Ice, Ice Baby: Gleaming the City’s Best Cubes

Daniel's orchid ice.
Daniel’s orchid ice. Photo: Melissa Hom

Sure, it sounds funny when Eben Freeman tells us that Angel’s Share was “the first place I started to see ice.” What he means, of course, is that not until recently have the city’s mixologists been giving frozen water the attention it deserves. Twelve years ago, Freeman recalls, Angel’s Share used a hand-cranked grinder to make their crushed ice. When Milk and Honey opened, Sasha Petraske began making larger cubes from vintage trays. His bartenders still famously cut their ice from a large block before each night’s service. Recently, machines previously available only in Europe have brought clearer, colder, larger cubes (perfect for agitating a drink in the shaker and decreasing dilution in the glass), and some mixologists have started freezing everything from orchids to raspberries. Let’s take a look in the freezer, shall we?

Slideshow: Ice, Ice Baby