Restaurants receiving five stars — the highest rating on Forbes’ scale — feature “outstanding, often iconic properties with virtually flawless service and amazing facilities.” Back in 2014, critic Craig LaBan awarded the restaurant two bells out of a possible four.
While the menu has experienced some structural changes since the restaurant's opening in 2014, today Volvér serves eight- and 12-course tasting menus. The shorter menu is essentially a subset of the larger one, and wine pairings are available for both. The menus span the world while also showcasing regional specialties, including locally raised meat, poultry and seafood, as well as produce from Garces' Luna Farm, a sustainable, organic 40-acre plot in Ottsville, Pennsylvania, named for his family's dog.
Formerly known as the Mobil Travel Guide, the Forbes Travel has been cranking out ratings since around 1958. In that time, just four Philadelphia restaurants have been awarded high marks: Lacroix with four stars, Volver with five, the Fountain at the Four Seasons with five, and Le Bec Fin, which received five stars when it opened in 1970.
In 2000, Forbes demoted Le Bic Fin’s score to four stars. The fifth star was reinstated in 2003.
Volver, for its part, has been operating for just under two years, in that time moving away from the ticketed dining and high prices it opened with in 2014. Currently, Volvér offers 8-course menus for $95, and $150 for the 12-course option.
Next up for Garces: Wood-fire-focused joint 24, which is scheduled to open up at 2401 Walnut St. in the second quarter of 2016.