The 2018 Guide to Good Health is here! FIND LOCAL DOCTORS & HEAR FROM EXPERTS close

Good Finds

Google+ Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr +

Cool Drinks On A Hot Day, Waterside!

by Marshall Wright

TOP PICK: Soleil

Few things are as rewarding after a long day on the job than a cool place to hang out and have a few drinks with friends. Toss in million – dollar views of the lake and you’ve got a winner every night of the week. So, as prime happy hour season heats up, I stopped by one of Austin’s newest and nicest lakeside watering holes that is sure to become a go-to happy hour spot.

Soleil, located in the lakeside Oasis, Texas village at 6550 Comanche Trail is the new Robert Del Grande Italian – Mediterranean inspired seafood restaurant overlooking Lake Travis. The elegant dining room is set in soothing water-inspired tones with 180-degree views looking out onto Lake Travis that feels perfect for date night or a more refined happy hour setting. The killer view is from the spacious patio that wraps around three sides of the dining room and adjacent Azure Raw Bar.

Taking our seats on the outside patio, we were immediately rewarded with streaks of orange, blue and red washing across the partly cloudy blue sky – that spectacular sunset the Oasis is known for as we looked out toward Mansfield Dam and Hudson Bend. Immediately, it felt like the perfect spot to unwind after a busy day at work.
The happy hour menu is divided into three sections – $3, $5 and $7 options – and is available weekdays from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.

The menu kicks off with a selection of three daily handcrafted draft beer choices from upstairs neighbor Uncle Billy’s Brew & Que. Each pint is priced at $3 and with selections ranging from the Agave Wheat, Hill Country Organic Amber, Bottle Rocket Lager, Ax Handle Pale Ale and Hop Zombie IPA, even the pickiest beer drinker will find something they like.

Starting at $5/glass, the happy hour menu boasts a selection of wines by the glass, from Pinot Grigio to Cabernet Sauvignon, along with your choice of three select liquors – Tito’s Vodka, Jim Beam Whiskey and Captain Morgan’s Rum – should you need something a little stronger to kick start your favorite cocktail.

The $7 portion of the happy hour menu stays nicely within the Italian – Mediterranean theme of the restaurant with appetizer choices like baba ghanoush, roasted pepper hummus, bruschetta, spicy meatballs, calamari and a cheese plate.

After reading through the menu, we started our visit off with a round of cocktails – a Mariner, Spicy Peach Basil Mojito and Blackberry Mojito.

By far, the clear winner at our table was the Mariner (see recipe at Whereas, with a traditional margarita, the lead liquor is tequila, the Mariner flips tradition on its head for a modern spin with Grand Marnier stepping out in front. The juxtaposition of components made for a more full-bodied and sweeter take on our beloved marg and we quickly ordered another one.

For those who don’t like margaritas, but don’t want to be odd man out when the table gets a round, this will be your way to save face (and probably have the best drink on the table).
Mojitos continue to be all the rage, especially this time of year, and we particularly liked the Peach Basil Mojito. Slivers of Fresno peppers added a nice touch of heat that played well against the sweetness of the peach syrup and the herbal notes of basil and mint. If you prefer a sweet drink, the Blackberry Mojito has you covered.

I’m a big fan of fried calamari, despite its ubiquitous presence on Austin menus and will order it more often. Soleil’s version was great. The calamari steaks are marinated overnight in a buttermilk bath and then cut thick, battered and gently fried resulting in melt – in – your – mouth tenderness. Creamy garlic aioli and housemade marinara served alongside for dipping complemented the calamari nicely but with just a fresh squeeze of lemon to brighten it up, the condiments weren’t necessary. A deal for seven bucks.

Balance when ordering is always a good thing, so finding the right combination of flavors that touch on all the elements of taste – spicy, sweet, sour, salty and umami is important. Especially when enjoying a well – crafted cocktail, you have to be careful not to overpower the food with competing flavors. Something spicy always goes well with a good drink and the spicy meatballs hit the spot perfectly.

A mixture of ground pork and beef blended with herbs and red pepper flakes then braised in housemade marinara, the meatballs are finished off with a bubbling blanket of gooey mozzarella cheese. A first cut through the mozzarella split the meatball in half and let the marinara penetrate into the center for the perfect bite. Just as we contemplated another bite, our mouth exploded. With a rush and a kick, our forks went back to the plate for another bite. Then another until we threw in the towel, mouths tingling and reaching for our drinks. Again, seven bucks. Deal.

Overall, the happy hour menu offers a little something for everyone with a value that underlies the upscale casual elegance of the restaurant. We look forward to our next visit.

