Icesurance Blog

Ice Equipment Sales & Leasing | Phone: (800) 999-5616

Icesurance Blog - Ice Equipment Sales & Leasing | Phone: (800) 999-5616

About

I have been working at ICEsurance for a year and half. I quickly learned that when interested in purchasing or leasing an ice machine ICEsurance is the way to go. We offer our customers a full spectrum of ice machine options. Customers can choose from: classic cubes, cocktail ice, nuggets and flaked ice. Not only do we offer ice machines but, we also offer soft serve machines and beer systems.

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Here are my most recent posts

Leasing, Financing or Owning a Frozen Yogurt Machine is Easy and Profitable

icesurance-soft-serve-machines-strawThe sun is shining and the weather is warming up. You are in the mood for something refreshing but can’t decide what. Frozen Yogurt, commonly known as Fro-Yo would really hit the spot. Maybe just a little in a cup or some in a cone. Strawberry, Vanilla, Chocolate, Mango, the choices are endless. Whether you are going to grab a bite to eat in a restaurant, lay at the beach or attend a sporting event you will most likely see Frozen Yogurt as an option.

Why did Fro-Yo become so popular? Well, we at Icesurance think it’s because it is delicious. It can be mixed and matched to your own preference. And who doesn’t like to try a new topping every now and then.  At Icesurance we offer you the option to lease, own, or finance a Frozen Yogurt machine. You can decide how many handles you want and if you want the option to make a swirl. Who doesn’t want a swirl? That’s my question, a little bit of 2 flavors.

Frozen Yogurt satisfies everyone’s cravings. Kids love being able to create their own mini masterpieces and adults love to indulge with something sweet but not to over the top. Frozen Yogurt does not discriminate on the time of day either. It’s a great snack, dessert or treat for any time of day. Fro- Yo is also a great and easy way to generate business and income.

To find out which Frozen Yogurt machine works best for your business please contact us at Icesurance. One of our representative will be happy to assist you. Don’t forget the option for a frozen drink machine too. As the summer approaches restaurants love to offer different drink specials, such as Blood Orange Margaritas or Strawberry Daiquiris. Here at Icesurance we can help make your business truly complete. Contact us today at 800-999-5616.

Common Problems Found in an Unmaintained Ice Machine

A good working ice machine is a necessity for restaurants, bars, hotels, food production facilities, and any business serving a large amount of customers. However, ice machines do occasionally run into maintenance problems and require repairs.

If you find that you are frequently coming across issues that interfere with your ice production, purchasing a higher quality ice machine or leasing an ice machine that comes with a maintenance plan would be options worth considering. The following are a few of the problems that can occur if your machine is not serviced regularly:

  • If the temperature of the water flowing into the ice machine is not cold enough, it will take longer to freeze, throwing off the machine’s freeze cycle and causing a number of problems. This could cause the ice to form differently and not be as clear as it should be.
  • Leaking water can also affect the production of the ice machine. Depending on where the leak is coming from can cause your machine to run into error codes or ice cubes may not form properly.
  • Electrical problems can also cause ice machine to malfunction. This could be due to bad circuitry in the machine or poor connections in the wires leading to the machine.

Many ice machine problems can be avoided by buying the right ice machine for your location. A few of the top brands include Ice-O-Matic, Kold-Draft, and Hoshizaki. All three of these brands are available from ICEsurance, where we take care of and provide our customers with only the best and highest quality ice machines. ICEsurance also offers leasing programs where we cover all maintenance of the ice machine, 7 days a week.  Contact ICEsurance today to find out more about our ice machines available.

