VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — The idea started out of a frustration for Michael and Amanda Mauch, who just wanted healthier options around where they work.
The couple owns two businesses at the Oceanfront and said they always struggled to find fresh food along Atlantic Avenue.
“My wife told me we were going to open up a restaurant. And I said ‘No, we’re not!’ but we’re here now,” said Mauch. “There was one thing that was missing, you know, something farm-to-table.”
The couple decided to open a, what they call a “farm-to-beach” restaurant named “Harvest VB” at the corner of Atlantic Avenue and 18th Street.
The goal is to keep everything local.
Michael made the wooden tables and the building facade himself. He also gets his produce like the salads and sandwiches from local farms in Virginia Beach.
“You keep the money in the economy. You support your neighbors,” said Mauch. “And it’s nice to know that your food comes from where you live.”
The restaurant caters to the morning and evening crowds with its hours, along with coffee and beer. It is open until 10 p.m. on weekends and a new soon-to-come rooftop lounge area will extend the hours until midnight.
Mauch said the corner where the restaurant sits has been a spot for violence in the past. He said he hopes his restaurant’s opening can spark change.
"A lot of high profile incidents in the past have happened around this corner,” Mauch said. “Hopefully if you change the environment that people are in, it kind of changes the way people act in that environment."
The restaurant opened in April just before the "Something in the Water" festival. Mauch said it was a huge success.