The Daily Meal caught up with chef Daniel Furey to learn about how his travels have influenced his work. Furey is the executive chef at Cannery Row Brewing Company in Monterey, Calif., where more than 70 artisan brews are on tap. Now specializing in serving gastropub cuisine, Furey has worked in kitchens across the U.S. including Rene Bistrot in New Orleans, Everest Restaurant in Chicago, and Tap Room in Philadelphia.
The Daily Meal: What has been your most inspirational food experience while traveling?
Daniel Furey: I cannot say there has been just one food experience — every city and place has something to offer. Growing up in New England the abundance of fresh seafood and small farm products was really inspirational. Like eating lobster on the water in Maine that just came off the boat, fresh milk and cheeses in Vermont, quahog clams cooked on an open flame on a beach at home in Connecticut.
New Orleans was definitely eye-opening in terms of a food culture — people love to eat and everyone takes pride in what they cook and the restaurants of the city. Not just Creole food, but the foods of the South; crispy fried chicken and spicy collard greens, fried green tomatoes with shrimp remoulade, a craw-fish boil with andouille, corn, and potatoes.
TDM: What’s your favorite kitchen souvenir from your travels?
DF: My favorite cooking souvenir is probably my collection of spoons — some wide and fat, or deep and pointy, quenelling spoons, and saucing spoons. I am really bad about buying spoons, I pick them up everywhere, and have way too many to use.
TDM: If you could eat your way through one country, which one would it be and why?
DF: Vietnam. I love the food. The cuisine is based on flavor, not fat. The use of fermented items, vinegar, citrus, spicy chiles, and herbs. As well as just the sheer variety in the cuisine, deep curries, delicate vermicelli, porridge, and my all-time favorite sandwich, the bahn mi. It’s a culture and cuisine that I do not always understand but am intrigued and exited by.