Getting creative with your ice has become a thing of late, whether it’s creating spheres or freezing your initials into them. Want something a little less ostentatious? Check out The Ice Designer, a brass plate with five different patterns that you can melt directly into your cubes.
The concept is similar to any press-style sphere maker: A heavy block of metal (four pounds in this case) acts as a heat sink, quickly melting anything frozen it touches. There are no moving parts here: Just take a block of ice from a standard silicone mold and drop it onto one of the patterns — straight lines, wavy lines, honeycomb, a sort of checkerboard, or — most oddly — a single pineapple. Within about 10 seconds, the pattern can be seen in sharp relief, melted into the ice. You can repeat as desired on multiple sides, though note that the more you use it, the colder the plank gets, and the less effective it becomes.
The patterns all look cool, though the pineapple isn’t quite as dazzling as I’d have liked. I also found that the honeycomb pattern tends to trap water within its cells; after a couple of uses I found that the brass had begun to discolor. The company suggests storing the device upside down when not in use to help prevent this.
At nearly $200, this is undoubtedly a gadget for the home barkeep who literally has everything else — but who categorically wants to make a statement. Versions with customized patterns are also available for an extra $100 and up.
As with most ice customizing systems, the effects are purely aesthetic. That said, they sure do look cool — and don’t take nearly as long to pull off as a sphere does.
$197 / theicedesigner.com