Jasmine House remains true to ‘home-style’ Italian cuisine

Right: Jasmine House’s ‘Pane, Fave e Cicoria’. (Photo: Mario Junior Appiani/JNews) Left: Jasmine House’s ‘Linguine di mare’. (Photo: Mario Junior Appiani/JNews)
AMMAN — Named after the lovely jasmine plant in its garden, “Jasmine House” seeks to bring to Jordan traditional “home-style” southern Italian cuisine.اضافة اعلان

The feeling you get as soon as you walk in to the place, located in the heart of Jabal Luwaibdeh, in a 1950’s villa, is that you are literally entering someone’s house, an impression that is quickly confirmed by the staff’s warm and friendly welcome.

The décor is simple and authentic to its concept; white is the predominant colour, providing a bright, fresh, and graceful atmosphere.  Old Italian songs played in the background, taking me back to memories of my adolescence years in Italy. 

Jasmine House has a simple one-paged menu that changes seasonally, but remains always true to its Mediterranean flavours. As soon as I started going through the menu, Chef Vincenzo Fullone came to my table and introduced his dishes in their minimal details and suggested the special of the day to try.

The first of the selection of starters he prepared for me was a classic “bruschetta”; crunchy toasted sourdough bread served with two toppings: homemade black olive tapenade and sun-dried tomato pesto. 

The second starter was “Pane, Fave e Cicoria”, a dish of peeled broad beans cream, cooked in southern Italy’s traditional way, in a pot of clay.  The beans cream were topped with whole Jordanian black olives, and in the centre, a tower of baked shell of sourdough bread filled with wild chicory. 

I ended the starters with an amazing “insalata di ricotta fresca”; the ricotta cheese is made from scratch by chef Vincenzo using fresh local cow milk, and the whole dish is elegantly balanced by a combination of different green leaves, truffle oil, cherry tomatoes all dressed up with balsamic vinegar, and a homemade fig mustard. 

For, my main course Chef Vincenzo prepared “Linguine di mare”. On a first look, this might sound as a simple pasta dish, but the process of preparation and study behind this entrée is simply mesmerizing: A premium quality linguine pasta cooked halfway in boiling water, and then in a seafood broth for the pasta to absorb as much of the seafood flavour as possible. The dish is presented with a tartare of the Red Sea Grey shrimps from Saudi Arabia, scented with in-house oven dehydrated powder of Cozze Nieddittas (very flavourful mussels of the Sardinian sea), and garnished with crunchy fried seaweed. 

This dish is most probably one of the most unique seafood pastas I ever had; a pasta with every single element perfectly combined to intrigue all your senses.

To cap off my Italian lunch, I had to go for a typical Italian dessert, so I opted for the “Tiramisu”. 

Chef Vincenzo prepares it himself, with Italian Savoiardi biscuits, fresh local eggs and mascarpone cream cheese, layered in a small glass jar and dusted with dark cacao powder.

I must say that going to Jasmine House is a true southern Italian dining experience of elaborate dishes, in which the main elements are fresh ingredients, quality, and passion. 

Chef Vincenzo truly reflects all those qualities in his “canvas”, and if you get the opportunity to meet him and listen to how he presents his creations you will absolutely agree that he is an artist; he was, in fact, able to create in Amman a restaurant that is also a house, in which you are invited to discover the unique marriage of flavours and cultures.

Jasmine House has a beautiful cosy garden that goes all around the house, ideal for an outing with family and friends, even simply just for a peaceful afternoon to enjoy a cup of coffee, dessert, and melodious Italian music. 

Alcohol is not available at Jasmine House, but you can bring your own and you will be charged a minimal corkage fee.

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