Subsolo has been on my list of restaurants to visit for a while now. After hearing some amazing reviews from friends who had visited the place, I was very keen to experience it myself. A tapas night generally never disappoints.
The first thing that took me by surprise was that this was located in the basement. Well it's called Subsolo - what do you expect? Only later did I realise that subsolo is the Portuguese word for underground (my oops moment)
It's quite a nice setting once you get down the staircase off King street, marked by strong appearances of brown and red colours. The winding red lights and chandeliers hanging down the ceiling does impart a sophisticated and distinctly moorish look to the restaurant. Owing to it's underground location it does feel rather dark at times but that probably is part of the plan - you tend to forget that you are right in the heart of the bustling city of Sydney.
The menu has a good variety of tapas dishes to offer including Zucchini flowers served with salsa verde, peppers stuffed with lamb ragout, the simple yet awesome vegetable stack a.k.a tortilla, pork belly with crispy crackling, the never failing patatas bravas and Spanish meatballs to name a few. Portions are adequate and 4-5 tapas dishes between 2 people is plenty.
The also serve paella in chicken, seafood, vegetarian and a house special option with chicken, seafood and pork. The menu also houses grills for mains that are majestically served on long skewers suspended from a tall iron-like holder.
I wouldn't really complain much about the service except that after initial introductions and a promise to ensure that we had a good night, there wasn't much conversation till it was time to leave. We had specifically asked for a dish to be served in a particular way but that was long forgotten. To be fair, the wait staff profusely apologized and acknowledged that there was a little communication letdown.
On the whole Subsolo is a great package, good sangria and cocktails, adequate food portions, a wide variety of choice and great service. The restaurant is rather busy at all times, so a booking is recommended.