I recently spent an evening with friends at Solas and had a fabulous time. We started with dinner on the first floor, which was awesome. I had the Fried Lobster (wow!) as an app, Chilean Sea Bass, cooked perfectly, with the sauteed spinach as a side for my dinner. The layout of the dining room allows for very intimate dinner parties, eventhough we were a group of six.
After dinner, we decided to check out the rooftop for a bit...surprisingly warm with the tent keeping all the heat in. After a few cocktails, we went to the second floor and danced the rest of the night. The staff was friendly, and the bartenders worked hard to get our drinks to us. I definitely recommend Solas for your night out!!
Let me begin by introducing myself, my name is Amanda Manares, and I’m the newest addition to the Solas management team. I have only been with the company for about a month. I think Solas is fantastic… I truly do. The owner’s concept is far beyond what has been introduced into the Raleigh market. I hear people say “Who do they think they are? This isn’t Miami, or New York”. Quite frankly, that’s what is so great about us. In today’s economy, who has the money to fly to Miami just to enjoy a great view, and a good martini? Just because we don’t share Manhattan’s zip code, doesn’t mean Raleigh doesn’t deserve an amazing place to mingle over cocktails, or enjoy an amazing dinner with your Mr. or Mrs. I have read comments about we are elitists, and let me tell you first hand, that the people who work here are good hearted, kind of quirky, and are truly in this industry because they love it. I am honored in the very core of my being to be working beside some of the most talented group of people. From the servers in the restaurant, the cocktail waitresses, and the crazy bartending staff that just want to show you a good time- to Cliff our executive chef whose passion for food can always be compared to art… We are only here because we want to offer an entire experience that you, the public, will love. Our general manager John Hackett is such a gentleman. He has a very genuinely cordial and inviting personality. He makes it a personal point to know each and every guest’s name. The dress code, it’s because we have a standard. Simple as that. We want to give women an opportunity to feel like ladies, and for gentlemen to have an excuse to shine their shoes, and break out the “special occasion” blazer. This is who we are, this is what we love. I would warmly like to extend an invitation to come in and experience us for yourself. I guarantee you will love us as much as I do. Please, while you are here, make it a point to say hello to me. I’ll be on the first floor with the biggest smile, always anxious to meet a new friend.
I am one to usually not write reviews, but I went to Solas for dinner with my wife earlier this week and I was extremely impressed!
The food was too perfect for the price. At one point, I asked my waiter "what's the catch?" Service was great from the moment we pulled into the valet until the moment we left. I am looking forward to seating up on that roof seating next time we get a babysitter.
My girlfriends and I recently celebrated a birthday at Solas. I'm a skeptic of any new places, by nature, but the rest of the group really wanted to try it out. I was pleasantly surprised at the experience! I had the grouper which was wonderful! We also tried several of the specialty cocktails which did not disappoint... I hate going to restaurants and paying $8+ for cocktails which are greatly diluted with mixers and sugar-- not the case here! The environment is unlike anything else in Raleigh which was exciting and refreshing.
Like I said, I usually don't "blog" on forums like this, but someone from our dinner party forwarded the link to me and I felt compelled to share our experience.
*Parking can be difficult... but that's the case with any place in downtown Raleigh, especially on a Friday or Saturday night. They provide valet service and a parking deck is very close by, not to mention the stream of cabs which regularly circle though Glenwood Avenue. It's really not an issue - just plan ahead!
I have been there twice, once when they opened and again last night. The first time was enjoyable, though I could see some service issues that needed to be worked out. I went again after reading Greg Cox's Review, and it was truly fantastic. After reading the review and dining there, I was suprised with only 3.5 stars. I give it 5. We'll be back.
I recently had dinner at Solas with my girlfriend and was extremely satisfied with the entire experience. I The decor was beautiful, unlike anything I've ever seen in Raleigh. The food was excellent! Everything on the fall menu sounded great. We started our meal with a couple of appetizers. The tempura fried lobster was out of this world, and I'm not a huge fan of tofu, but the macadamia crusted tofu was extremely flavorful. For the entree I ordered the rack of lamb which was served with a rosemary chimi and shallot jus. Needless to say I highly recommend it! My girlfriend is vegetarian so she ordered the butternut squash ravioli, also delicious. For the side items we chose the grilled asparagus and the lobster risotto. The side items were great complements to the entrees. We ended our meal by sharing the pecan chocolate tort, which was very decadent. The food at Solas was fantastic, I will definitely be returning to try some of the other menu items.
The service at Solas was also great. The server was extremely friendly, and the service was professional but relaxed. The server was extremely knowledgeable of all the items on the menu, and made some great suggestions of what to eat, and also an excellent wine suggestion.
After dinner we walked around to check the place out. The second floor lounge has a very swanky feel. There are black leather couches everywhere enclosed by sheer curtains for a little added privacy. The lighting was great, and the music was also very good. After having a couple cocktails on the second floor (which were very well prepared) we met with some friends on the roof-top.
The scenery on the roof-top was very chic. The place is littered with white cabanas and umbrellas. The view of Glenwood South was fantastic. The atmosphere on the roof was a little more relaxed than the second floor, which was really nice.
All in all the whole experience was excellent. I would highly recommend Solas to anyone.
I went to Solas with my girlfriend for a 9:30 PM dinner on a Saturday. I asked for a table outside and upstairs on the third floor, after being initially told that it would not be a problem to accommodate, we arrived, on time, in front of the restaurant. The valet said that they could not park our car, because they were full. Full? I think not, I paid over twice the normal valet rate, and magically, a spot for me was found. Considering that I drive a higher profile vehicle, this elitism classification does not surprise me.
We arrived and asked for our table upstairs from the host. She said we would have to wait. This was understandable. We floated between the bar and the outside patio on the first floor for almost 30 minutes, checking in with the hostess every 5 minutes. After waiting 30 minutes for our table, they informed us that they could not seat us upstairs. We ended up sitting on the outside patio, our server did not arrive until 10 minutes after we were seated, with 60% occupancy on the dinner tables, and very few people actually eating, this level of service was unexpected and obviously undesired.
We were not offered water. We bought two glasses of champagne which ended up coming AFTER the meal. I repeat, we did not receive water. Our bread came to the table, with no olive oil, or vinegar (as some of the other tables had). The food was acceptable, even if the menu did seem like a complete rip off from more popular gastronomic eateries in D.C. and Manhattan, not saying much for originality, but with that said it was well prepared.
The quality of service enough is alone for me to never step foot in this dump again. I have never felt so small while paying so much money. My girlfriend and I wanted to see the third floor. We were unable to do so, because people had reservations on the third floor. Which to me is rather interesting, because, we could NOT reserve a table, it was not that the tables were full, we simply could not reserve one, it was their quote "policy". So I find this elitism rather interesting, what I believe, is that the owners/management, cater to those they know, i.e friends first, and ignore other well, generally better paying customers such as myself.
This social elitism is absurd, and is the worst way to run a business. I repeat, I would never step in this place again, there are significantly better places to eat, the only attraction to this venue is the third floor, which...no one except friends and management can really get up to anyways.
Once the hype dies down and the management and owners realize that they have to take care of their customers and not treat everyone like crap, then perhaps this place will be worth going to.
But beyond its decor and aesthetic attraction, there is nothing here to stimulate a good night out.
My advice, stay far far away.
1205 Front St., Raleigh N.C., 27609