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Feb 3, 2007 11:34 AM

Chinese Vegetarian - I'm confused - so many Happy Familys!

Its been quite a while since I've been to the Happy Family chinese vegetarian place in Monterey Park - I had heard they had moved, so i started poking around, and I am finding that there are quite a few Happy Family restaurants out there! Can some of you kind peeople help me figure out which is the one to go to?

Apparently there is some confusion because the original one (the one I was initially familiar with) had to move, so now I am seeing the "Happy Family 3" restaurant with addreses of both 111 N. Atlantic. and 608 N. Atlantic in Monterey Park, but there is ALSO a "Happy Family" restaurant on Colima Road in Rowland Heights, and seemingly, another one on Valley Road in Rosemead...

Can someone with more recent "Happy Family" experience guide me through this - are they all owened by the same people? Which ones are currently open, and most importantly, which is the best one!


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  1. The one on Atlantic moved further south (corner of Garvey and Atlantic). 608 N. is the old address (right south of the 10), and 111 is the new one. Unless you feel like trekking to Rowland Heights, the one on Atlantic is almost definitely the one you want to go to.

    I have a little information about the different ones and also a list of some other veg Chinese places in the area at:

    I believe the one in Rowland Heights and the one in MP (on Atlantic) are the same ownership. I haven't been to the Rowland Heights one, but I know it is meat on one floor and veg on the other; the MP one is all vegetarian. My gf says the one in Rowland Heights is a little better, though she hasn't been there for a while.

    There used to be a non-veg "Happy Family" in the mall on Del Mar / Valley, but I don't think it's there anymore. The one in Rosemead isn't as good IMO, and isn't owned by the same people. I think it's the same family, though (I think there was some drama involved, so maybe not such a happy family). Hopefully someone else knows more about the background than I do.

    1 Reply
    1. re: will47

      The first floor Happy Family in Rowland Heights no longer exists... only the upstairs vegetarian Happy Family is still there. I hear it's still good though.

      My family used to love Happy Family (dare I say it made us happy?) but now there are only vegetarian Happy Family restaurants. You're probably right that there was some sort of drama w/in the family who owned these Happy Family places. But I wish they were still around... we haven't found a good substitute for Happy Family. :(

    2. wow - thanks will47 - that's exactly the scoop i was looking for! we'll be heading out there tomorrow i think!

      1. I had my high school graduation dinner at the Happy Family on Valley. From what I remember it was pretty good and my mom who is the vegetarian in our family had no complaints which is a good sign.

        1. happy family is very good.
          mhy faves - the lily flower/enoki mushroom soup (lily flowerin the english meny, enoki -golden needle mushroom soup in the chinese menu)
          and the "monkey -head" mushroom soup (houtougu tang). It was only on the chalkboard in chinese. Ask the server, it's pricey though.

          1. The Rowland Heights upstairs used to be the best of the bunch, but I haven't been in a while, so I don't know if it still is. The Monterey Park one is the only one that does the all-you-can-eat thing, but last time I went there I thought it was kind of lackluster.

            However, I think that Fine Garden (Las Tunas at Mission) is currently the best chinese-vegetarian restaurant in the SGV. A terrificly good deal at lunchtime, too.

            5 Replies
            1. re: ladelfa

              Did Fine Garden have a different name before? I went to a restaurant at that spot maybe 4-5 years ago and didn't love it... I went there again last year on the recommendation of Vegetarians in Paradise, then realized I had actually been there before.

              I honestly didn't see what all the hype (in their review) was about. It seemed fairly average to me. Not bad, but I didn't find it to be better than the other places around.

              I used to like Vegetarian Delight (in the Del Mar / Valley shopping center) and Ten In - I was sad when they both closed.

              1. re: will47

                Fine Garden has gone through several incarnations. I believe it was called "Vege Table" just before it became Fine Garden.

                1. re: raytamsgv

                  You are right about the name change-my mom frequents that place quite a lot. There is also a good Chinese vegetarian place in Sunny Plaza on Valley, I think it's called Vegetarian Wok

                  1. re: crystaw

                    Yeah - I think that's mentioned in the post I linked to. I like that one - had my birthday party there last year.

                2. re: will47

                  There was an a total overhaul of the dining area and menu to coincide with a change in ownership and name from "Vege Table" to "Fine Garden" about a year ago. IIRC the people who had run "Purple Bamboo" in Rowland Heights took it over.

                  We went last night, actually. Thumbs up to the chicken with lily bulbs and gingko nuts, and to the duck and taro. The "spicy over spicy" (finely diced dried tofu, chilis, long bean -- it's on the Chinese-only page at the back of the menu) had a nice sausagey note, but it didn't really grab me.