The Contemporary Pond Beer Backyard readies for a full opening within the Cambridge Highlands. (Picture: Tom Meek)

Can’t say that I believed a beer garden in a parking lot close to commuter rail and the bustle of the Contemporary Pond Parkway could be a good suggestion – the noise, the solar, the tarmac publicity. However, boy, was I incorrect. The newly opened Contemporary Pond Beer Backyard, a collaboration of the homeowners of Phoenix Touchdown in Central Sq. and First Home Pub in Winchester, makes for a nice city oasis with loads of shade (each bench has its personal shade umbrella, and there are streamers above that) and house (seating for 188, and greater than double that in capability). You’re not on sun-spiked asphalt however a cool, sprawling astroturf carpet by a tiki-style bar with a strong providing of domestically crafted brews (Cisco, Evening Shift, Wormtown, and many others.), in addition to Guinness, different taproom mainstays and a full bar choices. (The cucumber gin and tonic feels like a summer season hit.) Plus there’s cornhole to play and loads of water dishes set out must you deliver your pooch alongside.

The backyard, subsequent to Apple Cinemas, is reachable simply by automobile (and has ample parking), public transit (Alewife Station is a half-mile away) or bike. Because it’s in a mushy opening, meals isn’t fairly a full-on factor but. Meals vehicles are coming, and there’s a partnership with close by Ma Magoo’s Pizza & Sub Store, ensconced within the space for nicely over 35 years. Order on-line or name (that’s what I did) they usually’ll zip your meals over to you very quickly.

The hen sous-chef sub delivered from Ma Magoo’s Pizza & Sub Store. (Picture: Tom Meek)

I hadn’t eaten at Ma’s shortly, but it surely’s actually good informal fare. For my maiden go to I had the hen sous-chef sub. The hen got here fried, however frivolously and tenderly so (cooked by, however fairly moist), with thinly sliced ham and cheese tucked beneath to meld in when wrapped for supply. I ordered a big, which is lunch sufficient for 2 – I ate just about the entire thing and wanted nothing else for the remainder of the day. My lunch mate, a fan of Ma’s from the previous, was nostalgically happy with the fried haddock sub (“recent” was the phrase). So far as the pizzas go, Ma’s is Greek fashion (the East Coast Greek immigrant spin has a thicker, doughier crust than the Italian fashion, however will not be Chicago- or Detroit-thick); on social media boards, its fried hen fingers and seafood dishes get hailed recurrently. Again within the day, I did the Massive Brothers Massive Sisters program; my “little” is now in his 30s and simply (I proudly say) graduated from Yale with a grasp’s diploma, however when he was a real little, Ma’s was his favourite place for pizza. The factor I recall from these common visits was a knockout meatball sub, which I now have on my radar for one more lunch run.

The Contemporary Pond Beer Backyard is open seven days per week from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. or to midnight on weekends. There are TV screens for sports activities (soccer fare will probably be a spotlight, as at Phoenix Touchdown) and port-a-potties close by. DJs and occasions comparable to whiskey tastings are within the works, but it surely’d be cool if it partnered with Apple to indicate some movies within the parking zone.

Fresh Pond Beer Garden (168 Alewife Brook Parkway, Cambridge Highlands)

Ma Magoo’s Pizza & Sub Shop (6 Concord Lane, Cambridge Highlands)

Cambridge author Tom Meek’s opinions, essays, quick tales and articles have appeared in WBUR’s The ARTery, The Boston Phoenix, The Boston Globe, The Rumpus, The Charleston Metropolis Paper and SLAB literary journal. Tom can also be a member of the Boston Society of Movie Critics and rides his bike in every single place.

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