Family owned café brings quality treats to Redwood Shores


Ben Romanowsky

Manager Ben Kong serving a fresh brew of black coffee.

Sweet U café embodies the importance of a family-owned and operated business.

Located in the depths of Redwood Shores, the café opened in August of 2022. Sweet U puts quality first in all its items to provide an enjoyable experience. They sell bubble tea, customizable desserts, and savory options. The quality of the goods encapsulates the passion of the managers and staff. 

“My wife is the reason I opened Sweet U,” said Ben Kong, the manager of Sweet U café. 

Sweet U treats its guests with the best service possible. In addition, the owners prioritize the creation of a friendly and enjoyable working environment.

Elisa Luo-Wimmer, a junior at Carlmont High School, is an employee at Sweet U.

The Sweet U family treats me like one of their daughters. I’m constantly being fed, and I’m always being joked around with. It’s such a great environment”

— Elisa Luo-Wimmer

“The Sweet U family treats me like one of their daughters. I’m constantly being fed, and I’m always being joked around with. It’s such a great environment,” Luo-Wimmer said.

Sweet U is thriving as the café approaches its two-month anniversary. The café is open six out of seven days a week and received a five-star review on Google Maps. It’s been a long journey, and reaching their success and getting to where they are today hasn’t been easy.

“It was very hard to start the business. Not as much the money, but we lacked the knowledge and experiences needed to be successful,” Kong said. “We have to take everything one step at a time to expand the business.”

Sweet U has been dedicated to expanding the café by adding to its menu and catering options. Their larger selections and dedication to the community have brought the business to success. 

Sweet U has a menu that caters to all audiences, including vegetarian and vegan options. However, one item, in particular, has caught consumers’ attention.

“The most popular menu item here is the cake. My wife is really good at decorating and making the birthday cake especially,” Kong said.

Sweet U’s Menu by Masha Rozenfeld

Kong and his wife prioritize having cakes that not only taste delicious but are also aesthetically pleasing. She puts quality attention into every cake, and positive customer feedback is a worthy payoff. 

Sweet U isn’t just a café; it’s a spot that brings the community together. The cafe is located in the back of Redwood Shores, next to a dog park. According to Kong, locals often walk their dogs and join together for a cup of coffee and a pastry at Sweet U.

“Redwood Shores is a good area for family-owned businesses because of the community surrounding it,” Kong said.

Sweet U has quickly become a place where locals can experience a home away from home and a place where quality food and service are expected.

“[Sweet U] brings that community type of feeling. I’m helping them out, and at the same time, it’s doing something good to me,” said Alex Wong, a resident. 

In addition, the café has brought together the Asian community of Redwood Shores. When the owners opened, they didn’t know there was such a large Asian residence in the area until Sweet U connected them. These contributions to the community are what the owners strive for, and their impact is definitely seen. 

“Working at a family-owned business is really inspiring because you see how hard people work. And it’s made me such a hardworking person,” Luo-Wimmer said.