Volterra
Volterra

Volterra

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.volterraballard.com/
  • Phone: 206-789-5100x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Brunch: Saturday - Sunday: 9:00am - 2:00pm
    Lunch: Saturday - Sunday: 2:00pm - 5:00pm
    Dinner: Tuesday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm
    Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:30pm
    Sunday: 5:00pm - 9:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian, Northwest
  • Executive Chef: Don Curtiss
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Chef's Table, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: We would love to assist you with catering for your offsite event. Please contact us and ask for Michelle for detailed information.
  • Private Party Facilities: The Volterra Drawing Room is a beautiful, intimate private event venue located next door to Volterra restaurant and is an ideal location for small to mid-size events. We offer the same award winning cuisine, exceptional service and extensive wine list as Volterra.
  • Private Party Contact: Michelle Quisenberry 8883527279

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 20th Ave NW
  • Public Transit: Metro Bus #17 and 18
  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: Street parking is available on Ballard Avenue and Shilshole Avenue. Paid parking in the Ballard Landmark Garage. Enter on Leary Way with access to Ballard Avenue puts you 1 block away from Volterra. Please note, access to garage entrance on Ballard Avenue is only open until midnight.
A word from Volterra
Volterra features the bold-flavored, Tuscan-inspired menu of Chef Don Curtiss showcasing his innovative style applied to the bountiful harvest of the Pacific Northwest. Menu highlights include: Seasonal Tuscan specialties –truffles, squash blossoms, fresh porcini mushrooms are featured throughout the year. All natural, organic or free-range meats and poultry. Fresh, house made pasta. Our extensive wine list features primarily Italian and Northwest wines. Volterra has received numerous accolades including: “Best New Restaurant” and “Best Italian Restaurant” by Seattle Magazine. “Best Italian Restaurant” by Seattle Citysearch, and “Best Chef Inspired Restaurant” by Seattle Metropolitan Magazine, Zagat “America’s Top Restaurant’s” and “America’s Top Italian Restaurants”. Rachael Ray named Volterra "one of her favorite restaurants on the planet".
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Volterra reviews from OpenTable diners
75 reviews since June 27, 2014
Overall Rating4.2
  • Food4.2
    Service4.2
  • Ambiance4.1
    Noise LevelModerate
87% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (52)neighborhood gem (41)special occasion (36)romantic (35)great for outdoor dining (28)notable wine list (28)good for groups (6)great for brunch (5)hot spot (5)kid-friendly (3)late-night find (3)great for lunch (2)vibrant bar scene (2)scenic view (1)Show More
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 10/22/2014
    The menu is so mouth-watering online, but it wasn't current with the menu that was given to our table. It would be great to make sure they match so that guests can receive the menu item they have been dreaming about all day! We searched through the current menu and were all very happy with our new selections. Overall, it was a great restaurant and we enjoyed our time in Ballard.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great service and food!
    lovetodineVIP
    Dined on 10/19/2014
    Love the service and food. Our waiter was fantastic. He gave me samples of various red wine before I ordered. He was SUPER!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great find!
