The Complete Guide to Using Ice in Restaurants


From hot D.C. summer days to cold Maryland winters, using ice in restaurants is never out of season. No matter what type of foodservice you operate, ice is an essential component to more than just a cocktail on the rocks. Is your restaurant using ice to its fullest potential?

Although ice is inexpensive, it’s extremely valuable to foodservice operations. In fact, ice is the number one most consumed food, and ice has to be both created and transported to where it is used. Let’s take a look at three main methods for using ice whether it’s in a restaurant, school, college, university, corporate dining, or any other Virginia or Maryland foodservice operation.


Let’s start with an understated use for ice in restaurants: cooking. Cooking techniques like blanching, followed by submersing vegetables in an ice bath, maintains the food’s crispness, color, and texture. Preserving the crunch of a vegetable will help certain dishes really stand out.


Running a seafood restaurant, or need to show off the catch of the day in your full-service D.C. establishment? From Eastern Oysters to Rockfish, displaying seafood on ice not only keeps the food fresh, but it’s a visually appealing way to draw customers towards your seafood offerings.


This last method is an obvious one, but far too often, restaurants don’t take their ice seriously. Different types of beverages require different types of ice. Ice for soda fountains matches best with nugget ice, while cocktails are better with large ice cubes.


Selecting the right type of ice is also nice because it defines each.  We can also let them know that their sales rep can provide a sample chips for each vendors ice styles.  There is a pouch of about 4 molds for the different manufacturers of ice machines, and their patterns and advantages esc.

The right ice needs the right ice machine.

No matter what style of ice your restaurant needs to function on a daily basis, you need a commercial ice machine that is reliable, efficient, and perfectly suited for your Virginia, Maryland or Washington, D.C. foodservice operation.

To learn more about which type of ice is best for you, contact Alto-Hartley for sample chips for each vendor’s ice style. Ready to purchase or lease an ice machine for your foodservice operation? We can help with the financing. Click below to get started.