Jamie's Italian Singapore
Jamie's Italian opened its first restaurant in Singapore and in Asia. In typical Jamie’s Italian style, the restaurant oozes rustic charm with bespoke furniture that’s been handmade by local craftsmen. With a terrace that looks out over the harbour, it’s set to be a year-round hit.
When we went the restaurant was surprisingly empty, but decided against sitting at the 40-seat al-fresco dining area since the weather was pretty hazy. The rustic, no-frills décor of the place was absolutely charming, and service was excellent – our water glasses were never empty. For starters, we ordered a Ricotta Bruschetta ($10.50) and Italian Nachos ($8.50). Both appetisers were pretty small, and the nachos tasted stale and had hardly any ricotta cheese filling. The Tagliatelle Bolognese ($26) was good, and the pasta was al-dente which I liked. Their Prawn Linguine ($26) however was oily, and overall pretty underwhelming.
Overall the food really fell short of my expectations, and the portions weren’t worth the price we paid for it. The standard of the food was pretty inconsistent, so maybe we ordered the wrong dishes. But it’s unlikely I’ll visit again.
I ordered the Truffle Tagliatelle ($15) with black truffles, butter, parmesan and nutmeg. I'll be completely honest that the small serving isn't enough and the big serving is overpriced. My pasta was fist-sized, with a generous dose of truffle - and nothing much else. I'd say that the sauce was pretty well done, with rich cream and a heady truffle fragrance. You tend to lose interest halfway through though, because it's really just pasta with cream sauce and... truffle fragrance. Still a delish item for those of you who love truffle as much as I do, but gets boring halfway through.
Jools' Favourite Sicilian Tuna Fusilli ($14) was boxed up as a recommendation, so we had high hopes for this one. Unfortunately it wasn't particularly memorable.
You'd fare better with The Jamie's Italian Burger ($27.50), which got great reviews from my dining companion. But the price is pretty steep for a middling-sized burger, in my honest opinion. I wouldn't pay for it.
Verdict? Probably not visiting again anytime soon, sorry Jamie.
In terms of aesthetics, I would say that I had a very good impression of the place. The interior design of the restaurant is modelled such that it is innately pleasing to the eye. It is not easy to point out specifically why but I was filled with a really good feeling as I entered the restaurant and took my first look around. Moreover, much effort is put in to make the food look good. For example, take the spaghetti. The spaghetti noodles are twirled into a mould with ingredients dispersed around it to create a random pattern and with sauce spreaded over it.
However, I would agree with Crystal's review below that I wasn't satisfied with the fare. For example, I felt that the mushroom soup tastes bland, and mushroom soups are supposed to optimally taste rich and creamy. Hence, i feel that too much effort is gone into making the food look pleasing such that the essence of the food itself is neglected.
A decent place but not exactly recommended alongside the other stellar choices of Vivocity.
Upon entering the place, I was very impressed with its layout. It was unique and refreshing, unlike many other fancy restaurants these days. There was even an area where various merchandise were laid out and aspiring chefs would be pleased to know that Jamie's cookbooks were being sold as well. I also liked that they used cloth napkins instead of paper ones, which added to the classiness of the place.
However, although food layout was pleasing, I could not say the same for food quality. I was sorely disappointed with the food because it wasn't anything remarkable and was normal to me. No pleasant surprises there. Portions were also pretty small and since I am a big eater, the meal was unsatisfying. On the bright side, I did enjoy their tiramisu dessert.
Overall, not a place to go to for a second time, and coupled with the pricey menu, is not a place I would recommend.
All the pasta are made fresh daily, so you get a delightfully springy and fresh pasta that’s different from the dry pasta you find in a box*. Fresh pasta goes best served with delicate sauces where the texture of the pasta can take front stage. Go for dishes like the Prawn Linguine, which takes advantage of the freshness of the pasta.