Normal Heights' Incoming Pachamama Organic Restaurant Appoints Cafe Gratitude Alum To Lead Kitchen

June 16, 2019

We broke the news earlier this year that controversial Argentinean former-model and tennis pro Victoria Vannucci had relocated to San Diego to open an organic, mostly plant-based South American restaurant in Normal Heights. Pachamama will open this July with a menu from former Cafe Gratitude Chef Ernesto Moreno.

Pachamama is named after the Inca goddess synonymous with "Mother Earth" and is in the process of installing within the 2,058 square-foot restaurant unit that last housed Cafe Cabaret in San Diego's North Park community. The restaurant today announced an anticipated July opening with a kitchen helmed by Cafe Gratitude alum and native San Diegan Ernesto Morena. Taking cues from the owner’s South American roots, Chef Morena's mostly plant-based menu will offer flavors and dishes that honor the indigenous cuisines of Peru, Colombia, Venezuela, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Cuba and Mexico. The menu will be 100% organic with many options that are vegan, gluten-free and paleo friendly. Pachamama will have a minimalist decor with natural wood furnishings and an ample garden patio decorated with outdoor herb boxes, potted plants, and succulents.

The breakfast menu at Pachamama will feature items such as avocado tostadas, medialuna (Argentine croissant), banana coconut pancakes and farm scrambled eggs. The lunch and dinner menu will include items such as empanadas, tuna ceviche, tacu tacu (Peruvian bean & quinoa cakes), green rice, a selection of superfood bowls, house-made tamales, crispy wild salmon and Peruvian-spiced eggplant & tomato.

Pachamama is the product of Victoria Vannucci, a former tennis professional and model who has lived in Miami since 2016 after a series of controversies in her home country of Argentina that included backlash due to the dissemination of images of her and her ex-husbannd posing with hunted wild animals in Africa. The distribution of the photos of Vannucci with big game animals resulted in the businesswoman filing a successful lawsuit against both her hometown municipality and social media behemoth Twitter. 

Pachamama aims to open as early as next month at 3737-3739 Adams Avenue in San Diego's Normal Heights. For more information, visit and check out the draft menu below.