It's finally here -- Volt is set to open this Friday, July 25. To say that I am excited about this new downtown restaurant would be an understatement. And I'm not the only one!
Just in case you didn't see it, here's a link to an article in today's Frederick News Post written by one of my favorite local food writers, Rochelle Myers: http://www.fredericknewspost.com/sections/art_life/display_food.htm?storyID=77843
Volt is going to join an already great downtown Frederick restaurant scene, and I'm excited to see how this upscale addition pans out. You can check out their offical website here: http://www.voltrestaurant.com/
The hype, at least locally, has been HUGE, and the pressure is obviously on. As they get ready to open their doors, let's review a few rules to visiting a new restaurant:
# 1: Give them a little bit of time to find their feet
What the heck does that mean, you may ask? Well, let them get everything running smoothly before you start to judge them. Regardless of how polished each person's skills are, it may take a little time to have everyone working together like the well-oiled machine they hope to be. Even Thomas Keller (culinary demi-god chef/owner of Per Se in Manhattan & The French Laundry in the Napa Valley) brought many of the folks running his first restaurant to open the second, and still they hit a few (minor) bumps in the road.
No matter how great you are at your job, you weren't the best you could possibly be your first day, or even your first week.
# 2: Restaurant reviewers don't typically review restaurants in the first 3 months - neither should you
This sounds an awful lot like rule #1, but it's an important point. Don't trash the staff if you don't have the perfect first dining experience. Loosen up a little and relax. Don't be uptight, and have a good time. They will impress you if you give them a chance.
#3: Trust Your Chef
From all the hype, it looks like Voltaggio is the epitome of what chefs today want to be: He's focusing on local ingredients (in Frederick County, how could you not???), he's renovated an historic building to make the restaurant what he wants it to be, he's build a staff from the ground up. He's a local boy coming home to show us what he's got -- let him show you. Whatever you do, try the tasting menu. This is where you typically get the best your chef has to offer.
#4: Don't be afraid to try something new.
If ingredients sound a little freaky or unusual on the menu, or if the plate presentation isn't what you normally see, don't be afraid! Give something new a try. You may like it more than you think
That all said, I really cannot wait to give Volt a visit. I have high hopes for Voltaggio and his partner Hilda Staples, and think they're going to blow us away. Give them a chance and let me know what you think. Me? I'm making my reservation for early September as soon as I can. Woo hoo!