A bartender has lost ‘thousands of pounds’ worth of precious wild ice as a result of a power cut in his bar.
According to Linus Hoar-Frost, the collection consisted of rare urban ice, made all the more valuable from having been harvested in what experts are calling a particularly frigid year.
In addition to his stash of wild ice, Hoar-Frost also told Fake Booze he had lost a significant quantity of icicles he had been curating around his venue’s door and window frames, earmarked as a garnish for an upcoming signature drink.
‘If I can’t replace those icicles before spring, I’ll have to take my ‘Icepresso Martini’ off the menu,’ he told Fake Booze. ‘It was devastating to discover they’d turned into nothing more than little puddles of dirty water.
‘Even hipsters won’t drink that.
Nat Froz ice (naturally frozen) ice has been growing in popularity in recent years, with its fans extolling the virtues of its ability to bring terroir and even vintage variation to cocktails.
‘It’s a lot like wine,’ said Hoar-Frost. ‘Think Picpoul but with a bit more character.’
For proponents of Nat Froz, the idea of mass-produced cubes from conventional freezers is unthinkable.
‘Ice is seriously hot right now,’ said Farrah N Heit of the Real Ice Co. ‘It’s the unpredictability, the excitement that hyper-efficient industrial freezers just can’t provide.
‘A perfect, crystal-clear cube just leaves many modern bartenders cold. They want authenticity and character, not vanilla ice.’
The growing trend has resulted in bands of bartender-foragers roaming cities for frozen rain, or even dew, with some rare caches fetching upwards of a cool £100 per kilogram.
Shards scraped off car windscreens and urban ponds have achieved record prices at auction, while one bartender was hospitalised after attempting to cultivate a nose-grown icicle during the recent cold snap.
‘Committing to wild foraged ice is a lot of effort,’ said Heit. ‘But for most of us this is a way of life, rather than a fashion statement.
‘And of course snowflakes love it.’