Vola's Dockside Grill

4.4
568 reviews
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$30 and under
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Seafood
Top Tags:
  • Waterfront
  • Great for Outdoor Dining
  • 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.
*Although we try and do our best to accommodate all seating requests, all reservations are for Vola's Inside-Dining only.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Seafood, American, Comfort Food
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Hours of operation
Vola’s Dockside Grill:
Monday-Thursday 11:30am - 11pm
Friday 11:30am - 12am
Saturday 10am -12am
Sunday 10am - 11pm
Happy Hour: Monday-Friday 4pm - 7pm
Brunch: Saturday-Sunday 10am - 3pm
Hi-Tide Lounge: Monday-Friday 3pm - 1am
Saturday- 12pm - 12am
Sunday- 12pm -11pm
Friday 3 pm - 2am
Happy Hour:
Monday-Friday: 3pm - 7pm
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Phone number
(703) 935-8890
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Santiago Lopez
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Cross street
King Street
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Parking details
There are several public hourly parking garages within two blocks of the restaurant, and hourly street parking is also available on adjacent streets.
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Public transit
The free Old Town Trolley stops in front of the Hi-Tide Lounge at the corner of King and Union Streets, just steps from our entrance. It carries passengers from that point to the King Street Metro station. The Trolley runs every 10 minutes from 10am-10:15pm Sunday-Wednesday, and from 10am-12am Thursday-Saturday.
Additional
Bar/Lounge, Beer, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 568 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.4
service
4.2
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
84% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
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OT
5.0Dined 2 days ago

Stopped here yesterday for a quick drink before water taxing to the National Harbor. Like the entree’s coming out and the service was Excellent. Decided to come back today for Brunch and you did not disappoint 😍❤️

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OT
5.0Dined 3 days ago

We went for brunch and it was amazing food! My husband loved his fried chicken and biscuits and I loved the Chesapeake crab Benedict which was recommended by the waitress! Will definitely be back!

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JP
4.0Dined 4 days ago

Made rez for the dockside grille only to find, once there, that they don't do rez for outside. We had a table for 4 in the restaurant.
Put our names in for outside and it was ready in about 15 min.
Food is ok, nothing great, ready very quickly. It was a beautiful evening on the dock in old town, so there is that! Felt a little rushed, but there was a line waiting for seating so we left soon after everyone was finished.
Honored happy hour prices on oysters, which was a courtesy since it was just after 6 by the time we were seated.

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BS
5.0Dined 5 days ago

Great food and service. My favorite waterfront restaurant.

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OT
3.0Dined 5 days ago

Martini and oysters were good, although the mignonette sauce was flavorless. Server was attentive and eager to please. Noise level a little high (we sat indoors), but good place to meet friends and enjoy a lively night.

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E
5.0Dined 6 days ago

Fun to be on the riverfront in one of my favorite cities. Vola rocks!

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OT
5.0Dined on July 9, 2018

Amazing food and great atmosphere!

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MJ
5.0Dined on July 8, 2018

Really enjoyed a Sunday afternoon meal! Made Open Table reservations and we were quickly sat. We sat by the Dock. We had 3 of us plus our service dog.

It was a hot day, so I got my tan on in the patio.

First off, they have a dog menu! How cute is that?! Honestly, some of the stuff looked good enough that I'd eat it. We didn't order anything for the dog, because we don't want any upset tummies later.

We ordered 1/2 of peel shrimp for an app.

Cocktails: Spicy pineapple Margarita (mine) and strawberry dacari (his). The spicy marg, was good.. I was not expecting the flavor but it was okay. The strawberry dacari tastes like a fruit roll up! Yummmmm!

Food, I got the fish tacos, the waiter suggested grilled, which was a great choice! It was so good. My boyfriend got shrimp tacos. It was smothered in hot sauce. I liked my plate better :) my so got chicken tenders and fries- surprising, I know -_-

We really enjoyed our meal!

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D
4.0Dined on July 8, 2018

We were seated inside because we didn’t want to wait 45 minutes to be seated outside.

The service was stellar.

The food wasn’t amazing, but wasn’t anything to complain about. The crab dip was definitely a 5 out of 5.

