As some of you home alchemists know, alcohol and frozen treats aren’t too friendly with each other. Ethanol (aka the booze we imbibe), melts at -173.5 degrees Fahrenheit, and if you include it in your homemade ice cream, good luck in getting it to freeze properly if you just eyeball it. Damn you, science!
But now Will Rogers, an inventor in Hinckley, Illinois, has figured out an easier way to turn any of your favorite alcoholic beverages into a soft serve format. Good News Network reports that it’s due to a magic gel he’s created. He developed a machine called “Below Zero” with a company called WDS Dessert Stations, and it means that your favorite new hard seltzer could be something you carry around in a cone instead of a can.
The process sounds relatively simple: The drink’s carbonation must first be removed, then it’s mixed with Rogers’ special gel and put into the freezing device that will turn it into slush.
“We like to say the gel ‘bear hugs’ the alcohol itself and turns it into ice cream,” Rogers explained to Good News Network. “In the beginning days we used liquid nitrogen to make Below Zero, but now with the new machines you put it out in a cone and it’s ready to eat.”
The gel also allows for the inclusion of sugar, which also affects the freezing temperature of frozen treats like sorbets or ice cream. Once Rogers cracked the code on the initial project, he began selling the boozy specialties at catering events. His personal favorite is vodka and lemonade, but I’m willing to bet a cherry limeade one would be killer too.
At $6,000 a pop, the machines aren’t cheap, but if enough of you give your favorite breweries or bars the ol’ puppy eyes this summer, you might be able to peer pressure them into turning a White Russian into a portable boozy snack that you can swirl into a waffle cone.