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Volare, a popular Italian restaurant, reopened at the beginning of November after a two-month closure for a major overhaul. It now features an enclosed bar and a totally redone outside dining area. 

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It's located at the corner of Soi Bukhao and Soi 15, directly east of The Avenue Shopping Plaza and about 200 hundred meters south of LK Metro.

Visually, the results are pretty impressive.

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And this is a pic of the bar from Volare's Facebook page:

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A fish tank has been built into the floor leading into the bar.

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The mural on one of the walls is eye-catching.

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A detailed view:

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The two nights I ate at Volare this week, it had quite a few customers; about 25 on the first night and 15 on the second. 

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The first night I ate between 9.30 p.m. and 10.00 p.m. and the second between 23.30 p.m. and midnight.  I was a bit surprised that so many were dining so late.  The customers were a mix of plain vanilla farang with TG companions or male farang in groups as well as Russian and Asian tourists.  That bodes well for Volare.  To succeed in Pattaya's crowded restaurant segment, a restaurant has to attract customers of different nationalities.  A Holiday Inn Express is due to open nearby in 2018 and it should provide Volare with a stream of potential customers. The new trendy but casual decor should help.

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The brick pizza oven has been rebuilt at one end of the restaurant.

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I'm running into Internet hassles again, so I'll save the food reviews for the second installment.  Here's a teaser:

Tortellini pomodoro -   IMG_0297.jpg

 

Paccheri al pomodoro, basilico e ricotta - IMG_0315.jpg

 

Pizza with prosciutto ham for takeaway - IMG_0330.jpg

 

Evil

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Edited by Evil Penevil
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Volare, a popular Italian restaurant, reopened at the beginning of November after a two-month closure for a major overhaul. It now features an enclosed bar and a totally redone outside dining area. 

Posted Today, 05:35 AM I have positive and negative observations about Volare.  I'll mention the positive first. The Volare is an inviting and attractive restaurant in which to have a

Went to Soi BUakhao market today so, having read Evil's review in the morning, TGF and I decided to give Volare a try for lunch as we both enjoy Italian food. We ordered a couple of watermelon sm

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One of my favourite pizza joints from earlier this year

nice place to sit back and relax before the night begins 

The renovations look great, I am back in January so will give it a review then as well 

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I have eaten there a few times before it was redone and once since the extensive remodeling - and it is decent quality Italian food... Not the best I have had in Thailand (that would be Pala Romana in BKK), but decent enough... And the location is fantastic for me as I am often at my TGF's shop just around the corner from there... Also, one of the waitresses told me that they are open 7x24, so good for a late night/early morning, after the bar scene meal... The new decor is very nice, the menu is the same one they had before, which has a relatively big selection... In addition to the Holiday Inn Express going up on Bukhao, there is also that massive set of condos going up across from the new Centara Hotel/Condos on Soi 15 (across from Bagel's bar, Kor_EE_an_Ders)... So if that set of condos is ever finished (and lately there is visible signs that they are moving along on the construction), in addition to clogging up an already clogged Soi 15, Soi Bukhao, it will provide many potential customers to the shops in that area... 

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Passed it a few weeks ago before it had reopened, was impressed with the fish tank at the entrance, no glass on it when I passed, will give it a try when I return in December.

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Posted Today, 05:35 AM

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I have positive and negative observations about Volare.  I'll mention the positive first. The Volare is an inviting and attractive restaurant in which to have a meal. The staff is friendly and attentive.  The menu is extensive and includes some Italian dishes not frequently seen in Pattaya.  It also features some Thai standards and international dishes like hamburgers.  

Prices for the Italian dishes (salads, appetizers, pasta, pizza, etc) are reasonable for what you get. Some of the non-Italian meat dishes, like steak and lamb chops, get into the 600- to 800-baht range, but I don't go to an Italian restaurant for such dishes.  It's currently open 24/7 and offers an English breakfast at 130 baht, but again, Volare wouldn't be a natural choice for me for any sort of breakfast.

