Two weeks ago, Hubby and I celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary. We decided to treat ourselves to a lunch at VOLT restaurant. Hubby and I are Top Chef junkies and have been watching for several seasons. If you watched last season, you'll know that VOLT is owned by one of the runners-up from last season.
Last Summer when we lived in Chicago we were able to visit Rick Bayless' restaurant Frontera. I heart Rick Bayless. I thought he had a great personality when I watched Top Chef Master's last Summer. I couldn't wait to try his food so it was a bonus that our condo was just blocks from his restaurant.
So when I heard that another Top Chef contestant had a restaurant nearby, Hubby and I made plans to go. It takes months to get a seating at VOLT...well if you want a evening meal. I checked ahead and tried to get us one for our anniversary, but the meal times were for 9pm. I'm old and there is no way that I could stay awake for a 9pm meal, so Hubby and I settled for lunch on our anniversary.
We were able to get a babysitter and headed to VOLT. I have to say it was hard to find. The restaurant is in a big brick building that we at first thought was a church. But really, it's a beautiful mansion. After realizing we passed it, I had Hubby let me out and I walked to find the restaurant. Fortunately a friend told me about the parking on the side of the restaurant and Hubby was able to circle the block and come back and get a parking spot.
When I walked in I told them I had a reservation was for noon. The hostess was a little cold and kind of snotty and said, "Oh, are we waiting for the rest of your party? They're not here yet?" I said, "No, he's just parking. Your restaurant isn't easy to find." She had me wait in the lounge until Hubby walked in. When he did, he told her his wife just checked in and as soon as he did, she did walk us back to a table.
We sat down and I have to say I was really giddy and excited. We've been looking forward to this for several months and what a great way to celebrate our anniversary. A long, luxurious lunch without having to wait on the kids, keep them entertained, or feed them.
Here's the menu we selected:
He chose to do a wine pairing with his meal. It was just a taste to go along with his meal. He enjoyed having an expert decide for him what would taste well his meal selections. Each was a great accompaniment for each course.
1st Course-Goat Cheese Ravioli (Really good. He thought it was the best course of the day.)
2nd Course--Scallops (It was okay. Yummy, but I think the Goat Cheese Ravioli was so good that this was a bit of a disappointment in comparison).
Cheese plate--(He really enjoyed this. He thought the beer pairing was a great. I think it came with a belgium beer).
3rd Course--Blueberry cheesecake (He said it was good, but couldn't remember his initial thoughts).
1st Coure: Shiitake voulet (sp?). Basically mushroom soup. (This was really yummy. One of the best soups I've ever had. Just creamy enough.)
2nd Course--Grilled marinated hanger. (I've been craving red meat lately and this was wonderful! It was so tender and cooked absolutely perfectly. I was in heaven.)
Cheese Plate--(Unfortunately, I couldn't have any of the soft cheeses and there was only one cheese that I really liked. I had to give half my plate to Hubby. I wouldn't do this again. This is just a personal preference. I think if circumstances were different, I would have enjoyed it more).
3rd Course--Textures of Chocolate (I love chocolate and this was a no-brainer as far as choice. Though I have to say, my favorite was the dollop of chocolate ice cream. Just right).
I did not indulge in the wine pairing for my meal. If we do this again, I think I would really like to do it. Hubby really liked it and I think I would, too. They give you just enough to enjoy with your course and since you have several courses, the amount is just right.
They did come around with bread and butter tray while waiting for our 1st course. The butter was so yummy and the bread so fresh it was perfect. I read one review saying that the customer would have taken the butter home if he could have! Again, just enough so that you don't fill up on bread while waiting for your meal.
The waitstaff was courteous and polite. It was a little unnerving to have someone at our table every few minutes to check on us or to wipe crumbs off the table, but they were nice and answered our questions. At one point I got up to use the restroom and left my napkin on my seat. When I came back someone had come and folded it neatly beside my glass. It wasn't Hubby. Huh :)
I forgot my camera, but Hubby said he would have made fun of me for taking pictures of our dishes. I wasn't going to do that, but take a picture of us, instead. But of course, after he said that, we saw numerous tables taking pictures of their dishes. HA!
We would definitely go again and I would love to try the other dishes. I look forward to seeing how the menu changes with the seasons. I even got a sneak peek at Chef Voltaggio. He was actually there. So cool to see him person after watching his performance on Top Chef!