Jamie’s Italian Yorkdale restaurant opened sometime last year in December and I had heard lots about it seeing as it was chef Jamie Oliver’s very first restaurant in Canada and North America. Jamie Oliver opened it in conjunction with the chef, Francesco Venditti, of Bar Buca at Yorkdale Shopping Centre. Needless to say, I was very excited to try this celebrity chef’s restaurant! 😀
Ken made reservations here on a 6 p.m. on a Sunday night with no issues — we had heard of people not being able to get a table due to the restaurant’s popularity, thus it felt great that we got a table so easily. 😀 We actually arrived before our booked time of 6 p.m. to eat since we were both starving (the restaurant is located outside of the mall — you can’t miss it). There weren’t many people here at this time yet and we were led by one of the hostesses to a booth near the belly of the restaurant. We could see the open kitchen to our side and it was fun during the night to watch the chefs flip the pizzas in their hands every so often — table-side entertainment. 😀
Seeing as both their pasta and pizza dishes were made fresh every day, we opted to try one of each, an appetizer, and some white wine to go with it. Our server was very friendly and attentive throughout the night and recommended a really great Chardonnay to go with our food. I really liked how the restaurant was casual yet chic and very comfortable to dine in. It wasn’t too loud either and it was well lit inside.
Our Chardonnay arrived almost right away. This Chardonnay, a 2014 Pojer E Sandri, was from Trentino, Italy and boasted of citrus and quince flavours with just a hint of oak. It was actually really, really good. It was just sweet enough and the taste was really nice. I’m not a wine connoisseur and can’t really describe wine well but I know that I really enjoyed this one. It went very well with our dishes that night. 😀
The appetizer arrived very quickly too. We ordered the Mushroom Fritti which were herby breadcrumbed portobello mushrooms with garlic mayo. These were really nicely seasoned and then fried. Its texture and look reminded me of chicken wings or something meaty but these were vegetarian-friendly. The portobello mushrooms were really plump and meaty. I loved this appetizer. 🙂
After we were finished the appetizer, our mains arrived shortly. The Parma pizza was a classic Margherita pizza (crushed potatoes, basil, fior di latte, with extra virgin olive oil) topped with prosciutto, arugula, and Parmigiano Reggiano (hard, granular cheese). This was really, really good! The pizza was thin crust and it was so thin that when you held it up, it was like holding a cracker. The ingredients just melded together so well and it was really delicious. The prosciutto was really good — sliced thiny, too! I could have eaten another half of this pizza if there were more. XD
The pasta dish, Porcini Fettuccine, had wild and field mushrooms, mascarpone, garlic, white wine, lemony gremolata, pangrattato, and Parmigiano Reggiano. I liked the sauce in this one and even though I’m not a huge fettuccine fan, this one tasted great. I also liked the breadcrumbs that were placed on the spoon for you to sprinkle on the dish. Ken really liked the simplistic taste of this pasta dish.
We finished off with a dessert. We ordered the Orange Blossom Polenta Cake which was served with whipped crème fraîche, fresh orange, and pomegranate. This dessert was a bigger portion than I expected and it was also really good. The polenta cake didn’t taste like polenta too much but it was a dense cake that went well with the whipped crème fraîche, sweet fresh orange slices, and crunchy and fresh pomegranate seeds. Overall, it was a really good dessert to finish off our remaining Chardonnay wine too. XD
I can see why Jamie’s Italian restaurant is so hyped about now after having dined there. The food really was good! I wouldn’t hesitate to return again and try their other dishes. It was after our visit that I noticed somewhere online that they served polenta chips! I didn’t realize that these were the much-talked about polenta fries that were supposedly really good. I think we need to go back and try these. 😀