100 Very Best Restaurants 2013: Volt

Photo by Scott Suchman

Bryan Voltaggio’s recently opened restaurants have been casual (Family Meal in Frederick) and large-scale (Range in Chevy Chase). But this intimate, white-on-white dining room in a repurposed brownstone is the former Top Chef contender’s home base. Meals are a lineup of small courses: four for $80, seven for $95, and an over-the-top 21-course menu at Table 21—which sits ringside to the kitchen action—for $150.

Offbeat combinations such as foie gras with strawberry, rhubarb, and coconut mean that plates are always interesting. Many times, as in the case of sweetbreads with fennel, kale, and bacon, they’re also delicious. Meat dishes have a particular shine, testimony to Voltaggio’s days at Charlie Palmer Steak. With its cool living-room vibe, the lounge is fun for cocktails—we like the Paloma with tequila, grapefruit soda, and lime—and for classic plates with a Voltaggio spin, such as hanger steak with chimichurri and fennel.

Don’t miss: Kampachi with green apple, fennel, and citrus; lamb with cauliflower, chickpeas, and raisins; beef with rutabaga and green garlic; chocolate mousse with brûlée marshmallow.

Open: Tuesday through Friday for dinner, Saturday and Sunday for brunch and dinner.

Very expensive.

100 Very Best Restaurants 2013

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.