16 January 2014

London | Jamie's Italian

It's an irony that I managed to get my foot in the London version first instead of Singapore's. The last time I tried, I was told the earliest reservation I could make at the Singapore outlet was end Jan.

But seriously if just based on the London (Covent Garden outlet to be precise) version, I could understand what the fuss was about. It is, in my humble opinion, hearty food that tastes like home, and doesn't break the bank. 

Take for example the Prawn Linguine (£7.25 or approx S$14.50). Fried garlicky prawns, shaved fennel, tomatoes, chilli & rocket. The light tomato sauce with linguine that is more fat than flat, coupled with the fresh prawns, was a dish of savory and sweet. The tomato base was different from the normal thick version that I was used to. Jamie's was simple, non-gooey, yet savory enough and satisfying. Tastes like home-cooked food. I could eat this everyday. 4.5/5

It was a different experience with the Wild mushroom & smoked mozzarella risotto (£6.95 or approx S$14). Made of Acquerello rice with fresh & dried wild mushrooms, oozy smoked mozzarella & ricotta. We found it too salty. Wondered if the chef accidentally knocked a bottle of salt in. 3/5

The Epic Brownie (£4.95 of approx S$10) was as epic as it sounds. Wondrously dense chocolate fudge topped by alcoholic amaretto ice cream and caramelised amaretti popcorn, with warm chocolate sauce. The bitterness of the strong alcohol in the ice-cream and popcorn nicely balanced the sweet and diabeties-inducing chocolate. 4/5

Verdict: Except for the mushroom risotto, I am pleased that the food did not disappoint. Service was excellent and my waitress was attentive to re-fill my water and also checking on whether I have any complains/compliments. Nice cosy ambience too. Add in the value-for-money factor, it is a formula that worked. I think I understand why the craze now.

Address: Covent Garden
11 Upper St Martin's Lane

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