My American Dream Story


Hola. My name is Yeni Rodriguez. I am originally from Michoacán, Mexico. Michoacán is in Western Mexico and has a stretch of coastline on the Pacific Ocean to the southwest. Michoacán is known for agriculture and ice cream.

As a child, my family visited The United States regularly, and a few of my relatives lived in Central Illinois. Therefore, I was familiar with the promise of America. I always heard in America hard work was valued. Ultimately, I wanted to pursue my dream to come to The United States and introduce my culture in cooking and food preparation. As a child, my parents owned an ice cream shop, and I operated a candy store. Hence, I was introduced into the food service industry as a child.    

During early adulthood, I matriculated to The United States in 2000; it was a new century/new year, so why not embrace the audacious task. I worked in the Chicago area with a Green Card. I moved to Peoria in 2005 for a better life and more employment opportunities for me and my son. 

In 2019, I purchased Palarte Frida LLC, now known as Yeni’s Palarte. Yeni’s Palarte is an ice cream, fresh fruit, and drink shop. Our ice cream selections are made fresh daily and have no preservatives; Yeni’s Palarte is reminiscent of the family ice cream shops back home in Michoacán, Mexico. Many of our drinks are also vegan and keto friendly like the Mexican ice cream shops back home as well. On a personal level, I am proud to say I became a United States citizen in March 2021. I can now vote with my son and adhere to that optimistic, civic obligation. 

I met my business partner, Attorney Christopher McCall, in 2019 and we put our artistry, concepts, passions of food, and hospitality together to create these wonderful offerings. What makes Mexican ice cream unique compared to the alternatives is Mexican ice cream is creamier (as the cream is a much stronger quality,) rarely with additional sweetener, and Mexican ice cream uses fresh fruit.

Additionally, at Yeni’s Palarte, our ice cream flavors are small-batch, and artisan made daily. Unlike most of our competitors, our dessert is made here, where you eat it; our product has not been transported across the country in a truck. Our fresh ice cream is made with love for our customers and prepared consistently per my Mexican traditions that I am excited to share with you. I hope you enjoy your visit to Yeni’s Palarte and our selections. Have a taste of Mexico right here in Peoria Heights!