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5411 Ballard Ave. NW (Market St.) Send to Phone
The elder statesman of Ballard's Italian restaurant scene.

Dinner nightly, Brunch Sat.-Sun.
Open late Mon.-Sat.

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THIS RESTAURANT IS CLOSED Volterra Restaurant Restaurant Review

: A pioneer in Ballard Avenue's collection of Italian restaurants, this charming spot is adorned with chandeliers, sconces and hanging alabaster light fixtures, all handcrafted by artisans in Volterra, its namesake Tuscan town. In summer, the dining room opens onto a small terrace, creating an upbeat, cosmopolitan setting. Sip a classic cocktail or limoncello in the cozy bar while enjoying seared scallops. Baskets of freshly-baked bread served with olive oil and little dishes of fennel salt whet the appetite. Starters may include roasted oxtail with caramelized onions or baked gnocchi with house-made wild boar sausage. Dinner options from chef Don Curtiss are inventive and seasonal as well as classically Italian, such as braised lamb shanks with a rich gravy served over creamy polenta or fork-tender wild boar with a light Gorgonzola sauce. For colder evenings, we recommend the seafood stew brimming with mussels, clams, scallops, prawns and the day’s fresh catch, all married in a saffron tomato broth. Service is sometimes slow but always friendly and helpful, especially when interpreting the extensive Italian wine list. Sweet endings include apple pie and lemon tart.


GAYOT's Annual Restaurant Awards honor America's best chefs, as well as promising newcomers and a top restaurateur.