About Us

Ed and June Hoffman opened Hoffman’s Downtown in September of 2001.  That’s not where Mr. Ed Hoffman started his baking career though.  Over 25 years before in in the same downtown Santa Cruz the Old Theatre Cafe stood and a young, vibrant, handsome Ed Hoffman was an apprentice baker under the tutelage of Lorenz Rothbucher. He also worked with Ron Schmidt, Al Negri, and Jean Wopplehorst, all former owners of bakeries in downtown Santa Cruz.  It was love at first sight for a 19 year old June and after both graduating from UCSC they went on to start their life and business in an exciting new place.

As they had their first two children Marie and Adam Hoffman, they moved up to Eastside of Seattle, Washington to Kirkland to open and run a still existing Hoffman’s Fine Pastries.  Ed ran the Best Bakery on the Eastside and produced award winning pastries daily as well as second to none wedding cakes.  They ran the business for 16 years but their love of California beckoned.  They sold the business in 2001 to come home to Santa Cruz with their third child Michelle.

Hoffman’s Bakery Cafe opened in August 2001.  Hoffman’s Downtown has come a long way in the 10 years it’s been open.  One of the biggest changes has to be that ownership has been gifted to Ed and June’s only son, Adam, a graduate of Business Management Economics from UCSC.  He has been working in his parents restaurants every since he was a kid and found it natural to take it over.  “This is what I’ve wanted to do my entire life”, he told me recently. His most recent accomplishment is opening the Global Village Cafe by Hoffman’s in the McHenry Library at UCSC, he and his parents, alma mater.

Marie Hoffman works at the downtown location as a Manager and as the Wine and Beverage Director for the restaurant. She is a sommelier, a long time dream of hers and is incredibly gifted with her foresight and drive for the restaurant.  It was Marie that applied the stuggling Hoffman’s Bistro for a coveted spot on the Food Network’s “Restaurant Impossible” with host, celebrity chef, Robert Irvine.  In October of 2011, the Food Network did what others dream of by giving the restaurant a complete makeover, a new dinner menu and a new found HOPE that was not there before.

Now, Ed supervises the bakery staff and provides pastries for not only the downtown location, but for the Global Village Cafe at UCSC as well.  His wedding cakes are still just as beautiful and popular as ever.  June is the glue that has held the business and family together through the years and looks over all the bookkeeping and helps in the front of the house.   She also serves on the Board of Directors of the Downtown Association and the Downtown Commission.

The entire family has welcomed Amelia, their first, third generation Hoffman, into the world from their beautiful daughter and sister Michelle.

Open Sun-Thurs 8am-9pm, Fri & Sat 8am-10pm
1102 Pacific Ave. Downtown Santa Cruz, 95060
(831) 420-0135