Watch Smitten Ice Cream Brrr-istas Make it Creamy

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Joseph Geha
One of the Brrr-istas in action at Smitten Ice Cream in Hayes Valley.
Photojournalism brings along with it plenty of risk, excitement and even stress, but occasionally it brings with it the opportunity to photograph (and subsequently eat) ice cream.

So when I heard our food editor, Anna Roth, was tackling a story involving the tasting of several unique and just down right odd ice cream flavors in the city, I knew I should contribute somehow.

See also: Harsh Dessert Conditions: Finding the Weirdest Ice Cream Flavors in S.F.

Visiting Smitten Ice Cream in Hayes Valley in the small area just off the corner of Octavia and Hayes can make you feel like you are in some sort of dreamland. Cattywampus cargo containers have been turned into everything a person could need, including artisan, fair trade, organic coffee, incredibly expensive men's performance outerwear, and of course, ice cream. I could live here.

I had the opportunity to take some cool photos and video of the patented Brrr machine in all its glory being operated by Smitten's aptly named Brrr-istas. The machines are essentially tabletop kitchen mixers with nitrogen tubes feeding in precise amounts of chill to stir up some creamy goodness.

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Joseph Geha
Olive Oil going in the mixing bowl for an individual batch of Smitten's Olive Oil Lavender Shortbread flavor.

Plumes of nitrogen smoke were erupting from the metal bowls spinning round and round, and there was just something delightful about watching golden olive oil being mixed into white ice cream.

The idea that someone spent years perfecting a machine design just so I could stand inside a shipping container and lick olive oil drippings off my ice cream is a pleasing thought.

Check out the video and let us know what you think:


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