Freezing Objects into Ice Part #1

Freezing Objects into Ice Part #1

We are routinely receiving inquiries from the community about freezing different objects into Klaris cubes. This can be a rather complex topic so it will be tackled in 3 different blog posts. 

  • Part #1 How do the professionals do it? 
  • Part #2 What have people tried at home?
  • Part #3 How can the Klaris Ice Maker be used? 

For some bars and restaurants, large, clear craft ice just doesn’t cut it anymore. Many have partnered with their local ice distributor to freeze objects like flowers and fruit into their craft ice. Each of these cubes can range in cost from $1 to $10.   Freezing flowers in ice using clinebell

Photo credit DNAinfo/Patty Wetli

As we explained in a previous blog post, ice distributors typically use a machine called the Clinebell to make clear ice. This is similar to a large bathtub that freezes water from the bottom up while a pump circulates the water. An object cannot simply be thrown into the machine and embedded perfectly into the ice. The object must be held in place by some method. There are two approaches typically used 

1. A grate or rack is set at the bottom of the tub and the object (flower or fruit) is fixed to it.  The tub is filled with water (1A) and the ice production cycle is completed (1B). 

1A Freezing Objects into Ice 1B Freezing Objects into Ice

2. The tub is filled with water and ice growth is partially completed (2A). The operator opens the lid, places the object on the ice then lays a mesh screen over the object to hold it in place (2B). Ice growth is allowed to continue for a short time period and then the mesh screen is removed (2C).  Finally, the remainder of the object is encapsulated in ice (2D). 

2A Freezing Objects into Ice2B Freezing Objects into Ice2C Freezing Objects into Ice2D Freezing Objects into Ice

At the end of each of these processes, a bandsaw is used to cut the ice around each object to yield the desired shape. 

Cutting ice around flower

Photo/Video credit The Sixth Bar

Some artists have even started getting into the game.  One of my favorites is Leslie Kirchhoff of disco cubes.  She was recently featured in this New York Times article. 

Disco Cubes

Photo Credit of Leslie Kirchhoff

Stay tuned for Part #2 where we explore how people are currently embedding objects in ice at home.  

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