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Treat yourself to this coffee tres leches cake from Diletto Bakery
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Diletto Bakery's coffee tres leches cake keeps customers coming back for more. Photo courtesy James Velez

New and sweet flavors are essential to James Velez, owner of Diletto Bakery in Gainesville. He offers a large selection of desserts and bread at his business, but one mouth-watering treat reigns in popularity — the coffee tres leches cake. 

Each day, Velez said he works with his team to prepare batches of the confection, selling nearly 20 cakes each day. Even when customers intend to only purchase one, he said most order another.

“They eat it with a smile, and most of the time they take a second one home,” Velez said. “Some people buy it to-go, and they can’t resist and eat it here.”

Velez said the cake was the first dessert released by the bakery after months of perfecting the recipe and finding the right coffee ingredient. The baker said he was inspired to combine the two flavors of traditional tres leches cake and coffee because it embraced the star items of the bakery — pastries and coffee. 

“Our customers rave on the fact it’s the perfect amount of sweetness and coffee flavor,” Velez said. “Even customers who don’t like the traditional tres leches have fallen in love with this item.”

The bakery has seen similar success with other espresso combinations like its dirty chai latte, which adds a shot of espresso into a regular chai latte.

Staying true to its name, tres leches — which translates to “three milks” in Spanish — the cake is made with evaporated and condensed milk and heavy cream. The coffee element comes from the espresso that is poured into the dessert for a rich taste. 

Velez and his staff make the batter from scratch, baking it to a soft consistency. Once they take it out of the oven, the owner said the cake is punctured and infused with the milk mixture and coffee.

Once the dessert cools off, it is cut and topped with a generous helping of toasted Italian meringue.

The end result — a scrumptious mouthful of coffee and fluffy cake. Be warned, you may end up taking another slice or two home.  

Coffee tres leches cake

Where: Diletto Bakery, 528 Bradford St. SW, Gainesville 

Hours: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday-Friday; 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday

Price: $4.25

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