Chef Vola’s in Atlantic City NJ never disappoints us. Not ever! And we have been dining there for almost 50 years.
Chef Vola’s in Atlantic City is one of those hidden gems that draws us back time and time again. The little red sauce Italian restaurant in the basement of a house just off the boardwalk offers consistently fabulous food, generous portions, and warm hospitality. The Esposito family, Louise, her husband, and her son’s see to it that every detail of your experience is memorable. And they have been doing just that for over 35 years. Chef Vola’s has also won a James Beard Award and is a finalist again this year!
We love going to Chef Vola’s every single time we visit Atlantic City. And at this point, we are treated like family which makes the experience even more special. I think we all know the menu by heart but we still love listening to our server reciting it from memory. We always start with their antipasto style salad with a tangy vinaigrette. This time with added the very delectable Fresh Buffalo Mozzarella, Prosciutto, and Roasted Peppers with Red Wine Vinaigrette. The contrast of flavors was spot on.
Our appetizers were followed by our enormous entrées. So big that we all knew we were taking home doggy bags that would be enough for another meal. Eve had the Red Snapper which was topped with the most incredible colossal lumps of crabmeat and was perched atop fresh wilted spinach. Adding moisture and great flavor there was a lemony beurre blanc anointing the entire plate. Brian had the Bone-in Veal Parmesan. His huge veal chop was pounded thin and then finished just like any traditional veal parm. Steve is not a huge fan of bone-in meat so he ordered the Traditional Veal Parmesan and it was amply covered in melty cheese and rich tomato sauce. And I ordered the 16-ounce Bone-in Veal Chop topped with an abundance of sautéed shiitake mushrooms and a beautiful demi-glace. All of our veal dishes delivered on flavor and tenderness. We also all had sides of spaghetti with Bolognese sauce that was yummy but also made us question if we would have room for dessert.
Desserts at Chef Vola’s are da bomb. Louise makes them all herself with her own very special, very secret recipes. I have tried to no avail to get the recipe for her Chocolate Chambord Pie. We were quite disappointed last year when she informed us it was no longer on the menu. I almost cried. Maybe she felt sorry for me because YAY, it is back. So of course, we had to order a slice. And somehow also managed to devour a slice of Limoncello Pie and a slice of her wonderful Ricotta Cheesecake. And to complete our feast we also had espressos and cappuccinos. To everyone’s surprise, Steve even took a sip or two of cappuccino. What is funny about that is that Steve does not drink any hot beverages. Never has. He even spent 3 years in the Navy and never drank coffee. One time, before we got married, my mother offered him $5 to take one tiny sip. He did it just to please her, but you would have thought he was tasting poison. So I was happy to have witnesses and a photo to prove he tasted it willingly even if it was almost 50 years later!
If you plan on dining at Chef Vola make sure to make a reservation well in advance. Come very hungry and wear your stretchy pants because the portions are huge. Bobby Flay confessed to me that he needed a wheel barrel to cart him out of the restaurant he ate so much of their good food! And last, but very important, they do not sell wine, beer, or liquor so be sure to bring your own.
111 S Albion Pl
Atlantic City, NJ 08401