5 different forms of ice

How to choose the proper ice machine

If you are in a business that relies on ice, you no doubt need an ice machine to make ice for you. However, the type of ice machine that is right for your business will vary greatly depending on what exactly you’re serving. There are several different types of ice machines and each produces a different kind of ice.

If you are serving iced drinks, mixed drinks, or bagging ice to be sold or dispensed, then you will probably need a cubed ice machine. This type of machine is perfect for bars, bagging facilities, and many restaurants. Ice-o-Matic, Manitowoc, and Hoshizaki, and Scotsman all make variations of these machines. All of these produce the rhomboid ice cubes found in most bars and restaurants, with the exception of Hoshizaki’s cube, which is round. These type of ice machines offer a higher water to ice ratio, allowing for a slower melt, decreasing production.

Another good choice for those in the bar or restaurant industry is the commercial half cube ice machine. This is found in many bars, restaurants, and convenience stores. The cube produced is ideal for glasses of water, soda, and iced teas and juices. Because of it’s similarity to the full cube ice, the half-cube ice is ideal for the same type of businesses. Scotsman and Manitowoc call them half dice ice machines, Hoshizaki serves it up in a crescent cube ice machine and Ice-O-Matic produces a half cube commercial ice machine. These are the best selling types of commercial ice machines.

If you are serving fountain beverages, specialty soft drinks, or are in an industry where people might chew ice, then the commercial nugget ice maker is the choice for you. This type of ice is perfect for medical facilities. Though the names for the ice varies, Manitowoc, Ice-O-Matic, Hoshizaki, and Follett all produce ice machines of this type. One specific fast-food restaurant, Sonic Drive-In, uses this type of ice in its drinks. The restaurants, in some locations, even bag the ice for its diners to take home. It is also useful for those who serve up the salad and produce bars.

If you’re in the business of serving up chilled foods on a buffet, or in a fish or a meat market, then a commercial flake ice maker is the choice for you. Commercial flake ice makers are also ideal for bars serving up chilled blended drinks as well as providing chewable ice for institutions where choking might be of concern. Ice-O-Matic and Manitowoc both call them flake ice machines while Scotsman calls them flaked ice makers. Hoshizaki names them flakes commercial ice machines. Follett also appears in this category with their flake ice maker.

If you are a high-end bar or eatery, where presentation is key to your business, then a commercial gourmet ice maker should be taken into consideration. The perfect water-to-ice ratio produces a crystal clear cube that is the most effective at cooling beverages. The Manitowoc ice maker produces an octagonal cube while Ice-O-Matic produces a cylindrical cube. Because these cubes are larger and solid, fewer cubes are needed to get the job of cooling a drink done.

No matter your business, selecting the right kind of ice machine is key. The right kind will depend on exactly what type of business you are in and what types of foods or drinks you are serving. There are many manufacturers and different types of ice, all of which can meet your needs as a business.



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