Garrett is a friend, neighbour when he's in Perth and supporter of the brand. I met when Garrett was in the kitchen at Madalena's in South Fremantle, I was very lucky to eat there a few times and get to know every friendly face involved when Hunter briefly worked there, too. I got to use this interview to cover all bases since his move to Paris this year. I hope you enjoy this article with Garrett!
If you’re feeling uninspired, how do you transform your energy?
Move. I just moved to France in search of inspiration. I move a lot, maybe too much. There is nothing more inspiring for me than having my routine and sense of place shifted. It is not sustainable though and I envy people’s ability to hold tight and find inspiration without moving.
What rituals do you have in place to take care of yourself?
I used to go swimming. Right now I don't have the ocean so I'm riding my bike as much as possible. If I can spend an hour by myself at the beach or riding a bike a few days a week I'm all the better for it.
Who has been an expansive influence to your career so far?
I worked at a little wine bar in Fitzroy called Gertrude street Enoteca. The owner Bigitte Haffner has managed to stay a constant influence. She is a natural chef, decades of experience and a great sense of self in her cooking. At the time I was young and didn't understand her approach to cooking. I think I use more of Brigitte’s recipes now than anyone else I have worked for.
How do you successfully get out the door on time?
I pack my bag before I go to bed. I never get out the door on time.
How do you manage boundaries with your phone or computer?
I struggle. However, working in a kitchen is great for spending hours away from the tech world. I made the decision last year to cancel all of my subscriptions and put the money I had been spending there into going to the cinemas.
How do you overcome feeling anxious, uncertain, or nervous?
When I'm anxious I like to be alone. Somewhere I can see the sky and breathe lots of fresh air. If I’m uncertain or nervous I usually call my mum. We are not super close but she has a great way of making anything nerve racking sound approachable. It's always nice to speak to someone who has already gone through whatever is troubling you.
What are your rituals for sparking creativity?
Research new or old approaches to cooking. Look through all the cookbooks on the shelf and then not cook anything from them. I have a scribble pad as well with ideas that I will sometimes go back over and summarize or try to make sense of.
What are you working towards?
Learning as much as I can so that I can work for myself one day. I'm aware of how taxing it can be setting up your own shop so whilst the pressure isn't on it's great to observe how new business owners manage expectation, burnout and the stress of opening up a business.
I'm also working on trying to find out what I can actually offer that's going to stand the test of time. I don't want to work in pretentious exclusive restaurants with high price points, but they seem to be the businesses that pay well, respect their staff and use the best ingredients. I'm concerned about local food systems and a lack of community understanding on what food is available to them, what it should cost and why it isn't available all the time. I am an advocate of people who restrict or limit things in their diet for whatever choice, however with so much misinformation around food I think we could be forgetting the inspiration for those choices.
I would love to open a business that offers affordable, sustainable food that's conscious and inclusive of its community. So I'm working on finding a way to achieve that.
Garrett Murphy is a Chef now working in Paris, France. When he isn't doing doubles in the kitchen, he can be found here.