“Homicide is 0.8% of deaths. Diet-related disease is over 60%. But no one fucking talks about it.”-Jamie Oliver on why the obesity epidemic isn’t going to stop.
Extra mile- 6.5
Budget – Medium
*Scores are out of 10
Jamie’s Italian: Overall rating – 31.5/50 on a medium budget
Jamie Oliver is loud, proud and on a mission to improve the state of health worldwide. He happens to be one of my favourite chef crushes (next to Heston Blumenthal, and of course Pete Evans), and he just so happens to have a restaurant here in Sydney.
I have been holding off on this restaurant for some time now, as most of the reviews have been less than ideal. Many of my clients are foodies (clearly like attracts like), and the general consensus has been that it was ‘a little disappointing’. However, our time had come, so off we tracked on a wet, cold Tuesday night to get dinner. Being a Tuesday, and given that we were on Nana o’clock time again, I thought that it would be no trouble getting into the restaurant. How wrong. We arrived at 6 o’clock and there was already a hefty line outside.
We were told that we would have to wait for 40 mins to get a table, which we were happy to do, so settled in for a pre-dinner class of vino.
If you have hungry gremlins, and you are starting to eat yourself from the inside out, then I would suggest heading elsewhere.
Jamie is renowned for doing simple food that’s packing a punch. He is the haphazard, rogue chef who loves his ‘pinch of salt’ and ‘dash of oil’. That was what I was expecting on the menu – simple dishes with great flavours.
I ordered the main sized Cockle Pasta (Spaghetti Vongole), and MC ordered an entree sized Wild Rabbit Tagliolini followed by Game Meatball for main. I do not normally eat pasta, especially at night as I tend to have a reaction to it, but I was determined to give it a try. We also ordered a side of coleslaw, which as an aside, is a regular feature on our home menu (thanks to Jamie’s 15 minute meals).
I am glad that I went in there not expecting much, because if I had I would’ve been bitterly disappointed. The pasta was dry and non-eventful, and the coleslaw was bland (I think I even declared that my version of his Coleslaw crushed his). I walked out of the restaurant feeling a bit flat, almost like when a really good friend has let you down. However, despite my emotional reaction, it won’t stand in the way of my celebrity crush, and I will continue to support his quest for worldwide health reforms and education; I just won’t eat at his restaurant
I have to say I do absolutely love that image and quote from Jamie above. He is so passionate about people cooking and eating real food and I completely relate to it.
In saying that, I’m not entirely convinced that everyone should be smashing pasta willy nilly. However, there can be a time and place, and for me that was this night.
As with NN, I don’t tend to eat too much of it these days, and I do notice when I do- I’ll usually feel a little bloated afterward. So I used this as an experiment in just that- to see if in eating it for this blog I would feel a bit crappy afterward.
And I did. Not terribly mind, but not 100%.
However, this might not have been entirely the pasta’s fault, as you can see from NN’s description above, the food just wasn’t that overwhelming. Sure, it was nice, but it just wasn’t anything great.
Of course, I was completely enticed in by the wild rabbit and the game meatball. Wild meats are something I’ll get if possible, but again they left me underwhelmed.
Still, as NN said, Jamie’s drive, determination and passion to educate people about good food choices and teaching people how to cook quickly at home are remarkable, and I cannot wait to meet him one day to chew his ear off about it…
For us, this was a pass, but dissatisfaction due to the regard in which we hold Jamie. However, if you would like to see the vast menu choice, click here to view in another window and see the vast selection for yourself.
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