By Collin Breaux
Stopping into Breezy for a bite to eat can feel like you’re having brunch in Hawaii.
That aura is exactly what the new downtown San Juan Capistrano restaurant is going for, according to Jasmin Gonzalez—one of the owners of the new eatery.
Breezy recently had a soft opening at what used to be Ramen Shack. The island-themed restaurant’s address is 31761 Camino Capistrano, Suite 4, near Mission San Juan Capistrano and across the street from FKN Bread.
Menu items include pancake stacks, avocado toast and acai bowls. The interior is painted in pastels and has island-themed décor.
“What this really is, is the island foods we grew up on,” said Gonzalez, who grew up in Polynesian culture and has family and friends in Hawaii. “Filipino, Hawaiian, the foods we had for breakfast. Pretty cool vibe. Really chill. We’re not trying to win awards, but mainly trying to introduce our culture and what we grew up with to San Juan Capistrano.”
Gonzalez was also a business partner in Ramen Shack, which closed earlier this year due to chef Keizo Shimamoto experiencing health issues. Gonzalez wanted to hang onto the space and decided to retool it into something different.
“Every week, I’ll feature specials. I’ll have different chefs collaborate, since I do work with a lot of different chefs to bring in their favorite meals that they have and to share,” Gonzalez said. “Our planned grand opening is November 5. By then, we’ll be able to work out the kinks and be able to create all these different specials.”
Even with a low-key opening, some customers have already stopped in for brunch. Gonzalez said the response has been good so far.
“Everybody loves the food,” she said. “A lot of people like to hang out here. It’s a very calm environment. Honestly, the whole creation of this was to have a cool place to hang out and not feel pressure, just enjoy your food, just enjoy your breakfast.”
The coffee menu is curated by Anne Marie Damaso, and the acai menu is curated by Gonzalez’s husband. Breezy uses bread from 61 Hundred Bakery, a cottage bakery based in San Juan Capistrano, as well as coffee beans from Hidden House Coffee, which is right around the corner from Breezy.
“When we’re back in Hawaii, that’s all we do. We eat good food, have acai, go surfing, have coffee,” Gonzalez said. “It’s just chill.”
Gonzalez said Breezy also fits in well with the growing downtown area, which is becoming a tourist hub full of new restaurants.
“That’s why I stayed, to be honest. Just watching it grow, that was the reason why I didn’t want to let go of this space,” Gonzalez said. “The downtown area and putting that on the map and being able to say it is a foodie destination, that was the whole goal. I think San Juan has a lot of things coming. It’s up and coming. Watching it grow and evolve is exciting.”
While Breezy currently offers what is called a sunrise menu, they eventually want to also open a sunset menu that goes beyond breakfast items. The restaurant was working on getting an alcohol license at the time of the interview.
Breezy is currently open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.
“I love San Juan. I think it’s a beautiful and charming city,” Gonzalez said. “It’s going to get on the map.”
Collin Breaux covers San Juan Capistrano and other South Orange County news as the City Editor for The Capistrano Dispatch. Before moving to California, he covered Hurricane Michael, politics and education in Panama City, Florida. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.