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Happy Heart Kona

Our Story

Happy Heart Kona started with a simple idea: bake food that makes you feel good! It also grew from a personal passion to bake delicious, dairy-free, and plant-based pastries with locally sourced ingredients. 

Owners Isabel Thottam and Neil Bhave share a love for food and fruit! Isabel started baking dairy-free pastries due to digestive issues related to dairy. This also inspired her to take charge of her health and led her on a journey to discover what foods made her heart happy: turns out, it was mostly fruit! 

Isabel first started baking professionally in Seattle at a local, gluten-free bakery. She then started baking on her own while working for an organic tree fruit orchard, which gave her access to a lot of really good, organic fruit. This inspired her to bake naturally sweet pastries and expand her baking knowledge. She later worked in a local bakery in Hawaii when she first moved to Kona.

Isabel and Neil actually met in Hawaii in 2018 while on vacation. After being introduced by a mutual friend, Neil taught Isabel how to surf at Pine Trees.  They later decided to move to Hawaii together and Isabel started selling her baked goods at the Pure Kona Green Farmers Market in Captain Cook. Neil started helping her sell and baking his own favorite snack…granola! About 8 months after starting at the farmer’s market, they were offered an incredible opportunity to open a cafe in Kealakekua and decided to follow their hearts and go for it. 

Our Goals

Happy Heart Kona’s goal is to be a community space that fuels people with good food. Our focus is to keep our ingredient sourcing local and transparent so you always know what's in your food. By investing in local farmers and other small businesses, we will contribute to the local community, food system, and economy. 

Isabel’s dream has always been to own a cafe where local artists could play music, recite poems, read their writing work, and share stories with one another. We know our hours are currently limited, but we hope to expand in the future and offer you all a space where you can enjoy art, conversation, and music…and pop tarts in the evening!

Our Food

We designed our menu with the goal of offering food we would and do actually eat. We also wanted there to be something for everyone and do our best to accommodate different allergies and dietary restrictions. The cool thing about our menu is that we eat all of these things at home…so we can truly recommend any item on our menu! Anything added to our menu has to pass our taste and quality control tests because we only want to serve what we can stand behind.

We also believe in using minimal added sugar and only use organic cane sugar when necessary. The majority of our food is sweetened naturally. We have various sweeteners available for customers who want to make any drink or item sweeter (honey, monk fruit, stevia, coconut sugar, etc.,)

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