Ice is an essential ingredient in cocktails, but it’s importance is often overlooked, especially when making cocktails at home.
The ice in cocktails deserves as much attention as the spirits, mixers, bitters and syrups you use.
One of the most important functions of ice in your drink is the way it melts. The slower it melts, the better.
This is one situation where size DOES matter, and BIG is infinitely BETTER.
It’s all about the science. If you have a load of regular ice cubes in a tall glass, they’ll melt faster than a slab of ice because small individual cubes have more surface area exposed in the drink.
It’s the same when you use a whisky or old fashioned glass. A mega cube is more preferable than a scoop of small cubes because a large single cube will melt at a much slower rate and keep your drink colder for longer. When you’re mixing a premium cocktail, you want to chill those beautiful ingredients, not dilute them.
Here are our top 5 tips for giving drinks the chill they deserve:
- Use the coldest ice possible. Keep your ice in the freezer until you need it. Ice sitting in an ice bucket will melt more quickly and dilute your drinks.
- Keep your ice fresh. We like to use our ice within 2 weeks, it never lasts that long in our house to be honest.
- Don’t store your ice trays near frozen fish. Ice will take on the flavour of food around it and no one wants a fishy G&T.
- Don’t use bagged ice in your drinks. Bags of ice are fine for cooling drinks, but don’t be tempted to add that ice to your cocktails. Bagged ice is full of different shapes and sizes, which melt at different rates.
Use the right ice shape. For drinks in highball/tall/Collins glasses like a Mojito or Gin & Tonic, or bloody Mary, Unconventional Slabs are excellent. For drinks in whisky/old fashioned glasses like a negroni, old fashioned or whisky on the rocks, use a mega cube, hexagon or pyramid.