Jamie Oliver's Italian Restaurant Bath: Photos and Interview
Three of us went to Jamie Oliver’s Italian Restaurant. The food was great and we had a good time. These are a collected of some of the images I took while there. I have more photos of Jamie’s Italian.
Interview with Tom James, General Manager
by Francesca Brkic
FB: Why Bath?
TJ: Jamie has been coming to Bath for many years. He likes the look of the city, the ambiance and the fact that there is a real buzz about food.
FB: What do you think is the restaurant’s aim and purpose, with regards to the choice of customers and culinary dishes?
TJ: The main mission of Jamie’s Italian is to provide world class Italian food in a relaxed, informal, and accessible environment. One of the key factors to its success is the fact it is so reasonably priced for the quality of the dishes. I don’t know any other restaurant where you can get a truffle tagliatelle for less than 8 quid! We wanted a totally non-exclusive restaurant where 4 students would be equally as comfortable as 3 people having a business lunch. In terms of the menu, that all comes from Jamie with help from his mentor Gennaro. Its a combination of classic Italian dishes and some more contemporary dishes inspired by Italy.
FB: What do you think sets Jamie’s Italian apart from the many other Italian restaurants that can be found in the country?
TJ: I think the products the chefs have to work with. The mozzarella is made exclusively for us, as is the olive oil. The pasta is made fresh each morning, using a recipe that took 6 months to perfect.In fact the sourcing of produce has probably been the most time-consuming aspect of opening, but we weren’t prepared to compromise anything. Every supplier knows how passionate we are about our food and so they know they have to deliver, from the day boats that supply our squid to the Devonshire red chickens. The other key factor was staff training. Before opening we had all the staff together for 2 weeks; eating, cooking talking about food, talking with Jamie. That 2 weeks was very special and has helped create a real family atmosphere.
Our pasta dishes
FB: If you had to describe the restaurant’s atmosphere, what would it be?
TJ: It’s a real family Italian. Full of atmosphere, smells of fantastic food, and warm rustic surroundings.
FB: What were the reasons behind the architecture of the restaurant? It’s quite a melange of styles, from the large glass windows and the modern lounge feel to the wooden bathrooms and tables.
TJ: A lot of the design has come from Jamie. Its a combination of features he has seen and ideas he has had. I think the restaurant works really well and we are getting a lot of customers coming back to sit in the different areas. A meal on the terrace in summer is a totally different ambiance to a December night in the cosy Georgian room. The only thing that doesn’t change is the quality of the food and the great service!!
Taking a look upstairs…
FB: Has the presence of two populous universities influenced this decision in any way?
TJ: Yes definitely. We were looking for a vibrant city and Bath is a fantastic university town. We employ a lot of students and love the fact that we have a great reputation with the universities.
FB: What are the reasons behind an open and exposed kitchen?
TJ: It’s to create that link between the chefs and the customers. The chefs love to be able to talk to customers and let them see what they are doing. Also we like the transparency of letting customers see exactly how we make the great food they are eating. It’s why we put in a 8ft projector screen of the chefs too!!!