Category Archives: Food and Drink

Live in Virginia for a Week and Start a Healthier Lifestyle

Live in Virginia for a Week and Start a Healthier LifestyleAs one of the world’s countries with the most obese people, the United States is now moving to end this problem. If we can recall, First Lady Michelle Obama led a fight against obesity by encouraging Americans to keep moving and to live a healthier lifestyle. A lot of other states followed this move and decided to introduce initiatives that would encourage the locals to also follow healthier choices in life.

Virginia is one of the states where there are government programs encouraging everyone to live a healthier life. Despite being in the middle rank of the states that are least obese, Virginia is moving in an upward direction, doing everything it could, to end this problem. This is why a lot of locals have started to change their habits. You can now see more fitness gyms opening up due to a huge demand. You can also see healthier stores and restaurants. Vegetarian restaurants are now available all over the state. In fact, if you happen to visit Virginia for a week and try to imbibe their healthy lifestyle, you will go back to your home state continuing what you have started.

Try organic juices

If there is one thing that you need to try when you are in Virginia, it’s the organic fruit juices available. The state is abundant with locally produced fruits and vegetables. Almost all the types of fruits that we have grown to love like berries, cherries, applies, oranges and peaches can be found in the state. When you move to other states, you can taste these fruits as flavorings and not as actual organic juice. Therefore, Virginia is such a special place where you can try out these organic fruit juices. You can even go on an all juice diet for a few days to clean your body.

Make your own

Given the availability of local fruits, you can easily buy one at the market and create your own juice. You can decide whatever flavor is perfect for you by combining these fruits. You can do so by using a juicer. Start by checking out the best juicer online. There are big and small juicers available. The big ones are perfect for huge chunks of fruits and vegetables that you wanted to crush. Smaller juicers are also referred to as portable juicers. You can use them if you wish to carry the juicers around with you. You might also want to check out online juicer reviews  to guide you in making the decision on what juicer to buy.

A total change

As soon as you fall in love with the idea of a healthier lifestyle, you will surely keep on doing it. Of course, you can instantly see the changes happening in your body. You will lose weight, stay in your best shape and maintain a natural glow. Who would not want to achieve all these things? Therefore, you can go back home after your trip to Virginia and still live a healthier lifestyle.

My Nurse Friend is in Town

I had a friend from college, Shawn, who came into Richmond the other day. He is going to be moving down here for next couple months because of work. He is a travel nurse and gets to work all over the country. He has been doing this for years and makes over $100,000 per year. The companies he works for always cover is moving costs and give him short term housing allowance.

Travel make an average of $85,000 per year. Coming out of school, they are set to make a salary of just under $70,000. That is a nice chunk of change. These nurses get paid very well because there are not enough of them hospitals at the moment. Until the labor market catches up to the demand, these high salaries will not change.

Sometimes he gets me thinking this. “Gee. What did not I get into that.” When we were in college, I used to make fun of him by saying nursing was only for girls. He got the last laugh. He got a good job out of college and makes more money now than most people I know. He has got the right idea and applaud him for sticking to what wanted despite the criticism.

Anyway, he came to town and I wanted to introduce him properly to my home state — Virginia. I took him out for barbecue and beer at my favorite restaurant in the area. He loved it and now understands why people are so overweight in Virginia. It is because they have great food and little self-control. That is usually a disastrous combination.

Shawn was more surprised by the number of overweight people he had seen so far in Virginia. Shawn is originally from northern New Jersey. People are a lot thinner in the northeast region of the United States. I do not know why the northeast has less fat people than in Virginia. Don’t we all eat the same food? I guess not.

Shawn has seen a good portion of the United Stated in his eight years as a travel nurse. I asked him if Virginia stood out to him somehow. He was shocked about how big the difference in culture was once you leave Northern Virginia. A 45-minute drive south of DC, people start having thick country accents. Gas prices fall by 30 cents. Everything is cheaper. There are Waffle House restaurants everywhere. It is crazy.

Other than that, he is adjusting well. He figured out his was around the city. The also has a cheap place right outside the heart of the city. Shawn is doing pretty well for himself. I would just urge to watch this political views. He could really tick off the wrong people with that liberal jargon he tells everyone else once in awhile. Nonetheless, Shawn will be here for a little while longer so he will have plenty to grow.

Food Culture in Virginia

olio bistro richmond

Virginia doesn’t exactly have a reputation as a hotspot for culinary excellence, but upon closer inspection it’s clear that we actually have a burgeoning food scene that includes both high end fine dining style restaurants as well as a huge number of diners and small eating establishments that serve simple, straightforward, fantastic food. In this post I hope to convince readers that Virginia as a state shouldn’t be overlooked when it comes to the food and restaurant scene.

First off, we’re a southern state, so we have all the traditions that come with that – if you’re looking for great barbecue, incredible pies or delicious fried stuff, we’ve got all of that here. One thing that is particularly special and that only comes out of Virginia is Virginia country ham – it’s well known throughout the country and is pretty damn delicious if I may say so myself. We’re also famous for our peanuts – Virginia peanuts are the largest peanuts grown in the US and make for a great bar snack.

