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730 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02128

Photo of Wish, Cambridge, MA As many of you probably know, the Central Square neighborhood of Cambridge is home to a number of interesting restaurants. And one such eating and drinking establishment is called Wish. Or is it called The Tavern in the Square? Or is it called Wish and Tavern? No matter, this combination upscale Italian restaurant and homey pub is a rather unusual place, but one that people should consider searching out, since both the pub and, especially, the restaurant are quite interesting spots in their own unique ways.

We will concentrate on Wish here, with a short note about The Tavern in the Square later. Wish is, as noted, a classy Italian restaurant in a part of Cambridge that has woefully few classy dining spots. The restaurant is cozy and intimate, with dim lighting and a quiet, peaceful environment. The menu, which is shaped like a circle (Cambridge always does things differently!) has some delectable entrees, including chicken milanese as well as some tasty flatbread pizzas. Salads are fresh, and the delicious bread comes with olive oil that has a lot of garlic. If you are looking for beer or wine, Wish has an extensive list of both, including a hearty Monty Python Holy Grail ale that has been "tempered over burning witches" (the beer company's words, not mine). The dessert list is tempting, although sadly, there was a sizzling apple dish that had been on the menu, but was recently taken off because the fire alarms didn't like it very much.

By now, you've probably started to think that Wish is a rather, um, quirky place, with the apple pies setting off fire alarms and the round menus and the Holy Grail ale and whatnot. Well, that is what makes Wish a restaurant that this writer will continue to go to, as it's a unique place in world of generic dining spots. The Tavern in the Square, on the other hand, is a straightforward, instantly familiar pub. The pub has many televisions and a lot of room, so if you are looking to catch a Red Sox or Patriots game, this is a place worth coming to.

Both Wish and The Tavern in the Square are owned by the same people who own The Playwright in South Boston, as well as a few other restaurants in the Boston area. As good as their other restaurants and pubs are, they may have outdone themselves with Wish, giving Central Square in Cambridge a place that people will want to check out.