Who knew that you could have so much fun in Frederick, Maryland? For those of you unfamiliar with Maryland’s geography Frederick is not the center of Maryland’s universe. It’s about an hour from DC and even farther from Baltimore than West Virginia. You may be wondering why I was even in Frederick or how I know about it. Let me take you back a bit…back to when I used to live in Northern Virginia. My old boss (B-Dawg) lived in Frederick and I often dog sat for his yellow lab Norman (named after the character Norm from Cheers). Because Frederick is not close to anything the Love Muffin and I would explore on the weekends when visiting – it is in a beautiful area nestled between WVa and VA…think Shenandoah beauty.
So that is where the story of Frederick begins. It has been years since I’ve been down there but this past weekend I was proud to be a bridesmaid in one of my best friend’s weddings. The wedding was in Va but within 30 minutes of Frederick. Friday night we were relieved of our bridesmaid duties and it dawned on me as we were making the drive down to Va that one of my absolute FAVORITE Top Chef contestants, Bryan Voltaggio, had his restaurant Volt in Frederick. DUH! We had to go!
We made the drive through the rolling hills toward Volt. I’ll admit we were both geeking out a little bit because we love Top Chef and this was the first Top Chef contestant restaurant that we were going to be visiting. We pulled up and Volt is in this awesome old building. We decided to sit in the bar, which was good since the restaurant was completely booked for the night. We both started with cocktails. Mine was delicious – gin, lemon juice and sparkling wine – heaven in a glass, let me tell you. The Love Muffin had some whiskey drink as per usual.
Everything on the menu looked SO good, so I took the liberty of ordering for us – tuna tartare, foie gras and pork belly…I know, faaaaaaancy. What do you expect? All of the food was so good. I died for the tuna and I mean, let’s be honest, I could eat that pork belly every day.
This story wouldn’t be complete without letting you all know that we got to spend Friday night with an awesome guy…the CEO of Flying Dog Brewery, Jim Caruso. Of course he and the Love Muffin talked business. He’s a really interesting guy and I highly recommend you check out his blog Cut The Leash. To round out the night we decided to sample some of Flying Dog’s finest. The Love Muffin decided to have this special Rauch (smoked) beer that was made specifically with Bryan Voltaggio – he died for it with the pork belly. I on the other hand opted for one of my favorite styles, an Imperial IPA. It packed quite a punch at 10% ABV – but let me tell you this, it was one of the best IPAs I’ve ever had (and I’m very particular about my beer). If you have a chance to try either of these beers, I highly recommend them.
So there you have it…the story of Frederick, Maryland. If you ever find yourself driving through the area, it’s worth stopping – even if it’s just to enjoy the scenery. Big thanks to the bartenders and folks at Volt – they made our night extra special!