    natmrk
    Dined on 10/19/2014
    We went to Volterra in Ballard for the first time during Seattle Restaurant Week and loved it! The dining room was a bit full so we sat outside. The outdoor seating was beautiful and we had it all to ourselves. The food was delicious and the service impeccable. We will be back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Disappointed
    DMSSVIP
    Dined on 10/19/2014
    We found Volterra to be disappointing. It did not come anywhere close to living up to its reputation. The food was rather bland. I was surprised when my lamb loin arrived with a simple scoop of mashed potatoes, like you might get at a diner. The potatoes were bland, and the lamb was not very flavorful. Nor was the wild boar loin that my dining companion had. The service was pretty good, however.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Twice disappointed
    langes23
    Dined on 10/19/2014
    Volterra used to be a restaurant we really looked forward to visiting. Given the cost, we saved up for special occasions. The last two times we have been for dinner however, have been disappointing. At one visit my husband's osso bucco came to the table charred and dry and I was astonished that they let it leave the kitchen at all. This time the lamb was rubbery and the plate came appointed with a few spears of asparagus and an ice cream scoop of flavorless mashed potatoes. The entire plate was anemic looking and unappetizing. My own $18 plate of pesto pasta was unimaginatively dotted with uninteresting bits of sundried tomato and scanty dots of goat cheese. We are waiting for strike three- Volterra's already out.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Amazing Food and service
    DevanVIP
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    My husband and I went here before a show in Ballard the food was amazing! I had the smoked salmon ravioli and he had the wild boar tenderloin. We shared a beautiful bottle of wine that our server suggested. We can't wait to go back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, notable wine list, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fantastic all around
    Aldaenster
    Dined on 10/7/2014
    Great service, spot-on wine suggestions, and welk-executed dishes from appetizers to dessert. We are going back next week to try our second choices from the menu!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Yummy!
    juniormintz
    Dined on 10/4/2014
    My husband and I dined at Volterra on our wedding anniversary and it was wonderful treat! The food was amazing and we were treated very well. We had a fantastic time. The only thing I could nitpick about was that the cocktails seemed small and stingy and not particularly notable. We'll definitely come back again!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Going downhill
    Disappointed
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    The food was OK. For years this was my favorite restaurant, but I will probably not return. The food has gone from great to average. The way we were rushed through our meal you would have thought there was a line of people out the door, although the restaurant was half empty. Very disappointing.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great Italian; good wine
    ballardDiner
    Dined on 9/25/2014
    One of our favorite spots. Especially good is the Autumn menu, which features pork jowls in pasta.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • nice dinner
    char
    Dined on 9/20/2014
    Liked it, had a nice dinner. It wasn't amazing, but server was great, liked the feel and will probably go back again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • A rare complaint about Volterra
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    Volterra is one of our favorite restaurants and now that we discovered the athletic club cheap parking structure, it's even better! But, it was so dark we asked for a second candle so we could read the menus. Several people complained but nothing happened, it was too dark. Romantic is fine but none of the diners was a teenager so raise the light level to reasonable.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great place to go
    chefpropman
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    I work in the business and this by far was one of the best meals I've had in years. The wild boar and the lamb was superb. The mussel appetizer was so tender and sweet and I don't really care for mussels. I would highly recommend this restaurant
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Urban oasis
    ProfBob
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    Great food in a great setting--a quiet spot for escape and relaxation in an urban setting.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Still love it
    DrinkneatinBallard
    Dined on 9/10/2014
    Dinner with visiting family. Service was great, per usual. All dishes tasty except my moms pork loin. Over cooked and dry.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food, uninteresting crowd
    ipanemaNH
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    I love the food in Voltera but I feel that each time I go back there the crowd is more family oriented. It lacks the high energy, trendy vibe that I'd look for a Saturday night dinner in Ballard.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Mehh...not so romantic, not so good
    FoodieFemme
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    We came here to celebrate our anniversary since it was rated as a "romantic" restaurant. It was ok, but certainly not a romantic spot. The restaurant was unpleasantly hot and muggy...like eating in their kitchen. The table for two was very small, with one cushy bench seat and one hard chair. It was crammed in 6 inches from the table next to us, who had resorted to using the table next to them to hold their sides dishes and bread - which we never got. The wait staff knocked into my wine glass trying to serve the table next to us. My medium-rare lamb loin came well-done (yuck!), and the ball of mashed potatoes had sat around so long it formed a crust on top. The rest of the food was ok. We had several different servers. Mehh.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Usually great food and service.
