Nottingham welcomes new wood grill restaurant, Oaks
Nottingham and oak trees have been synonymous since ancient times, so our newest wood grill restaurant not only has the perfect name, but is perfectly thought through – from the front door down to the sausages. Visitors to the city can now sample some of Nottinghamshire’s fantastic local produce surrounded by the glory of our most famous tree.
From the moment you walk through the giant oak covered door, which stands out on the grey horizon of Maid Marion Way, the smell of the wood embers burning on the grill surround you with warmth and stir your appetite. Sourced from a sustainable forest in Lowdham, the wood alight in the open oven cooking a simple but deliciously considered menu of everything from signature dish sausages, also sourced locally from a butcher in Netherfield, to king prawns and cote de boeuf is the centre piece of the restaurant.
We started with nibbles and a cocktail; beef quail scotch eggs and baked olives washed down with a Midlands Spritz – a very tasty brew which included Nottingham’s Castle Rock brewery’s Harvest Pale. I’d never have dreamed of putting ale in a cocktail but it works, especially if you don’t like the sweetness of most traditional cocktails.
Our main dish was a spectacle to behold – a sharing platter including half a chicken in honey dew beer and black pepper, a 250g lamb and rosemary sausage, a softshell crab burger, and a smoky sweet corn on the cob with a generous helping of jacket-on chips. The sausage was huge and very tasty, the chicken was done to peppery perfection, and the softshell crab burger in tempura with wasabi was the best fish burger I’ve ever tasted.
Bursting at the seams, I was persuaded to try chef’s special desert – doughnuts with hidden marsala cream inside, which originate from his hometown near Venice. Alongside some Bluebells Dairy Bakewell tart ice cream we were in pudding heaven. The doughnuts were light and none greasy, a perfect sweetener after a hearty meal, thank you Italy!
If you’re visiting Nottingham and looking for a flavour of our city, or just a great steak or burger, Oaks is the perfect location. With cosy corners for couples and bounds of space for groups on long tables, everyone will feel special in the bustle of this great new venue. A few extra top tips from me to finish; make sure you venture down to the toilets, which look like they are inside a deep freezer, or look out for music performances to time your stay around on their website – because they have some popular local acts visiting. I know I’ll be visiting again soon to try an Angus beef burger. In Notts We Love our Oaks!