Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream Fun With The Brozen Brothers

Ice ice baby! Tasty frozen fun with Brozen

Toast.Life gets the scoop on tastebud tickling ice cream and fabulous frozen cocktails with Bristol brothers Brozen.

So far, we’ve been treated to the hottest summer on record – and what a scorcher it has been. There are few better - or should I say tastier - ways to cool off than with a delicious, juicy gelato, but Cornish-born and now Bristol-based brothers Ben and Joe, owners of Brozen, have gone one better with their fabulous frozen cocktails.

“Being from Cornwall, running an ice cream business was an obvious choice!” smiles Joe.  “In summer 2015 we went cycling around Europe in search of the very best ice cream we could find. We were determined to figure out how to make the perfect ice cream and after lots of research and experimenting, we opened Brozen in September 2016”

Ben and Joe now own not one, but two wo delicious businesses in Bristol; an ice cream shop in St Nick’s Market (Brozen) and a frozen cocktail bar just around the corner (Brozen Bar). Yes, that’s right people – a frozen cocktail bar. As twins from a family of six boys, the pair had always been keen to work together, and both caught the ice cream bug at an early age.

“When we were little our mother taught us how to make semi-freddo, a sort-of ice cream mousse, using figs grown in the garden” recalls Ben. “Those memories really inspired us to start a business doing something we love”

Strawberry Ice Cream Brozen

In order to make their delicious ice cream, Ben and Joe use the best quality local ingredients and, à la Heston, they freeze it using liquid nitrogen. So not only do Brozen’s frozen delicacies taste delicious, but they are also the ultimate in mouth-watering food theatre. All the dramatic smoke, whirring noises and billowing dry ice of the freezing process makes for a mind-bogglingly good show, and then at the end of it all you get some fabulous, freshly made ice cream to devour too.

“When we were in school, we saw an ice cream making demonstration using liquid nitrogen and we were instantly hooked” explains Ben. “We learned to handle liquid nitrogen from the technicians at the University of Bath while Joe studied there. We both have scientific brains, and it makes perfect sense to us because it creates the most delicious ice cream”

“Also, we’ve always been dead set on doing things perfectly” adds Joe.

Brozen Process

Brozen Process 2 

“The nitrogen is at -196°C, meaning that it freezes the ice cream so quickly the large ice crystals don’t develop, and so the resulting texture is completely unique. Liquid nitrogen opens up a whole other world of possibilities. It’s cool to experiment with!”

No pun intended, I’m sure. Just a few of Brozen’s fabulous flavours include rhubarb and custard, mango and lime sorbet and tiramisu. Joe tells me that the chocolate orange also ‘always goes down well’, as does their elderflower and lemon, and melon and jasmine sorbets – both a delicate and deliciously refreshing treat during the warm summer months.

“We love making whacky flavours and we pour a lot of creativity and time into making interesting ice creams. Having said that - we also love the classics. A good quality vanilla is nothing to be scoffed at!” explains Ben. 

“We’ve also invested a lot of time researching into the chemistry behind our recipes. We prefer gelato to be creamy, but less sugary than most. We’ve researched into the effect that proteins, fats, sugars and fibre all have on ice cream, and we use that knowledge to balance our recipes”

 Brozen Ice Cream

Pistachio Brozen

And so, having mastered the art of awesome ice cream, the Brozen brothers turned their attention to a new frozen challenge; cocktails. Yes that’s right people – fabulous, frozen, alcoholic deliciousness. In December 2017, applying the very same scientific knowledge gleaned during their ice cream making journey, Ben and Joe opened their very first frozen cocktail bar - the aptly names Brozen Bar.

“We knew we were onto something when we started experimenting with using liquid nitrogen to freeze alcohol…” smiles Joe.

“It produces amazingly smooth alcoholic sorbets because it’s unusually low temperature forces ice crystals to grow around the alcohol and hold it together. Ordinarily it’s difficult to freeze ethanol because it has a freezing point of -100°C, but our cocktails come out looking like perfect sorbets. One day, we were offered a great space by a friend and we just couldn’t turn it down!”

Initially, Jo and Ben took traditional cocktail recipes and combined them with their sorbet recipes. Their ‘classics’ include a G&T sorbet, a passionfruit margarita (‘Passion on Ice’), a Bloody Mary (‘Cold Blooded Murder’) and Eski-mojitos, and they also make frozen Sgroppinos using Prosecco and elderflower.


Eskimojito Brozen

“The cocktails are frozen to order using nitrogen and churned in electric mixers; the nitrogen makes big clouds of fog as it evaporates – customers love it!” smiles Ben.

Our Artic Grasshopper was also a recent stroke of inspiration. It’s our classic ice cream base with crème de menthe and cacao liquor, topped off with chocolate bitters and shaved chocolate. Our smoked banana with rum is another favourite - we use a smoker gun fuelled by hickory wood chips to infuse the cream in our ice cream base – fats do well at picking up flavours. We then add extra ripe bananas and spiced rum and top it all off with Gosling’s rum and rum soaked raisins!” 

Arctic Grasshopper

And the deliciousness doesn’t end there; there is of course the garnish to consider, and being the Brozen Bar, that's pretty special too. Think frozen mint leaves coated in sugar with lime juice and then dunked in liquid nitrogen to garnish frozen mojitos, and dehydrated slices of lemons and limes popped in your frozen G&T. 

“We take great care over our presentation - people eat with their eyes” explains Joe.

“Each cocktail has its own garnish and is served in a frozen glass. Our customers are after premium cocktails, and they deserve only the best!”

Brozen Pride Cocktail

Exercising your ice-cream creativity is positively encouraged at one of Brozen Bar’s workshops, where you can enrol in a cocktail or ice cream masterclass and learn how to combine flavours yourself, and have a go at making your very own frozen fancy. You can also hire the Brozen Bar and host your very own bash there, but if you really want impress your guests this summer and help them cool off in delicious style, then the Brozen brothers can bring their frozen fun to you, and can regularly be found whipping up iced treats at all manner of events across the South West and beyond. 

“We love the looks on peoples’ faces when they try our ice cream or our cocktails” says Joe. “That’s the best bit - chatting to customers and seeing them having a good time” he adds.

“And recipe testing isn’t too bad either...!” 

If you’d like to work with Brozen or Brozen Bar you can find their contact details and more information on her page in Toast.Life’s Little Black Book

Remember you can also head over to their ice cream shop in St Nick’s Market and a the Brozen Bar just around the corner...

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