On a busy Thursday night thick with humidity in Greenport, Brae Iglesias stands in front of a white refrigerator cart. His long blonde hair is pulled back into a ponytail under a hat that says Love and a neon-colored fanny pack sits around his waist. The brightly-decorated sign in front of the cart reveals what’s inside. Paletas — Mexican style ice pops — is written in bright yellow capital letters surrounded by orange flowers and the three flavors available.
Iglesias, 14, started this business Dos Ositos with his sister Osa Iglesias, 16, and the help of their father, Kristian Iglesias.
“The lemon lime is the most colorful,” Brae Igesias said of the flavors available that evening. “The coconut is a little creamier, but the raspberry hibiscus is my favorite.” He pulls one out of the cart and takes it out of the wrapper. A deep ruby red popsicle comes out and if you look closely, chunks of raspberries are visible in the center. But beware, you have to eat them fast, especially if it’s hot. Drips of the dangerous color will run down your hand. After one bite, however, you will want to eat these quickly. The fruit flavor is so pure and imminent. It almost tastes juicy. This flavor in particular has a bit of a fizziness to it that makes it extra refreshing.
This business, like many, was born out of the pandemic. “Our family is always cooking together, and we had been talking for a while about making handmade ice pops with fresh fruit,” Kristian Iglesias said. “During the pandemic, we found ourselves with a lot of time on our hands and decided to start making some. I designed and fabricated a little cart and we started to order all the necessities for starting an ice pop business.”
They bought molds, bags, a heat sealer, popsicle sticks and a small portable freezer last year and upgraded to an industrial freezer and commercial kitchen this year. On top of popping up at Little Creek Oysters, which is where they were this evening, they also sell their product at Good Food, Mattitaco, First and South and Orient Country Store.
The name, which translates to little bear from Spanish, comes from the two founder’s names — Osa and Brae. Osa means bear in Spanish and Brae is an anagram for bear. “Hence, two bears in Spanish is Dos Ositos,” Kristian Iglesias said. “Brae conceptualized the logo and Osa drew it.”
In addition to the raspberry hibiscus, coconut and lemon lime, they also make mango with kiwi, blackberry orange, honeydew mint and they are experimenting with a horchata flavor.
“They are typically made in small batches to maintain high quality,” Kristian Iglesias said. “Each pop has a slightly different process, but generally we try to purchase local or organic fresh fruit. We clean and process the fruit and add a small amount of natural organic sugar along with any other fresh fruit pieces. We then pour into our molds and freeze.”
When sourcing their fruit, they always try to get the “ugly” fruit, produce that won’t sell because of cosmetic blemishes or over ripeness, both perfect for making paletas.
Dos Ositos also has a paleta club where for $55 every two weeks you can get a dozen delivered to your door and they also do parties.