Short N Sweet Cafe

Come for the bubble tea, but stay for the shredded squid

Restaurant Review
Photo by John Anderson

Short N Sweet Cafe

10901 N. Lamar, 873-0893
Monday, Wednesday-Thursday, 9am-9:30pm; Friday-Satur­day: 9am-6:30pm, Sunday, 10am-6:30pm; closed Tuesday

Two years ago, Nancy Pham opened Short N Sweet in the Chinatown shopping center anchored by MT Supermarket. It's a brightly decorated Vietnam­ese shop with bubble teas (short, $2.77; sweet, $3.77), shakes, ice cream, candies, preserved fruit, meats, seafood, snacks, and a limited menu of home-style dishes. We supped on a wonderful Spicy Hue Beef Noodle Soup ($6.45): a huge bowl of rich broth loaded with fresh rice noodles, tendon, fresh beef slices, stew beef, and even a large chunk of blood cake, accompanied by a plate of herbs, sprouts, and shredded greens to add. We also sampled an excellent Pork Bahn Cuon platter ($5.59), loaded with fresh rice-sheet dumplings filled with ground pork; topped with julienned cucumber, sprouts, scallion, and fried shallot; and served with slices of Vietnamese headcheese, pork loaf, and a bowl of zesty nuoc cham dressing to drench it all in. Finish this up with a luscious Thai tea smoothie with tapioca pearls, and you have yourself a perfect meal.

Most seem to come for the bubble teas and shakes, which are offered in many taste configurations, while kiddos migrate toward the ice cream selection (which includes a sensuous durian, mango, green bean, and red bean). A big draw is the Crazy Drink, made with your choice of taro, egg, strawberry, or almond puddings; mango, sweetgrass, or pandan jellies; and several dozen other ingredients.

Not to be missed are the 40-odd containers of preserved fruits, along with assorted candies and 23 different snacks and preserved meats, including spicy venison jerky and numerous manifestations of beef jerky. There is an addictive sweet-spicy dried shredded squid that you have to try; it tastes just like Thai plaa mèuk bing (grilled dried squid with sweet chile sauce). Short N Sweet isn't that big, but it's packed with yummy food finds, and the service is fantastic.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Food Reviews
Himalaya Kosheli and Fat Dragon Spice Up Spicewood Springs
Himalaya Kosheli and Fat Dragon Spice Up Spicewood Springs
Nepalese fare and Asian fusion revitalize North Austin shopping center

Jessi Cape, Feb. 15, 2019

Otherside Deli Offers Out-of-This-World Pastrami and Corned Beef Sandwiches
Otherside Deli Offers Out-of-This-World Pastrami and Corned Beef Sandwiches
Former food truck touches down on West 34th Street

Jessi Cape, Jan. 25, 2019

More by Mick Vann
Guantanamera Cuban Cuisine
Guantanamera Cuban Cuisine
Good things come in small packages

May 8, 2015

On the Cheap: Taquito Aviles
Taquito Aviles
Getting our goat on Braker

Feb. 20, 2015

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Short N Sweet Cafe, Chinatown, bubble tea, Vietnamese

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle