Jamie’s Italian, Sydney
Jamie Oliver requires no introduction. Most of us would probably have one or two (or more) of his cook books. I definitely have a couple and have tried to replicate most of the dishes. His first Sydney restaurant, Jamie’s Italian opened this week, and it has been busy from what I hear. There are no bookings for groups less than 6, so be prepared to wait by the bar if you come during peak hours.
Located on the busy street of Pitt Street, it used to be Industrie, a Souther French restaurant. I remember dining there a couple of times, but it really didn’t blow me away. I have been looking forward to dining here, so suggested lunch with a fellow food lover, D.
We started with the complimentary bread, sourdough, focaccia and dryish bread stick, served with extra virgin olive oil and aged balsamic. I thoroughly enjoyed the focaccia and would happily eat this all afternoon.
D couldn’t go past the truffle risotto ($17 / $28.50) – entree size of finely shaved black truffle with creamy rice, butter and parmesan, ‘a real treat’ they claim. The risotto was nicely cooked but we both agreed that it could have done with a lot more truffle!
I on the other hand couldn’t go past the buffalo ricotta ravioli ($14 / $21), entree size of delicate parcels stuffed with creamed ricotta, lemon, mint and Parmesan. ‘Pure heaven’ it says, and how can I say no to that? Five moderately large ravioli filled with creamed ricotta, which was cooked to perfection. The tang from the lemon really gave it that nice touch and I have to say, it was ‘pure heaven’. Serving wise, just right for lunch, as I didn’t want to be in a food coma, and dessert, I wanted dessert!
We shared the rocket and radicchio salad ($7.00) with aged balsamic and shaved Parmesan, which was recommended by the waitress and it was a wonderfully light and refreshing salad that went with both our pasta!
For dessert, we both couldn’t go past the special tiramisu ($9.00) – coffee flavoured trifle with orange mascarpone and chocolate. I have never had orange zest with my tiramisu, so this was refreshing, and absolutely delicious. D and I certainly enjoyed this.
The restaurant was busy when we rocked up at 1.30pm, lots of suits. Service friendly and warm, and our waitress was quite knowledgeable about each dish. I am definitely keen to go back to try their non pasta dish. Great for afternoon lunch with friends or even for a business meeting, although the place did get a little rowdy. None the less, it was an enjoyable meal at reasonable prices!
Came back a week later, and vowed I would order a non-pasta dish, alas…. Came here with a dear friend, A, she is a HUGE Jamie fan. I think at one stage she was thinking of naming her child (boy or girl) Jamie.
We started with the crispy squid, fried squid served with really garlicky mayo ($12.00). Served in a terracotta dish, the fried squid was served with chili, garlic, and lemon. The ‘really garlicky mayo’ really gave it a nice touch and tang. It was absolutely delicious and I think both A and I could have had another serving of it.
I wanted to order a non-pasta dish, but really couldn’t go past the prawn linguine ($15.50 / $25.00), entry size, the linguine was al dente, the prawns were pan-fried and garlicky and served with tomatoes, chili, rocket and fennel. The chili really gave it that extra kick, I would have liked it to be a little more spicier.
A couldn’t go past the crab and squid ink risotto ($15.50 / $26.50) – black creamy rice with hand-picked spanner crab and crunchy herby crumbs. We had the main size and boy was it big! You couldn’t miss it, black risotto, it looked fantastic and it was! The lemon really gave it a nice tang flavour, and crab flesh was just delightful.
We ordered a side of salad, rocket and radicchio salad ($7.00) – with aged balsamic and shaved parmesan, it was as good as the first time!
Unfortunately we didn’t have time for dessert, A’s baby boy was getting a little restless, but saw the table next to us have the ultimate brownie and it looked DIVINE! next time!!!!
The restaurant is quite narrow, but definitely kids friendly. A’s son sat on a high chair and was a winner amongst the staff but then again, he is super duper smiley and absolutely gorgeous!
GA’s ratings: 7.5 / 10
107 Pitt Street
Ph: +61 2 8240 9000