Need some advice on stress-free entertaining during the party season? We spoke to Lucy Barrow, Marketing Manager at The Ice Co. for some cool hosting advice about bagged ice and how to use it to make life easier when serving drinks at parties.
What Are Your Top Three Hosting Tips for Stress-free Entertaining?
Make sure to keep drinks chilled when entertaining – stocking up your freezer with bagged ice is a great way to ensure you don’t run low.
Consider chilling foods over ice too, including desserts and fish platters, for maximum taste but also a show-stopping serve.
Stock a variety of drinks to cater for all tastes and use crushed ice or larger cubes to make cocktails and mocktails more exciting for guests.
What Ice Should I Stock for My Christmas Party?
Be the perfect host with ice in an instant this Christmas by keeping a variety of ice to hand in your freezer, ideal for different purposes.
If you’re worried about having time to prep volumes of ice for your Christmas party amidst all of the cooking and party prep, it’s useful to buy in bags of ice rather than use ice trays.
I’d recommend stocking:
1. A selection of premium ice cubes that melt slowly for sophisticated cocktail beverages. Sleek in shape, they’re perfect for adding elegance to Christmas serves.
2. Larger ice cubes for short or long serves, for the finer, more refreshing festive drinks. They chill your drinks quickly but melt slowly, reducing dilution.
3. A large bag of smaller ice perfect for entertaining for bigger numbers – these are for your beers, non-alcoholic beverages and useful to place in buckets to keep bottles cold.
4. Crushed ice is versatile and adaptable. This can be used in cocktails, non-alcoholic beverages for the designated drivers or for kids’ smoothies.
How Can I Make Sure I’m Fully Stocked?
When hosting a festive event, bags of ice are essential in terms of convenience. They’re already pre-cubed and frozen in large quantities, and there’s no washing up involved. You can save a lot of time and effort with cubed ice, meaning more time to enjoy the party!
So much so, in a recent consumer survey, it was found that 71% of consumers agree it is important to have ice in the house when entertaining.
How Should I Store My Ice?
1. If using an ice bucket and scoop to dish out ice, make sure all are thoroughly cleaned before use.
2. When cooling bottles in an ice bucket, don’t be tempted to use the ice from inside the bucket. It’s unclear where the bottles have been before reaching your home – they could contaminate the ice.
3. Wash your hands before tearing open your beloved bag of ice and using your hands to retrieve the ice for your guests’ drinks.
4. The nature of bagged ice means it’s easy to freeze alongside other party foods in your freezer and saves you time and effort freezing at home.
For more top tips, head to The Ice Co. website at www.theiceco.co.uk