When you have a scoop of Queen City Cayenne you’re having a taste of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams history. Queen City Cayenne is the very first ice cream Jeni ever made.
The inspiration for this milk chocolate ice cream with a kick is traditional sweet and spicy Mexican hot chocolate. And it’s other muse is our neighbor to the southwest, Cincinnati, the Queen City, and its unconventional, spicy-sweet chili made with a bit of chocolate.
Long before Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams existed, Queen City Cayenne came to life one day in the mid ‘90s when Jeni mixed cayenne with run-of-the-mill grocery freezer milk chocolate ice cream in her home kitchen. It was an instant hit at dinner parties, and when guests ate it they’d say, “It’s hot! It’s cold! It’s cold! It’s hot! It’s cold! We love it!”
Originally known as Mexican Hot Chocolate, when Jeni’s Splendid ice Creams opened in 2002 in Columbus’ North Market, the ice cream soon was renamed Queen City Cayenne. While enjoying a scoop herself one day at the shop, Jeni decided to personalize the flavor with a new name, one that reflected a city (and chili) she loved made perfect sense. And the rest is history.