Sol Agave, known for its authentic Mexican cuisine, has opened at Kaleidoscope in Mission Viejo. Restaurateur Jesus Galvez and his partner Chef Manny Velasco, who was honored as the Golden Foodies 2017 Rising Star Chef of the Year, were at the forefront of the food truck trend when they started Sol Agave as a taco truck in 2015. They attracted such a loyal following for their upscale Mexican cuisine that they decided to open a restaurant in San Juan Capistrano in 2016. The success of that original location lead to moving into a larger space within the same retail center just a year later.
“Opening Sol Agave at Kaleidoscope is like coming full circle for me,” said Galvez, who met Velasco when they worked together at Carmelita’s in 2014. “One of my first jobs was at El Torito Grill at Kaleidoscope when the center opened. I have fond memories of Kaleidoscope and it’s always felt like home. For the last two decades, I thought it would be great to return and open my own restaurant there.”
Most of Sol Agave’s menu is the same as the original location, with a focus on organic ingredients, fresh seafood, USDA Prime steak, and all-natural pork for its carnitas. New to the Kaleidoscope location is a gourmet taqueria section with handmade tortillas, and new specialty items including Ceviche a la Mesa with fresh mahi mahi served with tostaditas.
Signature dishes that have remained at the new location include Our Famous Carnitas (chef’s famous Mexican braised pork, served with rice, refried beans, sour cream, guacamole, “trocka” sauce, and hand-made corn tortillas), Tacos de Hongo (skirt steak, portabello mushrooms, grilled onions, and cheese served on a hot skillet with salsa morita, rice, refried beans and hand-made tortillas), and Camarones Vallarta (jumbo breaded Mexican prawns, butterflied and stuffed with Dungeness crab, topped in a Creole tomato spicy sauce, and served with cilantro rice.)
Sol Agave’s popular cocktails include the Table Side Old Fashioned (Hornitos Black Barrel añejo tequila, corazon chocolate bitters, splash of agave and mango) infused and flamed table side with rosemary and orange. Sol Agave also offers an array of margaritas, including the Grilled Piña Margarita (Maestro Dobel tequila, muddled grilled piña, jalapeños, agave mix, chili rim.) Guests should be sure to save room for the Sol Agave Mexican Coffee (artisan cinnamon-based coffee with tequila, Kahlua, and Bailey’s.)
Sol Agave features rustic wood accents, white stone and colorful paintings, along with a patio for al fresco dining. The restaurant is 1,600 square feet and seats approximately 150 people in the dining room, bar, a patio and private dining room, the Agave Room.
“Sol Agave is one of South County’s favorite restaurants and we’re proud to welcome them to Kaleidoscope,” said Lisa Miller, Senior VP of Property Services for Sentinel Development, which manages the Mission Viejo center. “Their gourmet Mexican cuisine is a great addition to Kaleidoscope’s dining options, including the recently opened Tapas Flavors of Spain and Panini Kabob Grill.”
Sol Agave is open Monday through Thursday from 11am to 9pm, and Friday and Saturday from 11am to 10pm, and Sunday from 10am to 9pm, with a daily Happy Hour from 3 to 6pm. The restaurant is located on the top level of Kaleidoscope at 27741 Crown Valley Pkwy. in Mission Viejo. For reservations or more information, call 949.446.8058 or visit www.solagavesjc.com.