Vola's Dockside Grill

4.5
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1052 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Seafood

Top Tags:

Casual
Vola’s Dockside Grill and the adjacent Hi-Tide Lounge provides a relaxed and casual style seafood restaurant, and a retro-cool, hideaway bar for tourists and locals alike. Named after Vola Lawson, a much-loved and iconic citizen of Old Town, Vola’s Dockside Grill embraces the simpler times and has been designed as a spot that feels as if it is as integral to Old Town as the cobblestone streets. Vola’s is a friendly, familiar place with a raw bar and the largest outdoor riverside patio in Old Town, where the food, atmosphere, service, and experience are always fantastic.

Join us for lunch, happy hour, dinner, or weekend brunch! Vola’s ‘All Day’ menu is based on chef-grade simple, classic seafood and waterfront-inspired foods made with peak season ingredients all while enjoying our expansive patio.*

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Specials

Wine Down Wednesday

50% off on all bottles of wine $100 and under.

Terms and Conditions:

Valid For: 1 - 20 people

Starts: March 4, 2020

Ends: March 5, 2119

Availability: Wed 11:00AM-11:30PM

Instantly increase your points with dining rewards

See availability for bonus point tables

Sun - Thu 10:45AM - 11:15AM 5:00PM - 6:15PM

What 1052 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.4
food
4.5
service
4.4
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
86% of people would recommend it to a friend
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J
Houston
1 review
Dined on March 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a lovely brunch outside, overlooking the Potomac. The weather, food and service was perfect. Vola’s is one of our go to places. It is always fabulous!!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 17, 2020

Hi Julie, thank you for taking the time to leave us the incredible review! We are thrilled to know we are on of your favorite places to dine and look forward to hosting you again soon.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on March 13, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Lovely outside dining area. Tight seating but we got lucky and had a table by the water.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 16, 2020

Thank you for taking the time to leave us the kind review! We hope to see you again soon on the patio.

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CP
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We like coming every time we are in the area. Food is excellent and service is great. We like to sit by the window so we can enjoy the views of the Potomac and park.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 12, 2020

Hi, thank you for taking the time to leave us the lovely review! We are delighted to know you had a wonderful time and look forward to seeing you again soon.

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5
New York Area
10 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2020
Overall3food2service4ambience3

Food is average but staff is friendly and the location is ideal, right on the waterfront. And they have outdoor seating, which is nice to have on the water.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 12, 2020

Hi, thank you for taking the time to leave us a review! We hope to see you soon to try some of our new dishes.

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o
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our waiter, Franklin, was kind and attentive and checked on us just enough. The seafood stew was delicious!!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 10, 2020

Thank you for the review! Franklin is great and we will share your kind words with them. Hope to see you again soon.

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LG
Austin
1 review
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience5

Based on what we ordered, fried chicken and fish and chips were very good. Lobster roll and corn and shrimp fritters were disappointing.

Server was super nice at first, but then went MIA. We only ended up with one round of drinks because he frankly never came around to ask us if we wanted more.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 10, 2020

Hello - thank you for the review. We pride ourselves on both the quality of our dishes and our service and are sorry to hear that we fell short during your recent dine. We have shared this information with out management team and hope you'll give us another opportunity to impress you.

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KR
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on March 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My only complaint, and the reason for low rating on Value, is the small size of the brunch cocktails for the high price. Next time I'll pass on the fancy drinks. No specified GF options but Walter was able to inform me on what could be made GF.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 10, 2020

Hi, Kathryn. Thank you for the review and feedback. We will share this with the management team and hope you'll join us again soon!

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VA
Washington DC
36 reviews
Dined on March 6, 2020
Overall4food5service3ambience4

Honestly, we were surprised. We've been to Vola's before, though not recently. Thought the place was a fine neighborhood hangout joint, but nothing spectacular. But this time...the food was outstanding. We split the trout dip, and my wife had the coconut shrimp and I had the grouper. Everything was really great, loved it all. Good beer list for my wife, adequate wine list for me. Service was a bit slow but nothing really to complain about. Altogether, I'd really recommend Vola's.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 9, 2020

Hi, thank you for taking the time to leave us a review! We are thrilled to know you had a wonderful time with our dishes as we look forward to hosting you again soon.

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EE
Austin
11 reviews
Dined on March 5, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Buck a shuck...can’t go wrong with that!!! We followed up 3 dozen oysters with a roasted butternut squash topped with bacon, sliced almonds and a maple syrup drizzle...on the specials menu!!! We finished up with fish tacos that were to die for!!! Matt was a great server and totally took care of us with great recommendations!!! We were in heaven with the oysters...the mignonette sauce was fabulous, if you like that!!! If you’ve never tried it, give it a shot!!! You won’t be disappointed!!!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 6, 2020

Hi Erin, thank you for taking the time to leave us the lovely review! We are delighted to know you enjoyed all of our offerings, especially Buck-a-Shuck. We will be sure to pass along the kind sentiments to the team and we hope to see you again soon.

