No, Jamie Oliver is not an Italian, although he has declared he ‘should have been one’. It was only four years ago that the first Jamie’s Italian started its business in Oxford, UK, thanks to his love for Italian food, ingredients and culture that tag along. Similar to the big name that opened earlier this year on our shores (Hong Kong’s famed Tim Ho Wan), Jamie’s Italian Singapore has the queue going like nobody’s business. Thankfully, they do have the SMS System to save the day. Keep calm, join the queue, give your number, and you are free to go off shopping at VivoCity.
Merchandise are available right at the entrance. Things like yes, Jamie’s Napkin.
Posh Chips ($7.50++) :: I know, I like the sound of it too. It’s Truffle Oil and Parmesan on the thickly-cut fries. It can look small in portion but it turned out pretty fine, like Hermione’s Beaded Purse. Sorry I digress. For the price I paid, it was all worth it. The truffle was light but still detectable. Not overly orgasmic but somewhat there.
Crispy Squid ($11.50++) :: Served with my type of sauce (garlicky mayo with lemon), it was enjoyable. The squid was slightly dry but pleasantly quantifiable. Though the outside is fried, you can still taste the squid. Best with a touch of the sauce.
Brixham Bay Crab Risotto ($19++) :: It sounds promising but was distasteful. Firstly, the risotto is uncommonly beady and hardened, not the kind of risotto I’m comfortable with; the kind that is slightly mashy. Then, I had expected the crab to be in a more generous portion. It was in negligible shreds of crab meat. Lastly, it’s a creamy risotto not creamy enough for me. I wouldn’t go for its risotto if you’re more conventional with your texture of risotto.
The Jamie Italian’s Burger ($27.50++) :: To be frank, I was the most excited with this main. Unfortunately, it was really uninspiring and lackluster. Stuck with sunflower and pumpkin seed, the Mixed Seed Bun wasn’t impressive enough to begin with. It was too evenly baked, a little charred edges would do the trick. The bacon was perfect though – not crispy and not excessively salty. The part that
makes or breaks the course is the Wagyu Steak. My expectation when it says it’s a steak is a piece of grilled in-tact meat. It was regrettable when I realized it was the typical patty – juice-less and not flavorful.
Black Angel Spaghetti ($16++) :: I don’t dispute the freshness of the pasta, but its counterpart of squid ink, accompanying items and condiments basically brought the star level downwards. It was purely bland and far from being Squid-Inky.
Chocolate & Vin Santo Pot ($12.50++) :: A more bitter, caffeine-free, stronger alcohol taste version of Tiramisu, this dessert piece strikes me as an interesting end to the course, if you like a bittersweet one. It wasn’t for me as the Vin Santo (Italian Dessert Wine) was too overpowering. It’s topped with Zabaglione Ice Cream (comes with a sweet wine flavor).
Ji Warm Brownie ($11.50++) :: Chocolate is a must as desserts for me. This was sufficient to cope with my need, though there was nothing to scream about. I still miss Cocotte’s legendary brownie. Topped with Vanilla Ice Cream.
You ought to know that I dined at Jamie’s Italian without taking into consideration the ‘brand name’, and believe it or not, not even the waiting time (45 minutes, reaching at about 5.45pm on a Friday). Despite so, the food (mainly the flavors more than anything) was upsetting. However, I have heard a lot about its Baked Mushrooms, 30-Day Matured Prime Rib, and Pink Snapper Acqua Pazza. These are the items I will order on my second trip there. I say don’t waste your time on their pasta and risotto.
Service was top-notch though. No snobbish attitude just because they are Jamie’s Italian. Very professional, engaging and warm. Perfect for its family and casual setting anyway.
Address: 1 HarbourFront Walk, VivoCity #01-165-167 (at the right hand corner, facing Sentosa)
Telephone: 6733 5500 (Online Reservations taken)
Opening Hours: 12pm – 10pm (Sun – Thurs); 12pm – 11pm (Fri – Sat)
Photos by Kathleen.