Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Jamie's Italian - Sydney CBD - Sydney, Australia

Jamie’s Italian

When there was news of Jamie's Italian opening in Sydney in 2011, I was extremely excited as I've always enjoyed his cooking shows and loved his passion for cooking. I had high expectations in the lead up to visiting this restaurant and we even queued for more than an hour within the first few months of opening. Unfortunately, the food failed to impress us and my perceptions of the restaurant weren't so good back then given the mediocre food and small portions. 

Fast forward a few years and I had the opportunity to go back again. My cousin, Miss Booklover, is a fan of this restaurant and frequently dines here as she works just a few blocks away.

It is consistently busy every night so it’s best to get in early if possible.

Who likes standing in line? No one does. They've introduced an online reservation system so booking is a must if you want to get a table without having to potentially queue for a very long time. Previously, they wouldn't take bookings for less than six people online but they've now changed the system for the better and you can book for more. I was expecting to queue in that terribly long line given but I decided to check the times available online and much to my surprise, there was a few spots available for dinner the next day.

One thing I really like about this place is the causal ambiance. Upon entry, there is a bar to just relax and chill while you’re waiting for a seat. It’s not a quiet place and indeed quite boisterous with the constant chatter happening around, giving it a lively atmosphere.

The spacious interior, occupying two levels, is nicely put together and I wouldn't expect less from a famous chef like Jamie Oliver. 

It’s dimly lit with candles on every table giving that feeling of comfort and relaxation. However, for food photography purposes, this is not the best place to be as it’s a bit too dark and photos don’t turn out very clear. Thankfully, Miss Booklover’s new mobile phone is advanced and the quality of the pictures turned out much better than my Iphone. This is not an advertisement but she persisted that I mention that it is a ‘HTC M8’ and for all you technology experts out there, this is the latest model from their range. Thank you to Miss Booklover for kindly sharing her photos on this blog.

The waiter was very friendly. He introduced us to a few specials prior to ordering but we already had our eyes set on what was on the menu. He took our order without even writing it down! Amazingly everything was spot on.

For starters, we had the ‘Italian Bread Selection ($1.50)’, which is a must order. Not only is it fresh and absolutely delicious, but $1 from every serve is donated to Jamie’s Ministry of Food Australia. So it’s a win-win situation. In a metal bread tin, there is a selection of freshly made breads from the bakery including Italian grissini, rosemary focaccia, crispy ‘music’ bread and ciabatta. This is served with olive oil and aged balsamic vinegar. The bread served here is one of my favourites out of all the ones I've tried at restaurants so far.

The ‘Crispy Squid ($12.50)’ is divine. The portion, though small, is enough for two but I wouldn't say more. Fried squid is served with a garlic mayo and a lemon wedge. The squid was crispy and perfectly cooked. A must order.

Pasta is made fresh on site every day so freshness is guaranteed. ‘Prawn Linguine ($16.00 / entree size)’ is an enjoyable pasta dish. A combination of prawns, tomato, chilli, garlic, rocket and fennel are cooked with al dente pasta. A simple dish with uncomplicated flavours, yet  still flavoursome. I liked the addition of garlic and chilli but overall it was quite bland for my palate. I found myself having to add some pepper and salt for that extra kick and probing for the oil at the bottom of the dish.

‘Black Angel Spaghetti ($15.50 / entree size)’ is made with squid ink pasta cooked with scallops, garlic, chilli, anchovies, wine and capers. Miss Booklover’s must order dish every time she is here. The flavours are mild and deceptively tasty. I like the combination of flavours but we both find it a bit on the salty scale in this instance. 

A range of desserts are on offer and all at a very reasonable price. The ‘Chocolate Brownie ($10.00)’ is served warm with amaretto ice-cream and caramelised popcorn. It’s fudgy, rich, and very chocolaty. 

The food here is simple and honest. The prices are reasonable, service is great and meals are adequate. This dinner was definitely much better than the first and I’ll surely be returning soon. The place is buzzy and unpretentious just like the chef.

*Credit to Miss Booklover for her photos

107 Pitt St
Sydney NSW 2000

Phone no: 02 8240 9000

Opening Hours
Monday – Sunday
11:30am - Late


Jamie's Italian on Urbanspoon


  1. It's actually the HTC One (M8)! :P

    I would have ordered the Turbo Penne Arrabiata if it was still on their menu. :'(

  2. Italian Bread Selection and Crispy Squiud seems great. I wanna eat all of that.

    1. The bread selection and squid were delicious!

  3. Hi Jamies

    Really the restaurant has a great ambiance , I can make it out from the pictures . I even loved the presentation of the food , I too run an Italian restaurant in Glen Waverley . I will try these presentations.


    1. The ambiance at Jamie's is great and very lively :)