Updated: Dec 11, 2019
Architect - Robyn Thomas Architects
Owner - Jon Parden
General Contractor - Spacemakers
MEP Engineer - PermitZIP
A Coastal Virginia favorite has quickly become a Richmond favorite. Taste Unlimited started as a wine and cheese shop in Virginia Beach in 1973, according to their website. In 2006, the Pruden family became the owners and began the expansion. Taste has expanded to now include an online market, coffee house four locations in Virginia Beach, two locations in Norfolk, and locations in Chesapeake, Suffolk, and Newport News.
Taste is now celebrating its first anniversary in Richmond. Their menu has a delicious array of sandwiches, soups, salads, and wraps. The store also has a retail area known as "The Pantry" that offers Virginia made gifts, local wine, Taste's own salad dressing, and local gourmet food options.
In his interview with Richmond BizSense, President Jon Pruden talked more about the move to Richmond, “We have a number of people from Richmond that have second homes or have visited our location in Virginia Beach. Many kept asking when we were going to put a location in Richmond.”
The project started as the first retail location at the Westhampton mixed-use development for developers Jason Guillot of Thalhimer Realty Partners, and Stefan Cametas. The Westhampton website gives more insight into the project, "Westhampton on Grove is the result of over 18 months of community outreach, careful planning, thoughtful design, and cooperation with neighborhood businesses and residents to breathe new life into a legacy property and to set a benchmark of quality for future development in our neighborhood. The design team's goal is to create a high-quality mixed-use project that serves the residents and businesses in Westhampton while complimenting and strengthening the scale and character of the community surrounding it."
In addition to Taste, PermitZIP has also designed the MEP systems for several of the fit-outs at Westhampton including Montante Plastic Surgery & Aesthetics, an out-patient office on the second floor. Dr. Stephen Montante offers cosmetic and reconstructive surgery and the living wall was a key piece in this design in helping his patients feel at ease when entering the space.
PermitZIP designed the third level luxury condominiums as well as the tenant fit-out for the wealth management division of Virginia Commonwealth Bank, the VCB Financial Group. The architect for the core and shell, as well as condos on the project, was Glave & Holmes.
While there was initial pushback from some residents with regards to increased traffic and parking issues, Westhampton on Grove is a welcome addition to the neighborhood. It gives residents more places to eat, shop, and socialize within walking distance and will attract more businesses to the area that are looking for both the work and play aspects for their employees to enjoy.