Ted Corrado has been into cannabis for as long as he’s been cooking and with the third anniversary of legalization, he sees an opportunity of appreciation and a chance to dream. Corrado, 48, who heads Scale Hospitality’s culinary team as Executive Chef, is equally excited to be developing products and ideas for Miss Jones. Corrado says that the industry is still in its early days.
“Imagine having a beautiful outpost in the Muskoka’s where you could go to escape and have a beautiful meal and a curated cannabis list offered to you in whatever way you desire followed by a topical massage, then a really nice patio where you can smoke flower. This is the kind of romantic cannabis retreat that we’ll eventually offer,” says Corrado, who made his name cooking in Toronto at C5 at the ROM. For Corrado, cooking, like cannabis, is about a singular voice and a curated impression. He thinks the edibles currently on offer are limited and mass-produced, a hodge-podge of products that he appreciates, but, working with Miss Jones, he is hell-bent on improving. “If I’m going to make something, it speaks to the quality of my ingredients and the importance of seasonality,” Corrado told kind magazine in an interview at their vegetarian inspired Middle-Eastern restaurant Shook on Portland Street in downtown Toronto. “I imagine a time very soon where I can bring technique to the market—not just a so-so product in over-the-top packaging.”
Ingredients, creativity and technique are important to the man who, as much as anyone, transformed Toronto’s Queen Street West from an afterthought to a bespoke curated stretch of great restaurants and bars. Corrado believes the time is now for cannabis to experience the same love and attention. There isn’t anything wrong with the way cannabis is currently represented, but the umbrella under which cannabis consumers live is broader than the market’s current offerings. Ted Corrado, at least, has a distinct, adult point of view.
“My hope is to take the ethos of small batch production and bring a genuine and real story to life through the consumer experience,” says Chef, adding that when he publicly came out of the cannabis closet, he was surprised and encouraged by the support he received from the cooking community. “I don’t want to hide cannabis because it’s part of my life and part of all of our lives and my goal for working with Miss Jones is to help make weed this beautiful, normalized, elevated experience.”
Corrado says the innovation, for him, is just getting started, and that there’s space in the market for a brand that is bespoke. “I know where I want to get my kicks, my shirt and my food and we should have that same choice as cannabis consumers. I don’t want to go to the McDonald’s of cannabis,” he says. “I want to go to Roots or Holt Renfrew. Cannabis consumers deserve the same thing with their stores.”
For Corrado, food and cannabis go hand in hand. He believes producers of high-quality artisan products should not be afraid to add cannabis to their repertoire. He wants to make beautiful, infused honey and exquisitely crafted chocolates and says Scale Hospitality’s culinary leadership team has the talent and passion to bring his dream to life.
“What I can offer is my perspective, my experience and my passion for both cannabis and culinary. My goal is to work with Miss Jones, and tell my story,” Corrado concludes. “I’m putting it out there for everyone. If you’re into it, you’re into it and if you’re not, that’s cool, but what I’ve learned from the chef world I think also applies to cannabis: if you want to do something amazing, you have to be true to yourself.”