HeeMee Coffee + Bakery quietly opened its doors for a soft opening on Friday, June 7. The soft opening will extend to Saturday, June 8 with hours from 7 a.m. - 4 p.m.; the cafe will then close until its grand opening on Monday, June 17.
During the soft opening, 50% of proceeds will benefit the Iskashitaa Refugee Network.
The family-run cafe resides in the 1,300-square-foot space at 20 E. Congress St., Ste. 110. Seoul, Korea native HeeMee Kim bakes at the cafe with her daughter Angela Kim.
"This was kind of a second wind for her," said David Kim, HeeMee's son. HeeMee previously owned a dry cleaning business in Oro Valley and sold it. With her newfound free time, she started baking at home more often.
Although HeeMee has no formal baking experience, she has been baking her whole life. Word of mouth spread about her baking quality, so she decided to open the cafe.
David, an architect, designed the space with his professor. The old-meets-new interior features exposed brick and an open duct ceiling, along with a modern, minimalist aesthetic featuring white walls with pastel pink and peach-colored accents. Artwork from family and a Los Angeles friend adorn the walls.
HeeMee's pastries are the result of researching countless Korean, French, and Japanese recipes and adjusting them to her liking.
During the soft opening, we tasted our way through carrot muffins, strawberry shortcake, olive scones, and a few other goodies. The pastries were fluffier, more delicate, and less sweet than what we'd considered standard. They paired well with the Verve Coffee Roasters latte we had; local Yellow Brick Coffee cold brew is also available.
The pastry menu changes regularly; we also saw an Oreo matcha cake, mascarpone tiramisu, and gluten-free blueberry cake on display.
Furthermore, the cafe offers bingsoo, a Korean dessert made with shaved ice and milk. Current flavors include green tea, Oreo, strawberry, and mango; seasonal and rotating flavors will soon be added.
Operating hours will be 7 a.m. - 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
HeeMee Coffee + Bakery is located at 20 E. Congress St., Ste. 110. Keep up with HeeMee Coffee + Bakery on Instagram.
Jackie Tran is a Tucson-based food writer, photographer, culinary educator, and owner-chef of the food truck Tran's Fats. Although he is best known locally for his work for Tucson Foodie, his work has also appeared in publications such as Bon...