Respiro del Diavolo – Glasgow, Scotland - Gastro Obscura
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Respiro del Diavolo

Aldwych Cafe and Ice Cream Parlor

The world's spiciest ice cream comes from Glasgow. 

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It’s not often that ice cream parlors make international headlines. But just before Valentine’s Day 2018, Aldwych Cafe and Ice Cream Parlor in Glasgow, Scotland, made the news for a fiery new flavor. Called Respiro del Diavolo, or “Devil’s Breath,” the ice cream is an innocuous bubblegum pink, suggesting strawberry or another harmless fruit. Instead, Respiro del Diavolo’s star ingredient is much scarier: Carolina Reaper peppers, some of the hottest in the world.

The result is spicy, to say the least. Reapers have a Scoville level of 1,569,300 SHU, making them more than a hundred times hotter than a jalapeño. While a bite of the ice cream might start off as ice-cold, it quickly becomes furiously hot. So hot that when Aldwych Cafe debuted the treat, customers had to sign a waiver before trying it (for some people extremely spicy food can be painful and even injurious). 

Few people record tasting notes beyond “very, very hot.” Lee Bandoni, the brother of the Aldwych Cafe’s owner, describes it as “a thermal nuclear explosion in your mouth.” Despite its hair-raising hotness, the owner maintains that the recipe is an old family specialty from Italy.

But only certain members of the family can enjoy Respiro del Diavolo. You must be over 18 to try it.

Know Before You Go

As of June 2018, the Aldwych Cafe is still the sole seller of the spicy ice cream. It's a family recipe, after all.

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