One of the best places to get some vegan Chinese food is Happy Family in Monterey Park. This restaurant is not to be confused with the Happy Family chain in Rowland Heights, Costa Mesa, and Loma Linda. Rumor is that these two businesses were once one actual happy family, but parted ways some time ago. I could be wrong. Either way, these businesses have a similar menu, but are not the same company.
My vegan guy and I started off with my favorite – hot and sour soup. I absolutely love this soup, but it’s so hard trying to find one that is tasty and vegan. Luckily, Happy Family has it and it is wonderful. I could eat bowls and bowls of this stuff in one sitting (and have many times). It has a very flavorful broth and is filled with tofu, bamboo, mushrooms, and carrots.
Next up were the crispy oyster mushrooms. These mushrooms are fried, but not greasy. They are subtly seasoned and are not served with any sauce (you don’t need one). I thought they were very good, but prefer the similar dish at the other Happy Family. The oyster mushrooms at the other Happy Family have a bit more flavor, but I would still recommend ordering it here.
Our last dish was the special fungus with deep fried tofu (can you tell we like the fried stuff?). It sounded better than what was served. This was my least favorite. The tofu did not seem deep fried. The soft tofu had a thin layer of fried batter that had gotten mushy from the sauce. As my guy said it, “It’s not very flavorful, but it’s also not flavorless.” I couldn’t have said it better.
There are many other dishes at Happy Family that I’ve had and loved. Their menu is huge! They have lots of fake meat items, too. I’d highly recommend making the drive out to Monterey Park – it’s worth it!
500 N Atlantic Blvd
Monterey Park, CA 91754
Parking structure is connected to shopping plaza.