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Of the three dishes I have had at Volare,  the first suffered from a miss in the kitchen, while the other two were excellent. 

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On my first post-renovation visit, I ordered tortellini pomodoro (tortellini in a tomato sauce).  Tortellini is a filled, ring-shaped pasta also called navel, i.e. belly-button, pasta thanks to its appearance and the legendary story of its origin.  According to popular tradition, tortellini was the result of an Italian innkeeper peeping through a keyhole at a female guest.  He only caught a  glimpse of her navel, but it turned him on so much that instead of whacking off, he ran to the kitchen and invented tortellini.

 

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The filling most often used in tortellini is finely ground pork that's a bit bland by intention to highlight the broth or sauce with which it's served.  The tomato-and-mince-meat sauce that covered the tortellini was fresh and vibrant, no complaints on my part.  However, a couple of the pieces of tortellini were hard and dry on the outside. That's a sign they had been cooked in advance but hadn't been covered properly, so that they dried on top. 

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It was a silly mistake, as tortellini only takes about 10 minutes to cook in boiling water.  it certainly detracted from the meal, but not enough to deter me from returning for a second try. If all the pieces of tortellini had been freshly cooked, it would have been a great meal.

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I ordered the paccheri al pomodoro, basilico e ricotta (paccheri with tomato, basil and ricotta cheese) on my second visit.  Paccheri is a very large tubular pasta, sort of what macaroni would look like if it could suffer from giantism.

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Paccheri occupies a special place in Italian culinary history.  In a groundbreaking cookbook from 1839, a recipe for paccheri al pomodoro is one of the first published Italian recipes to call for a tomato sauce on pasta.  Today we consider tomato-based sauces to be synonymous with Italian cuisine, but they are actually a relatively recent addition, dating back to the late 1700s and early 1800s. The tomato was introduced to Italy in the mid-1500s from Mexico via Spain.  However, it took another 250 years for the tomato to catch on as a widely used ingredient in Italian kitchens.

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Paccheri dishes aren't often encountered outside Italy, so I was eager to try Volare's version.  This time, the dish didn't let me down.  Both the sauce and ricotta cheese were excellent and the collapsed tubes of paccheri supported the flavors well.  

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This time, everything clicked in terms of flavor and seasoning.  Good job, Volare!    :thumbup

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Every main dish at Volare comes with three pieces of nondescript commercial white bread and a tiny bowl of parmesan cheese. The bread is nice Touch as it can be used to sop up the extra sauce, but I wish Volare had used better bread.There's also a pepper mill on each table.

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That night I decided to try one of Volare's pizzas.  I chose prosciutto (dry-cured ham) as the topping.  It's not a traditional pizza topping in Italy, nor is it customary in the U.S., but I love prosciutto and thought it would taste great on pizza.  I was right

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The pizza was 13 inches (33 centimeters) in diameter, which would put it between medium and large on the U.S. size scale.  It had a thin Neopolitan crust and I would have preferred a bit more char on the bottom of the crust, but that may be a NYC thing. The sauce and cheese hadn't been laid too thickly so the taste of the prosciutto was overwhelmed. It was a good pizza and I wouldn't hesitate to order pizza again from Volare.

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And now it's time to mention something less favorable.  The 10% service charge and the 7% VAT were tacked onto the prices shown on the menu.  The paccheri (210 baht), Coke Zero (95 baht) and takeaway pizza (285 baht) added up to 590 baht.  However, when I called chek bin, the total price I had to pay was 690 baht because the menu prices weren't net.  I couldn't see it specified anywhere on the menu that the prices listed didn't include service and VAT, although it might be there somewhere in very small print.  Naughty, naughty, Volare.  

The other less-than-favorable point is the cost of beverages at Volare.  A Coke Zero is 111 baht with service charge and VAT.  A SML is 140 baht on the menu, which would be 164 baht.  Those are hefty prices.

