Mano Cornuto

Mano A Mano with Tyler Maher

What would a bon vivant be without his local restaurant? Having good taste isn’t limited to what we wear, it’s about having taste in all manner of things; eating and drinking well are as important to living well as anything. For us, a place that defines good taste is Mano Cornuto — it’s the epitome of a great, local joint. Good coffee flows freely in the morning and before you know it you’re three perfect negronis deep, debating who had the best first touch, Maradona or Totti? Mano doesn’t grandstand, it just oozes the effortless style of a Milanese café or low-key osteria in Rome — it’s the embodiment of timeless style. We headed out to Griffintown to catch up with one of Mano’s co-owners, Tyler Maher, and we chatted about coming up in Montreal’s restaurant scene, the meaning of hospitality and how the creativity he found in skateboarding translated to opening one of the coolest spots in town.

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TYLER - “Living well — balance, lifestyle. Not too much of one thing or the other. Whether that’s play, work, family — I think it’s really about finding balance. You have different stages in your life, to be able to identify what you need at a certain stage, that’s what we’re striving for.”

“I came from the Monkland Taverne, which is an institution in NDG, and that’s where I really learned about the restaurant community. But it was all the things we did outside of work that really taught me about what it is to really eat well.”

“Mano is a special thing. The crew that we put together is not something that existed before — we have our own, unique way of doing things. It’s real, we’re not trying to emulate something, we have our own vision of what we wanted to do.”

“It’s kind of like skateboarding. You know, sometimes, when you’re trying to decide whether to put the trick down or not. You might be like, I’m not right over the bolts but I can roll away from this. [Running a restaurant] is like trusting that instinct and [pushing on] without seeing it all perfectly.”

“In my opinion, what makes a good restaurant is all the things you don’t see in front of you — all the little details that create the experience. At the end of the day, you need to eat and you need to drink but if you can come into this space and have a little escape from everyday life — that’s what we strive for.”

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