Jamie’s Italian, Sydney CBD

Neither of us have been to Jamie’s Italian before, so this was a good opportunity to go to the place known for long waiting lines. We booked on a Monday night at 8pm, which suited us fine. We’d gone to a life drawing session at the Art House Hotel from 6pm, and quickly walked over to Jamie’s.

Jamie’s Italian

This place is massive

Yes, you MUST book. Even on a Monday night, I think the online booking options either had 5pm or 8pm. So book early. And don’t just show up, because it’s a 50 minute wait. Yes, seriously – 50 minutes! On a Monday night! It’s a bit insane – the level of hype – around this place. The waiting line isn’t so bad on a Monday – the couple before us are told it’s 50 mins, so they wait in the bar area (they seem happy/content with 50mins at 8pm…if that was me, I would be starving!).

More popular nights (Thurs to Sun), I’ve seen groups of people waiting outside the restaurant. They even have a velvet rope carpeted line – very posh.

Thankfully, D2D has booked and we are seated pretty quickly and assigned a waiter.

Open kitchen with 10+ chefs working away

Service and ambience

The place is massive, fitted out with tons of tables and an open kitchen featuring 10+ chefs working hard away. Our waiter is running around. Sadly, I have to say I was disappointed with the service. Our waiter was quite delayed in everything, from getting our orders to water, to clearing the table and getting the bill. We had to flag them down (or really ANYONE down) to get anything done.


Ambience? The wall across from us has some cool graffiti art.

However, I felt like this restaurant was rather uncomfortable. The table for two is tiny (with a hot light very close to our heads) and seems squashed once all the food arrives. What makes this more noticeable is that the waiter doesn’t come to clear the table of empty dishes. We had to flag someone down to ask them to do so. At the end, we just stacked the plates ourselves and even then, it didn’t get cleared. Ever. They were there even after we’d gotten the bill and paid.

Are they too busy and understaffed? Seems like it. Yet, not even every table was filled, so I’m not sure how they could cope when it is at full capacity…

Okay, onto the more positive comments:

Food and drink

We order a variety of dishes to share – entree size.

Polenta chips -$8.50

These were really tasty! Super crunchy and not too oily.

Tomato and mozzarella arancini – $10.50

This was nice, but $10.50 for 3 arancini balls? Not too sure if its worth it.

Land and sea risotto – $16

This was really good and so filling! Delicious seafood goodness.

Black angel spaghetti – $14.50

The most visually interesting. I love how black angel spaghetti always makes a dish more…ominous haha. Quite good, but I was so full at this stage, it was a struggle to fit it in!

Mortadella and ricotta panzerotti

A nice interesting mix of flavours. Apples always adds a little citric sweet/sour flavour.

Bread and drink

D2D also ordered a cocktail and some bread, which was only $1.50! Apparently the bread used to be free. But still cheap, you get a variety of breads/sticks etc with a dish of olive oil.

All in all, the food was very filling – so much that we weren’t able to even order dessert.

Overall verdict?

Jamie’s Italian is a mix: the wait without booking is a bit ridiculous. The food is quite good and relatively cheap for a restaurant run/owned by the famous Jamie Oliver. The service, poor this time, but perhaps this was just a once off.

Will I be back? Probably – we need to try dessert.
Jamie's Italian on Urbanspoon


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