slouch when it come to railing turns. 

 

The Cardinal is not for everyone -- it is a very demanding ski that will simply not let go of its tail.  But for bombing down crud, soft bumps, and other variable terrain, and then making hero arcs on groomers under the chair lift, I have never been on anything better. 

 

So, with that said, I want to give a shout-out to Parlor skis.  Here's there website.  Apparently, for about $1,000, they'll make you a custom pair, which is expensive but not ridiculous for what you get, based on my limited experience. 

 

As for my E100s, I'm still very pleased with their performance, and I still think that they're the right ski for where I ski and how I ski, but when held against the Parlor, I'm afraid there's no comparison...