THE AGING OAK 3 QUEEN ST. E., CAMBRIDGE 519-260-5000 WWW.THEAGINGOAK.COM
Wednesday and Thursday, 5 to 10 p.m.; Friday, 5 to 11 p.m.; Saturday, 3 to 11 p.m. Wheelchair accessibility Not entirely; there is one step from the street to surmount, but once inside the space is accessible
Atmosphere The Aging Oak is a relaxed spot midweek, although I suspect the place gets noisy when all seats are occupied; the low incandescent lighting makes reading the menu a challenge; music selections were unobtrusive
Fresh, local cuisine made mostly in-house and conscious of food trends, perhaps to a fault with some dishes more complex than necessary. With the chef managing the kitchen on his own, the menu is sensibly restricted to what he can deliver to his standards. New menu items are added or removed every couple of weeks, often based on customer feedback, and fresh menus are developed each season. Watch for specials, like Hump Day, where $24 gets two glasses of house wine and a flatbread.
A restrained wine selection covers a lot of geography and there are a variety of beers and carefully-curated whiskies available.
An invested host makes all the difference: the service was truly welcoming and warm. One extra server is hired at the weekends when the restaurant is most busy.
The bill $94.02 (including tax, but not tip) for four dishes, two small glasses of wine and one dessert In a nutshell
A surprising find in an often-overlooked corner of the region, The Aging Oak provides a warm welcome and thoughtfully-prepared fresh food.