4 Reasons to Get an Ice-O-Matic Ice Machine

An ice machine can be found in most restaurants and food production facilities. The machines make large quantities of ice very quickly, and for most restaurants, this is all that is required of an ice machine. To ensure the best ice machine, however, all restaurants need to consider Ice-O-Matic machines. Ice-O-Matic makes a variety of ice machines that make ice in different shapes and sizes, but for your everyday needs. The following are some of the benefits of buying an Ice-O-Matic ice machine:

  • Ice-O-Matic offers an option of Nugget ice or crushed ice. This is very popular at some fast food restaurants because it is really easy to chew. For those who prefer eating their ice over enjoying their drink, nugget ice is the way to go.
  • Whether a soda, a mixed drink, or simply a fruity beverage, crushed ice will make it taste watery and unsatisfying in a matter of minutes. Cubed ice, on the other hand, will not melt as quickly as nugget ice, and will not dilute a drink as quickly. Yet it will cool your drink to the perfect temperature in very little time.
  • Ice-O-Matic ice machines are used by the best. Starbucks iced lattes, Costco Cokes, and most sit-down restaurants and bars. This isn’t just because they are inexpensive and efficient, but because they are the best.
  • Have you ever stuck the straw into what you thought was the bottom of the cup only to find that the ice has clumped together, blocking you from reaching the last few sips of your drink? This is a minor annoyance, but why deal with this when you don’t have to?

If you want to learn how to get an Ice-O-Matic ice machine for your restaurant please contact Icesurance today to find out how we can help. Leasing and Financing options are available.

Why the Appearance of Ice Matters

Ice is an important and often underestimated ingredient in a cocktail. However, it is not only the type or cut of ice that is important, but the appearance as well. This may seem like a subtle and superficial aspect of a good drink, but you would be surprised to know how much the appearance of your ice matters. Not simply the cut or the size, but the clarity of the ice can be an indication of its quality. The following are a few of the factors that affect the appearance of your ice.

  • Style. Cubed and nugget ice are the two most common types of ice for drinks, but are popular for different reasons. Nugget ice will cool a drink must faster than an ice cube, but also tends to dilute a drink more quickly. Cubed ice, because it has a higher volume to surface area ratio, will melt more slowly, cooling the drink at a slow, steady pace and not diluting it as quickly as cracked or crushed ice.

    Shaved ice, like the ice found in snow cones, can also be used in drinks, but is more commonly found in slushies or frozen cocktails. Some restaurants and bars use ice balls, a spherical version of an ice cube.
  • Drink choice. One thing to consider when choosing your style of ice is the drink being served. For whiskies, scotches, and other straight liquor, cubed ice is usually preferable. This is a case in which appearance trumps function; not only does cubed ice appear more traditional in a glass of liquor, but it also cools the drink more slowly.

    Some liquors benefit from a small amount of dilution, but the levels of dilution caused by cracked ice would take away from the taste of the drink. Cocktails, on the other hand, in which the drink is best served very cold and dilution is less detrimental to the taste, would be better served by adding crushed ice.
  • Clarity of the ice. Clear ice cubes don’t just look better than cloudy ones – they are often of a higher quality. There are a few factors that contribute to cloudy ice, the two most common being trapped air and impurities in the water. One reason why restaurant ice is so clear is because it is made from water that has been purified and distilled and contains fewer minerals than typical tap water.

    The other reason is because restaurant ice is frozen slowly under pressure, eliminating all air bubbles as it freezes. This means the ice is denser and cleaner, melting more slowly and introducing only fresh, clean water into your drinks.
  • Aesthetics. There is simply something more appealing about a glass of scotch with one or two large ice cubes than a glass with a handful of cracked ice. Perhaps it’s tradition or the influence of the media, or perhaps it’s the way the light reflects in the glass, leaving the drink looking clear and sharp. Whatever the reason, the appearance of ice in a drink undeniably affects the drinker’s experience.

To ensure your restaurant, hotel, bar or nightclub has the best ice to present to your customers and contact Icesurance today.

Why Is Flake Ice a Good Choice for Seafood Presentation?

Flake ice is just one of the many different types of ice used for keeping drinks, produce, and other food items cold. It has become especially popular for keeping fish cool. Whenever you go to a fresh fish market, the fish are laid on a bed of flaked ice. There are several reasons for this, not least of which is the fact that fish stored in flake ice will remain in top condition for up to five days.

fresh seafood displayed on flake ice

Another reason why flake ice is so popular for the preservation of fish is because of its availability. Flake ice is easy to buy or to make yourself, if you choose. While flake ice used to refer to any type of small, irregularly shaped ice, the term is also used interchangeably with “scale ice.” This is the type of ice used most often for cooling fish; flake ice is made commercially by freezing water in large flat pieces and then breaking up that water with a blade. The ice is usually made on large drums, where thin films of water are poured and frozen before being cooled to well below 0 degrees Celsius. The extremely cold temperatures make the ice brittle, which causes it to shatter in to small flat pieces when broken by a blade.

