Two entrepreneurs are on a quest to bring fresh, locally sourced food to the Northside.
Jessica Goldberg and Erin Wright plan to launch Little House Green Grocery on Bellevue Avenue. They want to be up and running by Thanksgiving, but Goldberg said they haven’t set an official opening date.
Little House will sell fresh produce, meat and dairy products as well as canned goods and a few kitchen supplies, Wright said. Local vendors will supply about 60 percent of the offerings, she said.
“Food is our number one priority,” said Wright, 38. “We’re not going to have 10 kinds of rice, but the rice we do have will be high quality and well-sourced.”
Goldberg, a Brooklyn native who moved to Richmond last year, said she noticed a lack of food options in her Northside neighborhood. Except for a small convenience store on nearby Macarthur Avenue, she said residents didn’t have a place within walking distance to buy fresh ingredients.
When Wright’s brother introduced her to Goldberg late last year, the two decided to fill the gap themselves.
“The goal here is to make local food more accessible to an area where it’s just not right now,” said Goldberg, 35. “We’re not trying to be the next Whole Foods.”
Goldberg and Wright signed a lease on the 1,625-square-foot space at 1227 Bellevue Ave. in early October. The building used to house a violin shop and required some minor renovations. Goldberg and Wright did most of the work themselves and used their personal savings to finance the startup.
Both owners have food industry experience: Goldberg managed a bakery in Manhattan, and Wright led the farmers market at St. Stephen’s. Goldberg said Little House would complement some of the other local farmers markets, which are only available on certain days and might close for the winter.
All of Little House’s inventory will be available online, Goldberg said. Customers can place an order and pick up their items at the shop the next day.
The store will also offer prepared soups and salads for lunch or dinner. Once they get going, Wright and Goldberg plan to host product demonstrations and cooking classes.
“We think this is going to be a good thing for the community something that most people here want,” Wright said.