Monday, February 4, 2013

Bigger Is Better

As I sipped and photographed my way through a Cocktail Conference recently, I discovered something that has become my new favorite thing: BIG ICE.

I like my drinks nearly frozen (but not frozen because then I get brain freeze and I'm a little afraid I might hurt myself trying to warm my brain). So, I hit up Google to find out how big ice is made. Yes, I am aware it's frozen water, but I wanted a giant square of ice to sit in my glass and keep the contents cold without watering them down in seconds.

I found these at Sur La Table. And I found these. I was given a few tips at the store:

  • Use distilled or filtered water.
  • Unlike regular ice cube molds, these cubes will need a little bit of shimmying to get them out of the holder.
  • If there's a film in your drink, it's minerals from the molds. Rinse the ice before putting it in your drink.
Sounded simple enough. Then, I looked at the directions for the sphere ice molds:

See? It's not that easy to make ice! All I could think was how sad I'd be if I went through all that trouble and I had half spheres.

I cleared out space in my freezer (now it's my big ice shelf) and set to filling these giant molds.
A few hours later, I had my giant ice in its own non-fancy but durable container. My spheres were perfectly round and smooth - like a smooth, mostly clear orange.
Then, I set out to use them. Here's the sphere in a glass of white wine. Only after I took that picture did I realize it looks a little like a giant eyeball floating in a glass. That didn't stop me from drinking it! My wine was perfectly chilled down to the last drop.
Here's a giant square of ice in some of my own strawberry vanilla vodka (made using this recipe I found on Pinterest). It looks less strawberryish because I mixed it with cream soda. IT'S DELICIOUS!
And I used another big cube to keep my Chimay cold.
These things were beverage magic! I even dropped one in my iced tea. I did have to give them a little rinse, but they were worth it. I should note two things:

  1. I did not drink all of these things in one setting. This purely scientific sampling was done over a few days. 
  2. I learned you must be careful when you get to the bottom of the drink. Those cubes are heavy and when they clank into your teeth, it is not a nice thing. I may lose a tooth over this.
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