Kara Zorn on April 30, 2014 10 Comments Ice comes in many different shapes and types on its own. In our ice makers, the ice may be different in shape and type as well. In fact, there are six different types and shapes of ice that you may run into with our different machines: nuggets, flakes, cubes, full cubes, half cubes, crescent, and gourmet. Knowing the different types and shapes of ice can help you to make a better decision about the type of ice that you might prefer for your beverages, food displays, or special events. 1. Nuggets (AKA: Sonic Ice) Nugget-shaped ice tends to be soft and chewy. One of the benefits to this type of ice is that the drink it is mixed with tends to keep its flavor well. This makes nugget ice great for food service. The nuggets tend to not stick together and lasts for a good amount of time in any drink. Nugget ice is the ideal choice for carbonated drinks and blended cocktails, but also works great in salad bars and produce displays to keep food cool. 2. Flakes You might be familiar with ice flakes as they are often found in snow cones. Not only does this ice look good, but it also serves well to preserve food on display, such as seafood, meat, and produce. Ice flakes are great for display because they help to maintain the hydration of the food more consistently for longer periods of time. For this reason, it is also a good ice shape choice for transporting perishable food. This is also the ideal ice type for making blended drinks, as the ice is soft, flaky and easier to blend. 3. Full Cubes Ice cubes are by far the most common shape to find for ice. The cube is just right for any drink, and the shape is very popular at any establishment that serves drinks, such as convenience stores, restaurants, and bars. You are also most likely to find cube-shaped ice in ice dispensing machines, displays, and with ice retailers. Full-cubed ice comes in pretty large cubes that help drinks to quickly cool. They are slow to melt, too, which makes them an ideal choice for the food service industry. They are also great to use in bulk for cooling or bagging purposes. 4. Half Cubes As the name implies, half cubes are half the size of full-cubed ice. Their shape actually resembles a butter pat. They are really easy to handle, dispense easily, and blend well into most drinks. They are another great choice for the food service industry, especially for businesses that are looking for ice that is a little smaller than the full cube. This type of ice is an ideal use for mixed cocktails, iced coffee and other therapeutic uses. 5. Crescent Crescent ice gets its name from its half-moon shape. Due to its unique shape, liquid easily flows over it and the ice does not pack together. Not only does this result is less splash and better displacement within your beverages, its unique shape also allows for maximum storage within the ice bin. This type of ice is great in most settings, especially if you are worried about your drink splashing out of a glass when poured. It is a great choice for soft drinks, especially. 6. Gourmet Gourmet ice cubes are ideal for special occasions, banquet services, and upscale restaurants. The ice not only has its own unique shape, but it will also not dilute the flavor of your drink, at least not as quick as other types of ice on this list. It tends to be very clear to the eye, odorless, and melts slowly. Shaped like a small shot glass, this crystal-clear ice has a very beautiful look to it, which is what makes it so attractive for special events. Ice can take on many different types and shapes. Above, we have shown you six common types and shapes of ice that our machines can provide. Each type of ice has its own particular use. For drinks, you will want to choose something that is slow-melting and avoids diluting the actual flavor of your beverage. For cooling, preservation, or display purposes, choose a type of ice that melts slowly and helps to preserve the hydration of whatever you are transporting, storing, or displaying. Understanding the difference between the ice shapes and types should help you to better use them to their maximum potential.