Veteran culinary artist and chef Ben Davis serves as Executive Chef for Paragon Gaming’s The Den, a southwest Las Vegas bar and restaurant acclaimed for its neighborhood atmosphere and original menu of breakfast, lunch, and dinner specialties. Chef Davis brings more than 30 years of experience to the role, having spent his life applying the knowledge passed down from his parents, while sharpening his culinary and leadership skills in the kitchens of Las Vegas’ busiest casino-resorts.
Chef Davis spent his early childhood in Miami, where he observed and assisted at his mother and father’s roadside barbecue stand. After relocating with his family to Georgia, he started working at Western Sizzlin steakhouse. Although he was just 12 years old when he started, Chef Davis proved to be a quick learner, earning a promotion to Assistant Manager at 14 and becoming District Manager overseeing multiple locations at 18.
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“I wanted to be a football player, but I started in the culinary game really young and grew into it,” Chef Davis explains. “I started focusing all of my time and energy on culinary instead [of football].”
After moving to Atlanta, Chef Davis began working at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, training under French Chef Juan Pierre. In 1991, Chef Davis moved to Las Vegas, a city that he describes as the “Mecca” of the culinary world.
Shortly thereafter, his career began to take off. He served as a member of the opening team for the debut of Station Casinos’ Boulder Station in 1994, and quickly rose through the ranks from Lead Cook to Room Chef within two years. At Boulder Station, he was responsible for overseeing the resort’s steakhouse as well as its Italian and Mexican restaurants, and eventually rose to the title of Chef de Cuisine. Throughout his tenure, Chef Davis worked on the opening team for some of Station Casinos’ largest properties, including Sunset Station and Green Valley Ranch.
Chef Davis later helped open several Timbers restaurant locations on Las Vegas’ west side, which eventually led him to joining the Paragon Gaming family at The Den.
“I think the most important part of my job is making people happy,” he says. “I always watched my mom and dad, and they were really focused on customer service and satisfaction.”
Chef Davis has taught cooking classes for the College of Southern Nevada and has trained future professionals as part of the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts internship program.