If you’re thinking that the only difference between clear ice and cloudy ice is the way it looks, think again! The cloudy appearance of some ice cubes is actually an indication that tiny air bubbles were trapped during the freezing process. These tiny bubbles affect more that than just the look of the ice, though.
Clear Ice vs. White Ice: A Showdown
Perfectly clear ice is the standard for high-end bars and restaurants because it looks great, but it’s also worth pursuing in your home as well. Here are three ways clear ice cubes are totally superior to cloudy, home freezer ice.
1. Clear Ice Is Pure Water
When water freezes around those air bubbles, the cloudy ice cubes are holding a lot of extra oxygen. When a carbonated drink like your favorite soda hits the ice, it reacts with the gases in the soda and causes an explosion of extra fizz. If you’ve ever been irritated by having to wait for the fizz to die down, only to discover your glass was less than half full, cloudy ice is the culprit — and clearer ice is likely to boost your quality of life if you don’t like waiting.
2. Clear Ice Cubes Melt More Slowly
All that trapped air causes white ice to melt faster than clear ice, too. A perfectly solid cube packed with only water molecules can maintain its low temperature longer — unlike cloudy ice, which reaches room temperatures faster thanks to the air bubbles. Slower melting means you get to enjoy a cold drink for longer, without worrying about it getting watered down before you get a chance to finish it.
3. Clear Ice Tastes Great
Whether you make it with tap water or distilled water, clear ice just tastes better. Because it’s pure water without the extra air, it doesn’t pick up any “off” flavors from your home freezer the way that cloudy ice can. That’s a big bonus for fans of mixed drinks — or anyone who just wants their cold one to taste exactly like it should.
How to Get Clear Ice at Home
The most reliable way to get clearer ice cubes at home is to try directional freezing. With a standard ice cube tray, ice freezes from the outside in. This pushes any air bubbles and impurities toward the center, where it is eventually trapped. To keep ice clear, you want the ice to freeze in one direction so that impurities are pushed out of the ice.
To do this, you can make a giant block of ice in a lidless cooler inside your freezer. The trick is to remove the ice before it’s completely frozen, so that air and impurities are in the bottom layer of water and not in your ice. You’ll have to use a knife to score a cut cubes with this method.
Of course, the easiest way to get clear ice cubes without the hassle is to use an ice machine. The NewAir Countertop Clear Ice Maker automatically makes clear ice just like a commercial ice machine, but in a compact, attractive home appliance that fits right in your kitchen or home bar. It works by passing water over ultra-cold coils to remove air bubbles and keep ice clear.
Is clear ice worth the effort? For home mixologists and aspiring gourmands, the improved flavor in your drinks is a big reason to make the switch. Whether you like to savor your favorite Scotch or just kick back with a cold soda pop, once you experience the difference that clear ice makes, you’ll never want to go back!
Countertop Clear Ice Maker | NewAir ClearIce40
- • Creates restaurant-quality transparent ice
- • Produces up to 40 pounds of ice per day
- • One-button operation for ease of use