Ice is an essential item for all food service establishments. Restaurants, cafes, bistros, institutions, food processing units, and groceries need ice for various purposes. Flake ice in particular, which has a thin or granular structure, is ideal for commercial food units. You can use flake ice for consumption or food storage. Flake ice is primarily airy, light, and moldable, which makes it highly versatile.
In this article, we discuss different types of ice, what flake ice is, how to make flake ice, how to make crushed ice, the difference between flake and crushed ice, and the benefits of flake ice.
The Different Types of Ice
There are various types of ice cubes and crushed ice that are perfect for a wide array of applications. To make it simpler, we have curated a comprehensive list of the kinds of ice available for commercial purposes:
- Regular Ice Cubes: Ice cubes are mostly available in standard or half sizes. These cubes can be crushed into pieces, and you can use them in alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverages.
- Crescent Ice: Crescent ice has a crescent moon-like structure, which makes it distinct from other ice cubes. Crescent ice is perfect for filling a glass and has excellent liquid displacement characteristics.
- Crushed Ice: Crushed ice is ideal for making cocktails, smoothies, and Slurpees. Crushed ice is mostly made from ice cubes.
- Nugget Ice: Nugget ice has a soft, chewy texture and blends with different ingredients to enhance the flavor. Nugget ice is ideal for sodas, mocktails, juleps, or smoothies.
What is Flake Ice?
Flake ice is a type of soft ice that is somewhat similar to crushed ice. Flake ice has a snowy flake-like texture which is perfect for creating customized food displays for merchandising food products. Flake ice has a light and airy texture that makes it moldable. You can create various forms and shapes from flake ice.
What is the Difference Between Crushed Ice And Flake Ice?
Flake ice’s airy texture sticks to food items. You can also create ice mounds to showcase food products. Flake ice is perfect for restaurant owners or business owners who want to be creative with their food displays. With flake ice, you can make dazzling food displays. Additionally, your food items will stay fresh for a longer period with flake ice.
Crushed ice is ideal for making cocktails, smoothies, and drinks that need to be diluted. You can make juleps, tiki drinks, or delicious cobblers with crushed ice. Crushed ice also has a smooth texture that makes it perfect for blenders and food processors. You can safely make frozen drinks with crushed ice without damaging the blades of your blender or processor.
Some freezers and ice machines can deliver crushed ice directly. Most soda fountain machines come with a crushed ice or fluffy ice option. Alternatively, you can take any ice cubes in a clean towel or freezer bag and break it with a mallet to obtain their smooth, fluffy texture.
How To Make Flake Ice
You can use commercial ice machines or industrial flake ice machines to make flake ice for commercial establishments. Flake ice is mostly made on vertical or horizontal drums, where the ice is formed on the surface of the drum because of contact freezing. The thin sheet of ice is brittle and can be broken into irregular shapes by a harvesting blade.
How to Make Crushed Ice
You can make various crushed ice types to make delicious cocktails, slushies, and storing food items. The final result is dependent on the volume of crushed ice needed, tools available, and the methodology. You can make crushed ice with saute pans and towels, freezer bags and mallets, hand cranks, manual ice crushers, or commercial ice crushers. Choose the ideal process depending upon your needs.
The Benefits of Flake Ice
Flake ice is highly versatile and is ideal for various businesses. It is perfect for both large-scale food storage units and low-volume restaurants.
Flake Ice For Food Displays: Flake ice is perfect for food displays. With flake ice, you can store and merchandise seafood, meat, veggies, or other fresh produce. Flake ice’s snow-like texture makes it ideal for beverage displays. Bars, pubs, and restaurants use flake ice in beer tubs or drink tubs. You can store beer cans, wine bottles, and other alcoholic beverages with flake ice. Flake ice provides thorough and even cooling.
Flake Ice Makers For Hospitals: Flake ice is ideal for hospitals and clinics. Hospitals and clinics use flake ice for storing medicines and for treatments. Doctors and therapists use flake ice to treat physical injuries or sprains. Flake ice is beneficial for treatment as its soft texture provides more even and thorough cooling than ice cubes and other types of ice. Flake ice absorbs the heat from the affected area and provides faster recovery times. The soft texture of flake ice also makes it perfect for freezer bags. Flake ice remains intact in freezer bags during cold compressions, which makes it better than ice cubes, which can damage ice or compression bags during treatment.
Flake Ice For Bars, Pubs, and Restaurants: Flake ice is predominantly used by restaurants, cafes, diners, smoothie parlors, and foodservice establishments. You can make fizzy drinks, slushies, and smoothies with flake ice. Most cocktails are served with crushed ice, but you need a blender to create the perfect mix. With flake ice, you can easily create delicious cocktails without blenders. Your bar staff can directly use flake ice with margaritas, mojitos, and LITs.
Many blended drinks like daiquiris can take time to blend. And while blending ice cubes, most blenders and blender blades get damaged. But with flake ice, you can serve delicious daiquiris in a hassle-free manner. Flake ice is also perfect for blenders or processors.
Flake ice is also used to serve and store seafood. Some also serve oysters with flake ice. In oyster bars, oysters are served with flake ice and rock salt. Flake ice keeps the oysters fresh for consumption over long periods, perfect for seafood places or oyster bars.
With versatile flake ice makers, you can serve delicious cocktails, store processed meat, serve oysters, and help heal sprains. Most flake ice machines can deliver 50 to 1000 pounds of flake ice per day; opt for a flake ice maker that suits your business needs.