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Allen Pierleoni /

Add lemon or orange slices, or zest, to oversized ice spheres and cubes for holiday cocktails.

Big ice shape-shifts for holiday cocktails

Published: Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013 - 8:59 am

In a foodie-oriented world of high-end specialty stores selling sophisticated cookware, esoteric gadgets and jars of sauces and marinades you never knew you needed, there’s the more subtle online Trudeau company. Its stock of “innovative quality kitchen products” includes a mill that grinds chiles and a stressless garlic press.

We were looking at the the “Wine & Bar” section at when two items stopped us cold, so to speak. The Ice Sphere Mold and the King Cube Tray make oversized ice rounds and cubes ($14.99 each). The science behind them says that large spheres and cubes melt slower than small ones, keeping drinks from getting watered down before they’re consumed.

The molds looked so cool we decided to spend an afternoon chillin’ with them. Our first batches of ice were big and cold, no surprise. Then we started adding ingredients to the water in the ice molds: slices of orange and lemon and the zest from same, sprigs of mint and rosemary, basil leaves, plump blueberries, green kiwifruit. Like garnish inside the ice, right? The project was becoming more interesting.

Then we stopped using water altogether and began filling the molds with fruit juices — orange, cranberry, pomegranate. Why wouldn’t a sphere of frozen OJ work in a vodka-OJ cocktail, for instance? Or what about mixing passionfruit juice with lime juice and grenadine for a tiki cocktail?

It appears the list may be endless, so we’ll be a while.

Call The Bee’s Allen Pierleoni, (916) 321-1128. Follow him on Twitter @apierleonisacbe.

Read more articles by Allen Pierleoni

About Appetizers

Chris Macias has served as The Sacramento Bee's Food & Wine writer since 2008. His writing adventures have ranged from the kitchen at French Laundry to helping pick 10 tons of zinfandel grapes with migrant farm workers in Lodi. Chris also judges regularly at food, wine and cocktail competitions around Northern California. His profile of a former gangbanger-turned-pastry-chef was included in Da Capo's "Best Food Writing 2012."

Read his Wine Buzz columns here
(916) 321-1253
Twitter: @chris_macias

Allen Pierleoni writes about casual lunchtime restaurants in The Sacramento Bee's weekly "Counter Culture" column. He covers a broad range of topics, including food, travel, books and authors. In addition to writing the weekly column "Between the Lines," he oversees the Sacramento Bee Book Club, in which well-known authors give free presentations to the public.

Read his Counter Culture reviews here
(916) 321-1128
Twitter: @apierleonisacbe

Blair Anthony Robertson is The Sacramento Bee's food critic.

Read his restaurant reviews here
(916) 321-1099
Twitter: @Blarob

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Note: The Appetizers blog switched blog platforms in August 2013. All posts after the switch are found here. Older posts are available using the list below.

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