Last week I sat down with Ryan Maloney, the Director of Operations at Jimmy’s Coffee. With over 18 years in coffee, Ryan has experience at the management level at Starbucks and recently moved onto Jimmy’s -- one of Toronto’s hippest multi-location, independent coffee shops! This is the 4th of a 4 part mini-series where we try to uncover Toronto’s long-standing urban myth… who is Jimmy?
“I’m sure you get this all the time.. but who is Jimmy!?”
Phil Morrison is the owner of Jimmy’s Coffee, opening the doors to his first location on December 10th 2009. Surprised the owner’s name isn’t Jimmy?.. So are we!!
It all started when Phil got in early on what is now some prime Toronto west-end real estate. He purchased the first Jimmy’s location on Portland Street, with intentions of investing in property and becoming a landlord. The street-front first floor seemed to be an excellent location for a coffee shop, as freed was about to begin some massive redevelopments of the area which would mean office and residential space all around it! Phil thought.. ‘what the heck, let’s try opening a cafe!’
Ryan explains how he has heard Phil in storied conversations throughout the years about Jimmy.. who Jimmy is and why he named his coffee shop after this elusive character. A big music buff, Phil found inspiration for the name in some of his favourites -- James Dean, Jimmy Hoffaa, Jimi Hendirx, Jimmy Carter, Jim Morrison, Jimmy Durante, the list goes on and on.
The truth is, we all know and love a Jimmy. Your friend Jimmy, uncle James, good ol’ Jim from down the road. Jimmy is everywhere.
The story makes so much sense when you pop into a Jimmy’s Coffee and realize how comfortable and welcoming it is. Whether it’s your first time there, or you’re a committed regular, the vibes in there feel like a warm hug from your favourite Jimmy!