There's a Right Kind of Ice for Everyone
Ice is a lot like the beach. Here in Florida, we have so many different options ranging from the trendy sites of South Beach to the lazy days at Fort DeSoto. Each one is right for a certain type of occasion and can provide a specific experience.
Ice is no different. Flaked ice is great for seafood displays. Chewable ice has a cult following in convenience stores. Cocktail ice should bring out the best in your cocktails. And each type of Florida foodservice operation should consider a certain type of ice.
Let's review six different types of operations as we search for the right ice for everyone:
Pearl Ice is the peoples' ice. Voted as "America's Favorite Ice" in multiple, independent surveys, having the right type of ice in your convenience store beverage program can mean the difference between bringing the customer in from a gas fill up to having the pay at the pump and never enter the store. Ice-O-Matic's Pearl Ice machines can help. Entice customers to enter the store on hot, Florida days with the perfect refreshment -- chilled by the perfect, chewable ice.
Ice machines in K-12 school cafeterias or on college campuses can serve multiple purposes. Beverage chilling, food prep, and even icing injuries from P.E. are all included on this list. Keep in mind that machines located in a school cafeteria that are used in food prep will require more frequent cleaning, so ice machines that make cleaning easy should be used. For beverage service, size your ice machine using an average of 1.5 pounds of ice per student.
Healthcare means one thing more than anything else -- safety. As it relates to ice, patients need the cleanest, most sanitary ice available, whether it be for consumption or for treatment. Machines that are easy to clean and can ensure sanitized ice are important, as are units that are touch-free to reduce the potential for the spread of germs. In general, each patient requires at least 10 pounds of ice daily.
HOTELS & HOSPITALITY
More than perhaps any type of operation on this list, hotels know the importance of ice. Because this is one area where ice machines are often used directly by the customers and guests, aesthetics and operation are also important. Sleek, modern designs, the ability to fit machines into tight spaces, diversified exhaust capabilities, and finger-proof dispensers are all great features in a hotel ice machine. Each guest requires roughly five pounds of ice each day.
The proverbial water cooler is much more than a water cooler. It should also include an ice machine. This is where people gather during a busy day for a quick refreshment, and ice can play an important role. Because office ice is typically consumed during the day and not at night, it's important to have a machine that will stop making ice when the bin is full. Compact counter machines can also be a great solution for tight spaces and office kitchens.
RESTAURANTS & BARS
Of course we were going to get to this type of operation. We all know restaurants and bars cannot operate without a good ice machine, so the question becomes what type of machine is right for your establishment? Are you looking to chill drinks, store produce, or display your stone crab claws? How much space do you have? Do you want to change the ventilation location based on the setup of your kitchen? All of these are questions a restaurant should consider when selecting an ice machine, and we're here to help!
Looking for the right type of ice? Check out our ice guide to learn more.