I was blessed this last weekend to be gifted with another visit to Volt. Apparently my excellent boyfriend had to make reservations for this outing a month in advance which is a pretty big deal for a place out in the middle of Frederick Maryland (the suburbs of the suburbs).
The decor was very modern, very plain. They had changed the cool pictures of ships since the last time I went there to some boring dull ones.
For lunch you can either order from the 3 course prix fixe menu or the 5 course one. Being a grad student I went with the 3 course-as did my 3 dining companions.
They do offer you anise flavored bread sticks. Not a fan. The awesome chive biscuits and rosemary rolls with salted butter were good (I love creative breads) and for brunch they offer even more bread choices.
I HAD to get the goat cheese ravioli as an appetizer-it was a must. If I were to chose one of my favorite dishes ever this would have to be one of them. The goat cheese was so creamy and light yet flavorful and was pillowed inside this fresh delicate pasta. The ravioli rested on top of this wonderful butternut squash smear and topped with these amazingly flavorful chanterrelle mushrooms and a foam. My only complaint was that I wanted MORE. All I got were 4 pieces and man I could eat that stuff all day.
Justin got this veloute which was essentially a mushroom soup which was just overly mushroomy and had no other flavors or textures to balance it out.
Katie got the beet salad which seemed quite nice with the variety of beets, the beet meringues were a pretty touch but the goat cheese was just air and not at all strong like goat cheese should be. A good appetizer but nothing compared to the ravioli.
The main dishes were quite the conundrum. I really thought someone who was one of the top contenders for Iron Chef would be able to produce better entrees. I got the pork tenderloin which was bland and pretty much tasteless. It came with this awful purple cabbage sauce (more like an apple sauce consistency) which was bitter and unpleasant. I at least enjoyed the bacony brussel sprouts but the mustard greens that were put on my plate were pathetic. All they tastes of was butter. Pure butter. Blech.
The chicken with sausage was similarly humdrum with the sausage being soft and under cooked (or just boiled? you should ALWAYS caramelize your sausage to bring out the flavor-what were you thinking Brian when you presented us with this sad spongy dish) and the chicken dull.
I had the fish on my previous visit and it was too fishy for my tastes, I kept on looking longingly at everyone elses plates (speaking of my previous visit VOLT does a much better brunch than a lunch-his eggs are the best eggs I have had in my life and Justin's grandmother inhaled her pancakes).
The only winner was the steak which was twelve extra dollars. The steak was marinated to perfection, tasting of teriyaki and honey and wasn't too tough at all (I am picky about my steak tenderness).
As for the desserts I don't think that Brian can do anything well except for his chocolate textures dessert. I tried the pear dish (boring and alcoholic-how can you serve such a hard piece of pear), the dissatisfying apple dessert (also boring-none of his flavored ice creams are ever good), and the peach dessert (had last time, I could make it in my sleep). None of them were as remotely impressive as the chocolate textures dessert but I honestly could STILL go for something even more exciting than that.
They always seem to send you home with a nicely wrapped up muffin. I love muffins myself and was really excited to eat them. You can't imagine how disappointed I was with the first muffin (blackberry) which was awful tasting and dry and the 2nd muffin (lemon poppy seed) which was somehow dry, dense and oily and grainy all the same time.
To sum it up: Go for brunch. Enjoy the bread. Be sure to get the ravioli, eggs/steak and the chocolate textures. Be prepared for a long meal as the time between courses is quite long.