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Pastry chef Vivian Hernandez-Jackson bakes up Cuban, French and San Diego-inspired sweets in the city's first and only "Cuban-style Pâtisserie".
In San Diego, you’ll hear people using the word “sweet” a lot. We use it to describe everything from the weather to the waves to our new pair of flip flops. But at Azúcar, in the heart of the fun and funky Ocean Beach neighborhood, you’ll hear it even more. OB (as the locals call it) is the perfect place for bringing creative flavors to a community of open-minded fun-lovers who only want to get the sweetest out of life. And Azúcar delivers deliciously.
The concept is simple: half traditional Cuban, half French patisserie, all good San Diego vibes.
Opened by owner and head pastry chef Vivian Hernandez-Jackson, the daughter of two Cuban immigrants, Azúcar is a collection of family and classic Cubano recipes.
But that’s not all.
Chef Vivian, who started baking before she was old enough to start first grade, left the US after university to study traditional French baking techniques at Le Cordon Bleu in London, England. And she calls her own, unique brand of bakery San Diego’s first and only “Cuban-style Pâtisserie.” Whether you’re in the mood for high-class confectionaries or simple, hand-made treats with a home-cooked feel, you can find a little bit of everything at Azúcar.
Once inside, however, visitors will soon find that the most interesting flavor isn’t French or Cuban, it’s the local San Diego sweetness. Not only does Azúcar cater to beach-hopping surfers with two-dollar meat pies, but to local school moms who visit regularly, looking for their weekly bite of gluten-free heaven. Chef Vivian believes that, “living in San Diego, the bar is set higher.” She goes on to add that, “everyone here is fit, and they’re on walks and running, so if they’re gonna eat a pastry, it better be a good one.” And that’s exactly what she delivers.
Her menu is tailor-made for the San Diego palette, from upscale to down-to-earth, cheeky, laid-back, and a little zesty. Ever since Azúcar opened in 2008, it’s been a place with good local vibes, positive energy and a welcoming spirit – just like the laid-back beach neighborhood she brought Cuban-flavor to over a decade ago. Now she passes her positivity on to others when they step through her door. “San Diegans really know how to enjoy life,” says Chef Vivian, “I just hope my pastries add to that joy.”
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