Cori Murphy’s Local Faves
After hours with the Lavelle pastry chef
by Corey Mintz
Lavelle pastry chef Cori Murphy has been working in kitchens — previously at Canoe and then Alo — for seven years. During that period, she’s often gone out every single night. The after-work kitchen beer becomes drinks at the nearby bar, requiring food to soak it up, and a third drink to wash down the food. “It is an expensive habit to keep up,” she admits. And although she’s dialled it down lately to save for her wedding next summer, she still finds time to explore the city.
Cori begins most days with a Nespresso at home. Or, she’ll stop at Jimmy’s on the way to Lavelle, a rooftop restaurant that features an outdoor pool and intricately-plated dishes with just a touch of Frenchnicity.
At the end of a 13-hour work day making elegant desserts for the bottle-service crowd — spiced pumpkin mousse coated in a chocolate/chestnut shell, carrot cake with yogurt cremeux and bruleed Thumbelina carrot — Murphy likes to unwind with a negroni, followed by another negroni, at cocktail bar Rush Lane.
“Rush Lane’s negroni is perfectly balanced,” explains Murphy. “And it comes with a great vibe and great service.”
At Bellwoods Brewery, Murphy mostly sticks to fries, while enjoying the brewpub’s Jelly King wild ale or Roman Candle IPA.
If she’s hungry, she’ll head to 416 Snack Bar, utensil-free progenitor of Toronto’s snackbar trend. Taking advantage of a kitchen that stays open until 2 a.m., Murphy and her and co-workers graze on steamed buns, Korean fried chicken or beef tartare while hollering over the deafening music.
On days that she’s not working, Murphy also likes to completely unplug from the restaurant business.
“In my time off, I get together with my non-industry friends, talk about normal things, go to the island, play bocce or binge watch a TV series on Netflix.” Many nights these days, she says, are devoted planning her wedding. And no, she’s not making her own cake.
“I don't love big wedding cakes. I’m getting a pastry chef friend to do a pie table for me.”
627 King St. West
735 Queen St.
563 Queen St W
416 Snack Bar
181 Bathurst street
124 Ossington Ave