Entering the shop – open just four months, still bereft of permanent signage – you see images of her raspados emblazoned behind a counter that spans a long, narrowroom. The pictured cups burst with colors, often layered, and teeter with coconut and mango strips, which fan out from clear plastic brims like flower petals.
The depicted creations are the shop’s preselected raspados. You can also customize your own.
Given the rampant possibilities, that may feel daunting. But any trepidation you have should diminish upon meeting Cruz Matias, Alejandra’s father, who bustles behind the counter with her mother, Berta Ortega.
Never before have I seen free samples so freely given.
Cruz poured juice after juice (tamarind was a highlight) and a litany of purees (mango was creamy and lush) to taste. He spooned fruit after fruit into tiny plastic cups for sampling – soursop, Mexican plum, and guava – all slicked in perfumed syrups. He passed coconut dusted with Tajin, and, later, the body of a raspado that I almost ordered but didn’t. Given the tutorial that can unfold as you decide what you want, this is a surefire spot for a brief intro to raspados (should you need one).
“We also cut fruit every day, and by the hour sometime,” Alejandra says.
Raspados Solaris also serves ice cream and a few savory dishes. You’ll see mint chocolate chip and esquites, Mexican cheese-flavored chips and candies. Raspados, though, are the main event. They set you back roughly $4 to $8, depending on size and makeup.
The Chamoyada – one of Cruz’s favorites – is similar but with more of Tajin and chile prickling through. It also brings crunch from Japanese peanuts and Chamoy-spiked candy.
Raspados Solaris. 9204 North Seventh Street #6; 480-648-5238.
Daily from noon to 8:30 p.m.