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GB
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on March 1, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Dalton was a great server! And we enjoyed our lunch!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 3, 2020

Thank you for taking the time to leave us the kind review! We look forward to having you again soon.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 29, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Good food and atmosphere

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 3, 2020

Thank you for the review! We hope to see you again soon.

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SS
Washington DC
17 reviews
Dined on February 28, 2020
Overall2food1service5ambience2

Sean our server went out of his way to make a mediocre experience great!! His attention to detail and attentiveness were top notch. However that’s where it ended the frittered came out fried even though the menu says something completely different. My lovely partner ordered the salad and crab cake which were okay. But please how can you screw up a salad!! I had the fish and chips which was entirely too big a portion and rather bland

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 2, 2020

Hi Shayne, thank you for taking the time to leave us a review. We appreciate and take all feedback very seriously, especially when it comes to the quality and seasoning of our dishes as we pride ourselves on quality ingredients. We are sorry your experience fell short and will be sharing this information with our management and culinary team. Thank you again and we do hope you will give us another try.

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o
Adelaide / SA
1 review
Dined on February 27, 2020
Overall1food2service1ambience3

My friend and I brought our adult daughters to Volas for drinks and a bite to eat. The food was average. My friend and I had the frozen pina colada's which were very good. My biggest concern was that when our check arrived, there were several items on it which we had not ordered - mixed in with our orders. When this was pointed out to our server, he didn't really seem concerned or apologize but did remove the items. We then asked for a copy of our check and it was never brought back by the server. Check your bill folks!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on March 2, 2020

Hi, we appreciate you taking the time to leave us a review. We take all feedback very seriously as we always strive to provide our guests with an excellent dining experience. We will be bringing these issues to the attention of our management team immediately and we do hope you will give us another try.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 23, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great service and amazing food!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 26, 2020

Thank you for taking the time to leave us the kind review! We hope to see you again soon.

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PJ
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on February 22, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience2

It was way too loud Saturday night at Vola's. It's my daughter's favorite restaurant, but we couldn't have any kind of a conversation. My older daughter couldn't eat her fried chicken because it was just way too salty. We've had that before. The calamari is salty. The shrimp you add to a salad is too salty to eat. Ah well. It's close to being a great restaurant, but the noise was off putting and please cut down the salt!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 26, 2020

Hi Pam, thank you for taking the time to leave us a review. We take all feedback from our guests seriously, especially when it concerns the quality of our dishes and the experience we provide. We will be sharing this information with our management and culinary teams and hope you’ll give us another opportunity to impress you.

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KN
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 22, 2020
Overall1food2service1ambience2

Both bartenders were very inattentive. Forgot to ring in an item I ordered, didn’t check on us nor ask if we needed anything. Received my food without utensils. The female bartender had a horrible attitude. They both were to consumed with tending to the guest on the other side of the bar that looked more like them, if you know what I mean. This by far was the worst service I’ve ever received. I’m a bartender myself and what I experienced was very unacceptable. We sat there for about 13 minutes before anyone greeted us, I timed it. Even then I had to ask for a menu.
In the industry I’m in we are taught to greet the guest within the first 60 seconds. Even if you are busy tending to other guest etc, you greet them and let them know you’ll be with them in a moment. I doubt I would ever return here. Typically you go to the bar because you receive better and attentive service, at least here this was not the case. Maybe a pre-shift meeting to go over the basics of hospitality and customer service would serve these bartenders well.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 26, 2020

Hi, thank you for taking the time to leave us a review. We take all feedback seriously, especially when it concerns the dining experience we provide, and we are sorry we fell short during your recent dine. Our goal is to welcome all guests in a timely manner and steps of service are at the core of what we do. We will be sharing this information with our management team and hope you will give us another try.

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MT
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on February 17, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Very good - grouper was excellent! Was a bit spicy for one of the clients, but otherwise, very good. Service excellent and friendly.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 20, 2020

Hi Mary, thank you for taking the time to leave us a review! We will be sure to pass along the kind sentiments with the team. We hope to see you again soon.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Volas was a cozy spot for a winter Saturday night. The food was delicious. It was a bit louder/darker than I would have liked but it was a much better option than chart house and Blackwall hitch. Very fun and yummy!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 17, 2020

Hi, thank you for taking the time to leave us a review! We are happy to know you enjoyed our dishes and will make sure to pass along the kind sentiments to them team. We hope to see you again soon.

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was amazing !
Vday menu was so good !
Customer service was exceptional too !!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 17, 2020

Thank you for the kind words! We hope to see you again soon.

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GM
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Atmosphere is wonderful the staff is amazing and the food is always absolutely delicious

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 17, 2020

Hi Gerald, thank you for taking the time to leave us the kind words about our service and dishes! We look forward to hosting you again soon.

