If you do any kind of entertaining from the home, you know how essential a fully stocked bar is. But have you ever considered what makes your cocktails so delicious? The spirits themselves are integral, sure, but the ice becomes equally important when you’re creating cocktails from your home bar.
Quick Comparison: Best Ice Maker for Home Use
|Pounds of Ice Per Day||Time to Make Batch||Number of Setting Sizes|
Our Best Pick
|26 or 48||6 minutes||3|
|#3. Avalon Bay|
The Benefits of an Ice Machine
There are a number of benefits to having an ice machine. Keeping a small ice maker for home bar means you don’t have to run back and forth from the freezer. It’s also great if you’re planning to entertain a large crowd.
An ice machine can make perfectly-sized ice cubes for your alcoholic beverages. Cubes you find in the freezer are often too large to use in cocktails, and they cause the drink to become watered down. If you’re a home bar enthusiast, an ice machine is an essential piece of equipment to accompany your mixers and spirits.
Ice machines make your home bar more accessible and convenient. They eliminate the hassle of traveling between your freezer and ice bucket. And if you have a large number of guests, ice machines go from luxurious to absolutely necessary.
With large gatherings, you’re more likely to run out of kitchen freezer ice. If you don’t want to run to the store to replenish the supply, you’ll need an ice machine. The machine gives you a full ice stash rather than making you suffer the hassle of running low at parties.
In addition, the ice that comes from an ice machine will always be better than your freezer’s ice. Ice machines are dedicated devices that serve only one purpose: giving you clear, fresh, tasteless ice.
What to Look For in an Ice Machine
Before you make any final decisions, you need to consider what kinds of drinks will be consumed. If mixed drinks are the bulk of your alcoholic endeavors, you might want to go with rectangular regular-sized ice cubes. Some ice machines provide multiple cube options.
Alternatively, you might want crushed ice instead. If you diversify the types of ice produced by your machine, you can make more drinks for both your guests and yourself. Some ice machines make cubes that have a hole through their center, so they can be easily smashed.
Space Necessary for an Ice Machine
You should keep in mind the amount of space you want for your ice machine. Not all ice machines take up a huge amount of space, but many will require a substantial spot in your bar. Many models are designed to operate underneath your bar or on the floor nearby, so they don’t take up any precious space on the bar.
Another factor to keep in mind is whether you need the machine to be portable. Many people entertain both indoors and outdoors when the weather is nice. If you tend to move your entertaining places around, you’ll want a compact and portable ice machine.
Features to Keep in Mind
There are a number of features you’ll need to consider. You should be aware of how fast you’ll need your ice bucket to be full. If you’re planning on non-stop drink making, you’ll need a machine that has a quick turnaround time and high capacity. If your gatherings are more laid back, your ice machine might not need so many add-ons.
Good ice machines include a drain and a water hookup line. This allows the water to migrate somewhere if the ice melts. These are the features that make bar ice machines a step up from your regular kitchen freezer.
The Best Ice Machines for Your Home Bar
#1. EFIC103 Machine from Frigidaire
This machine is available in two styles: 26 pounds of ice per day and 48 pounds of ice per day. It’s a portable ice maker with a stainless steel construction. The over-sized ice bucket allows for 2.2 pounds of ice to be held at one time.
The machine also comes with a choice of three ice cube sizes: small, medium, and large. You can enjoy an ice batch in just 6 minutes. This machine comes with a User Manual, which you should read before using it.
#2. NewAir 100S Ice Maker
This ice maker is available in six different colors. It has a convenient and compact design that makes it ideal to use in small kitchens, small bars, and other compact spaces. The machine produces 28 pounds of ice per day.
One of the ideal features is the LED control panel. It lets you choose from three different sizes for the ice cubes. The portable construction doesn’t require any installation. All you have to do is plug in the unit, add the water, and wait for 15 minutes.
#3. AB-ICE265 from Avalon Bay
This ice maker is available in three color options: silver, red, and black. It has a convenient and compact design that makes it ideal for use in your bar. The powerful compressor will produce up to 26 pounds of ice per day.
The ice maker creates bullet-shaped ice. One batch can be created every 6 minutes, so you don’t need to wait long to make the perfect drink. The simple construction requires no complicated installation.
There are convenience features like indicator lights that tell you if your ice basket is full or water needs to be added. The machine has a water capacity of 32 ounces.
All of these ice makers are portable enough to suit your home bar. If you want multiple color options, go with the NewAir. The Frigidaire is ideal if you want fast dispensing. The Frigidaire and NewAir both have three ice setting options, while the Avalon Bay creates bullet-shaped ice.
Every ice machine has features that make it great for your home bar. The best one for you varies depending on exactly what you want.