Norfolk, Va., is having a moment. Home to the world’s largest naval base, the historic port city is in the midst of a revival. The newly renovated Waterside District lures with good eats; Virginia’s first light rail network glides through the streets; and colorful murals are popping up on historic warehouses in the NEON arts district. With a flourishing arts scene, Norfolk is coming into its own as a culture capital to complement the sun and sand of nearby Virginia Beach.
And then there’s the food. A new wave of elevated eateries is joining long-time institutions like Todd Jurich’s Bistro. Sweet potato biscuits, house-cured charcuterie, oysters and fresh-caught fish are washed down with local wine and craft beer… creative energy in the kitchen is rejuvenating the region’s rich food traditions, with the spotlight on local producers. Foie gras hot dog, anyone? Head to Shiptown. Peach and pimento grilled cheese? Make a beeline for Commune. Or what about a cake from the folks who make the celebratory sweets for Navy Seals? That’s Elite Custom Cakes.
Here’s what’s cooking in Norfolk, Va.
The foodie faithful flock to the city for Todd Jurich’s she crab soup, a bit of sherry-swirled heaven in a bowl. Jurich first arrived from Pennsylvania in 1976, and has witnessed vast urban changes over the decades. “There have been many iterations of Waterside, the MacArthur Center (mall)… But right now there’s a real renaissance in the city,” the James Beard Award semi-finalist tells USA TODAY. “And it’s been named a top city for Millennials.” (According to a recent study by the Urban…