NEWPORT BEACH, Ca. March, 2012— Since opening, SOL Cocina focuses on Mexican cuisine that is made with fresh, seasonal and sustainable ingredients.
Executive Chef Deborah Schneider emphasizes real Mexican food is not about the sour cream and cheese served in the US with so many dishes but lots of fruit and vegetables. SOL celebrates authentic Baja coastal cuisine with a fresh, modern interpretation. Meat and seafood is grilled over mesquite wood in the open kitchen with salsas and sauces made in house. However vegan and vegetarians find much to choose from on the menu.
SOL Cocina with seats for 165 opened in Newport Beach alongside Newport Bay in 2009.A second SOL Cocina is scheduled to open this month in Scottsdale, Arizona.
“Scottsdale kills at lunch,” says Deborah about the area’s projected lunch business although she also expects dinner to go well. Apparently the large retiree population favors lunch as the dining out meal of choice. Why Scottsdale as the second location? “Our investors are here and we got a shot at an amazing location in a great area. My partners are both from here and know the market.”
The new restaurant will have almost the same menu as Newport Beach—tacos, ceviches and empanadas with the addition of a hamburger. But vegetarian and ‘stealth health’ options abound. The look is similar but more overtly artsy according to Deborah.
“I call this Spanish inquisition,” she says to describe the Newport Beach location’s white walls and wrought iron fixtures, although playful paintings of animals brighten walls. The Scottsdale décor will still include iron candle stands along with hand-painted Mexican tiles and stenciled lamp shades. Both feature open kitchens though Scottsdale is larger with seating for 205.
White Corn Tostadas with Chiles & Pepitas (wheat-free) (These are complementary and a tasty alternative to chips.)
Borracho Black Beans (no cheese; wheat-free)
Spinach-Garlic Rice (wheat-free*)
Rajas Taco (no cheese; wheat-free*)
Corn-Poblano Soup (no crema; wheat-free*)
Vegetarian Burritos $12
Warmed Goat Cheese (wheat-free*) encrusted with salted peanuts, with sweet/hot chipotle syrup & cilantro sprigs, served with tostadas
Chorizo & Mushrooms Con Queso (no chorizo; wheat-free) $12.50
Poblano, mushroom & corn taco - sautéed with epazote & garlic, toasted on the plancha with queso fresco, cotixa cheese and salsa quemada
Halibut taco gobernador $9.75
Alaskan halibut with lemon & garlic on a taco dorado with oaxaca cheese, salsa
Gobernador, avocado, onion & cilantro, pico de gallo & lettuce
Taco vampiro $6.75
Double tortilla stuffed with melted cheese, serrano chile and scallions , with carne
Asada, guacamole, pico, chipotle sauce & cotixa cheese
Carnitas street tacos(3) $13.00
Heirloom pork slow-roasted & shredded, chicharron, avocado, onion & tomatillo salsa
Garlic mezcal chicken street tacos(3) $12.50
Corn tortillaswith avocado sauce,l emon-mezcal sauce & onions
Shrimp chile relleno $19.00
Grilled poblano chiles stuffed with arroz verde, shrimp & oaxacan cheese,
Fresh tomato salsa diabla
Fish pibil $25.50
Seasonal fish roasted with yucatecan adobo,with pineapple salsa &
Choice of tequila-limes auce or salsa diabla
Shortribs barbacoa en cazuela $21
Cazuelita of tender angus shortribs braised with guajillos, avocado leaf, nopales & tomatoes, with diced onion & corn tortillas
251Pacific Coast Highway
Linda Mensinga was editor of Culinary Trends for 15 years, now a contributing writer to Great-taste Magazine. If you have a great restaurant, recipe or food you’d like to share please send an email. You can reach her at email@example.com.
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