Fresh off a plane and with a climb up the Sydney Harbour Bridge with adult daughter Poppy under his belt, Jamie Oliver has hosted an exclusive brunch on Royal Caribbean’s Ovation of the Seas at Sydney Overseas Passenger Terminal.

The event, marked his decade-long partnership with Royal Caribbean and the launch of its biggest ever summer season in Australia.

In addition, the chef, who started work at the family pub restaurant in Essex as a teenager, said docking a ship in Sydney with a Jamie’s Italian restaurant on board was a dream come true.

“As a family my mum and dad worked very very hard so we could go on a cruise every year, so those memories are absolutely burnt in my mind,” he said at the brunch.

“I promise you this is just not another thing! It’s not brand slapping, we get geeky about it. We love it.”

Pasta is made fresh daily on each of Royal Caribbean’s Jamie’s Italian. To demonstrate, the chef and his crew started pumping out 30-metre long ribbons of 00 flour, semolina flour and egg tagliatelle from a brass extrusion pasta machine along the length of the restaurant.

Moreover, the rest of the menu, from truffle arancini and amalfi lemon cheesecake to homemade focaccia, calabrian chicken and crispy squid, can be enjoyed in comfort inside or in the outside alfresco dining area of the Jamie’s Italian. Additionally, Jamie’s is one of the chef’s 76 restaurants in 22 countries around the world. On the other hand, Jamie’s Italian on Ovation of the Seas, which requires a booking, can serve up to 500 covers a day.

A sample menu from Jamie’s Italian onboard Royal Caribbean.

Oliver gives team credit

Oliver says Jamie’s Italian on Ovation of the Seas, and seven other venues on the cruise line present very little trouble with much positive feedback thanks to his front and back of house teams, who he describes as “ninja”.

“I have a team which are involved in every intricacy of every ship and every launch and every menu menu. It’s loved. It’s cared for. And it’s not just faxed through,” he said. “I’m very proud to do this. My team is very proud.”

In addition, the restaurant is a favourite  for families, as it provides both a quick and easy option or a place to linger.

“It feels like a little neighbourhood restaurant on this incredible ark that’s going around.”

Furthermore, Oliver, who also brought along wife Jools for the Australian trip, says having restaurants on Royal Caribbean ships is a dream come true.

“This really is a dream for that little boy that grew up in the restaurant. I can’t believe that we have eight of these restaurants on these incredible ships.” 

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Jamie's Italian
Jamie Oliver in Sydney next to Ovation of the Seas.