The tacos were a 3 out of 5. It’s a piece of fried fish, and the flavors are great, but they were made with a massive underlayment of wet slaw that overpowered the other flavors while also soaking the tortilla.

The burger was a solid 2.5 out of 5 and could be had anywhere, nothing special about it other than being smaller than the bun, came out well done after asking for a medium at max, and it was served with lettuce and no other toppings.

The fries accompanying both meals were quite good.

Alcohol beverage value was worthwhile, but be aware that they make their own Bloody Mary mix and on this date it wasn’t made well so our drinks were fantastic ketchup bloody Mary’s.

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JJ
5.0Dined on July 5, 2018

Great spot! The waitress was nice and provided great service

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FF
4.0Dined on July 5, 2018

Always great food, pleasant service, but so loud. Hard for neuro-atypical teens, who were in our party, hard to hear conversations, but really enjoyed the food. Lobster roll is delicious, fish tacos, Chesapeake Bay chowder, and coconut shrimp were all hits at our table. So unfortunately loud though. And did I mention loud? But the staff and servers were super friendly and competent. No missed items or anything.

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AC
5.0Dined on July 4, 2018

Great value for Old Town. Spinach salad with Grouper keeps me coming back!

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J
5.0Dined on July 4, 2018

Vola’s is one of the best seafood restaurants in the Washington DC area! Delicious food with Five stars service. Servers are very talented and professional and specially the manager Mr. Freddie who’s the best pro in the business. Thanks to all the Vola’s team, you guys have brought an new era of entertainment to Old Town Alexandria. Cheers !!!

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OT
5.0Dined on July 4, 2018

It was amazing good food, nice staff and our reservation was right on time!!!

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OT
4.0Dined on July 1, 2018

Lovely staff, decent

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RS
4.0Dined on July 1, 2018

Vola's is great! the outdoor patio has a nice ambience. Great service from our waitress. Nice place for a summer outdoor meal.

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OT
4.0Dined on July 1, 2018

I enjoyed the food and the atmosphere

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CD
4.0Dined on June 30, 2018

Excellent food and great service. If you sit inside, it is very loud with the music and the noise level. Still would recommend.

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L
5.0Dined on June 30, 2018

Grouper sandwich and lobster roll were delicious and refreshing. The kids had blueberry pancakes and monkey bread, and I enjoyed eating those too! Deviled eggs were a great starter, but the service was what made brunch special!

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M
5.0Dined on June 29, 2018

Great seafood, loved our waiter, Brandon. Very noisy, tho.

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2
4.0Dined on June 26, 2018

Great dinner! Was initially brought the wrong entree, but they replaced it right away.

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KJ
3.0Dined on June 26, 2018

Vola's was fine. I was really looking forward to the waterfront dining but no where does it tell you that construction is now going on between the restaurant and the waterfront with fencing up and construction vehicles. That was really disappointing. The food was above average. I had the blackened grouper but it was not very blackened. Our server was great!

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C
4.0Dined on June 24, 2018

Seafood classics done right served here. Great casual place to bring out-of-town guests if you don't mind the noise-level, which can get pretty high during peak hours. Patio seating is "cozy", and one of the few waterfront outdoor seating options in Old Town. Wait staff is always friendly and accommodating. I highly recommend reservations on the weekends.

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LD
4.0Dined on June 24, 2018

I went here for Brunch for the first time. Glad I made reservations because it can get crowed. I was craving some seafood and decided to try the Lobster Roll. It was packed full of lobster and served with a side of old fries that's fresh out the fryer. I think I only waited 5 minutes for my food. My server Phillip was great. Will be returning!

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OT
1.0Dined on June 24, 2018

We eat at restaurant but got no show status with Opentable.

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CA
5.0Dined on June 24, 2018

First time at the restaurant. Perfect setting for a Sunday brunch. The weather allowed for outdoor seating. Super comfortable and great atmosphere for a relaxing and totally enjoyable get together.