Fresh seafood onice displayThe second reason for the popularity of flake ice is that it is highly portable and packable. Flake ice, because it is stored in small chunks, packs down better than block ice, the most common alternative for cooling fish. More efficient packing makes it easier to load and transport, and the smaller size means that it can be shifted more easily when needed. It can also be loaded and unloaded quickly, and placing the ice under and around fresh fish takes very little time.

Flake ice has a remarkably large cooling capacity, due to the small size of the individual pieces and to the super low temperatures to which it has been cooled. Because the pieces of ice are small and flat, there is a greater amount of surface area exposed to the fish, and thus the ice cools the fish more quickly than the lower surface area of block ice. It also tends to cool more quickly than granular ice or crushed ice, and while its small size causes it to melt quickly, the melted water tends to freeze into a thin skin, slowing the melting and further loss of the ice.

Finally, flake ice can keep seafood cool and fresh for many days. It is most often used on fishing boats, where its quick cooling capacity is ideal for cooling the fish immediately after being caught. Flake ice is most effective in bringing the fish’s temperature down from the warmer ocean temperature to the freezing temperatures needed for storage and transport.

It is also important that flake ice be made from fresh water, especially before being used in stores. For this reason, an ice machine is a popular choice for making smaller quantities of flake ice that can be used at retail locations in private displays. Contact ICEsurance for more information about flake ice machines.

Make Your Restaurant Memorable with a Soft Serve Machine!

Now that the summer months are in full swing, the temperature has continued to raise. Adding a soft serve machine to your line of available food products is a great move for the summer months. Whether it’s a burger joint or a sit down restaurant, having the option of soft serve for dessert is good business. Children are often the pickiest of eaters, but soft serve is always a win for kids. Be sure to provide colored sprinkles!

Including soft serve ice cream, frozen yogurt, smoothies, and milkshakes to your summer line up is a quick way to increase sales and provide customers with the kinds of frozen treats they want during the heat of summer. Icesurance makes acquiring a soft serve machine simple and hassle-free. So what are some of the benefits of leasing a soft serve machine with Icesurance?

The Benefits of Leasing a Soft Serve Machine

Servicing: Icesurance provides a full service product when leasing a soft serve machine. What this means for you is a machine that is installed and serviced by Icesurance 365 days a year, all for a low monthly cost.

Flexible Leases: Icesurance offers the ability to upgrade or downgrade equipment based on a business’ changing needs. Beyond that, if you ever decide you want to purchase the machine outright, we offer an option to buy with lease payments applied to the total cost.

Avoiding Big Expenditure: Dropping a bulk payment on a machine you may or may not end up wanting to keep isn’t smart business. Not to mention the repair costs and maintenance must come out-of-pocket. Leasing allows business owners the choice to make adjustments to their equipment, as well as provides upkeep and maintenance within the bounds of the leasing agreement.

Experienced Professionals: How much do you know about a soft serve machine? As a restaurant owner, your focus should be on providing quality foods to your customers, not on knowing the ins and outs of current soft serve ice cream machine technology. With a leased soft serve machine, Icesurance professionals help you find the best machine for your particular needs, and make sure it is kept in good working order.

Ease of Use: Icesurance makes implementing a new soft serve machine easy and smooth. There’s no huge up-front payment, no figuring out what part goes where or why the machine isn’t producing anything resembling ice cream or frozen yogurt. With an Icesurance leased soft serve machine, any issues are handled by our professionals who have extensive experience with these machines.

Leasing a soft serve machine from Icesurance is a straight-forward process. There is no quick buy option and no shopping cart to click. The fastest way to get the soft serve equipment you need is to call and speak with an Icesurance professional directly. Reduce confusion on what type of equipment will work best for your needs and avoid the possibility of receiving a machine that isn’t right for your restaurant by contacting us today!

