Thursday, September 28, 2006

Ice Primer

A great question from one of our YouTube viewers:

Q: Why do you use so much ice in your drinks? Is there a significant purpose? I always ask for light ice.

A: Absolutely -- several reasons. First and most importantly, filling the glass with ice ensures the drink will be served at the right temperature: cold! Secondly, bar recipes assume a full glass of ice, so using less ice means there will be more mixer than intended (and no, the bartender won't add more liquor to "balance things out"). Third, light ice actually results in a more watered-down drink. The same thing happens in your cooler when you're camping: put in lots of ice and it all stays nice and cold and frozen; don't use enough and the ice you have put in can't hold temperature and melts.

Finally, and this is more of a consumer alert tip, when you ask for light ice most bartenders assume you're trying to get a stronger drink (which, again, will never happen) and might actually pour short just to mess with you. Almost every bartender I've ever worked with does this and will never admit it to you. I don't agree with it because you should be able to get your drink any way you want it, but in reality most people don't have any real aversion to ice and are just trying to outsmart the bartender which they understandably react to badly.

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