Jamie's Italian: Chelmsford Trattoria

It's not very often I do restaurant reviews, but I just HAD to let you know about the amazing food, although not so great service, at Jamie's Italian in Chelmsford. Both my Mum and I are members of Jamie's Gold Club, a free to join club that gives you benefits at any Jamie's italian around the country; as it was Mum's birthday on the 7th, she was entitled to a free bottle of Prosecco so we thought we'd take the offer up! 

I had never been before, but my parents have been a couple of times and have really enjoyed it so my expectations were rather high;  whilst my meal didn't disappoint, I know that for my family it was little bit of a let down. For starters, my Dad and Brother both opted for "Super gooey cheese balls", which whilst tasting good, the texture was a bit of a let down; having mentioned this to the waitress she then went on to explain that the cheese was Pecorino, so wouldn't really melt... leaving us a bit confused why they were described as super gooey! We then each ended up getting something different for main, and again my brother was let slightly down by his steak - possibly the most expensive thing on the menu and certainly not worth the money - although I do question why it's on the menu when it's an Italian restaurant! Whilst my brother had issues with food, we also had some issues with service in that we kept getting bashed into as the tables were set too close together and the staff didn't seem to realise... we actually had to move our own table to try and solve the problem.

Negativity aside, I had a wonderful meal - maybe I'm just good at choosing dishes! As I was driving, I tried one of their Virgin Cocktails, the "Apple and Strawberry Mojito" which was SO good. Their drinks menu spread looked amazing and I'd certainly consider going back just for cocktails! For starters I shared the Roasted Tomato Bruschetta and the Sizzling Meatballs with my mum; both of which were delicious, although I'd definitely opt for the Meatballs over the Bruschetta. 

For main course I had the Vegetable Rotolo al Forno, which was almost like a sideways lasagne with pumpkin, butternut squash and spinach. This was so good, although I do think the pasta was a little overcooked (I'm not a fan of the crispy pasta texture..); despite that, the vegetables were cooked to perfection and the flavours reminded me a lot of our holiday in Italy last summer. 

We also got a taster course, something you get every month with the gold card, and this month it was a sorbet palette cleanser between main and dessert. The orange sorbet was a lovely touch and really did set me up nicely for dessert - just think San Pellegrino Aranciata Rossa in terms of taste! 

Finally, for dessert I decided I wanted to try a twist on the classic pudding of Arctic Roll, as some of you may have seen from my Instagram - a chocolate, hazelnut, vanilla and toffee combination that just made the meal that much better for me. I'm not a fan of incredibly rich desserts, I'd rather just have a bar of chocolate, however this was SERIOUSLY divine. I would go back just for this; I didn't let anyone near it! 

I don't usually go for the full 4 course meal when eating out, however the portions were just right to let you not have the "I'm so bloated I need to have someone roll me out of here" feeling. Whether that's a good point, or a very business-minded point I don't know, but it did mean I got to try more! 

I have to admit, whilst my family didn't enjoy their time as much as me - which is a shame as it was for my Mum's birthday - I would definitely go back. Maybe next time the family friend we intended to see will be there, who I know made the trip for my parents previously that much more enjoyable (feel loved, Sophie!)... For somewhere that is similar in price to Zizzis and Pizza Express, I know that I would still venture to the latter for pizza, although perhaps this will be my go-to for the 'other side' of Italian cuisine. 

Have a great weekend!
Becky xx


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