SOL Cocina is one of my favorite Scottsdale Quarter restaurants because it’s upscale Mexican food in a classy, romantically lit setting accented by stone walls and comfy seating. Stellar service elevates the meal, which is what my friend Beth and I experienced on a recent invitation to try new menu items by chef Deborah Schneider.
Manager Jason and server Taylor expertly guided us through the menu and made fantastic recommendations for my vegetarian tastes and my friend’s inclusive palate. We paired our meals with SOL’s House Margarita ($8.50), a perfect balance of Agavales Blanco, freshly squeezed orange juice, sour mix and a splash of Patron Citronge Regular. The drink wasn’t too sweet or overpowered with an alcohol taste, making it a refreshingly cool classic choice.
For food, we started with the Guacamole Sol, made with mango, tequila, onions, goat cheese, pepita and cilantro ($10.75). The appetizer is one of the restaurant’s most popular, and I love the flash of a table-side preparation. My favorite part of the Guacamole Sol was the goat cheese, which enhanced the guacamole with a nice tangy flavor.
Every table gets housemade chips and salsa, with crunchy mini tostadas to break apart and dip into sauces.
We also tried the Grilled Sweet Corn ($6), half-sized ears slathered in butter, lime, chiles, cotixa cheese and a chipotle drizzle. Be warned it’s an appetizer that’s a bit messy to consume, but Beth said, “The corn was cooked just right, with a creamy and tangy chipotle sauce that made it different than any Mexican corn I’ve had – in a good way.” I liked the topping, as well, but I think it’d be so cool if there was a kernel-only option to keep fingers clean.
SOL has an extensive menu of a la carte tacos, with new offerings including the Grilled Agave-Chile Shrimp Taco ($11), which comes with a whopping three large shrimp and guacamole; and the Viper Taco ($6.50), which comes kicked up with a spicy ghost chile and chipotle salsa, avocado and onion. Our server was gracious enough to suggest an off-the-menu sweet potato taco, which was bursting with veggies—“It was delicious, coming from a non-vegetarian,” Beth said.
Beth also tried the Taco Vampiro ($8.50), which had the most tender carne asada she has ever had. “The double-layer corn tortillas, held together by the serrano chiles, cheese and scallions, helped keep the meat and toppings from falling out, which I appreciated. The taco had just the right mix of meat, guacamole, cheese and other toppings,” Beth said.
For my meal, I tried the new fall version of the Goat Cheese Enchiladas ($15), made with menonito and jack cheese, green salsa, queso fresco, cotixa cheese and crema. I definitely loved the three-cheese stuffing, but if you’re not a sauce fan, ask to go easy on it, since the dish was swimming in sauce. I loved how fresh the entrée tasted, and it was a huge portion.
We were too full for dessert, but if you save room, try the new Pastel Tres Leches ‘1921’, a house-made white cake soaked in cream, evaporated milk, and 1921 tequila liqueur ($9.50). Other new menu items include red pozole, oysters and scallops dishes, shortribs barbacoa, and a grilled agave-chile shrimp torta. Find more information on SOL Cocina, head here.