Having recovered from a poor start Galway looked likely winners when holding a seven-points lead early in the second half, but they ceded control at a critical stage.
Kevin Hennessy gave Cork a dream start goaling inside the first minute and the last of their five goals, from John Fitzgibbon in the 63rd minute ensured a 27th title.
Galway captain Joe Cooney was in sparkling form at centre-forward as was Tony Keady at centre-back and the duo inspired the westerners to a 1-13 to 1-8 interval lead. Cork captain Tomás Mulcahy was an influential figure after moving to centre-forward and a goal from the Glen man sparked an improvement. And at the other end Jim Cashman was dominating against Cooney. Cork went in front briefly with a Mark Foley goal and after Galway had gone back ahead, the first of two goals from Fitzgibbon turned the tide.
Scorers for Cork: J. Fitzgibbon (2-1); K. Hennessy (1-4, three frees); T. Mulcahy (1-2); M. Foley (1-1); T. McCarthy (0-3); T. O’Sullivan (0-2); G. Fitzgerald (0-1); K. McGuckin (0-1, sideline) .
Scorers for Galway: J. Cooney (1-7, two frees); M. Naughton and N. Lane (0-4 each); B. Lynskey (1-0); E. Ryan (0-2); T. Keady, M. McGrath, M. Coleman and A. Cunningham (0-1 each).
CORK: G. Cunningham; J. Considine, D. Walsh, S. O’Gorman; S. McCarthy, J. Cashman, K. McGuckin; B. O’Sullivan, T. McCarthy; G. Fitzgerald, M. Foley, T. O’Sullivan; T. Mulcahy (capt.), K. Hennessy, J. Fitzgibbon.
Subs: D. Quirke for McGuckin (44); C. Casey for B. O’Sullivan (48).
GALWAY: J. Commins; D. Fahy, S. Treacy, O. Kilkeny; P. Finnerty, T. Keady, G. McInerney; M. Coleman, P. Malone; A. Cunningham, J. Cooney (capt..), M. Naughton; M. McGrath, N. Lane, E. Ryan.
Subs: T. Monaghan for Malone (53); B. Lynskey for Cunningham (60).
Referee: John Moore (Waterford).