Virginia Beach's Best Food Destinations

Virginia Beach's food culture celebrates all things local, from farm to sea

Virginia is for lovers, but Virginia Beach is for locals. Though it's known as a visitor-friendly destination, this town has developed an interesting food scene that is representative of its unique location and culture. The region's waterways produce some of the best seafood you'll enjoy, the farmlands offer a bounty of fresh produce and the ViBe Creative District attracts innovators looking to push boundaries. That said, a weekend in Virginia Beach just isn't enough time to cover everything that makes the region so special. But it is enough time to try. To start your itinerary, here are just a few of our favorite ways to sample the local specialties, whether on land or on water.

Let's Do Brunch

Located in the heart of the vibrant ViBe District, Commune takes farm-to-table to a whole new level. Owned by a farmer-turned-restaurateur, the kitchen sources its produce from an on-site 2,000-square-foot garden and its nearby farm. The menu changes daily, depending on what's in season, which means you'll always be in for a delicious surprise.

Perk Up with a Local Roast

After brunch, get a caffeine boost at Three Ships Coffee Roasters (also in the ViBe District). Named after the first settlers in the area, this café carefully considers every aspect of the coffee-making process from bean to cup. The coffee is roasted in-house and is best enjoyed sans cream and sugar. If you're craving something sweeter, order the Pungo Latte—it's sweetened with local fruit from the farms of Pungo.

Catch of the Day

What could be better than dining on just-caught seafood? Catching it yourself . . . then having someone else expertly cook it. Simply book one of Virginia Beach's any (and many) charter fishing trips, where you'll cast your line for tuna, rockfish, cobia and more. Then, take your catch to Rudee's on the Inlet. This charming nautical-themed restaurant (it's housed in a replica Coast Guard station) will prep and serve your seafood in a meal you won't forget.

Aw, Shucks

Oyster aficionados, this boat tour is for you. Pleasure House Oysters farm tours take you on a journey around the Lynnhaven River, where you'll learn about the oyster that bears its name. There are two itineraries: One is a two-hour Tasting Tour (feel free to take a bottle of your favorite wine), and the other is a four-hour Waterman Tour, which offers a hands-on oyster-farming experience. No matter which one you choose, you'll come away a fan of the Lynnhaven oyster.

Country Learning

You'll find farms as far as the eye can see in Pungo, but the New Earth Farm still stands out. The working farm doubles as an education center. You can learn how to craft seasonal dishes from the region's best chefs in the farm's Learning Garden, or experiment with processes of fermentation or preservation at the Food Lab. Inspired to cook up a feast later? Head to the Virginia Beach Farmers Market for even more local produce and specialties.

A Better Brew

Some of Virginia Beach's best craft brews can be found . . . in a firehouse. Commonwealth Brewing Company is located in the former Chesapeake Beach Fire and Rescue Station #4, a local landmark that was transformed into a brewery, 28-tap beer hall and outdoor beer garden. Make sure to sample the Cheval de Noir, a dark Belgian strong ale that's meant to be savored.