The seafood in Virginia is also pretty incredible, and in particular we have fantastic blue crabs. While the blue crab is often associated with Maryland, the crab that comes out of this region is equally as good. We also have great oysters, and Tangier Island (on the eastern shore of the state) is said to be the ‘soft shell crab capital’ of the world. The seafood in this region is fresh and is just generally high quality product.

Virginia is also something of a wine hub – we have a rapidly growing wine industry, and the state now has over 200 wineries and that number is growing by the day. While we can’t match up to Napa valley just yet, anyone who’s looking to do a wine tour on the east coast should  put the great state of Virginia into their itinerary right away. Along with the many wineries, there are also frequent wine festivals and tasting events suitable for connoisseurs and amateurs alike. There’s loads of useful information at if you’re thinking about doing a wine tour in the area. Here’s a quick video that will definitely interest you if you’re a wine person.

The one thing that you probably wouldn’t expect in the state is great fine dining – but actually, the restaurant scene in Virginia has really taken off in the last half decade. Almost every reasonably sized city in the state has a downtown area with great restaurants, and whether you’re looking for exotic cuisines or a modern take on classic southern food, we’ve got it all. Richmond, Alexandria – even the tiny little city of Staunton all have amazing restaurants and excellent food. One theme that you’ll find runs through many of the state’s best restaurants is a focus on high quality local meat and produce. Many chef’s would agree that great farms make for great food, and Virginia is a place with a rich history of agriculture. Be on the lookout for restaurants that proudly display their suppliers – the quality of the local meat and produce that you find in high end restaurants in Virginia will rival anything that you can find in the entire country. For those looking for actual restaurant recommendations or reviews, check out this list. It only covers northern Virginia, but a bunch of my own favorites are on there so I’ll give it a pass.

We’re also seeing more and more farmer’s markets, (aforementioned) wine festivals, and local food events in the state. While none of the cities in Virginia are ‘known’ as trendy food locales like Austin or Seattle are, I personally think that places like Staunton are up and coming in the food world, and in a few years many places in Virginia will start popping up on those ‘most underrated food cities’ lists that you find so often around the web.

So, that’s my brief take on the Virginia food scene in general – and if you don’t believe that the food is great here, come and try it for yourself.

Everything that’s going on in Virginia


Hi all,

I’m hoping to develop this site into basically a lifestyle hub for everything to do with Virginia. I hope to cover everything from lifestyle stuff, restaurants, bars and other nightlife. Music, culture and arts, and even outdoors stuff like hunting and fishing in the area. I love this state – and I want to turn this site into a resource for both locals and visitors to the great state of Virginia.

So, what makes me love Virginia so much. First and foremost I was born and raised here, so that’s one obvious reason. But beyond that, I just feel like Virginia has a lot to offer – obviously, it has a rich history, and is and always will be tied to the American history.That also ties into the architecture that you can see around the state – I don’t think any other state has as many well preserved buildings with colonial architecture. We also have a great food culture – obviously, Virginia ham is a well known specialty and is beloved both by locals and by folks in other states, but beyond that, we also have amazing sausages and a bunch of rich, hearty comfort food traditions that outsiders might not know but that locals cherish (everyone should try shoofly pie, it’s crazy good)

We also have a rich tradition of producing great musicians – with country music, this great state has produced notables as Patsy Cline, and the (pretty old school) Statler brothers and Carter Family. Outside of country, the great state of Virginia has also produced Jazz legend Ella Fitzgerald, hip hop/RnB aritsts like Timbaland, Missy Elliot, and music industry legend Pharrell. Jason Mraz, the Dave Matthews band, and Dave Grohl (of the Foo Fighters) all have roots in Virginia as well. We also always have stuff going on in the state in term of concerts and smaller performances – the official Virginia website is great for updates on this front.

Then we have the outdoors. Hunting and fishing in Virginia is probably one of the most satisfying and fulfilling experiences you can get anywhere in the country. We have some really incredibly natural scenery that will take your breath away, and even if you don’t like hunting or fishing, just taking a stroll through the countryside or going on a hike can be really rewarding.

As you can probably tell, I really love this state, and no, I don’t work for the Virginia Tourism board. I just loved growing up here, and I continue to love living here, and I wish that the state would get more recognition as both a great place to visit and an amazing place to live. It offers an excellent balance of everything – no matter what you’re into, you’ll be able to find it here.

So, if you’re a local looking for stuff to do around the state or in your city specifically, or if you’re a planning a visit to Virginia in the near future – be sure to check back here. We don’t have a lot of stuff up yet, but I’m hoping to turn this site into a real resource for anyone looking for stuff to do in the state, and I’ll try to add content on a pretty regular basis to keep abreast of everything that’s going on here.

This is Virginia Beats.