I actually went 2 nights in a row with different work colleagues. I really wanted to try the selection in the menu and a single visit would just not cut it. For those who have not been to Jamie's before, it is a casual atmosphere that is fairly fast pace to help churn through the demands of the people waiting at it's doors most nights. It can get loud so I won't recommend you coming here if you are after a quiet romantic dinner. It has some rustic decor and a slightly 'homey' feel in a commercial sense. Enough about scenery, now let's get onto the food.
The antipesto planks is one of the signature dishes there. I went with the fried fish plank and shared it with Jar Jar. The plank had a section including, fritto misto, crispy salad, cured salmon, pecorino, salad, olives and smoked mackerel pate. The pate was beautiful, it was creamy and just perfect balance of texture and flavour. The cured salmon served with yuzo mayo was delicate yet refreshing. Jamie's planks never disappoint.
Jar Jar couldn't say no to the arancini on the menu so we also got that to share. Crunchy little balls of risotto with red chilli and mozzarella and served with a rich and slightly spicy red sauce.
The boys got the Truffle Tagliatelle and was nice enough to let me try some. This was a plate pasta served with a butter sauce laced with the magic of truffles, nutmeg and parmesan. It had a indulgent truffle flavours throughout the dish and this is the perfect dish for any truffle lover. It's simple and fully shows the flavour of the truffle.
The Jamaican got the Prawn Linguine which had garlic prawns, tomato, fennel, rocket and finished with a chilli stirred through. This is a good dish for anyone who prefers a light pasta and enjoys their garlic prawns. The tomato and chilli was a good way to keep the dish light and a difference from the typical creamy garlic prawn finishes.
Jar Jar got the Honeycomb Cannelloni three ways. This was cannelloni with the filling of eggplant and sun-dried tomato, ricotta and spinach or pumpkin. This was a hearty and filling dish. Great for those who can't decide what type of cannelloni filling they want or just want to try it all. I really liked the pumpkin one, it was a good sweet yet savoury balance.
One the first night I got the entree bolognese and a side of Primavera salad (to make myself feel less guilty about all the carbs). The bolognese was made up of a beef and pork ragu, then topped with crunchy bread crumbs and parmesan. This was hearty and hit the pasta craving spot. Though I won't recommend getting the entree size, you are are feeling hungry. It was definitely not enough for me, even with the salad as a side.
I can't say I loved the salad. I found it a bit bland but I guess it makes it a good balancing side side option.
On the second night I couldn't resist and just had to get the Blank Angel Spaghetti which was a squid ink pasta served with scallops, chilli, anchovies and capers. I made the mistake of also getting the polenta chips to share with Jar Jar. The pasta was beautifully al dente and the scallop was fresh and supple. The chilli and anchovies did a good job in giving it that bit of a kick.
The polenta chips were delicious. Fluffy on the inside and well seasoned with rosemary and sea salt on the outside. Sadly Jar Jar and I couldn't finish it because we over indulged in the pasta and arancini earlier in the meal. It was so good and we were so sad that we didn't clean up that bowl.
When dining with Jar Jar, if tiramisu is on the menu, it doesn't matter how full you are, it MUST be ordered. I shared a tiramisu and the epic brownie with Jar Jar. The tiramisu was home styled with an orange mascarpone.
The epic brownie was as the name suggest.... EPIC. Rich chocolate brownie with a warm fudge centre, then served with amaretto ice cream and caramel popcorn. It was all the things I love on one plate. It was heaven on the lips but not very kind to my hips. The ice cream cut through the richness of the chocolate and the popcorn was just that fun element on the plate that was good to eat.
Overall 17/20 I really enjoyed both my nights at Jamie's. On the second night with Jar Jar, we spent less than $100 between the 2 of us for a three course meal and practically had to be rolled out of the restaurant. I think it does well as a no frills Italian restaurant. Don't come expecting fine dining, because it is NOT that. It just the classics done well in a no frills manner. The prices are reasonable and you walk out happy.