Other Waterside Hot Spots

Roaring Fork (Quarry)

10850 Stonelake Blvd.
Austin, TX 78759
Lunch served daily at 11am
Dinner served daily at 5pm
Brunch served Sat and Sun, 11a.m.-4p.m.
Mon-Thu, Sun
Fri-Sat 11a.m.-11pm

Hula Hut

3825 Lake Austin Blvd.
Austin, TX 78703
Open Mon-Thu
Sun 11a.m.-10p.m.
Fri-Sat 11a.m.-11p.m.

Ski Shores Café

2905 Pearce Road
Austin, TX 78730-4310
Open Mon-Wed 11a.m.-9p.m.
Thu 11a.m.-10p.m.
Fri 11a.m.-11p.m.
Sat 8a.m.-11p.m.
Sun 8a.m.-9p.m.


“x” Factor: Online Drink Recipes


½ oz Hornitos
1 ½ oz Grand Marnier
½ oz Agave Nectar
½ oz lime
Salt rim

Fill a 12.5 oz Hi-Ball with ice, transfer the ice into a metal shaker
Mix all ingredients in a shaker with ice
Shake 8 – 10 times Only and pour into Hi-Ball glass
Garnish with lime wedge

Spicy Peach Basil Mojito

¾ oz Peach Monin
3/8 oz Simple Syrup
1 ½ oz Bacardi
¾ oz lime juice
4 basil leaves muddled
2 slices Fresno peppers muddled
3 peach slices muddled

Fill a 12.5 oz Hi-Ball with ice, transfer the ice into a metal shaker
Mix all ingredients in a shaker with ice
Shake 8 – 10 times Only and pour into Hi-Ball glass
Top with splash of Sprite
Garnish with a mint sprig

Blackberry Mojito

1.25 oz Bacardi Silver
.75 oz Monin Blackberry Syrup
.75 oz Simple Syrup
.75 oz Fresh squeezed lime juice
4 frozen Blackberries (Average Size)
10 Mint Leaves torn

Fill a 12.5 oz Hi-Ball with ice, transfer the ice into a metal shaker
Mix all ingredients in a shaker with ice
Shake 8 – 10 times Only and pour into Hi-Ball glass
Garnish with a mint sprig




  1. Needed to write you this very small word to help thank you very much yet again with the superb tips you have shown here. It has been certainly particularly generous of people like you to convey freely all that a lot of people could possibly have made available as an e book to earn some cash for their own end, especially considering the fact that you could possibly have done it if you ever decided. The guidelines also acted like a fantastic way to be sure that other individuals have similar dreams just like my own to grasp a whole lot more in terms of this issue. I’m sure there are many more fun occasions ahead for individuals that go through your blog post.

  2. I am only writing to make you understand what a really good experience our princess undergone viewing your webblog. She picked up some things, which included what it is like to possess an ideal teaching spirit to make the mediocre ones without difficulty master specified tortuous things. You undoubtedly surpassed readers’ expected results. Thanks for rendering those productive, trustworthy, revealing as well as unique tips on your topic to Mary.

  3. Thanks for your whole work on this website. My mum takes pleasure in setting aside time for research and it is simple to grasp why. We notice all relating to the powerful ways you render very useful tips and tricks via your website and therefore strongly encourage response from website visitors on this theme while our own simple princess is without a doubt understanding so much. Take pleasure in the rest of the year. Your performing a useful job.

  4. I simply wanted to thank you so much once more. I do not know what I would’ve taken care of without these suggestions shared by you regarding that subject. It was an absolute intimidating problem in my position, nevertheless taking a look at this specialized style you solved the issue took me to leap with happiness. I will be happy for your service and thus sincerely hope you really know what an amazing job you have been putting in teaching some other people using your webblog. Most likely you haven’t got to know any of us.

  5. Thanks for your own work on this website. My mother take interest in participating in research and it is simple to grasp why. My spouse and i notice all relating to the powerful way you provide valuable tips via your website and in addition recommend response from visitors on this subject matter while our own simple princess is undoubtedly studying so much. Take pleasure in the rest of the year. You have been performing a tremendous job.

  6. I’m just commenting to let you be aware of of the extraordinary discovery my cousin’s daughter experienced going through your site. She even learned lots of issues, most notably how it is like to have a very effective giving mindset to have many others just gain knowledge of chosen extremely tough matters. You really did more than our desires. Many thanks for distributing the important, healthy, educational and as well as easy thoughts on the topic to Gloria.

  7. Thank you for every one of your hard work on this web page. My aunt really likes making time for investigations and it’s really obvious why. Most of us learn all of the lively mode you offer precious suggestions through this web site and even increase participation from some other people on the matter so our favorite girl is now learning a lot of things. Take advantage of the rest of the year. You are always doing a really great job.

  8. Usually I do not learn post on blogs, however I would like to say that this write-up very forced me to check out and do it! Your writing style has been surprised me. Thanks, quite nice post.

  9. magnificent issues altogether, you simply gained a new reader. What would you recommend about your put up that you simply made some days ago? Any certain?

  10. Your current positions constantly have a lot of really up to date info. Where do you come up with this? Just declaring you are very inspiring. Thanks again