Bar Tips – How Much Does Ice Quality Affect Your Beverages?


In mixing, ice is an ingredient that is often underrated, while it is the second most important ingredient in the preparation.

In comparison, the ice in the cocktail is like the stove in the kitchen of a restaurant. The chef always goes for the high-quality stove for the most satisfying meal while the bartenders always have to use the most suitable best countertop ice maker to create ice constantly.

Cocktail ice is so important that it warrants more than a passing glance.  Making better ice does, in fact, help produce better cocktails.

How Much Does Ice Quality Affect Your Beverages?

How does ice make a difference in cocktail making? That is the question not only of connoisseurs but also of novice bartenders.

Almost everyone immediately thinks of ice as a means of keeping things cold. Yes, ice may assist keep drinks cold, which means the beverage is both tasty and quenches thirst.

Ice is composed of water, and water is readily converted to ice. Therefore, it is possible to alter the flavor and quality of beverages depending on the quantity of ice added and melted.

Also, ice often provides additional beauty and appeal in beverages.

Cocktails with ice

5 Different Types Of Ice Shapes And Their Uses

Ice blocks

It is the biggest, heaviest, and most slowly melting ice. Bartenders often use this kind of ice for cocktails consumed in big quantities or savored for a lengthy period.

Ice cubes

These ice cubes are smaller than block ice, allowing them to melt more quickly while maintaining the drink’s coolness.

In most cases, the ice used in cocktail preparation is a typical square form with a dimension of approximately 25mm or 36mm in depth.

Ice cubes

Cracked Ice

In drinks that are shaken or stirred, cracked ice takes the crown, which has the effect of allowing the drink to cool quickly, having an easy-to-break texture, and melting quickly.

Bartenders should consider the amount of ice they use when making drinks to avoid melting ice from watering down the drink, which can alter the original taste.

Shaved Ice

Because the crushed ice is as smooth as snow in this kind, it melts extremely rapidly, allowing it to be cooled several times quicker than crushed ice in other types.

Ice Balls

Ice balls are another big piece of ice that has become very popular in recent years. Professional bartenders carve the balls by hand, although molds are available in a professional bartender kits for home usage as an alternative to this method.

Ice balls for drink

Alcoholic beverages such as whiskey on the rocks and lowball cocktails are ideal for serving with ice balls. Even on a sweltering day, they’ll keep you cool for many hours.

Helpful Tips For Easy Ice-Making

Size of ice

It is critical to base the size of the ice cubes on the ice’s solubility in each drink since choosing the incorrect amount of ice may result in your drink being either too bland or excessively strong.

Generally, the heavier the drink (such as an Old Fashioned or New Vieux), the bigger the ice cube and the more spherical the form to help keep it cool (because the ice melts slowly).

New Vieux cocktail

Bartenders make Tiki-style cocktails by diluting the drink with fruit juice and normal ice if possible.

Furthermore, thick beverages like the mint Julep need the use of crushed ice for rapid chilling, as do drinks such as gin martinis. Allow it to cool a little further by whisking in ice and then sifting off the remaining ice.

Water source

Ice is made from water, so it is the water source that can lead to a change in the drink’s taste. The cleaner and purer water will create slower-melting ice cubes.

A cube of mixing ice is considered standard when you hold it, and it sticks to your hand. This means that the surface of the ice cubes is very dry, so they will not melt or melt very slowly when preparing.

Creative variations

The bartenders are also very creative, bringing surprises with clear, tasteless ice. You can complement the aged Pineapple Syrup and Rum in Sal’s Minion with ice cubes made from coconut water.

Rum cocktail

Some other unique techniques, such as ice is put in the Smoker until it melts to freeze the water once more to create smokey ice cubes for the Smoke Signals cocktail.

If you want a drink that smells like smoke but does not have a smokey taste, you should reduce the surface area, causing the ice to melt more slowly and emit smoke slowly.

We all know the importance of ice in drinks and the endless creativity of the Bartenders when making drinks. That makes up the spirit of Cocktails, drinks that at the last minute can control human emotions.

We recommend, by constantly learning and creating on the fundamental principles, the bartenders will create truly “divine” cocktails.

Ice storage

One of the tips for making ice last longer comes from using foil, or bags (usually using for vacuum sealer, barbecue meat storage). This tip works on the principle of heat transfer because foil has a great heat conduction effect.

When wrapping the outside of the ice tray, it helps heat transfer from the freezer to water faster and thaw longer than usual.

The procedure is so simple that you just need to wrap the foil around the plastic tray.

Then, you need to pay attention to wrap the glossy side of the foil inside and reveal the matte side to increase the insulation for the ice.

Or you can also choose to store the ice in the freezer. This method has become very popular and widely used.

Final Thoughts

Ice is an apparently crucial component in creating beverages ranging from popular to high-end. Neat drinks are less tasty and not powerful enough to be a mood booster.

Using ice sparingly and in sufficient quantities will maximize its worth and advantages, while excessive usage will result in the flavor becoming bland and unappealing.

This necessitates that bartenders continually learn and gain expertise. We hope this article helps you make the most delectable Cocktails for your customers and loved ones.

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