One of my favorite things to do in Oak Cliff is sneak out of the office on a hot afternoon and get a sno cone from Aunt Stelle’s. I’ve never met a sno cone quite like the ones you can get from the window on Clarendon. I am convinced that Aunt Stelle’s sno cones are the best anywhere. That’s why I chose them for the August Delicious feature of the Oak Cliff Advocate.
From behind the window at Aunt Stelle’s, owner Lee Albert has watched children grow up, couples get engaged, new babies strolled out. People tell her secrets. They brag about their kids and confess their fears. Or sometimes, they just say, “medium pink lady, please.” (It tastes like vanilla ice cream and costs 25 cents extra.) “We meet all kinds of people,” Albert said. “It’s like visiting with friends and family all day.”
As much as she has enjoyed the shop, Aunt Stelle’s is not going to be around forever. Albert, whose mom was Aunt Stelle, has been working there since she was 8 years old. She says she’ll never sell the shop that her mom started. And her only daughter, an award-winning high school physics teacher, has no interest in the family business.
More after the jump.
The shop used to be open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. And Albert would put in 90-hour weeks working the ice-shaving machine that her dad invented. Even though the business is seasonal, it was just too much. So she started cutting back the hours a few years ago. Now Aunt Stelle’s is open Thursday through Sunday from 2-9 p.m. Next year, they’ll be closed on Thursdays too. And someday, when Albert decides to retire, that will be it for Aunt Stelle’s. "But we’ll see how many more years we’ve got in us," she said.
Click to sign up for the Advocate's weekly news digest and be the first to know what’s happening in Lakewood/East Dallas.