Wegmans Opens in Virginia Beach
Wegmans’ Virginia Beach store officially opens its doors on Sunday, April 28. The 113,000-square-foot store at 4721 Virginia Beach Blvd. is Wegmans’ 99th store (and 12th in Virginia) and will offer over 60,000 products, including more than 4,000 organic items, hundreds of imported and domestic cheeses, wine and beer, a fast-casual restaurant called The Burger Bar, a Market Café with indoor and outdoor seating for more than 300 and a smorgasbord of chef-prepared restaurant foods.
“Overall, our goal is to give our customers options,” says Tracy Van Auker, media relations coordinator for Wegmans Food Markets. “For a family on a budget that’s buying Family Pack and focusing on our consistent low prices to that customer that wants the greatest cheese and top-of-the-line, dry-aged steaks, we have something for everyone.”
Here’s what you can expect from the 103-year-old supermarket chain.
Customers enter the store, which opens right into the produce department. “It’s how we got our start in 1916, as a produce cart in Rochester, N.Y.,” Van Auker says. “It still remains front and center as our business.” To the left of the entrance doors is a replica of the barn that sits on Wegmans' organic farm and orchard in Canadaigua, N.Y. “With that property, we test different organic growing processes, different varieties and how we can extend the season in the colder regions that we’re in, and then we share those learnings with our partner growers, and they’ll take what’s been successful small scale and do it large scale to provide produce to our supermarkets.” From inside the barn doors, Casanova the rooster pops out to greet customers every hour on the hour.
For health-conscious customers on the go, the Fresh Cut Market provides a variety of cleaned, cut and ready-to-use fruits and veggies, including veggie noodles and cauliflower rice.
The market’s bakery features cookies, cakes, bagels, cupcakes, doughnuts and assorted pastries, chocolates, muffins and organic breads made with grains sourced nearby. “We have a ton of different partners that we work with—bakery, produce, meat—we really try to source as much as we can locally and regionally because we know that’s what our customers want—they want to know where their food is coming from,” Van Auker says. There are a few items specific to the Virginia Beach store—ube cake, cupcakes and doughnuts. “Whenever we go into a market, we want to try to pick up some of the local favorites and culture,” she explains.
Another local favorite: Wegmans will carry the popular, Norfolk-based S’mores Amore—buttery graham cracker cookie crusts topped by homemade brownies or blondies and a made-from-scratch marshmallow, packed into a neat, bite-sized square.
The Market Café features hot and cold self-service bars, with offerings changing seasonally. “You can mix and match and grab whatever you want here,” Van Auker says. A sushi department is organized by raw, cooked, skinny and veggie. There’s also poke bowls and poke salads. “The sushi overall is very yummy,” she expresses. Shoppers can order from a selection of sandwiches, subs and wraps (hot or cold), authentic Italian pizza (signature selections or create-your-own), hot fried chicken, made-to-order salads and seasonal soups.
A cafe area (both inside and outdoor seating) holds more than 300 guests and includes a children’s seating area with kid-friendly programming on a large TV.
The Burger Bar
Need a break from shopping? The Burger Bar is a fast-casual restaurant featuring classic burgers as well as a Maple Onion Burger (aged cheddar, smoky bacon, maple onion jam, chipotle aioli), Santa Monica Turkey Burger (guacamole, arugula, tomato, herb goddess dressing) and Mediterranean Impossible Burger (100 percent plant-based burger with roasted tomatoes, goat cheese, lemon caper dill aioli and arugula), served with Tuscan fries or a side Caesar salad. Customers can also choose from a selection of salads and sandwiches, additional sides, $6 kids’ meals and wine by the glass or bottle, beer, margaritas and orange crushes—another Virginia Beach signature item—as well as a coconut crush.
Delivered daily from East Coast ports as well as across the country and around the world, Wegmans’ seafood department showcases fully traceable and sustainable seafood processed without chemicals. “Seafood is an area where our quality really sets us apart,” says Store Manager Mike Coyle. “Fresh, whole fish are delivered daily and cut to order. When in season, fish will come from local waters off the Mid-Atlantic coast and the Chesapeake Bay. We can’t wait to show it all off on opening day.” In addition to fresh fish, customers can get a variety of seafood options—lobster, shrimp, mussels, clams and crabs—steamed at no additional charge.
Ready-to-cook entrees and pre-marinated meats in a variety of flavors are available to pop in the oven or on the grill. In addition to conventional meat, Wegmans also offers organic beef, pork, chicken, lamb, bacon, sausage and the choice of meat with no antibiotics or added hormones. Wegmans Angus beef raised regionally near its stores and a dry-aging case will be featured in the meat department.
Cheese and Mediterranean Bar
Wegmans features specialty and artisan cheeses produced domestically and imported from around the world. The temperature and humidity-controlled affinage case offers premium cheeses aged in the Wegmans Cheese Caves. “Our Cheese Caves mimic the environment of those in Europe,” Van Auker says. “We’ll take cheese and age it right in our own Cheese Cave so they’re getting out to our customers at the peak of perfection.”
The Mediterranean Bar features more than 70 items, like imported and domestic olives, hummus, fresh mozzarella, marinated mushrooms, artichokes, roasted peppers and antipasti sold by the pound. They’ll also have cheese and charcuterie trays for customers to grab and go.
Wine and Beer
An incredible selection of wines are offered at Wegmans, ranging from $6 bottles to some of the finest wine estates in the world. “We have highly rated under $10, highly rated under $20, up to our fine wine room, where you’re going to get the best of the best,” Van Auker says. Wine tastings will be offered daily. Fine Wine Fridays are held Friday evenings from 4–7 p.m.
There are more than 800 varieties of domestic, craft and imported beers and ciders (with a large focus on local) and craft-your-own six packs.
Wegmans’ Floral Shop features fresh-cut flowers and signature arrangements, as well as a grand selection of outdoor plants—hanging baskets, Boston ferns, geraniums, daisies—offering customers more of what they’d expect to find at a garden center instead of a grocery store. Plants go directly from the grower to the store, never to a warehouse, so the products are always fresh.
This area has a focus on solutions for customers with special dietary needs and interests including a dedicated section of gluten-free and allergen-free products, plant-based foods, fermented foods and functional beverages as well as premium and loose-leaf teas, protein powders and sports bars.
Home and Entertaining
Stemware, wine and spirits accessories, kitchen tools, tabletop décor, kitchen and table linens, candles, greeting cards and seasonal items will offer customers a chance to browse for gifts or accessories while shopping.
Starting May 1, customers can shop online via Instacart and have orders delivered to their door in as little as one hour. Download the app at Instacart.Wegmans.com.
With 31 registers, the store prides itself on keeping wait times as low as possible. Parents with small shoppers will be delighted to find that certain checkout lanes come stocked with as assortment of books (versus candy) at kids’ eye level.
Learn more here or call 757-271-0500.