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CP
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall4food5service5ambience4

The server was very attentive , the food was fresh and very good. We had the fish and chips and I must say it is as good as you get in London. So for that you can stay local. 😊

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 17, 2020

Thank you for the lovely words! We are thrilled to know you enjoyed our dishes and look forward to having you again soon.

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V
Washington DC
36 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Outstanding service, amazing food and perfect cocktails. I am never going to forget that shrimp taco. WOW!!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 12, 2020

Thank you for the kind words! We look forward to having you again soon.

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m
Washington DC
12 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Sunday brunch was awesome. Great service great food. Would definitely go back again.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 11, 2020

Thank you for the review!

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SG
1 review
Dined on February 5, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience3

We are always happy at Vola's. The service was exceptional too. Many thanks, Sally Bolger Gardner - ACT for Alexandria

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 10, 2020

Thank you for the lovely review, Sally! We hope to see you again soon.

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L
Richmond
14 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

You have to try the wings with old bay. So so good.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 5, 2020

Thank you for the kind words, Lisa! We hope to see you again soon.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great all across the board

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 3, 2020

Thank you for the kind words! We hope to see you again soon.

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AC
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I just passed an exam to advance my career. My husband said I could pick anywhere. I LOVE Vola’s and of course chose to go there. The food and atmosphere never disappoints. Alex was our waitress and was amazing! We can’t wait to go back and hopefully will get her as our server again!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 4, 2020

Hi Alison, thank you for taking the time to leave us a review! We are thrilled to know we have found a loyal customer in you and look forward to your next visit.

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Fantastic food and service! Clams were out of this world. Nice that is also close to the water! Highly recommend.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 3, 2020

Thank you for the kind words! We are thrilled to know you enjoyed our Clams and look forward to hosting you again soon.

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FO
Washington DC
100 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food, nice HH. staff was super!

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 1, 2020

Thank you for the review, we hope to see you again!

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RW
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 22, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience4

Our go to place...and we're in Annandale! Its worth the drive and parking and crowded Old Town. Love the atmosphere and the food is excellent. Service has always been a tad slow for our liking, but its certainly acceptable.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 1, 2020

Hi Roger, thank you for taking the time and leaving us the kind words! We appreciate the sentiments and will share with the team. We look forward to seeing you again.

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CC
Washington DC
20 reviews
Dined on January 22, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Our server was excellent and half off oysters happy hour special was superb. Only thing we did not like was not being able to order chicken wings at our non-bar table. Cuz I love chicken wings. And it is not available on the regular menu.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 1, 2020

Hi Christine, thank you for leaving us the kind words! We are happy to know you love our dishes and would love to see you back for at the bar for those chicken wings you were craving.

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DT
Washington DC
13 reviews
Dined on January 18, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Great for a cloudy, mid-January lunch. Food was good with Crabs Benedict being excellent along with a great bloody mary. In addition, Alex, our server was terrific. All nicely done. Would definitely return.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 1, 2020

Hi Dave, we appreciate the kind sentiments about our dishes and the team. We hope to see you again soon.

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L
Richmond
14 reviews
Dined on January 17, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

The wings with old bay seasoning was fantastic. A must have.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 1, 2020

Hi Lisa, thank you for leaving us a review!

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SG
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on January 17, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We split the steamers, lobster roll and a slice of key lime pie. Food is always excellent here. We are never disappointed. Waitress was just perfect.

Vola's Dockside Grill
Responded on February 1, 2020

Hi Sandy, thank you for taking the time and leaving us the kind words! We are thrilled to know you enjoyed our dishes, especially the Lobster Roll and Key Lime Pie. We hope to see you again soon.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 12, 2020
Overall5food3service5ambience5

The service was great! Our server was so sweet! Love it and will go back soon!

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience2

Dinner and service were great. The noise level made it next to impossible to carry on a conversation.

HS
1 review
Dined on January 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Nice variety of dishes, both fish and meat. Good selection of beers. Nice view of National Harbor. Was quiet and easy to have a conversation on a Monday night.

f
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Friendly staff; crab cakes could use some seasoning.

SK
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Incredible staff, good food and fair price. We came in a bit earlier than the reservation time and the host accommodated us with no problem. Great place to spend the New Year's eve with family and friends.

SB
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall2food2service2ambience3

We were there on NYE and were VERY disappointed. They delivered our salad at the same time as our meal and our steak of well done and dry. We both like our steak rare to medium rare. Our server was less than experienced. She almost never came back to check on us. A food runner delivered our food and was surprised we might have liked our salad first and our hot food after the salad was finished. It was a busy nightm but we were not in a hurry--we were there at 6:30 and had planned to linger over dinner because the party we were going to didn't start until 8:30. They had us out the door by about 7:15-7:20 and felt like we got the bums rush. Really disappointing as I had heard really good things about this place and I eat out a lot and love seafood.