Here at Deco, there are few things we love more than a good, stiff drink. And if the place serving the drink is doing it right, they’ll make sure the ice in it is top-notch. Chris knows what you’re thinking: “It’s ice — what does it matter?” We’re talking cool shapes, infused with all kinds of different things.
If you’ve had a cocktail around South Florida, chances are Mixology Ice in Hialeah helped put it together.
Carlos Leal, owner: “Right now, you can see it at Four Seasons Hotel. You can see it at Faena, Soho Beach House, Finka Table & Tap.”
That’s just to name a few. This place is the little-known secret to the unsung hero of any great drink.
Carlos Leal: “Our ice brings a different experience. It doesn’t mess around with the taste of the cocktail, and at the same time, the melting rate is so low that it will chill your cocktail but it won’t water it down.”
It also looks great — infused with anything from orange peels to flowers, cut as cubes or spheres.
It’s icy cold perfection. The process is not quick.
Carlos Leal: “The first thing that we do is filter the water with five stages.”
Next is turning the water into 300-pound blocks.
Carlos Leal: “It takes five days, two inches daily, to freeze the water in only one direction, from the bottom to the top.”
And then comes the ice chef, who trims the blocks down in a freezer that, out of context, looks like a room in a haunted house.
Sawing the ice is a work of art. Perfecting it is all about trial and error.
Carlos Leal: “You find out 1,000 ways to go wrong about something until you make it right.”
The freezer, by the way, is kept at 20 degrees Fahrenheit.
Carlos Leal: “That’s Alaska temperature … in Hialeah.”
The finished product is a thing of beauty — clear and flavorless. But most importantly, it really brings your drink together.
Carlos Leal: “The good-looking ice isn’t just about the looks, it’s also about the quality of the ice.”
Want some fancy ice to make your own fancy drinks? Mixology Ice has you covered. You can order from them online.
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