Lancashire Times
Weekend Edition
2:00 AM 16th July 2022

Are You Mixing Your Drinks Correctly?

Image by anncapictures from Pixabay
Image by anncapictures from Pixabay
With temperatures predicted to reach the 30's throughout this week and next, many Britons up and down the UK are planning to take advantage of the warm weather with at-home BBQs and garden parties.

The drinks experts at NIO Cocktails have compiled some top tips on incorporating ice into drinks to create the perfect cocktails to sip in the sun:

“Ice is an essential ingredient that too many overlook. Not only does it keep your drink at a chilled temperature, it also impacts the overall enjoyment, quality and taste of a beverage consumed in the sun.

“Adding the correct types of ice to your drinks - especially cocktails - will help to ensure that all ingredients bind together to create one, delicious mixture.”

What type of ice should be used?

Standard sized ice cubes, roughly 1 inch x 1 inch, are the most common types of ice used at home, as they fit easily into any type of glass. Ice cubes in this form work well for almost all cocktails and drinks as they have a large, thick surface which prevents them from melting too quickly in the warm sun.

To avoid ice melting too quickly in your drink as you enjoy warmer temperatures, larger ice cubes that measure 2 inches x 2 inches might make for a preferred option. Not only do they look impressive and professional, their larger surface area will also help keep your drink cooler for much longer. Larger ice cubes are also preferential if you don’t want to dilute your drink.

Crushed ice is a very popular choice for cocktails like Mojitos, Frozen Daiquiris or any other homemade concoctions popular at summer BBQs. The slushie-like consistency makes for the perfect accompaniment to an afternoon soaking up the rays, and the ultra-refreshing texture dilutes the drinks just enough so that spirits aren't too strong,

There are several ways you can prepare crushed ice at home to enjoy this weekend. The easiest way is by using a blender to crush down standard ice cubes with the addition of a tiny bit of water, although this does risk the potential of some cubes melting due to the heat of the motor. Alternatively, you can crush ice cubes by wrapping them up in a plastic bag, and using a rolling pin to crush them before adding them to your favourite drink.

To ensure your crushed ice remains the perfect consistency, once blended, pop back in the freezer for 30 minutes before serving.

How much ice is too much ice?

We recommend filling your glass with two thirds of standard ice cubes before pouring over your perfect cocktail. A general rule of thumb is that if your ice is floating, there’s too much drink and not enough ice, so a bit of trial and error may be needed to ensure the perfect ice-to -liquid ratio.

Want to make ice guaranteed to impress?

For those looking to seriously impress their house guests, an impressive hosting hack lies in the ability to create crystal clear ice.

Normal ice cubes made from cold tap water are frozen from all sides at the same time, and this results in uneven freezing, which makes for a frosty, uneven cube.

To make perfect ice cubes, hunt down a plastic tray that fits into your freezer and fill it up with 4 or 5 inches of warm (but not hot) water. Then place in the freezer without its lid and leave it for around 18-24 hours, or until several inches of the water have frozen. You’re looking to have some water left under the ice, as this is what prevents the ice from getting cloudy.

By using this method, you force the water to freeze directionally from the top down. This allows for ice to form perfect crystals as all of the dissolved air and particles end up in the water beneath the ice block. It’s then ready to be cut to shape and served when your drinks are prepared

The perfect accompaniment to ice

Here at NIO Cocktails, ice is a huge aspect of our ready-made cocktail offering as it’s the only ingredient needed to enjoy our range of cocktails to the fullest. Our name does stand for ‘Needs Ice Only’, let’s not forget!

And in celebration of all things summer, we have launched a range of limited-edition summer cocktails to complement our core range, and offer our customers more refreshing cocktails throughout the warmer months of July and August

Mango Margarita: Exotico Blanco Tequila meets mango liqueur -

Tea Sour: Real tea liqueur with a hit of lemon creates a new summer afternoon classic -

Roasted Amaretto Sour: Roasted amaretto, cocoa, coffee and cinnamon with a hit of lemon -