Thu Thu Sandwich, a super-casual cafe tucked away in an unassuming strip center, has been serving Vietnamese food to Cypress-area residents since its January 2017 launch. While it may be close to home or work for some but a hike for others, it is worth making the drive to 10502 Grant Road to get a taste of fresh and competently prepared Vietnamese food, suburban style. (ICYMI: We feel the same way about Bosnian restaurant Cafe Adel on Eldridge and Koala Kolache on Spring Cypress Road.)
We stopped in to see what Thu Thu had to offer after being tipped off by a follower on Instagram and left genuinely pleased with the experience. We were greeted with big smiles from the staff, and good vibes resonated with the sounds of an early 2000s playlist. Seating is open, and waitstaff quickly made their way to our table to take our order.
If you haven’t tried much Vietnamese food, this cafe is a good place to get your feet wet. From com dia (rice platters), pho (the iconic Vietnamese noodle soup) or banh mi sandwiches, they have many, many offerings. In fact, the menu can be overwhelming with so many choices. So just ask the waitstaff. They are friendly experts and will make thoughtful suggestions.
Menu items are inexpensive, averaging about $7.95 a plate. The lunch combination, which includes spring rolls or eggrolls, noodles, your choice of meat and a soda, is offered daily 11 am to 3 pm for $9.99. Banh mi sandwiches are served with the traditional mayonnaise, pâté, carrots, cucumbers, cilantro and jalapenos. (You may have your banh mi on a croissant or baguette.) Beverage choices include milk tea, smoothies, flavored teas and ice blended coffees mostly $3.50 to $4.50.
We started with pho ga ($7.95, photo at top), the traditional Vietnamese noodle soup made with chicken in this case rather than beef. It’s a nice alternative to the beef-broth pho, though both kinds are always very light and without a trace of grease. (Perfect for August!)
I think you’d also like bun bo nuong xa ($9.95, photo below), which is a sort of noodle salad with lettuce, bean sprouts, lemongrass, cucumbers, crushed peanuts, green onions and fried onions. The protein toppings are yours to choose, and we enjoyed ours with eggrolls and charred beef. Pour over the salad “dressing,” and toss it yourself. Thu Thu was even nice enough to throw in an extra Vietnamese eggroll at no additional charge.
We couldn’t leave on a sultry August day without ordering one of the many beckoning beverages. Finding some middle ground between the selections, we opted for the mango tea ($3.50). Made of real fruit and tea, it didn’t disappoint on that hot afternoon.
Thu Thu Sandwich is situated on the far-Northwest side of Houston, but don’t let that stop you from making your way there, even if it’s not in your usual dining zone.
Sidenote: Google Translator tells us Thu Thu, in Vietnamese, means librarian. We’re going to ask questions about the cafe’s name when we return.
Thu Thu Sandwich, 10502 Grant Rd, B200, 832-688-5922 facebook.com/thuthusandwich
Hours: Monday-Saturday 11am – 9pm, Sunday 11am – 8pm.