Learning About Food and Cooking

The Right Cube For The Job: A Lot To Know About Ice

All ice is not the same. There are distinct and different kinds of ice cubes for each purpose. For instance, if you camp out a lot, you probably know that a big block of ice works well in a cooler for keeping food cold longer. There is some science behind the pragmatic reasons to use certain types of ice for the task at hand.  

There is a lot to know about ice. Make sure you choose the right cube for the job: 

Nugget Ice

Ever wonder why your ice at home is not as good as ice at your favorite watering hole? The shape and size of ice matter and perhaps the most popular kind of ice is nugget ice. This type looks like little pellets and each cube traps more air than other ice, so the ice has a chewy texture. There is less surface area, so it melts more slowly, making it great ice for bars and restaurants!    

Chewblet Ice

Chewblet ice is small, fast-melting cubes that you often see in convenience stores or wherever ice is blended and served. These are also pellet shaped and chewy, but these are mostly seen in healthcare settings. The texture of this cube is perfect for the purpose of the ice, which is generally to hydrate patients. 

Clear Ice

You will know clear ice when you see it. The transparent and bubble-free cubes just seem to taste better. These are favored among bars and restaurants in beverages for customers. Since there is no air in this kind of ice, it melts slower, too, so your drinks do not become diluted.  

Crescent Ice

Crescent ice looks like you would imagine: like half-moon-shaped cubes. This more linear shape curbs the backsplash that can occur when liquid is poured on top of them. Crescent ice is popular in clubs, hotels, and fine restaurants, as it creates a more aesthetically pleasing drink. Crescent ice is also the best choice for bagged ice, as it fits together congruently, dispenses with ease, and travels well.  

Gourmet Ice

Have you ever seen those unique spherical ice cubes, like in a glass of whiskey, or ice that is shaped like an octagon? These cubes are referred to as gourmet ice and they are intended to keep drinks cool as long as possible. The chic look is appealing, and these clear ice shapes melt slowly and evenly. You may also see gourmet ice being used at a special event, like a party or a wedding.  

Cubed Ice

Cubes are what most people use at home and are typically curated from conventional trays and molds. If your refrigerator dispenses ice, you may have the option of full or half cubes, the latter of which can work well for smaller servings or glassware.  

Flake Ice

Flake ice, or shaved ice, is soft and has a texture similar to snow. Flake ice is for chilling something, like seafood, down. It also has some healthcare applications as it is often used for icing patient injuries.  

Are you using the right type of ice? Use these recommendations and tips to use the right ice every time!

Contact a local food service to explore cubed ice options.