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Cold comfort on steroids: These Vegas drinks come with hand-carved ice chunks (Don't call them cubes!)

Cold comfort on steroids: These Vegas drinks come with hand-carved ice chunks (Don't call them cubes!)
Forget about ice cubes, they're making hand-crafted ice chunks at Yardbird Southern Table & Bar in Las Vegas. (Yardbird Southern Table & Bar Las Vegas)

Cutting-edge technology has arrived at a bar-restaurant along the Las Vegas Strip.

It's not about the newest sound system or a laser-lighted dance floor; I'm talking about a good old-fashioned saw.

Guests at Yardbird Southern Table & Bar inside The Venetian no longer are served cocktails with perfectly-square cubes from an ice machine. Bartenders now deploy an ice saw to carve chunks of ice in various shapes and sizes.

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A bartender at Yardbird uses a special saw to carve pieces of ice from a large block. The hand-cut pieces have replaced ice cubes at the bar-restaurant along the Strip.
A bartender at Yardbird uses a special saw to carve pieces of ice from a large block. The hand-cut pieces have replaced ice cubes at the bar-restaurant along the Strip. (Yardbird Southern Table & Bar Las Vegas)



Their bosses are betting customers will appreciate the fact that cocktails are far less diluted when served with a single chunk of ice rather than smaller cubes that melt more quickly.

There's a relaxed, down-home feel to the lounge area of Yardbird at The Venetian.
There's a relaxed, down-home feel to the lounge area of Yardbird at The Venetian. (Yardbird Southern Table & Bar Las Vegas)



Each day, bartenders use a 21-inch Japanese saw to cut chunks from giant blocks of ice. Their novelty shapes include 2.5-inch squares, 5-inch-long "rocks" and 3-inch spheres. (The balls also require the use of a chisel.)

The various hand-carved pieces are then paired to specific drinks.

Yardbird also enhances the taste of certain cocktails by serving them with flavored pieces of ice. The creations include cucumber cubes, Dijon-and-thyme cubes, and ice made from the brine of blue cheese-stuffed olives.



The adjoining restaurant pays homage to down-home Southern cooking. The original location in Miami Beach has received numerous accolades.

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