Ice, Ice Baby

Ice is one of the most overlooked aspects of most cocktails. Ice nerds such as Camper English of San Francisco have made it a somewhat obsession to create the perfect clear ice cube. On his website, Alcademics; he has painstakingly tabulated his endeavours in the search but that’s not what we are going to look into in this article. This is about flavour.

With the myriad of ice cube trays on the market from 1″ by 1″ cubes to 2″ x 2″ ice globes, the Star Wars series and various incarnations of novelty cube trays there is no shortage of choices.   The selection is endless and gives the at home bartender an amazing opportunity to create a new, fun way to entertain over cocktails.

Ice cubes add dilution and chill while lengthening the drink, further chilling it and making it more complex. Flavour ice cubes by freezing juice, tea, syrup flavored water, even smoked water. The key to creating a cocktail that is enhanced by the ice cubes, changing and evolving while you are drinking it. if you would like the ice cube to melt faster, add ten percent simple syrup (2:1 ratio) which will reduce the melting temp but keep in mind that the cocktail that you pour over the cubes will need to start off more sour and slowly become a deeper, sweeter cocktail.

Don’t stop with regular cubes, you can also take the cubes and crush them; creating a julep variation with a local tea and fruit spin creates a completely different cocktail with the same amount of prep needed to create the classic. Freeze Silk Road Summer Shangri La tea into cubes, crush them using a commercial crusher or a Lewis bag (if you can’t find a Lewis bag, an old pillow case or tea towel will work) build your julep the way you would classically and stir.


Shangri La Julep

1 1/2 oz Bourbon

1/2 oz Suze Liqueur

8 mint leaves

1/3 oz simple syrup

Silk Road Shangri La Tea crushed ice


Place mint, liquors and syrup in a julep mug or old fashion glass, add flavoured crushed ice and stir. Add more ice and mint sprig garnish.



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one of the most recognized bartenders in his homeland of Australia at the time, and relocated here for love with the city’s honest and unpretentious food and drinks (and for his lovely now-wife). In his years here, Shawn has ...

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