When we first heard about Smitten's Star Trek-like method for making ice cream, we were intrigued, but a bit skeptical. The use of liquid nitrogen sounded like it could be just another gimmick. But then we tried the TCHO 60.5% Chocolate at Smitten's new shop in Rockridge. Umm, no gimmick. It might be the best chocolate ice cream ever. Smooth, rich, creamy, and so, so dark chocolate-y. No wonder there was a line snaking out the door. In fact, the chocolate is so good it'll make you want to find out how the ice cream is made, even if you're not a foodie/geek. The secret is rapid freezing and extreme cold. Using liquid nitrogen that is chilled to minus 321 degrees Fahrenheit, Smitten's 23rd-century-looking Brrr machine creates tiny ice crystals that give the ice cream its dense, smooth texture. Plus, it's fun to watch Smitten's staffers manipulate the Brrr to make ice cream right in front of you.
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