“We are always in Season”

It was no ordinary day for the team at the Happy Girl Kitchen. You see, usually they are only open for breakfast and lunch… but on this particular occasion, Happy Girl Kitchen opened their doors for dinner. On this evening, the team at Happy Girl Kitchen welcomed about 50 of us to enjoy a beautifully cooked vegetarian dinner, and learn more about the Happy Girl Kitchen philosophy.

Who Are Happy Girl Kitchen?

The Happy Girl Kitchen was started by owners Tony & Jordan Champagne in California. It is a speciality artisan company that produces food products in a small scale in Monterey, but are making big waves in the farm to table movement.

Both Tony & Jordan ensure that Happy Girl Kitchen works closely with small farmers in the California region to ensure only the freshest of produce, organic wherever possible, while supporting all things local.

Tony & Jordan from Happy Girl Kitchen in Monterey, California | Hello Raya Blog
Tony & Jordan with their team (and me) at the Happy Girl Kitchen

Sitting there in their production kitchen, surrounded by bottles of all kinds of jams, pickles, honey… you name it… it dawned on me – now I understand what they mean by “we are always in season.”

The whole farm to table movement is not just about supporting local farmers, but it also means eating what was in season. This means that certain fruits and vegetables are not available year round. By preserving certain fruits and vegetables in the form of jams and pickles, you can eat them all year round. And this is the very thing that Happy Girl Kitchen are great at.

The Experience

Every dish prepared was truly a taste of California region, which was exactly what I was looking for while travelling in California. While some of the dishes may have looked simple, the flavours were fresh and complex. And being the carnivore that I am (yes I like my meat), this evening I forgot I was eating only vegetarian.

For appetizer, we had a chance to taste the famous Happy Girl Kitchen homemade pickles, which might I add was delicious. Paired with this was an heirloom tomato and fresh mozzarella salad. The tomatoes were extremely fresh and flavoursome – just the way tomatoes are supposed to taste like. None of these tasteless, mass produced tomatoes you might find in the supermarket.

Tomato & Mozzarella Salad | Happy Girl Kitchen in Monterey, California | Hello Raya Blog
The organic tomato & mozzarella salad

For mains, the team prepared an amazing vegetarian lasagne, made with home made ricotta cheese…just delightful!

Vegetarian Lasagna Happy Girl Kitchen in Monterey, California | Hello Raya Blog
The vegetarian lasagna for dinner

And finally we get to the finale of the evening – dessert. You know how they say that there’s always room for dessert? Well this was very well the case.

Everyone was stuffed to the brink, but of course there was plenty of room for a blackberry orange crumble. And to add to the experience, the Happy Girl Kitchen offered us to join them in the kitchen to help serve up all the dessert. This was great, because it felt like one big family get together.

Blackberry & Orange Crumble Happy Girl Kitchen in Monterey, California | Hello Raya Blog
Serving up dessert – the Blackberry & Orange Crumble

As a parting gift, we each received a lovely bottle of quince jam, which was just exquisite. In the following days, I bought a loaf of good quality sourdough bread, spread a generous serving of quince jam and it was the perfect breakfast. I also bought bottles of their limited edition strawberry and lavender jams, which was equally delicious and also made for lovely gifts to bring home.

The Verdict

Yes Yes Yes! I highly recommend paying a visit to the Happy Girl Kitchen when you are in Monterey. The staff are so darn friendly, the food is delicious and the products are delightful. Plus you would be supporting a fantastic small business, who are trying to make a difference by working closely with local farmers and bringing to the world stage the wonderful produce of California.

Spicy Carrot Preserve Happy Girl Kitchen in Monterey, California | Hello Raya Blog
The Spicy Carrot Preserve that you can purchase

Forget fridge magnets and key chains for souvenirs… bring a real taste of California home to your family and friends with Happy Girl Kitchen products.

If you are interested in products from Happy Girl Kitchen, they can be ordered online or bought in store. There are also numerous stockists around the California region, which carry the Happy Girl Kitchen range.

And if you want to learn the art of preserving and pickling, Happy Girl Kitchen run numerous workshops and events. Just visit their website for more information.

Are you planning on doing the Pacific Coast Highway Road Trip? Then check out these 20 beautiful stops to make on your trip. 

To Visit

173 Central Ave.,

Pacific Grove, CA 93950

(in Monterey, not far from the aquarium)

Phone: +1 831.373.GIRL (4475)

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Happy Girl Kitchen in Monterey, California | Hello Raya Blog


No compensation was received for this review. All opinions remains my own. I only recommend products & services that I personally love and use myself.

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15 Comments on An Evening with Todd & Jordan from Happy Girl Kitchen

  1. Can I just say that the idea of quince and lavender jam just made me miss California more than I have in years? As a former Bay Area resident now living in a country with mostly sad produce options, this place just shot to the top of my list for whenever I can next afford to visit.

  2. A brilliant and unbiased review! Really made me want to get on board with the movement and try harder to eat in season. Could you really taste the difference?

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