After completing a 2 year professional cookery course in 2000, Leona went on to work in various restaurants and hotels in Ireland and the UK. Returning to Cork in 2004, while working as a Chef de Partie, she completed a Diploma in Advanced Pastry followed by a Bachelor of Arts in Culinary Arts.
In 2007, Leona accepted the head chef position in Crackpots Restaurant in Kinsale, Co. Cork. She worked there for 5 years while simultaneously completing a Masters in Teaching and Learning at WIT. Taking a break from the kitchen, she began lecturing in the Kinsale College of Further Education on culinary arts, setting up and teaching Fetac Level 5 Professional Cookery.
Moving back to the kitchen, Leona took on the busy challenge of the head chef position at Electric Bar & Restaurant in Cork City.
With this vast experience under her belt she felt it was time to try her own project. After hearing of a suitable space in Kinsale she jumped at the chance. In January 2015 she open the doors of Nine Market Street.
The restaurant is a cosy 25-seater with 4 guestrooms over head. Leona believes in good quality simple food. The majority of the produce is locally sourced with everything made fresh in house. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and can cater for big groups and private parties. The rooms upstairs are all ensuite with tv, coffee making facilities and free WiFi.