How Ice Can Affect Your Enjoyment of Your Drink

Putting ice in our drinks has become so commonplace in America that we don’t think twice about whether or not the drink needs it. Sodas from fast food restaurants are almost expected to be three quarters full of ice, and some restaurants have even begun marketing their ice. A culture of ice appreciation has risen up within the American masses, and yet people still fail to truly appreciate and understand that some ice is better than others, especially in specific drinks.

Some drinks we know are best without any ice at all, such as red wine. Other drinks like soda or juice are good with any ice, because they are best served cold and don’t lose a significant amount of taste or flavor when diluted by a small amount of ice. Some of the more expensive drinks, such as cocktails and liquors, benefit from just the right type and amount of ice.

There are many benefits to adding ice to your beverage. Some of these are dependent upon the type of drink.

  • Ice cools a drink: Most people prefer a cooled drink versus room temperature.
  • Crushed ice is fun to eat: Part of the culture of ice appreciation is a surprising interest in chewing ice. Many people chew crushes ice or nugget ice on a regular basis to keep their mouths busy.
  • Ice cubes cool a drink slowly: For people who wish to enjoy their drink over a long period of time, ice cubes are the perfect option. They cool the drink slowly and without diluting it too much or too quickly.
  • Large ice cubes look good: When you picture a scotch on the rocks, you do not imagine it filled with crushed ice from the local fast food joint or deli. A scotch with one to three classic cubes of ice is what we have come to expect.
  • Ice will dilute your drink: For certain drinks this is a preferred, as some liquors benefit from slight dilution.
  • The wrong ice can detract from the taste of a beverage: Daiquiris and margaritas served with large ice cubes are simply not as good as those served with crushed or flaked ice.

When buying a drink at an upscale bar, take note of how the bartenders serve the drinks. Many bars are making special efforts to serve the best ice with their drinks, and the effort shows in the quality of their beverages. Scotches are served with ice that has been recently frozen to a very low temperature and cut into large, perfectly shaped cubes. Slushy cocktails are served with cold, finely shaved ice that cools the drink quickly but doesn’t melt too fast.

There is a perfect ice for every drink, and at Icesurance we have the right commercial ice machine to meet all of your customers’ expectations.

Knowing Your Choices for Different Kinds of Ice

There are many different types of ice and shapes of ice. Whether dining out at a restaurant or ordering a cocktail at a bar, the type of ice used in your beverage means a lot. The difference between a good drink and a great drink may not be the liquid in your beverage, but the ice that accompanies it!

Nugget Ice

Perhaps the greatest thing about nugget ice is its versatility. Nugget ice is used in everything from beverages to food displays. While nugget ice is small in size in comparison to crushed ice, nugget ice has a shape that is fun and whimsical. Nugget ice is also chewable and is the form of ice that creates the most elaborate cocktails.

Nugget ice isn’t perfect for every beverage. Its smaller size means it melts faster than large cubes. When using in beverages, be sure to use nugget ice where dilution will not disrupt taste.

Half Cube Ice

Half cube ice is perfect for blended drinks because it is small and breaks down easily, creating a smooth, easy to drink product. The ice packs tightly into a glass and too much ice can easily dilute beverages. Half cube ice can boost profits because drinkers get more ice in relation to liquid. The ice quickly cools beverages and is ideal for soft drinks or iced coffees.

Half cube ice makers come in several models. There are standalone machines, under counter machines, and combination ice machine and bin units.

Full Cube Ice

Full cube ice offers an old-fashioned, classic look that will be noticed by guests. Full cubes are excellent when making cocktails or drinking a spirit. The benefit of cubes is the ability to stack them so that the ice reaches from bottom to top, cooling the drink without requiring a lot of ice.

Machine Brands and Ice Types

There are many brands of icemakers, and Icesurance carries many reliable machines. Each brand name carries several types of ice makers that vary by size and model.

