Range winner retired Army Spec. Kim Breen, left, and her family: Chris, center, with Nathaniel, on his lap. Back row: Courtney, left and Emma, right. (Courtesy of Chris Breen)

None of them, however, compared to the actual winners, who both had compelling arguments for wanting to be among the first diners at Range. In fact, Chris Breen, 43, of Frederick wasn’t even arguing for a seat for himself (though, he will no doubt tag along):

My wife, Kim, needs a night out. She is a disabled Army veteran with Crohn’s disease. She has three beautiful children (Courtney, Nathaniel and Emma). Nathaniel has cerebral palsy due to a brain injury at birth. Mommy tirelessly keeps everything in order day to day as we try to figure out how to live day to day. All she needs is a big spoiled break, a beautiful night out on the town.

Upon hearing the news that he and Kim, 44, won a free meal at Range, Breen e-mailed:

“It has been a long time since we had a night out together due to our son’s illness. We can not wait to enjoy the company of each other at another great Voltaggio restaurant. Thank you so much!!!”

Tom King, 34, of Silver Spring snagged the other free meal with his bold pitch to put an end to his meat-free existence:

I’ve been off meat for 15 years. Haven’t had beef, pork, rabbit or anything like that since I was about 19 years old. I’m ready to try meat to find out if I want to return to the fold and use my incisors for what they’re for. I want to give meat a shot again, and I am curious to see if Range can make me a believer — A Believer In Meat.

“That’s fantastic news. I’ve had the pleasure of eating at Volt — it’s my favorite restaurant — and I am phenomenally excited to try what the brilliant Bryan Voltaggio has cooked up at Range,” King e-mailed upon hearing about his win.

Representatives from Range will contact the winners to arrange reservations for one of the restaurant’s three-night “pop-in” previews from Dec. 15-17. Range is set to open Dec. 18 at 5335 Wisconsin Ave. NW in the Chevy Chase Pavilion.

Further reading:

* Video: Behind the scenes at Range with Bryan Voltaggio

* Servers at Range jump on Voltaggio’s Chucks wagon

* Bryan Voltaggio talks about his soon-to-open Range in Chevy Chase