Cynthia Pierce, owner of Café Yuzu, is a professional baker and pastry chef with nearly 40 years of baking experience, including stints in restaurants, bakeries and catering companies in NYC and as pastry chef at The Market Place Restaurant in Asheville, NC.
In March of 2013, Cynthia and her husband, potter/musician Akira Satake, opened Gallery Mugen at the Cotton Mill Studios in the River Arts District in Asheville. Yuzu Patisserie, as the business was then called, was a cozy area with a few small tables inside the ceramics gallery where customers could enjoy Cynthia’s sweet and savory baked goods along with coffee and a selection of loose leaf teas, including black teas, herb teas, and a variety of Japanese green teas.
Gallery Mugen relocated to a larger space in another River Arts District studio building on July 1, 2017, and Cynthia’s pastries went along. Café Yuzu has expanded its line of delicious offerings to include artful pastries from West Asheville’s Old World Levain Bakery and Sweet and Natural (Lake Toxaway) as well as crackers and flatbreads from Asheville’s Roots and Branches. Pour-over coffee, seasonal specialty drinks (hot chocolate, matcha lattes, honey yuzu tea), and loose leaf teas sourced from Dobra Tea are served along with the pastries on ceramic ware made by Akira.
Bistro tables and chairs within the gallery and a picnic table in the back courtyard offer visitors to the River Arts District a chance to stop and relax awhile as they enjoy a snack and conversation with friends or simply some quiet contemplation time during their busy day.