Brandon Gray talk culinary influences, food trends and The Globe, interview

Contestant Brandon Gray cooking process, with Host and Judge in backround, as seen on The Globe, Season 1. Photo provided by Food Network
Contestant Brandon Gray cooking process, with Host and Judge in backround, as seen on The Globe, Season 1. Photo provided by Food Network /

Food Network fans are intrigued by the new show The Globe and chef Brandon Gray made a huge impression on his episode. While host Robert Irvine related to Chef Gray’s Navy connection, the reality is that this talented chef has used all of his experiences to flavor his culinary achievement.

Recently, Brandon Gray spoke to FoodSided. From food trends to traveling the world, this well-seasoned chef is always ready for the next great adventure.

Chef Gray shares that he “learned how to cook white taking a cooking class in high school. That was my first formal training.” While cooking for the Navy has its own nuance, it has nothing on his other restaurant experiences.

Specifically, Chef Gray said, “Cooking in some of the top restaurants is a harder task than cooking in the Navy as the chefs I’ve worked for are the best in the world. The attention to detail is magnified, and you have to be a lot more precise with your delivery as there are multiple components per dish.”

While those celebrated restaurants helped him hone his skills, the talented chef has taken on many culinary adventures. In some ways, all of these food and travel experiences help Chef Grey not only in The Globe culinary competition but make him a more successful chef.

Commenting on his culinary journey, Chef Gray said, “Australia was my first global restaurant. After I left the military, I traveled to work in Australia for 1 year, then after that year I traveled to Thailand for a few months, and finally Europe. The food in Thailand specifically spoke to me. That’s where my love for Southeast Asian food started. The time that I spent in Japan of course also inspired my culinary creativity. I model most of my career after the strive for perfection in Japanese cuisine.”

Although perfection might be a lofty goal, Chef Gray appreciates that food sparks a conversation beyond the plate. That connection between food, travel and culture can foster a deeper thought.

Chef Gray said poignantly, “There’s an underlying love language. The best memories in my life have always had amazing food near. Food brings people together and is an automatic focal point of any conversation. Tasting someone’s else’s culture through food is like being gifted the best experience in life, especially if it’s a culture you don’t know too much about.”

Even as those special experiences are ingrained in his memories, Chef Gray appreciates that there are even greater impacts beyond the food served on the table and the memories ingrained in people’s minds. Understanding how and why food impacts the world and each other needs to be part of the discussion.

As Chef Gray believes, “It’s always better to eat a product knowing that it comes from trusted purveyors. It helps the environment and supports local farms and fishermen. I shop at the farmers market weekly and have been since 2016. You build a relationship with the farmer and get the best available product while in season. The food tastes like what it’s supposed to taste like. Good seafood is never cheap and cheap seafood is never great, and the same goes for any other product on the market.”

Even as people further the conversation about food connections, more and more people are looking ahead to what will be the next big food trend or emerging food culture. When asked his opinion, Chef Gray had a clear opinion. He said, “I think Middle Eastern or Italian food. There have been so many pizza pop ups that were started during the pandemic that may pick up a lot of steam. I’ve always loved the food in Dubai whenever I went, and cuisine from places like Tel Aviv is slowly emerging here in LA.”

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Chef Brandon Gray is a chef and consultant who appeared on the Food Network’s The Globe. The Globe can be streamed anytime on Discovery+.