“It’s really freakin cold here in Canada-land. All I need to do for clear ice is fill a cooler with clean water and stick it on my back step.” – Rylan Martin
While I am grateful our temperatures in the San Francisco area don’t drop to Canadian temperatures, I definitely felt a bit jealous of Rylan’s giant outdoor ice machine. So when he agreed to take some pictures and provide step-by-step instructions the next time he made ice, I was very excited.
So without further ado, here is Rylan’s process for making Canadian Clear Ice:
How to Make Canadian Clear Ice
Step 1: Check the Weather
We had to wait an extra week because it was a balmy 0c / 32f degrees outside – not quite cold enough to get a good batch. When Rylan checked and saw the temperatures were going to be -20c / -4f the following week, he knew it was time for action.
Step 2: Fill a Clean Cooler with Ice
Step 3: Place it Outside
Step 4: Wait
After three days at -20c / -4f conditions, the block has frozen completely solid.
“The problem with freezing outside is that it’s incredibly inconsistent. But that keeps it fun.” – Rylan
“Once it’s upside down, I usually hammer a nail into the bottom spout to get some air in the bottom to free up the suction.” He admits, “usually it takes a few minutes, a pool of cold water, and a few drops before I hear the ice block bubble and drop.”
Step 5: Carving
Step 6: Breaking it Up
“This block of ice must have been through a few odd temperature changes.” Rylan suggested, “It would not split in straight lines. In the past I’ve been able to knock a block into a handful of large cubes. This one would not have it. I ended up cutting into large chunks and shaving the edges off into large rocks, rather than cubes.”
“It’s probably unnecessary, but it sure makes the process of making a drink look super cool. I feel that if I’m using tempered ice, I’m getting a far more consistent rate of dilution with the clear ice.”
Step 7: Serve!
The results: beautiful cocktails with crystal clear, Canadian ice!
Making it Look Easy
Thanks again to Rylan for sharing your process and photos, I never would have thought to make clear ice outside!