For more than 90 years, ice cream enthusiasts have flocked to the Original Rainbow Cone to indulge in its unique and delightful treat. With a lineup of flavors that includes chocolate, strawberry, Palmer House (New York vanilla with cherries and walnuts), pistachio, and orange sherbet, this ice cream shop has captured the hearts and taste buds of many. So, what’s the story behind this fascinating blend of flavors? Let’s find out.
How the Rainbow Cone Began
Joseph Sapp, the founder of the Original Rainbow Cone, developed a passion for ice cream during his childhood. As an orphan on an Ohio work farm, Joseph’s options were limited to chocolate or vanilla. However, he desired both flavors and more. Years later, Joseph and his wife Katherine decided to open their own ice cream stand. In 1926, they chose a location on 92nd and Western in Chicago, with the foresight that the area would experience future popularity. Thus, the Original Rainbow Cone was born.
The Early Days of the Rainbow Cone
Perfecting the flavor combination was a journey of trial and error for Joseph. Initially, he sold Rainbow Cones out of a small shack on 92nd Street. As Chicago’s south side only extended to the Bridgeport area at that time, they couldn’t rely on heavy traffic. Luckily, a cemetery nearby attracted visitors, many of whom stopped by for a cone on their way home. Word about the Rainbow Cone quickly spread, leading the Sapps to build a new location across the street just four years later.
Not even the challenges of the Great Depression or the onset of the war could hinder the Rainbow Cone’s rise. In fact, during the war, the Original Rainbow Cone became a gathering place for the community. Joseph even constructed a shortwave radio in the backyard so that visitors could stay updated on the news while enjoying their ice cream. Despite facing adversity, the Rainbow Cone flourished as the city of Chicago expanded, captivating an ever-growing fan base.
The Original Rainbow Cone Today
In the 1960s and 1970s, Joseph’s son Robert started taking over the family business. Robert’s children grew up working alongside him, with the family home located behind the shop. In 1986, Robert’s daughter Lynn fully purchased the business, assuming its management. Under Lynn’s leadership, the Original Rainbow Cone became a regular fixture at major events such as Taste of Chicago and Lollapalooza. She even introduced the world to the Rainbow Cake.
Despite the passing of time, the Original Rainbow Cone remains unchanged. The Sapp family continues to serve the same delicious ice cream that Joseph developed back in 1926. With Lynn at the helm, they have preserved the Rainbow Cone’s legacy, delighting generations of ice cream enthusiasts. So, whether you’re seeking a taste of nostalgia or a new adventure in flavors, make sure to stop by the Original Rainbow Cone for a delightful experience.
In conclusion, the Original Rainbow Cone is more than just an ice cream shop; it’s a testament to the enduring power of passion, family, and delicious treats. With its distinct and colorful flavors, it’s no wonder that the Rainbow Cone has captured the hearts of ice cream lovers for nearly a century. So, the next time you’re in Chicago, be sure to visit the Original Rainbow Cone and enjoy a scoop of their famous ice cream. You won’t be disappointed!