[Photographs: Erin Jackson]

Azucar is the kind of bakery where you could blindly point at anything in the case and end up loving it. The cookies, cupcakes, and scones are all excellent, but it's the mini cakes that make my sweet tooth tingle. The Divina ($6) is my current favorite. Passion fruit curd and raspberries are sandwiched between two layers of white chocolate souffle cake, enrobed in marshmallow, and toasted with a blow torch.


Owner Vivian Hernandez-Jackson has an excellent sense of balance, and her desserts have a finely-tuned restraint when it comes to sweetness. Cream cheese, acidic fruits and citrus, or salt are often introduced to balance out the sugar, creating desserts that are beautiful to look at but won't send you into a massive sugar coma.

In the Divina, the balancing elements are the passion fruit curd and the raspberries: two tart additions that round-out the sugary marshmallow and white chocolate cake. So while the mini cake is a good size to split between two people, it's just as easy to eat the whole thing yourself.

As tasty as it is, I still advocate sharing so that you can spend the rest of your sugar budget on a Dulche de Leche Macchiato ($3), with house-made caramel, steamed milk, and espresso.


4820 Newport Avenue San Diego, CA 92107 (map)
619-523-2020; iloveazucar.com

About the author: Erin Jackson is a food writer and photographer who is obsessed with discovering the best eats in San Diego. You can find all of her discoveries on her San Diego food blog EJeats.com. On Twitter, she's @ErinJax


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