Patience is a very important quality in running a business and creating a delicious Paleta at Monarca Gourmet Paletas

Jose Jacome and Fatima Esparza owners of Monarca Gourmet Paletas in Clive, IA. Photo by Tar Macias

Paletas (pah. – leh. – tah): are a Mexican frozen treat made from fresh natural fruits such as strawberry and mango or made from rich creamy ingredients such as Chocolate and Sicilian pistachio.

It is never too cold for a delicious traditional mexican ice cream treat named Paletas! Exotic and full of flavor passion fruit or classic strawberry cheesecake, whatever your favorite flavor is, knowing that the Paletas are made with fresh ingredients is an added bonus and a flavor buster. If you are feeling like craving for one of these Paletas, then head over to the recently opened Monarca Gourmet Paletas located at 9901 University Ave, Suite 150, Clive, IA.  

Monarca Gourmet Paletas opened its doors on August 4, 2020. Jose Jacome and Fatima Esparza are the couple that run this new joint.  


“We sell paletas, handcrafted gourmet ice cream treats from Mexico. Our Paletas are a frozen Mexican dessert that combines gourmet ice cream and popsicles with a wide range of yummy and fresh toppings. They are all made in house utilizing fresh ingredients,” Jose described their product.  

They explained that through their business they look to share their culture and traditions while doing something they actually like. Fatima Esparza also has some experience when it comes to the frozen treats business. She grew up helping her parents in a Paleteria (Ice cream shop) in Chicago. The couple actually met in Chicago and have been friends for a long time before getting married.  

Fatima was born in Chicago and her parents are from Michoacan and Jalisco, Mexico. Jose was born in Colombia and lived a large portion of his life in Chicago where they both met about 10 years ago through mutual friends. “We remained friends for many years and eventually dated and married.” Jacome tells us.


Jose moved to Des Moines 6 years ago for work and quickly fell in love with the city and its people, Fatima followed 2 years later both are now  proud to call Des Moines home.   

Once they settled in Des Moines they started on working to develop their own best recipes.  

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Fatima always had it in her mind to follow on her family’s footsteps and open up a similar business. She shared this dream with Jose and they both worked during the last couple of years in updating the family recipes, maintaining this great Mexican tradition and creating a concept “where any person would feel comfortable, welcomed and encounter a memorable and amazing Ice Cream experience,” Jacome shared.  


The planning was done and the launching of the business was set in motion, but the pandemic put a damper on their plans. Jacome and Esparza said their plan was to open the doors of Monarca Gourmet Paletas last March, but COVID moved the opening date to August.  

“We set the wheels in motion last year completely unaware of COVID. The lease was signed in November with hopes to complete construction during the Winter and Open in February or March. Unfortunately, COVID hit and this impacted our plans. We remained resilient and although there were difficult times through delays and many changes, we are blessed to finally be open,” Jacome explained.  


They also truly believe that being patient was the most important quality that helped them get through the hurdles and finally open their business. They also are very thankful to everyone who supported them and gave them the boost of positivity that allowed them to better focus on their goal.  

Today to keep their customers and employees safe during the pandemic they put some safety measures in place.  

“We require all employees to wear masks, we monitor for any symptoms prior to every shift and are in constant communication to make sure we stay proactive,” Jacome assured potential customers that they are cautious and take seriously the safety of both employees and customers.  

The couple recommended their customers to try mango, strawberry cheesecake or the passion fruit flavors.  

“These are personal favorites but there are many options for our customers to try out. You can also Dip them in various chocolate options, top them with a great selection of toppings and drizzle them with even more options. Our goal is for you to enjoy your Paleta any way you’d like,” they invited everyone to check out their store for more options and flavors.  

Let your creativity flow when you customize your own paleta


They also added that they are working on developing some amazing fall and winter flavors that for sure will delight all customers.  

Even though Monarca Gourmet Paletas opened just recently, it is attracting many customers who enjoy these great traditional Mexican ice cream treats.  

“It has been great; it is amazing to see people from all walks of life come in and try our paletas. You can always find a diverse group of people visiting our business which makes us feel like we are making an impact in sharing this great concept and part of our tradition with the community,” Jose Jacome shared about his and Fatima’s experience of running an ice cream shop so far.  

Like many businesses that opened during the current pandemic the future is still uncertain for them, but one thing the owners assure us is “our current goal is to provide the best Ice Cream experience to everyone that walks in through our doors.”  

Monarca Gourmet Paletas located at 9901 University Ave, Suite 150, Clive, IA. They are open Monday through Friday from 1:00 PM to 9:00 PM, Saturdays from 11:00 AM to 9:00 PM and Sundays 11:00 AM to 8:00 PM. Look for Monarca Paletas on Facebook.    

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