If there’s one thing that I love as much as than fashion and beauty, then it’s eating. Oh lord, how I love to eat. I remember one of my friends once commented on how good I would be in an all-you-can-eat contest – which, looking back, seems to be a very thinly veiled insult. But never mind, you get the point: Claire likes to eat.
In my recent Guide to Birmingham post, I wrote all about how my nearby city of Brum is amazing for dining options and I’m regularly popping over for the great choice of restaurants. One such place is Jamie’s Italian, which is fantastically located just outside the middle doors of the Bullring shopping centre. In December I was very kindly invited along for a meal there, and so I dragged my two friends, Lisa and Steph, along for a calorie-fuelled post-Christmas catch-up.
I had been to the Birmingham Jamie’s Italian once before, but that was a couple of years ago when I was much fussier with food (meaning I basically lived off Pot Noodles and chicken wraps) and so I think I only had a very basic bolognese. Going back this time was so much more exciting, as the menu is chocker with drool-inducing options that I was now much more willing to try.
To start, I opted for the Spinach and Ricotta Croquettes, which came served with an arrabbiata sauce. These were uh-mazing, and I could quite happily have demolished about ten more (though they were quite stodgy and filling, so my stomach probably wouldn’t have thanked me). The presentation was also beautiful – I know some people are very against food served of wooden boards or slates, but I’m all for it – bring on the rustic serving!
Lisa and Steph both chose the Crab and Avocado Bruschetta, which also looked gorgeous. If you’re not into your chilli then you might want to avoid this one, as they were both a bit taken aback by quite how hot it was – but they still enjoyed it anyway.
I was SO spoilt for choice when it came to the mains, even now that I’ve mainly given up red meat. In the end Steph and I both went for the Pumpkin Ravioli, while Lisa chose the Wild Mushroom and Winter Greens Risotto. All of the pasta dishes are available in two portion sizes, and cost between £4-£6 for the smaller portion and £10-£13 for the larger. Obviously we all opted for the bigger portions (#ChristmasDiets), but it’s good to know that Jamie’s does cater for lunchtime visits where you might be after something lighter.
The ravioli was TO DIE FOR. It’s actually roasted squash, ricotta & English mustard inside the ravioli, and then this is coated in the sweet pumpkin sauce. If I had the faintest clue how on earth you would turn a pumpkin into sauce then I would be trying to make this myself, but as I don’t I’ll just have to satisfy myself with revisiting Jamie’s some time soon.
The atmosphere at Jamie’s Italian is lovely, and overall I can’t fault our meal there at all. The service in the Birmingham restaurant is great – the staff are all so helpful and friendly, and got our food out to us in good time, especially considering it was such a busy day. I also really like the informal, rustic interiors that help to create the homely feeling. In terms of prices, it’s also really reasonable. Our bill came to just under £70 for three drinks, three starters, three large mains and two side servings of garlic bread. As I mentioned, with smaller portions available on a lot of the mains, you could also easily pop in for a light lunch and come out with change from a tenner.
You can visit the website for Jamie’s Italian Birmingham for more information on the menus, opening times and to book online (a feature that I personally love).
Have any of you ate at Jamie’s Italian before? What are your favourite restaurants? Let me know in the comments!
*For this review, I was kindly given £50 off my meal from Jamie’s Italian, but the opinions are all my own.