    FurryBiker
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Been here 3 times. First two were excellent. This time the food did seem as brilliant and the service was rushed.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • wanted to love it more
    valeg
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    We had a lovely evening with friends. Service was great, ambiance lovely, but the food, while good, was only that: good - not great. With all the awards, and with the spendy price, I expected to be wowed! Probably won't go back; too many other great places to go for less money.
    Special Features:
    romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Ballard fine Italian
    davesfaves
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    We had a very nice meal here recently. The space it warm and contemporary, and located on a historic street with a happening scene. Salads were freshly made with wonderful flavors. The pasta sauces and entrees were very flavorful and well constructed, with superb service. Nice ambience in a neighborhood of noisier venues.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Consistently excellent
    BallardDiner
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    We have found the quality of Volterra's kitchen and dining room staff to be consistently excellent. Euro size portions (i.e., not huge), allow for having a tasty appetizer, main course and dessert without overeating. Everything we have had was delicious and perfectly prepared, so it really comes down to individual taste as to what anyone would choose from the menu. However, we would be sorely disappointed if the wild boar tenderloin or the mushroom polenta were ever retired from the menu. Treat yourself to a night in Tuscany.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • As good as always...
    senti598
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    Great food. Relaxed atmospher. Really interesting menu. Overall GREAT!!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Nice
    AMinSeattle
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    We had a nice dinner. I was a bit disappointed with the charcuterie plate, we just got 4 different kinds of salami (I'm not particularly keen on salami) and very little cheese. If it is supposed to be charcuterie one expects a mix of salami, ham, prosciutto etc. Never mind. Our main course was pasta. My husband had the mushroom and guanciale taglierini, which were excellent. I had the aubergine ravioli and the tomato based sauce they were dressed in was way too spicy for me! The good thing is, most of the pasta on the menu is home made. Dessert was nice (custard cream with fresh berries and amaretti crumbs). Overall ok.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Delicious
    MECA
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    Thoroughly enjoyed the dinner and the service. One of the best pastas I have had - rich ingredients but not heavy at all. I had guests visiting from out of town and had wanted to introduce them to the neighbourhood. The menu was diverse enough to suit different tastes. the waiter recommended a wine that was delicious. Definitely a place I'll go back to if I want to treat myself. Even the coffee was extra-ordinary. Thank you!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Not what I'd expect for the price
    MonkeyFace
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    Food was good, not consistently, and expensive. Service was fine, nothing bad, just again not quite up to the standard that the prices and what they project about themselves suggest.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • A modern and urban take on classics
    Marco514
    Dined on 7/24/2014
    Perfectly executed modern take on italian classics, the dishes are innovative (gnocchi with pork belly, mushrooms and peas) and the wine list contains a few gems. The night we were there however the noise level was through the roof making it difficult to hold a conversation.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good food at fair prices.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 7/16/2014
    The food is fine and everything else is too. You'll be glad you went.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Volterra never disappoints!
    KnowsHowtoTravelVIP
    Dined on 7/6/2014
    Had our latest dinner at Volterra. So happy to see the polenta with wild mushroom ragu still on the menu! This is one of our favorite dishes ANYWHERE! Tried the lamb meatballs for the first time and it was delicious. The fresh pastas - tagliolini and tagliotelle - were perfectly prepared. They are offering a citrus, white Sangria, which was the only thing that disappointed. If you like Sangria, it doesn't taste like Sangria at all. But our waitress took care of us - had the bartender make one of our favorite drinks (pegu club?), which was perfect. Actually, our waitress, Cassie, made everything right. We will ask to sit in her section the next time we have dinner at Volterra. She has the perfect balance of knowledge and fun personality.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • ptompk2
    Dined on 7/5/2014
    Our server, Jess, was quite good. She stopped to visit with us when she had the chance and we enjoyed the meal more so because of it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Overall disappointment
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011VIP
    Dined on 7/5/2014
    AT Volterra on the 5th, the service was extremely inexperienced, slow and ultimately ruined the evening. All the fish courses "sold out" prior to our ordering or as we found out 20 minutes after ordering the other remaining fish dish, "sold out" before she could put in our order. Then when we ordered the shrimp pasta, it came as the shrimp main course. She was not able to handle making a dish dairy free (for a severe allergy, not pickiness) and order the correct meal. She did not apologize for the mix-ups nor was there any attempt to take off the charge for the meal, which was a 4th choice. The restaurant was almost empty, and it is clear Volterra had its junior staff working and did not order enough food to cater to its customers.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 45 ratings-only reviews submitted since June 27, 2014
    • Overall Rating4.4
    • Food4.5
    • Ambiance4.3
    • Service4.3
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 896 reviews are from the Volterra reviews archive.
