A couple of weeks ago Jamie Oliver’s temple to all things Jamie Oliver opened on Notting Hill Gate. I think I was in NYC the weekend it opened and since the I’ve peeked in but never summoned the curiosity to enter.
Until this weekend.
First impressions (will remain only first as I will explain later) are of a very over produced Epcot / Disney World experience. The chefs doing cooking demonstrations are human as far as I can tell (the only seem to chop) and there is no Space Mountain but this is contrived brand experience at its worst.
My companion for the experience and I circled the ground floor – so much space devoted to so much tat and props and then climbed the stairs to experience the consumption side of things.
At the top of the stairs the friendly greeter informed us, no warned us, that if we wanted food it would be a 20-30 minute wait.
She said we could have the corner table once it was cleared of a few glasses. We waited and then sat down. Still no one cleared it. We waited some more and then left.
Trial not completed.
Perhaps the purpose is to make more money from selling choppers and cookbooks to tourists and lots of cooking demos at £40 a pop.
Or perhaps it is one big old branding exercise.
I give it 6 months before they are ripping out the props and running it as an eatery proper. Without the 20 minute food delay.