Ice making machines are essential bar and restaurant equipment all year round, but if yours isn’t quite managing to suit your needs then it is usually summertime when you will notice it the most. Summer 2012 may not have been the hottest or driest on record, but Britain’s ice making machines still had to cope with high ambient temperatures and a LOT of partying this year!
The #1 Requirement for Ice Making Machines – Capacity, Capacity, Capacity
All else aside, the single most important requirement for ice making machines is to be able to ensure there is enough ice on hand at all times. And during the summer your customers will get through a lot more ice than at other times of the year.
Even in rainy summers like we had this year, summer ambient temperatures will be that much higher than at other times of the year, even if all your customers are sitting inside. Stocks of ice and ice in buckets will melt more quickly and need topping up more often. Ice in customers’ drinks will melt more quickly, and customers who don’t normally bother with ice, will be more likely to ask for ice during the summer months. Some iced drinks only become popular during the summer, such as iced tea and coffee. And some customers will take to putting ice into drinks such as cider or wine, to create a more cooling drink.
A chilled drink is simply more refreshing than an unchilled one – and customers looking for refreshment at your bar or cafe will be disappointed by a lack of ice, or having to wait for ice making machines to make a new batch of ice. And if you’re running a restaurant, a shortage of ice can even impact on the overall flow of customers if they are having to wait longer than necessary for drinks.
Luckily, high capacity ice making machines are available that will quickly and efficiently create large quantities of ice to satisfy even the most ice hungry of catering businesses. For instance, the Porkka KL301 can make up to 262kg of ice per day – that’s over 14,000 ice cubes. And if you need to ensure even more ice in reserve, this machine will stack on top of an ice storage bin. The KL301 is modestly sized in comparison to its capacity – 774mm high and less than a metre (960mm) wide – although if it is stacked over a storage bin it will be higher of course. For most large pubs, hotels and restaurants, finding space for a machine this size will present no problem, but if you have smaller premises with a high ice requirement, you may need a more compact machine.
Compact High Capacity Ice Making Machines
Vertical plate ice making machines use advanced technology to create large quantities of ice cubes in a short space of time. More importantly, they do so in a very small space. For instance, the Porkka KV150 is our smallest vertical plate cuber just 675mm high and 560mm wide, and yet it can easily produce 165kg of ice per day.
If you need maximum capacity in minimum space, the Porkka KV400 can deliver over 32,000 cubes per day. But perhaps the best combination of size and capacity is our KV270 which can make 295kg of ice per day but stands just 560mm high (easily fitting under most counters) and 750mm wide.
High Capacity Flake Ice Making Machines for Displays
When you need large quantities of ice for fresh food displays, such as fish, meat, salad or other ready-to-eat chilled foods, the summer months can be especially demanding. For food displays, having large quantities of ice on hand is not just a luxury, it is essential to keep produce at the required temperature for food safety and shelf life.
For any sort of outside catering, the higher ambient summer temperatures mean that ice needs to be topped up regularly, and it is then that businesses will notice if ice making machines are struggling. But it’s not just the summer months that can present a challenge - centrally heated restaurants and shops can pose a high ambient temperature to fresh food displays at any time of year.
To cater for this demand our largest flake ice making machine is the KF250 which can make 255kg of flaked ice per day. For smaller operations (for instance a bar that needs flaked ice on hand for cocktails, as well as ice cubes for drinks) our KF75 can still make a respectable 78kg of ice per day, while taking up very little space.
And now, even though summer is but a distant memory the winter party season is now getting going! So it is still a great time to consider whether your ice making machine needs an upgrade.
Ice Making Machines – click here for more information on our range of products