Ice, ice baby

As the world’s population grows unabated, the next major crisis will surely be water. But to listen to DPaul, you’d think it was ice.

For him, a drink without ice is not only unpalatable but unfathomable. When we prepare for parties, while I fret over whether there’s enough food or booze, he invariably questions whether there’s enough ice. No fan of hot beverages, he only acquired the taste for espresso while on our first trip to Italy, and even then only because there was no ice-cold Coke at the ready when the rest of us would have our morning shot or stop for a little pick-me-up in the afternoon. He’s even been known to slide the occasional cube into a glass of red wine to take the temperature down a skosh.

I have always attributed this to his Southern heritage, imagining him reaching for sweating glasses of sweet tea whilst baking under the Kentuckian sun. In fact, his mother recounts growing up in Kentucky, receiving a chunk of ice from the ice delivery man (as in, for the ice box), and that being the best treat one could hope for.

Myself, I managed to inherit the Italian propensity for room-temperature beverages and, with the sole exception of sugary soft drinks (which I seldom drink), prefer no ice at all. So it took my some time to cave in to DPaul’s desire for an ice machine. (Our fridge, while capable of making ice, is positioned far from any water source.) Ultimately he chose an Emerson ice maker, which now sits in our laundry room, cranking out batch after batch of adorable thimbles of ice. Crisis averted.

Icebucket2This ice bucket is one of the items I retrieved when we went back to clean out my father’s house. I remember it from my grandparents’ house; my aunt thinks it may have been a wedding gift to them. But more than just a charming example of mid-century modern home décor accessories, its form truly meets function. After a cocktail event last year, we opened it the following morning, realizing we had forgotten to empty it — yet we still found most of the ice perfectly intact. They just don’t make ’em like they used to anymore.



Serious Eats rounds up some interesting ice shapes.

YumSugar loves on some slick ice buckets.

Are you an ice snob?

  • Michael

    And here I was about to harangue you for not posting more…
    I’m with you on the ice deal. I prefer my water ice-free, don’t drink much soda, and when I do, it is chilled without all that ice taking up space in my glass.
    I tend to look at ice solely as material for chilling my martinis.

  • i’ve learned to love martinis with ice chips floating on top… meantime, I like water room temp. meantime, that’s one classy ice bucket.

  • such a lovely, poetic stem/handle. I really hate my ice bucket now.

  • Did you happen to notice the antique ice bucket we gave to Cam last week for his birthday? (Not as adorable as yours, weep, weep.)

  • I’ve learned to like room temp or drink out of the bottle b/c we have no working icemaker in our home – for parties we buy it by the bag. Ironically though, I AM an ice snob – I hate the bagged ice that comes in irregular shards, and if I could I would totally buy one of those ridiculously expensive machines that makes perfect cubes. In the meantime, I’ve actually found a gas station nearby that sells ice in cubes (when it isn’t frozen together in one big chunk) so I stop by there to buy some when I need it.

  • Too funny – I freak out about whether or not we have enough ice when we have people over too. Our icemaker is just so slow sometimes!

  • Sean–you forgot to include the recipe for ice!! 🙂 Seriously, though, love the ice bucket!

  • Sharon

    We have had one of these ice makers since 2005. It runs 24/7 and has since we got it, other than power failures and moving it. I love it and it paid for itself very quickly at $1.40 a bag for ice.
    I like my water room temp and my booze icy cold on lots and lots of rocks!

  • I love that everyone has an opinion on ice! I thought it was such a mundane topic. 🙂
    Cookie: No, I did not notice it! I shall have to raid their house and check it out.
    Alice: Next time you’re in town, you MUST go to Heaven’s Dog (Charles Phan’s new spot) and get drinks at the bar. They have all these crazy custom sized and shaped ice for their cocktails, and have even given over something like 1/4 of the kitchen to freezers that are isolated from other refrigeration, to keep them pure in flavor.
    Rebecca: Damn! I knew I left something out.
    Sharon: Yes, it was ultimately the economics that won me over. And convenience.

  • What a stunning ice bucket, indeed! Lucky boys!!!
    And, the ice cubes are pretty chill, too!
    ~ Paula

  • EB

    Gorgeous! I want it!!!

  • What a gorgeous ice bucket!
    Funny, the man and I are opposites ice-wise too. He can’t get enough ice into a drink and was so happy when we moved to a place with an ice maker. I like a just a little bit of ice or none at all.
    He gets nervous in Europe (or any other place where you have to beg for more than a cube or two!)