Beer Ice Cream
On a hot day, nothing beats a refreshing pint of beer or a scoop of your favourite ice cream and imagine if you could combine both them in one. Well luckily an US inventor has developed a machine that converts beers, cocktails, and other liquids into soft scoop ice cream. Yes, you read that right any booze can be converted into ice cream.
Of course, ice-creams flavoured like our favourite beverages already exist, but because alcohol’s freezing point is so low relative to the rest of the components, it usually means surrendering the alcohol content.
The drink is first de-gassed to eliminate the carbon dioxide, then mixed with a gel, placed in the machine, and out comes the ice-cream, thanks to a technology developed with WDS Dessert Stations in Hinkley, Illinois, USA.
‘The way it genuinely works, we like to say the gel bear hugs the alcohol itself and converts it into ice-cream,’ said Will Rogers, the inventor and owner of Below Zero to Metro.
Freezing Point of Alcohol
The freezing point is what we’ve invented with alcohol; there has never been a freezing point because it can’t be drank at that temperature.
‘We utilised liquid nitrogen to make Below Zero in the beginning, but today with the new machines, you just lay it out in a cone and it’s ready to consume.’
The Nitrogen Ingredient Additive gel allows the alcohol to freeze to a near-solid state inside the machine while also allowing sweets to be added.
It’s pasteurised and FDA-approved, however it’s not exactly ice-cream because it doesn’t contain any dairy components.
The equipment will be sold to bars for $6,000 (£4,300) and will allow them to make their own desserts.
The transition from liquid to crystalline solid takes about 30 minutes, however the higher the alcohol content, the longer the wait.
‘If it’s six ounces on a cone or six ounces in a glass, it’s identically the same – it doesn’t modify the alcohol at all,’ said inventor Will to Metro. ‘A Jack Daniels and coke in a cone is the same as a Jack Daniels and coke in a glass.’
Alcohol Ice Cream
Will, who owns an ice cream store, was trying to come up with a way to make a highly caffeinated espresso flavour when he realised he could accomplish the same thing with alcohol.
‘One of our employees made a joke about doing this with booze, and a light bulb went out in my head – I bet we could,’ he said.
To make his unique NEA gel, he began experimenting with gums and stabilisers from the ice cream industry.
He’s currently serving cones at catering events, but he thinks other breweries around the country will soon be able to provide their own versions.
Will added, ‘My personal favourite is a vodka and lemonade cone; on a hot day, it’s like having Italian ice cream.’
Below Zero Machines
A Below Zero Cone is a dessert, thus anything with fruit flavours is what you put in the machine when you go to a restaurant and want to get a dessert.
Will Rogers said, ‘We’ve run the Bud Lime through the machine, but if you want something more conventional, like Budweiser or Stella, I’d recommend sitting back and having it on ice!’
Unfortunately, Below Zero machines are not currently accessible in the UK, but we’ll keep our fingers crossed that we’ll be able to drink cider in a cone in the coming summers.