Cafe Sole – Review

It had been awhile since I had last eaten at Key West’s Cafe Sole, and I am not sure as to exactly why. My husband and I were on our way downtown for date night dinner on Sunday and at the last minute, we decided to forgo our plans for where we were going to eat and head over to Cafe Sole instead. The little house converted to a restaurant located on Southard Street has a romantic porch setting. And, our Maltese, Indiana Bones was welcome there too.

After working at other Key West restaurants such as PT’s, Chef John Correa opened Cafe Sole in 1995. When we were there the other evening, he came out to the dining area and conversed with the diners, which was a nice touch that I know he is not always able to do. He is entertaining, and seemingly genuinely interested in his clients as well.

The menu is a combination of French cuisine with Caribbean flair, and Chef John makes use of the fresh local seafood. However, there are also meals for land lovers as well, such as filet mignon, rack of lamb and duck a l’orange along with an extensive vegetarian menu, my favorite item on there being the vegetarian risotto. A beautiful wine list rounds out the choices, and I enjoyed a glass of Decoy Cabernet Sauvignon with my meal. I did go with seafood and should have had white wine, but I just love a good red.

The meal started off with fresh bread served with a garlicky hummus which was so, so good. My husband was not a fan of the hummus so he asked for butter and he was obliged.

There are so many items on the menu that I wanted to try, but on Sunday I decided to go with the Ingram’s Salad which is a mix of fresh wild baby greens with pears, pecans, Maytag blue cheese tossed with a lemon vinaigrette as my starter followed by a favorite dish that I don’t make at home, and that is the baby clams with garlic, white wine, parsley and crushed red pepper served over angel hair pasta. My husband went with the french onion soup followed by fruit of the sea which was fresh local shrimp, scallops, and calamari tossed with garlic and served over angel hair pasta.

All I have to say was that this meal was amazing. Everything was beyond fresh and the flavors melded together like magic. Seafood cooked to perfection and mixed with al dente pasta turns a simple meal into a memorable one. I am actually craving that pasta again it was so tasty!

For dessert my husband and I each ordered a cappuccino and we split a slice of key lime pie. Now, key lime is not my favorite dessert, and normally I would have gone with the creme brûlée, but I am on a mission to find the best key lime pies in Key West, so this award winning version capped with a toasted marshmallow meringue and served with Chantilly cream sauce was a must try. It had more of a cheesecake consistency to it and was more sweet than tart. I liked it and my husband thought it was the best one he has had in some time, so there you go!

Service was very good throughout the meal and we were never without water. They even brought Indiana Bones a dish of water out, and he did enjoy a few bites of the bread. Even though temperatures are high now, we were comfortable sitting outside under the brand new roofing. A very enjoyable evening that I hope to repeat again soon!

There are so many places to eat on this island, so before you decide where to go, be sure to read my Key West restaurant reviews; check out our restaurant review section of this blog. And for more information about the fun side of Key West… things to do and see in our island city, go to our Key West Web Site.

Island Genn – Your Key West Concierge

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