A melting pot of Asian treats

Co-business partner, Jay Choi, with the store’s mural.

Sasha Saxon|Marlin Chronicle

Diverse Asian treats have made their debut in Virginia Beach just fifteen minutes from Virginia Wesleyan’s campus. Oh Mochi, co-owned by business partners Jay Choi and Brian Yoo, has flourished since its opening in February 2023. Mochi donuts, made in-house, are crisp and chewy pull-apart rings, delicately decorated with frosting, cookies or chocolate scrolls. Reliable flavors, such as Belgian chocolate and creme brulee, mingle with classic Asian staples and inventive rotating flavors like taro and lemon berry.

Oh Mochi’s made-to-order Korean corn dogs are unlike their American counterparts and are well worth the wait. Gooey mozzarella or beef hot dogs are battered and fried, optionally covered in crunchy chunks of potato and sprinkled with sugar for balance. Customers frequent the storefront, leaving with hands full of boba and boxes alike.

A coffee beverage and cheesy mozzarella corn dog covered in crispy potatoes. 

Rhian Tramontana|Marlin Chronicle 

A dozen mochi donuts in front of the Virginia Beach storefront. 

Rhian Tramontana|Marlin Chronicle 

The business has never tailored their menu to a demographic and instead unabashedly wields creative flavors and Asian cuisine. “The idea is to cater to a diverse palette and a diverse group of customers,” Choi said. 

Junior Adam Sterling had a strong opinion of the store. “It’s a nice place to get your day started and if you want to try something new. Very flavorful food, especially the potato mozzarella rice hotdog. The only downside would be the boba,” Sterling said. 

Senior Erika Eichelberger has visited the store a few times. “It is a great place with an excellent atmosphere. The corn dogs and donuts exceed expectations,” Eichelberger said. While the general consensus might be that the boba is overpriced, Oh Mochi does produce treats worthy of a return trip.  

Yoo and Choi began their journey as a part of the Mochinut franchise. However their decision to branch out and rebrand became a reality when they began to disagree with Mochinut’s price control and sales ideas. Yoo, with a degree in hospitality, initiated the separation. “He was actually the founder of the business and when we rebranded, we rebranded together, so Oh Mochi is kind of like our baby,” Choi said. Three years ago, their Richmond location debuted and met with success.

In August 2022, the partnership decided to add a location in Virginia Beach, but their progress was met with unanticipated obstacles. Oh Mochi was forced to rebuild their storefront from the ground up and delay their grand opening due to disgruntled previous tenants sabotaging the electrical work. 

Regardless of the circumstances, Choi’s mindset has been nothing but positive, kind and growth-oriented. “[You] can’t alway get your way in life, you always have to improvise and adapt,” Choi said. Now, the storefront is dripping with the small business’ charm. Bright colors, custom murals painted by a team member, neon signs, cases of endless donuts and uber friendly baristas create an accessible user experience. Oh Mochi is excited to grow roots in the area and possibly partner with other small businesses.

Choi, a Virginia local, had no idea his career would lead him into such a successful business in the food industry. He began his professional career working with satellite software, but “between corporate jobs and even in the evenings with corporate jobs, post college, I always served as a bartender or at a restaurant,” Choi said. He knew that one day he would own his own business and through hard work and dedication, he has achieved his goal with the help of Yoo. “Brian and I are such different people and for that reason it’s been great, we have a very synergistic business partnership,” Choi said.

The team eagerly translates their energy to their staff, who manage a monthly beverage menu that experiments with new flavors and reflects trends. Oh Mochi is currently hiring proactive individuals, and will accept part-time employees. The storefront is located at 4224 Virginia Beach Blvd., Virginia Beach and is open every day of the week from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. If you’re ever in Richmond, Oh Mochi just recently opened their second location in the city and has plans to expand nationwide with the help of their team of general and assistant managers. Weekender highly recommends Oh Mochi for a sweet treat or study break snack. 

By Sasha Saxon