The name – Jamie Oliver is not unknown in India – one of the most successful TV chef who has written ample books and popular for his battle against McDonald.
Jamie Oliver has opened his chain of restaurants in India. Two restaurants in a week –Pizzeria, Ambience mall Gurgaon which is his first pizzeria outside Great Britain and Jamie’s Italian, Ambience Mall, Vasant Kunj.
I went for the pizzeria’s opening but missed the Italian opening, and planned a visit with my family after a week to try Italian food.
I would share my experience on both the places here.
Jamie’s Pizzeria and Jamie’s Italian both have rustic look, similar to what a warehouse looks like – rough, unfinished, yet cool. I liked the interior of Jamie’s Italian whereas pizzeria was a bit cramp and congested. Pizzeria is a regular pizza place that has limited pizza menu along with some sides and couple of drinks (they will also serve wine and beer, post acquiring licence).
While on the other hand, Jamie’s Italian’s interior was impressive. It has an open kitchen wth seating capacity of approx. 120, a huge bar and bright lighting.
At Pizzeria, it was a review on invitation and hence I got the opportunity to try almost everything that was on the menu. I started with sides and didn’t enjoy. Stretched Garlic Breads were chewy, too elastic and was hard to bite. Olive tapenade, a French inspired sauce that was served along with bread sticks, were delicious. Okra, chilli and lotus stems fritto was disappointing. Okra and lotus stems were undercooked and had no flavour. Three fried fish that had local basa along with prawns and calamari weren’t great. Basa was like mashed potato and it ruined the entire dish.
After a disappointing start with the starters I was not very excited for the pizzas. However, I loved the based that was fresh. They make fresh dough every day. Hand stretched pizzas with fresh ingredients and fresh local produce is here to impress everyone! I didn’t enjoy all the pizza’s that I tasted. This place has three non-veg pizzas and veg section has around 7-8 varities. Polpette schacciatta that had minced meat balls; stargazy that had prawns were good pizza’s. In the veg section, apart from fresh basil and cheese, I found rest of the other pizzas flavourless. Chilli pizza – jamie’s special too was flavourless. If you eat the pizza without the chilli, you wouldn’t get any taste.
The Real Challenge
After eating at Jamie’s place I realized that they actually will face lot of challenge in drawing India crowd. Here’s my take:
- Opening at Ambience Mall Gurgaon might backfire as the mall has lost its charm. There are 2 other pizza joints on the same floor. Lot of other joints in this mall are struggling for footfall in the mall.
- Another challenge would be to change our palette as we have adapted our taste buds for American pizzas that has thick base – tastes more like bread, cheese oozing from the slices and generous toppings (The toppings at Jamie’s are far better than any of the pizza restaurants).
I would love to hear from you on my view of Jamie’s Pizzeria. Please feel free to share your comments/feedback
Disclaimer – This review was done on an invitation from the establishment. Views expressed in the review is entirely ours and without any bias. Pictures of the dishes are not the standard portions, they are sample portions.