Wrought iron design for SOL Cocina
SOL Cocina features upscale vegan, vegetarian & wheat-free options
by Linda Mensinga
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.