To summarize:  Volare looks very fine after its makeover, the ambiance is good and the service friendly. The food is mostly tasty and some dishes aren't on any other restaurant menu I've seen in Pattaya. However, a miss in execution pulls my overall opinion down, as does the failure to include service and VAT in the menu prices.

Bottom line:  I'll probably go back, but I'm not in a hurry. Pizza for takeaway might get more frequent business.

 

Evil

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Edited by Evil Penevil
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Thanks for that very informative review. I've never tried Volare and your review helped me decide whether to ever go. I also like paccheri dishes and also ricotta cheese so that's tempting, but their price structure sounds like a real turnoff. If you want a great (IMO) Neopolitan pizza (crust is thin, very chewy, folds when picked up, and charred) with plenty of char, have you tried Pizzaart in Jomtien yet? I'd really like to hear your review on that place as for me that's the only place to go for pizza now, and there's a lot of competition. 

 

The reviews here are mixed but like I said, I seriously love their pizza. There's a pic of one in the link --

 

https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g3366878-d12678342-r533166875-Pizza_Art-Jomtien_Beach_Pattaya_Chonburi_Province.html

 

Edited by Kreggerz
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Great job on the refit. All these refits and new places popping up are making mine look untidy LOL.

Always enjoyed the pizza there but haven't made it in yet since the reopening. They moved to 24h just before the refit and great news that is still the case, not been an easy task to get a quality late night pizza. 

Thanks as always for the review. 

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Thanks for the review EP, as always it was very informative, fair and balanced.

There are at least a couple of other Italian restaurants/pizzerias within very close distance to Volare, so competition will hopefully keep everyone on their toes.

That decor/refit is a matter of taste. Personally, I think its one of the least-looking Italian restaurants that I've seen in a while! It looks very bright, and some kind of Thai-Italian fusion that doesn't work for me at first glance.

PS: I'd like to see paccheri opened up and bulging a bit more, they look a little sad. But there's different variations for the dish.
 

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Thanks for another great review Evil. :10of10Score:

I have eaten at Volare many times over the last few years, I always go for my pasta fix but on occasion have had pizza. I really like their food, but certainly can't remember their drinks being so pricey. It was still shut last month when I was in town so I look forward to seeing the new version.

The bread I have always been served at Volare I assumed was their version of a Pane Casareccia, I only know this bread because of my local Italian restaurant here in Australia. It is certainly a lot different to standard loaf of bread, a smaller round loaf, more dense with a thicker harder crust. Was this the bread you were served? I was under the impression that Volare made their own bread.

 

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++ prices are for Bangkok, it not work in Pattaya. Even Hilton have nett prices.

If you not see that on the menu you do not need to pay.

Is it the pasta fresh, home made?

Edited by soi16
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Have eaten pizza there before, but bill padding by sc/tax and ridiculous drink prices will put this place to the no go list.

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14 minutes ago, JohnDoesPattaya said:

The portions look really, i mean REALLY small. More like a little snack. 
 

The tortellini (six, I think) are swimming in a sea of ragu. It shouldn't be like that.

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I went there once in the middle of the night, only to discover that pizza was not possible since the oven wasn't on.

Ended up eating some pad krapow moo, at something like 160++. I am not going back any time soon.

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Excellent review. Passed by it the other night and was wondering if it was any good. Will check it out soon :D

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I have stayed just round the corner for 3 years of trips (maybe 8-9) and walked by many times, never eaten as for me (maybe a CC) although it has had customers, the prices always seemed "high" before. I am more interested to see the Thai place next  door further in Soi 15 which was revamped and although I cannot find a "link" serves proper Thai food at reasonable prices, hope it is still there in 3 weeks.

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Evil, great review on Volare.

All this pricing excluding VAT and Service is complete bullshit and really makes me angry.

Will put people off immediately, it certainly has for me, plus the portions look tiny.

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26 minutes ago, cjtrader said:

111 baht for a coke zero sounds about right. Now how many girls do they have dancing on the poles - and are there any real HOT ones?

I paid 110 baht for a Coke Zero at a gogo last night. 

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