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Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Jamie's Italian, Newcastle - The Children's menu

We have had very mixed experiences when visiting Jamie's Italian. Our first visit was a few years ago in Covent Garden. We took our then 6 year old son and this in when we first fell in love with polenta chips. We vowed to return. The following year we tried Jamie's in York. This time it was just me and hubby and again we had a wonderful experience. I still remember the pork dish I ordered from the specials board - it was one of the most memorable meals I've ever enjoyed. Fast forward to Jamie's Italian opening in Newcastle - we were there on opening night and I loved their lamb lollipops. They were perfect! However it all went down hill after here. We have visited a few times for lunch and been let down by poor service and overcooked food. We weren't sure if we would return.

We are Gold Card members (you can sign up for free here) and when an offer popped into my inbox for a free glass of fizz for everyone on our table plus a complimentary orange sorbet, we decided to book for lunch and use up an old gift voucher that had been lurking in my purse for ages. I had a quick peek on tripadvisor and was surprised to see nothing but 5* reviews in the last 2 months. I was impressed. Perhaps the opening of The Botanist upstairs has forced Jamie's to up it's game? There was a large queue forming as we turned up for our 12noon reservation.

Complimentary glass of Prosseco

We were provided with our complimentary glasses of fizz and I have to say they were rather stingy with the measures - I think this is about 2/3 of a standard measure and it was gone in a few mouthfuls. We couldn't help but feel a little conned.

The Children's menu

The children's menu at Jamie's Italian is award winning and it's clear to see why. There are some fantastic options on there including happy fish fingers (made from sustainable fish), mini sliders and organic chicken lollipops. Mains are served with crinkle cut potatoes and a special salad shaker (which I wish my children would eat but it was sadly left untouched). The price of £5.95 includes a free glass of fresh juice too so provides good value.

Children are giving a special vegetable themed colouring sheet and their own crayons while they wait which kept them occupied.

Curly Wurly Tomato Pasta Bake

Free Range, Organic Chicken Lollipops

Happy Fish Fingers

The kids all thoroughly enjoyed their lunch (especially Jack who was tricked into eating salmon and he loved it). You can add a dessert for only 50p but we were a little pushed for time as had booked tickets at the nearby Tyneside Cinema.

We had a £25 voucher left over from Christmas to spend and I ideally did not want to spend too much more than this as money was tight. One thing that does annoy me about Jamie's Italian is that they don't offer any reduced portion/price set or lunch menus. I ended up spending £12 for a small salad and hubby spent the same on his seafood pasta (although I would say his pasta was worth this as he was served a huge portion).

So, in conclusion. The children enjoyed their lunches however they were not a patch on the kids meals at The Botanist upstairs (which also include dessert for the same price). Although our food was tasty, our meal worked out fairly expensive for lunch so I am not sure if we will return soon.  I would love to hear your family friendly recommendations for lunch in the centre of Newcastle.

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  1. I've still not been yet! I've heard the one in York is nice so I'm thinking of maybe trying there next month when we're staying in York for the weekend x

    1. The one in York is lovely - we only stumbled upon it as the queue for Betty's was too long and we had loved our experience in Covent Garden so much.

  2. I've had very mixed experiences at Jamie's Italian too. The last time we went (with 4yo) we ordered the kids' chargrilled chicken. We asked the waitress how chargrilled it will be and she said not much. But there was loads of black bits all over it and we spent the meal picking them all off! Not massively helpful!

    1. Hmmm not good! Nobody likes burnt chicken!

  3. I have never been but wondered about going. It does seem a bit hit and miss

  4. We've always had excellent service and the food's been well cooked, but the main course portions are tiny so they can upsell the sides. We've never been back since the over-priced for what it was meal left us so hungry we stopped off for chips on the way home! That's never happened to us anywhere else! #tastytursdays

  5. Really helpful review thanks. We've not been but after this might prioritise one of the many other restaurants in Newcastle when we do make it out xx

  6. Really fair review hun that will help others, maybe best for a special occasion. Thanks for linking up to #tastytuesdays x


I always love reading your thoughts and comments - Sam x

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