  • Dependably good
    BallardDiner
    Dined on 6/19/2014
    The quality of the food and service is consistently good. We have dined here for over 14 years. It is our go-to restaurant for an upscale dining experience we know we can count on. The Tuscan-based cuisine is delicious, the preparation excellent, and the quality of the basic ingredients always high. The noise level depends upon the time (earlier is generally quieter) and dining location (main dining hall being the loudest). But it is never oppressively loud.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Father's Day breakfast
    eileenca
    Dined on 6/15/2014
    First time here for breakfast and I would definitely come back again. Food was great and nice menu choices. Service was flawless. What more can I say?
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great food and service
    DarrenPVIP
    Dined on 6/14/2014
    Everything was fantastic! The food here is always very good. For appetizers, the meat plate from Salumi is excellent as well as the Burrata cheese. The wild boar is really good as well as any of the pasta dishes.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Memorable breakfast
    masteryandmagicgrateful
    Dined on 6/14/2014
    Everything we ordered was delicious, preparation spot on, and offerings unique while still being recognizable! Coffee and Hash Browns by people who know it's the details that carry the day. Mushroom, Truffle Eggs Benedict, and various scramble egg combinations for four, all very happy diners. Will be back to try lunch and dinner, it was hard to choose from the interesting and varied menu!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Best of the best!!
    CJ88
    Dined on 6/5/2014
    Excellent food and service. Loved the roasted cauliflower with Fontina, and the pasta with foraged mushshrooms. Had some superb wines we were not previously familiar with. Best meal we've had in Seattle since moved here a year ago.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Special brunch on patio
    BallardBoone
    Dined on 6/1/2014
    Waitress, food, and ambiance on the patio were all exceptional. Brought my parents to celebrate my mom's birthday, and she absolutely loved it. Reminded us of great memories traveling in Europe together.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food - Not so great waitress
    jstutz
    Dined on 5/31/2014
    Excellent food and atmosphere. One complaint - we ordered 2 glasses of wine and we were disappointed w/ the size of our pour. Our waitress knew the people at the table next to us and would pour nearly double the amount we received. We didn't like that the waitress played favorites.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great Date for Fancy Italian
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 5/30/2014
    Really nice place for a date with a woman who likes Italian and wine. server was excellent as well and food came out at correct times.
    Special Features:
    romantic, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Susan
    Dined on 5/24/2014
    We were a group of five people and everyone really enjoyed their dinner. The service was professional, attentive but not intrusive. The desserts were outstanding.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Leisurely Date-night Dinner
    Karen
    Dined on 5/23/2014
    We had tickets for a show at the Tractor and decided to make an evening of it. We'd walked past Volterra on many occasions and decided it was time to try it out. It turned out to be perfect choice for the kind of destress-from-a-long-week, start-the-holiday-weekend kind of evening we needed. The atmosphere was convivial, but quiet enough for conversation. The server was knowledgeable about the wild mushrooms in my dish, and about mushrooms in general, which was fun. And the dish, pork jowls and wild mushrooms over pasta, was delicious! We spent over two hours, what with cocktails, dinner, wine, and dessert, and never felt either rushed or like we were waiting around. And then it was an easy walk to our show -- no need to re-park the car!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.