Viet-Cajun seafood restaurant Happy Rito Seafood opens in Cedar Park

The Viet-Cajun crawfish scene that took off in Houston the past decade is beginning to make inroads in the Austin area. The latest addition to the genre comes from chef-restaurateur Ethan Huynh, who opened Happy Rito Seafood in Cedar Park in November.

The Houston native grew up in southern Louisiana, where his parents operated a convenience store that served boiled crawfish, and spent his first decade after college working in Louisiana restaurants, including a long stint in a sushi restaurant in Houma.

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Huynh moved to Austin six months before the pandemic hit to join her family. He opened Happy Rito Seafood at 11066 Pecan Park Blvd., Suite 540, in November. The restaurant serves boiled seafood (shrimp, snow crab, and crayfish); po’boys and fried seafood baskets (shrimp, oysters and soft-shell crab); crab spring rolls; pan stickers; and more. Boiled seafood is served both classic Cajun style and Viet-Cajun style with garlic butter infused with aromatics found in Vietnamese cuisine.

Happy Rito began its seasonal live crawfish boils last weekend, thanks to a mild winter and an early start to crawfish season. Huynh has not decided whether he will serve pre-frozen crawfish once the live season ends.

Happy Rito Seafood is open 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday and currently only boils live crayfish on weekends.

Thanks to one of our favorite Instagram followers, @eats_n_noods, for alerting us to the new restaurant.

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