How ice serving tongs contribute to the perfect drinking experience

Ice tongs are more than tools. Picture: Pexels/Nasim Didar

Ice tongs are more than tools. Picture: Pexels/Nasim Didar

Published Mar 6, 2024

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While scrolling through X on Monday, March 4, I came across an interesting post by @TsepangMolisana: “I want South African restaurants to be shy about bringing ice with a spoon to the table when you order wine.”

This made me question the establishments that bring you an ice bucket and a spoon instead of tongs if you want to chill your wine or add a dash to your spirit beverage.

As much as we never raise our concerns with the establishments, at some point, as diners, we need to talk about these things.

Using a serving tong instead of a spoon can add to the overall dining experience. Sometimes used as grabbers to garnish drinks but most commonly used to fill glasses with ice, tongs dutifully serve our garnishing needs.

Over the years, there have been a few pieces of research done on how customers perceive food when certain experience factors are changed including crockery, cutlery, glasses and even background noise.

When dining out, some of us look for much more than good food on a plate, and not everyone of us realises the impact of small changes to a dining environment.

In the realm of mixology, presentation is also key.

For instance, using ice tongs instead of a spoon is more orderly. Ice tongs allows us, as diners, to delicately lift ice cubes and place them in glasses, preventing unwanted splashes and ensuring a visually appealing drink.

Ice tongs feature crow feet-shaped ends that help grab slippery single cubes of ice for wine, cocktails and other beverages. The design also serves as a draining mechanism for liquids to ensure our drinks or liquor is not watered down.

Whether we are placing garnishes or even sugar cubes, tongs add an air of sophistication to the process. They are made of stainless steel to ensure a firm grip.

Restaurants and bars should understand that first impressions matter. A study in journal Flavour suggests the brain makes judgements on food even before it goes in the mouth, all of which can be altered by the style of cutlery.

Ice tongs are more than just tools. Picture: Pexels/Charlotte May

Even as a home cook, having a reliable pair of ice tongs enhances the overall culinary experience.

Whether you are hosting a dinner party or simply enjoying a refreshing drink, the right ice tongs contribute to the aesthetics and functionality of your kitchen.

Ice tongs are more than mere utensils – they are versatile tools that have stood the test of time.

Whether at a restaurant or at home, the significance of using ice tongs goes beyond functionality.