Broad Appetit 2016: Everything to know about RVA’s popular food fest

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Hundreds gather for Broad Appetit

RICHMOND, Va. – Broad Appetit, one of the most celebrated food festivals and the only one that shuts down Broad Street, returns for its ninth year, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, June 5.

Plates by over 65 of the best chefs in the Richmond area will be showcased, in addition to a variety of other drink and food vendors.

It’s not just an opportunity to stimulate your palate, and lounge around Broad Street feasting, but also a chance to support the nonprofit FeedMore, who distributed over 18 million meals last year. The event has raised over $50,000 for FeedMore.

Each individual restaurant participating at Broad Appetit creates at least one $3 mini-dish. Expect delights in all forms: ceviche, empanadas, tacos, salads, burgers, deviled eggs, wings, korma, sandwiches, cookies, cakes, and meatballs – to name just a few.

For example, Rappahannock Oyster Co. will serve a main dish of smoked bluefish dip, crème fraiche, dill pickle and espellete served with saltine crackers. Spoonbread Bistro will serve a main dish of lump crab cakes with white truffle spoonbread and also offer a bourbon bread pudding.

Maple & Pine, of the Quirk Hotel, will serve a beef shortrib strudel with wild mushroom ragout or a quinoa salad with charred corn, tomatoes, and avocado mousse.

A list featuring some of the dishes can be read here, but not all chefs have announced their plans.

In addition to the restaurant chef, there are vendors who will have various drinks, cupcakes, popsicles, and other treats – even organic cotton candy.


Since all local chefs are featured, all Virginia beers will be exclusively poured at the festival.

“We needed to walk the walk,” said event organizer Tracey Leverty of their decision many years ago to serve only local and regionally-made beer, to match the showcased local fare.

Center of the Universe, Hardywood Park, Isley, Bold Rock Cider, Isley Brewing, Legend, Lickinghole Creek, Midnight Brewery, Steam Bell Beer Works, Strangeways, Triple Crossing Brewing, Devil’s Backbone, O’Connor Brewing, Starr Hill, Bold Rock and 3 Brothers will be at the event and the beer they will serve can be found here (at the bottom of the page), or seen in the picture.



Each beer can be sampled with a special sampling cup, which is available for $5 and includes three sampling tickets. Additional tickets are available for $1 each

Full pours of beer will also be made available for purchase, in addition to wines from Tap26.


The daylong banquet of Richmond dishes takes place on a four-block of Broad Street between Henry and Adams, in the footprint of First Friday’s Artwalk – reflected in the tagline “where food and art intersect.”

“We wanted to bring attention to it [Broad Street] because of the art galleries popping up,” Leverty said of the events origin years ago.

Some galleries and shops along the stretch will be open and several spaces open for tours

There are two stages for music, the Henry Street stage in the 400 block of Broad Street, and the 100-block of Broad in front of Metro Sound Stage. A schedule is at the bottom of the story.


Throughout the day a resounding “where did you get that?” can be heard.

“Some people follow their noses,” Leverty said.

Others use a map, highlight the booths they want to visit and seek out those specific places. Click to access/print/download the PDF of the map: Broad Street Appetit Final Map

“Then there are others who say ‘there’s a map? Who needs a map?!,’” Leverty said.

There is music throughout the day and then the event is anchored at Adams, where the competition stage is situated.

Earlier in the day the student chefs face off and then later in the day the professional chefs take the stage. The championship round goes down from 3:30 to 4 p.m.

The winners from student rounds assist winners from the pro rounds.

One of the judges is 11-year-old chef Claire Hollingsworth, who won $10,000 on the Food Networks “Chopped Junior’s” episode “Cuteness Overload” in 2015.

There will be kids activities throughout the event, including the Trashbus activity bus that provides educational games and entertainment.

People can add their vote for The People’s Choice Award by looking for the ballot buckets at the two stages OR by phone. Look for the QR code on site that will lead you to instructions on how to vote for your favorite dish.


Although everyone raves about the food, the festival has won awards each year for being one of the greenest environmental festivals in the state, awarded by the Virginia Green Travel Alliance.

“We realize that food festivals make a huge impact on the environment,” Leverty said.

That’s why all the stuff used to serve food is compostable. It’s provided to vendors, and covered in the fee they pay to vend.

The trash bins are color coded for composting, recycling and then trash. Hundreds of volunteers man the eco-stations to help the trash get appropriately sorted.

Even the oil used is collected and converted to bio-diesel.


There is usually plenty of parking around the event. Off-street public parking is available at several locations on a first-come, first serve basis, including VCU’s Henry St parking deck, which has the option to prepay by following this link




Henry Street Stage

  • 11 am – 11:45am Paulo Franco (Acoustic Soloist)
  • 12 pm – 12:45 pm Blue Line Highway (Country Flavored Rock)
  • 1 pm – 1:45 pm Tin Can Fishband (Grooving)
  • 2 pm – 2:45 pm Crain Brothers Band (Classic Variety)
  • 3 pm – 3:45 pm King Solomon’s Marbles (Richmond’s Grateful Dead)
  • 4 pm – 4:45 pm  The Soul Proprietors (Old School R&B/Soul)
  • 4:45 pm BEST DISH AWARDS, presented by Richmond magazine
  • 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm Doghouse RVA (Rock Trio)
  • 5 pm – 6 pm Gayle McGhee & the Nocturnes (Grooving Swinging Hipsters)

Metro Sound Stage

  • 11 am – 11:45 am  Mad Children (Jazz Infused Rock)
  • 12 pm – 12:45 pm The Blue Chords (Motown Variety)
  • 1 pm – 1:40 pm Voo Doo Dolls (Girls that Rock!)
  • 2 pm – 2:40 pm Drew Perkins & The Powhite Boys (Texas Swing)
  • 2:45 – 3 pm Virginia Repertory Theater – “Dreamgirls”
  • 3 pm – 3:45pm Johnny Lee Long (Funky & Smooth)
  • 4 pm – 4:50 pm Gayle McGhee & The Nocturnes (Blue-Eyed Swingin’ Soul)
  •  5:10 pm – 6 pm The Royal We (Power Trio)
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