This is the first of a series of articles about choosing the best sphere ice makers. In this article we will cover the top ten best ice makers based on many different factors. The first item we will look at is the size. The size of the machine will vary depending on how many guests you plan to use the machine at.
For large gatherings or family gatherings: If you host many parties or just host a lot of events you will want an ice maker that is able to produce and store multiple balls. A good sized machine can easily hold and produce between four and twelve balls at once. An excellent feature for any of these machines is a freezer so you can keep extra balls frozen until needed. You should consider getting a freezer from either wintersmith or another manufacturer as it will make your life much easier.
If you are going to be entertaining at a private party: If you are going to be hosting a small private party at someone’s home or a small birthday party for a couple of friends you may not need to spend a whole lot of money on an elaborate ice chest. A basic model will usually hold around four cups of water and about three or four ounces of ice cubes. It is important to note that all models will not use tap water and will require bottled water. The only exception is the tap water balls used to create your drink. If you do not want anyone to know that it was all made with tap water you can easily disguise them with flavored water. A simple solution is to invest in a flavored water bottle and then purchase inexpensive plastic drinking straws that you can use to drink out of.
If you plan on a career as a chef and are concerned that your kitchen counter is too small to accommodate a large commercial sized ice maker you have some options. One option is to rent or purchase an appliance with a big enough opening that you can put the refrigerator inside. Most appliance stores carry small versions of the sphere maker and they often come with the same features and accessories.
If you are interested in a more permanent option that will be much more functional, but is a bit more expensive, you should consider a permanent ice chest or a standing fridge freezer. These items will have a door on the front of them and usually have shelves along the interior wall as well as on the outside. Typically they will have a rack or a shelf for glasses and ice balls and even a top freezer. Some models will have the freezer area built in and others will have a door installed on the side. These refrigerators have the advantage that they can be used year round regardless of the time of year. However they are more expensive than the sphere makers and so you will probably want to purchase several to keep your ice supply up year long.
If you want a simple model that you can store away then you might want to look at the clear ice makers or the cube molds. These units will have the ice making compartment as well as a large window that shows all of the ingredients and can be opened with a simple pull down handle. The only drawback to these clear ice makers is that you will not see the ingredients you will need to make your drinks. However this may be of little importance to many, since everyone seems to have a variety of different flavors available anyway.
Finally there are the sphere and cube molds. These are the most popular types of ice makers and many people simply buy the plain one and put it in their freezer to use at any time they wish. They come in all of the same models as the ice chests and ice makers with the same convenience features. There are also a few new types that have been introduced to the market that can hold as few as six ice cubes versus the old standard of ten ice cubes. These newer models are a bit more expensive but they are worth it if you want to be able to make enough drinks for all of the people in your family during the course of the year. Also, you will not have to worry about running out of ice since they last a long time.
One final option is the tap water ice maker. This machine can be found in department stores and is quite easy to use. All you have to do is add water and turn on the maker and then place the ice balls into the container. After a few minutes you simply pour tap water into the ball and let it set for a couple of minutes before plugging it in. These models can be used for both cold drinks and hot teas, so you can enjoy fresh summer drinks all summer long.