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KF
4.0Dined on June 23, 2018

Had reservation and despite being very busy, they kept close to our appointed time and spot. Our server was prompt, friendly, and took excellent care of us throughout the meal. The food was fresh, flavorful, and satisfying. Fried chicken was crisp and just cooked. Scallops were perfectly seared over tasty, good textured grits. The décor is casual, with considerable character, conveying a unique feel for the seaport town of Alexandria. Price was quite reasonable. Noise level was very high, but for the most part, we were able to converse.

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OT
3.0Dined on June 23, 2018

Went after seeing the Bloody Mary’s on eatdrinkdc’s IG, (but prefer the ones at Logan Tavern). We were about 15 min late for our reservation but they were still able to seat us, which was very kind of them. If you like dining by the water and adorable historic towns, this is a good solid place to eat.

We had the deviled eggs, oysters, lobster roll and crab benny. Everything was solid. Good, not great. Waitress was a little young/unpolished (we asked about the difference in Bloody Mary drinks and she admitted that she was 20 so couldn’t tell us, which is not at all her fault, but she didn’t offer to ask or send over someone who would know) but again, nice enough. Eggs were balanced, not too mustardy, oysters were very good, lobster roll was good but not the best I’ve ever had. My boyfriend felt the same about his Benny. We might go back, but prob not anytime soon when there are so many other places to try.

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JO
5.0Dined on June 21, 2018

We came late from a weather-delayed fight into Reagan and arrived 45 minutes prior to closing. The staff was most accommodating and very helpful. Added to the excellent food selection and preparation, made It a great, late evening.
We’ll go back!!

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OT
5.0Dined on June 18, 2018

It was my second visit to Vola’s, but my first time sitting outside. The food was great and came out very quickly. I went on a Monday evening and to my surprise I was still able to enjoy happy hour (for oysters). I’lll definitely be returning again. My oyster po’boy was soooooo delicious. My boyfriend’s calamari was tasty! The best part was our sever’s attention to detail. I always had a new drink on the table right before I finished the last!

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PQ
3.0Dined on June 17, 2018

The hush puppies are a must and the burgers were excellent. The salmon meal was marginal, it was the special of the day but it was overcooked and very bland. The restaurant is very noisy and I think the bathrooms are open to the general public so the wait can be 5+ minutes.

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AE
4.0Dined on June 17, 2018

Great location and look of space - service was fabulous. Food wasn’t bad but not special either - steamed shrimp were a little mushy and brocollini was a little tough. It was Fathers Day so hoping just a crazy day in the kitchen (??!) Would be great to have more rum/tiki drinks on menu too. Definitely worth going back and trying again.

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OT
5.0Dined on June 17, 2018

Father’s Day outing for the family. The food was very good, the service was great.

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JR
5.0Dined on June 17, 2018

While the "special occasion" was Father's Day, the reason we chose Vola's was to try the conch fritters. They were great. There is a bit of construction going on outside of the window beside the table where we were seated, but that seems to be a short-term challenge; it didn't bother us in the least, but lost a star on ambiance. It was a quick and easy Sunday brunch coming from Capitol Hill, and a trip we'll definitely make again in the near future!

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OT
5.0Dined on June 17, 2018

Great food and service as always. It was a little warm and when we asked about it, they immediately turned up the AC. Very accommodating!

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OT
5.0Dined on June 17, 2018

Great view ! We sat outside overlooking the river and a marina , oysters were amazing

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OT
2.0Dined on June 16, 2018

Miserable. Waiter spilled clam juice on our table, clams were not cleaned and still had sand in and on them. Mussels were not cleaned and residue on shells. Never going back.

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F
5.0Dined on June 16, 2018

Hostess and waitress were great. The scallops were some of the best I’ve ever had. The view of the water was amazing, but it was so noisy you couldn’t hear the other talk.

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TM
2.0Dined on June 16, 2018

We had friends passing through town and reserved a table, requesting one on the dock. I only learned that they do not reserve dockside tables when we arrived at the restaurant. I don't mind the policy but was very disappointed that they didn't notify me in advance. The food is quite meh but the view is lovely. We would have selected another restaurant if we'd known.

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BE
5.0Dined on June 16, 2018

Fun place to go with friends. Excellent staff, especially our server, Jonathan. Good food, great atmosphere. Can't wait to go back,

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