After three years of establishing roots in Pawleys Island, it seemed utterly baffling that our group had somehow managed to skip out on a culinary gem hiding in plain sight - Sol Cocina Mexicana. But alas, as fate would have it, with the girls out for their Barbie movie night, the boys ventured into this yet unexplored territory. And what can we say? It's a night we're not forgetting any time soon.
From the moment we walked in, there was a palpable sense of anticipation. We were immediately swept into the warm and lively bustle of the restaurant. Despite it being a buzzing evening, we were promptly shown to our seats - a promising start that only hinted at the efficiency of their service. The ambiance straddled the line between casual and sophisticated, creating an environment both kid-friendly and yet intriguing for adults. Picture a mix of cheerful chatter, the clinking of cutlery, walls adorned with vibrant colors, and a mesmerizing aroma that almost carried us off to the streets of Mexico.
However, it was Angela F, our server for the evening, who truly stole the show. Armed with an encyclopedic knowledge of the menu and an intuition that felt uncannily precise, she made navigating our gastronomic adventure a breeze. Her keen attentiveness paired with an ability to pitch perfect recommendations tailored to our distinct tastes and cravings made her nothing short of a culinary guide.
Take, for example, the Ribeye Surf and Turf with Creamy Habanero Sauce - one of their specials, recommended by Angela. At a cool $63, the price tag was a touch steep, but boy, was it worth every penny! The ribeye was cooked to an impeccable medium rare, with a side of shrimp that were equally well-prepared. The creamy habanero sauce, for an extra $2, struck a harmonious balance of spice, just enough to kick up the heat while being far from overwhelming. Of course, what's a Mexican meal without a beer? A Pacifico was my chosen companion for the evening.
My son, Levi, couldn't resist the lure of the Puntas De Filete, which was cooked to a mouth-watering medium. Priced at $24, this was a symphony of sauteed beef tenderloin tips, sweet plantains, fire-roasted tomatoes, chipotle quemando salsa, melted Oaxaca cheese, and black beans. Both meals were generously portioned, ensuring no belly was left wanting.
Our first foray into Sol Cocina Mexicana is undoubtedly the start of many more to come. Exceptional food, a vibrant atmosphere, and phenomenal service courtesy of Angela F, make this hidden gem a must-visit. We are left wondering - how did we let three years pass without experiencing this Mexican marvel? Well, better late than never, and it was indeed worth the wait.