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Food & Drink

New socially-distant, BBQ-focused food tour experience launches

RVA BBQ Tours has created a unique experience that is the first of its kind in the nation. The startup offers the only socially distant food tour focused exclusively on barbecue.

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RVA BBQ Tours has created a unique experience that is the first of its kind in the nation. The startup offers the only socially distant food tour focused exclusively on barbecue.

The tours allow attendees to travel in their own cars, led by a guide, and caravan to restaurants across the region. Each stop includes a generous portion of barbecue and sides to sample. A podcast interview with the restaurant’s pitmaster can be downloaded to listen to during travel time.

The new business is the brainchild of entrepreneurs Greg Hofbauer and Ryan Martin. The duo met through a mutual friend and shared a passion for Richmond’s food scene. They had been working on launching this project since last year and adjusted the concept when the pandemic began.

 “It’s important for people to feel comfortable and safe and this tour provides them with that option as it follows COVID-19 guidelines,” Martin said. “Everyone is looking for a special experience right now and this tour offers a unique opportunity for families and food lovers.”

Three off-the-beaten-path restaurants are currently featured on the Saturday flagship tour which lasts approximately two and a half hours. Private group tours for parties and corporate outings are also available.

Both Martin and Hofbauer share a background in business ownership. Martin was the founder of Pie restaurant in the fan and Hofbauer runs web design firm Hofbauer Consulting in addition to teaching entrepreneurship for VCU Arts.

“There is definitely a killer barbecue scene in Richmond. We want to put our city on the BBQ map and known as the East Coast Memphis or Kansas City.” Hofbauer said.

Tickets can be purchased online at www.rvabbqtours.com and are priced $59 per adult, $25 per child aged 11-17, and free for children 10 and under.

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Longoven to Require Proof of Vaccination to Dine Starting August 1st

Proof of vaccination will be required for both indoor and outdoor dining.

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Posted on Facebook

Hello friends. Navigating the current situation as the pandemic changes is no easy task, but as from the beginning the physical and mental health of our staff, families, guests and community are paramount.⁣

Beginning August 1st we will require proof of vaccination for indoor and outdoor dining.⁣

We will be reaching out to August reservations to confirm this process and to answer any questions guests may have.⁣

Thanks to everyone for your understanding ⁣and patience. Our hope is that this is temporary and that the optimism of these past few months prevails.

Longoven is located in Scott’s Addition and focus on seasonal and local menu items.

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Food & Drink

Duke’s Mayo Hot Tomato Summer Being Served Up this Week

One Mayo to rule them all, One Mayo to find them, One Mayo to bring them all, and in the darkness bind them.

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There are two things everyone that moves to Richmond from the non-south, should learn right away or risk the wrath of their neighbors. Hanover tomatoes are the best and Duke’s is the only type of mayonnaise that should be used.

I just found out that Duke’s Mayo is partnering with local restaurants to present Hot Tomato Summer: A week-long event featuring seasonal pairings of tomatoes and mayo from participating Richmond restaurants. There are 13 participating restaurants, including favorites like ZZQ with a Put up your Duke’s Tomato Pie – House made biscuit pie crust filled with Shalom Farms tomatoes, poblano peppers, garlic, basil, cheddar cheese, and Duke’s Mayonnaise and Union Market which is offering up – Heirloom Tomato Sandwich with Edward’s Hickory Smoked Bacon, Romaine, Smoked Sweet Corn Duke’s Mayo, pickled red onions and a schmear of House Pimento cheese on Toasted Billy Bread. Find out what the others have on tap here.

For those unfamiliar with Duke’s check out the story on NPR.

Unlike most other mass-produced mayonnaise, Duke’s contains no sugar. This gives it the signature tang that has kept both chefs and home cooks raving about it since the company was founded over 100 years ago. “When they teach you how to make mayonnaise in culinary school, they are essentially teaching you how to make Duke’s,” says Fleer. “It has the right balance of richness and acidity.”

Southern Living posted just three days ago an article about what makes Hanover tomatoes so great.

“The Hanover tomato is defined by its soil, not by its variety,” David Hunsaker, a farmer at Village Garden RVA in Hanover, says. “So, you’re looking at this strip of sandy soil, and that soil is what makes Hanover tomatoes what they are.”

The sandy, coastal region, mixed with a little Virginia red clay, if you’re on Hunsaker’s farm, makes for a richer flavor in this bright crop. All of the growing circumstances – soil pH, composition, rain, and sun – marry to produce the Hanover.

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Wildcraft Focaccia Company in Manchester Opened Last Week

Current hours are Thursday through Sunday 11 AM – 10 PM.

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The latest restaurant in Manchester had a soft opening last week. Wildcraft Focaccia Company (1303 Hull Street) as you’d guess from the name specializes in naturally leavened focaccia and serves up flatbread, sandwiches, salads, soups, and pies. 

RichmondMag.com ran a story about the venture on July 1st.

“We share a common vision of how we want to treat people,” Parfitt says, “and that’s so important.”

The two also share an adoration for simplicity, such as salami paired with good bread and cheese.

“We both eat bread and cheese every day and make so much at home, too,” Murphy says with a laugh. “I could eat bread and cheese every day and be happy,” says Parfitt, a L’Academie de Cuisine pastry school graduate, in agreement.

You can check out their menu online. I’ve screengrabbed one page below. Current hours are Thursday through Sunday 11 AM – 10 PM. I hope to check it out soon.

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