CLEAR ICE OR NUGGET?
“Ice is most welcome in a cold drink on a hot day”
– Vera Nazarian
Luxury Ice, Your Drink Deserves It
What is Clear Ice?
Clear ice is pure frozen water with no impurities or dissolved solids. It can only be made in very specific ways and your standard ice maker is not capable of doing it – even with filtered water. We all know of those milky white crescents that live in your average ice box. Step up to luxury ice.
People Either Love It or Love It
Sometimes referred to as the “good ice” nugget ice is a favorite of many. Chewable, soft, small we always love the restaurants who but a nugget ice machine.
Clear Ice or Nugget Ice?
Ice (and lots of it) is essential for any good party. Whether you need to fill your cooler for a day on the boat or you’re getting ready for your famous 4th of July BBQ – who wants to head to the store to buy bags and bags of ice?
THE JOURNEY STARTS WITH A SINGLE STEP
Whether you’re looking for a unique custom outdoor kitchen, designed and built to match your aspirations or a simple and straight forward set up, it all starts with a conversation. Learn more by scheduling a personal consultation with one of our design experts.
One of the appliances you can choose to add to your outdoor kitchen is an outdoor ice machine. Ice is one of the most important parts of an outdoor party in the summer. And the last thing you want to do is run out of ice. Here in Orlando, it gets hot and humid in the summer. That’s why we offer top of the line ice machines as an option for our customers. We want you to feel cool and comfortable outdoors. So why should you consider adding an ice machine to your outdoor kitchen? What should you look for in an ice machine? Here is our guide to everything you need to know about ice machines.
Benefits of an Outdoor Ice Machine
Especially during hot weather, an ice machine can be the most popular feature of your outdoor kitchen. Guests can add their own ice to their drinks, helping everybody stay cool. Plus, it encourages your guests to stay hydrated. Also, a huge benefit of an outdoor ice machine is that you won’t have to go buy more ice. There’s no need to stop the party, or slip out and run to the convenience store. With an ice maker in your outdoor kitchen, you don’t have to worry about, “Do we have enough ice?” Your ice maker’s got your back.
At the most, you may need to give the ice maker about 5 minutes to catch up and make more ice. But that’s nothing compared to a grocery store run, where you could spend 10 minutes sitting in traffic. An outdoor ice machine is a sign of luxury in your outdoor kitchen. It shows that you care about providing for your family and guests, and that your backyard is a place of comfort. One of the most popular questions we hear about ice machines is, “Do ice machines work well in the heat?” Let’s take a look at how a high quality ice machine can work, even in hot and humid temperatures.
Do Ice Machines Work When it’s Hot and Humid?
Not all ice machines are created equal. Just like any other kitchen appliance, ice machines come in a wide range of qualities. You have the cheap ice machines, which have no front venting, and are made from cheap stainless steel. They are not weatherproof, and they leak cold air very easily. If your ice machine is made from cheap materials, it won’t work well in the hot weather. It might not stay cold enough to keep the ice frozen. Or it will overcompensate and freeze the interior, making a mess.
On the other hand, you can purchase a luxury ice machine, which includes a 304 stainless steel exterior, automatic defrost, and digital controls. With a high quality ice machine, you can expect it to work well in humid, hot weather, especially if you check on it and make sure it’s running properly. We believe that it’s important to purchase the right product. Yes, the luxury brand will cost more, but it also lasts much longer. You won’t have to pay for repairs as often.
What to Look For in Ice Machine
here are several different factors to consider when you’re thinking about buying an ice machine. Some of the things you should consider are the size, placement, and drainage. But there are other details that you should be aware of, like what kind of ice you’re looking for.
What Type of Ice?
When it comes to ice machines, lots of people jump straight to the brand. And yes, the brand is an important point to consider. You want to buy a brand that is durable, trustworthy, and weatherproof. However, a simple question that often gets overlooked is, “What kind of ice do you want?” You can choose from several different ice shapes, including:
- Cube (perfect cubes with no indentations)
- Crescent (ice that’s curved on one side and flat on the other)
- Nugget (Sonic-style, small crushed bits that are easier to chew)
- Top hat (also called Gourmet, large cylinder chunks that melt very slowly)
Remember, you’re not just picking based on the aesthetic alone. If you’re looking for lots of ice that can be made very quickly, Nugget ice machines are your best option. The second fastest option is a Crescent ice machine. However, if you’re looking for quality over quantity, Cube ice and Top Hat ice are both very hard, clear, and dense. Your ice machine won’t be as fast, but the ice itself will last much longer in your drink.
With ice machines, a standard rule of thumb is 5 pounds of ice for every 10 drinks. For a group of 20 people, assuming each guest has one drink, you’ll want an ice maker with 10 lbs of storage capacity. For a group of 50 people, you’ll want to find an ice maker with around 25 lbs of storage. And if you’re hosting a group of 70 people for a large event, look for an ice maker that holds about 35 lbs of ice.
What Type of Drainage?
Drainage is important to helping your outdoor kitchen stay clean and functional. You don’t want to have excess water pooling up in the ice maker. Your drainage options depend on what type of layout you have, as well as the outdoor plumbing. Whenever outdoor plumbing is involved, we encourage you to work with a professional. If you’re based in the greater Orlando area, we’d be happy to help you with your outdoor kitchen! Give us a call at (407) 330-6860.
When you’re planning your outdoor kitchen, you want to try and include the ice maker near the “wet zone” or a “cold zone.” This includes placing it by the fridge, sink, or wine cooler. This makes it easier to drain, because you can have your ice machine connected to the fridge or sink via a gravity drain. That way, the excess water from the ice machine just flows down into the fridge drain. If that’s not an option, we can help you install a drain pump, so the water gets pumped out of the ice machine and into a drain some distance away.
Looking to Add an Ice Machine to Your Outdoor Kitchen?
Are you looking to build an outdoor kitchen? Thinking about adding an ice machine? We are an outdoor kitchen design and construction company, based in the Orlando, FL area. We’d love to bring your dream outdoor kitchen to life! Reach out to us today, and we’ll schedule a consultation call so we can talk about your project. You can reach us by phone at (407) 330-6860, or by filling out the contact form on our website. We look forward to working with you!