How To Choose The Best Ice Machine Vendor for your Business

Selecting a reliable ice machine supplier is crucial to the successful management of a restaurant, night club, hotel, or bar. The satisfaction of your customers depends on the quality of the products and services you offer, and this should be a major consideration as you make long-term investments in your equipment. Locating a reputable vendor to meet your ice machine needs doesn’t have to be difficult if you search out the answers to the following questions:

Do They Deliver to My Area?

Before deciding whether to work with an ice machine vendor, the most basic (yet important) question to ask is whether they will be able to service your location. You can find local ice vendors by performing a search by searching the internet or by getting referrals from other business owners.

Can They Service ALL Your Needs?

It is important to choose a supplier that can meet all of your business needs. Whether you are looking for cubed ice, flaked ice, nugget ice, or a specialty machine for soft serve or frozen drinks, talk with your potential vendor to find out what products are available.

How Do Their Prices Compare?

Although quality is often worth a higher price, smart business owners look for the best value, so they can invest their savings into running profitable enterprises. Compare the prices of potential ice machine vendors and ask about discounts for first-time buyers, multiple purchases, referrals, or other arrangements that could be mutually beneficial.

What Financing or Leasing Options are Available?

Perhaps you don’t yet have the capital, or you are not yet ready to purchase an ice machine outright. Does your vendor offer direct or third-party financing? If so, ask about interest rates and read the terms carefully. The same goes if you are considering leasing equipment. Make sure you understand your rights and responsibilities as a buyer or as a lessee before signing anything.

What Are My Options if My Equipment Needs Service?

Discovering that your ice machine isn’t working – sometimes right in the middle of a busy period – is never a pleasant prospect. If you are leasing your ice equipment, your relationship with your supplier should go beyond equipment drop-off and a check in the mail every month. Choose a vendor that provides quick and reliable service in case of a malfunction.

What Are Their Customers Saying?

The opinions of other business owners should be a guide as you consider any potential vendors. Take a look at reviews posted on sites such as Google+, Yellowpages and Superpages to pinpoint any warning signs. Talk to your local peers to hear their success and horror stories about suppliers they’ve worked with.

Here at ICEsurance, we want to help you make the right choice for your business. We have offices on both the East and West Coasts to better serve our customers. Contact us today to learn more about our high-quality, warranty-backed products and our world-class customer service.

Julie Reiner of Mixtress Consulting Recommends ICEsurance

Julie Reiner has been elevating the cocktail scene in NYC for fifteen years, most notably with the opening of the Flatiron Lounge (2003), the Pegu Club (2005), Brooklyn’s Clover Club (2008), and Lani Kai (2010).  As co-owner and beverage director of the Flatiron Lounge, Reiner drew much of her inspiration from her native Hawaii by utilizing the freshest fruits and premier quality spices & spirits available in her original cocktails.  Julie’s beverage program at the Clover Club is highly focused on classics, and furthers her signature style of superior quality and green market ingredients. Lani Kai (recently sold), featured a modern tropical décor, Pacific Rim plates, and a more tropical interpretation of Julie’s cocktail styling. Julie’s consulting company, Mixtress Consulting, helps to create top-notch beverage programs and cocktails for restaurants, bars, resorts, and spirits companies.

View a photo gallery of Julie’s signature cocktails.

Flatiron, Pegu and Clover opened to rave reviews and have enjoyed a top ranking among the best bars in the world.  In 2009, Clover Club was honored with the award for “Best New Cocktail Lounge in the World” at Tales of the Cocktail and this year took home the award for “Best American Cocktail Bar”, “Best High Volume Bar”, and Julie was personally awarded “Best Bar Mentor”.  Clover Club has also been listed in Drinks Internationals 50 best bars in the world two years in a row.

Julie’s recipes have been featured in The New York Times, New York Magazine, Food & Wine, Imbibe, The Wall Street Journal, Esquire, Playboy, Gourmet Magazine, Food Arts, Bon Appetit, GQ, Fortune, Wine Enthusiast, O Magazine, Crains, Time Out NY and Time Out London, The London Times & Wine & Spirits.  Julie has also been featured on The Today Show, The Food Network, the Cooking Channel, Martha Stewart Radio, CNBC, LXTV, and the Fine Living network.   In 2011, Julie was honored with a James Beard nomination for spirits professional of the year.