Singapore: Jamie's Italian opening in summer of 2013
Same here. Jamie's Italian fits the profile of a casual mall eatery. Vivocity has good Brazilian (Carnivore), Japanese (Sushi Tei), Chinese (Crystal Jade Dining), German (Brotzeit), Indian (Go India), Indonesian (Garuda), amongst others, but no decent Italian spot to speak ... until Jamie's Italian comes!
"....but no decent Italian spot to speak ... until Jamie's Italian comes!..." And IMO, after giving it a couple of try's still no decent Italian after it arrives. However, they are generally wildly successful as his name is a big draw - but to me lacked the simplicity and freshness you associate with truly great Italian. It will be interesting to see how it goes is such a competitive food city.
Ok, maybe I should say "decent" for a Singapore mall ;-)
I'd only tried Jamie's Italian on a couple of occasions previously - at the Covent Garden outlet in Upper St Martin's Lane (next door to Dishoom's) this Jan, and the one in Oxford back in 2009. But I think they really *are* quite decent for a chain.
In Singapore, we import everything anyway:- vegetables from Malaysia & China, ducks from Canada, pigs from Australia & Indonesia, beef from USA, fish from everywhere, even waiters from Philippines.
I wonder if Jamie Oliver himself will be here for the launching, I don't even remember him ever even stepping onto Singapore soil before.
1.5 hour's wait in the queue, and full on-line bookings a couple of weeks in advance - Jamie's Italian seems to be taking Singapore by storm.
But, oh Lawd, I must have had the worst Italian meal in recent memory there last night!! Exactly what kind of chefs do they have in Singapore to churn out what we had? Firstly, *everything* was served lukewarm and they did NOT taste good at all.
What we tried:
- Polenta chips with rosemary and Parmesan: I was expecting freshly-cooked polenta, crisp on the outside, soft on the inside. What we had: plasticky, chewy-skinned cubes which tasted like they'd been re-fried. I thought Jamie was a chain - why is food at the Singapore one SOOOOO Bad compared to the Covent Garden outlet I tried?!
- Tagliatelle Bolognese - Ragu of beef, pork, herbs, Chianti & Parmesan with crunchy, herby breadcrumbs. Trust me - the real deal we had bore no resemblance to the superlatives used in the menu description. I get the same taste from pasta out of a can.
- Lamb chop lollipops - bone-in lamb chops served with creamy artichoke & mint sauce, roasted nuts, chilli and fresh mint. This was the only edible choice we had, though hardly memorable. For a moment, we actually thought the artichoke puree had gone bad, but I guess the sourish taste is intended. I'd not eat this again.
- Daily special: Roasted pork belly - recommended by our friendly waitress (service was good, by the way). The roast pork was okay, but the grilled/baked root vegetables accompanying it tasted pre-cooked and re-heated - again! So you basically have chewy exterior shells on the baked potatoes or whatever it was that they put on the plate.
Nasty, vile food. I don't usually like to write about negative experiences, preferring to point people out to good/great dining spots - but methinks Jamie's Italian pulled a fast one on Singaporeans here. To have to book online two weeks ahead, or queue 1.5 hours for this kind of stuff? No way.
Jamie’s Italian Singapore
1 HarbourFront Walk
Tel: +65 67335500
I'm also very disappointed with Jamie Oliver. After waiting so long, turned out to be ordinary restaurant with lousy cooks and lousy dishes - taste worse than British school lunches! I thought JamieOliver got a crusade to replace horrible lunches in British schools? Looks like he brought those horrible lunches to Singapore instead.
Lucky the service staff (all Filipinos?) are very friendly and good.