40 Under 40: Aaron Lee, Lead Chef and Co-Owner of Winnie & Ethel’s, Downtown Diner


Aaron Lee

Thu, Mar 28, 2024 (2 a.m.)

Aaron Lee is the head chef and co-owner of Winnie & Ethel’s Downtown Diner, a restaurant concept that was brought to life as a result of The Great Las Vegas Coffee Shop Giveaway. Working in collaboration with his wife and co-owner Mallory Gott, Lee’s home-cooked favorites and Gott’s design experience won the competition in the spring of 2022 and netted the couple $1 million to open the diner.

With more than 12 years of culinary experience working with some of the best chefs in the country, Lee brings a breadth of knowledge to his business. He counts James Trees as a mentor after working as a sous chef at Esther’s Kitchen for more than four years and has experience in Michelin-starred restaurants. Lee emphasizes fresh, locally sourced ingredients, and delivers classic American cuisine with unique twists.

Family and community remain at the forefront of Lee’s vision for the diner. Today, Lee and Gott work closely together as head chef and general manager, respectively, and seek to serve the community with great food, philanthropic giving, and a thoughtful, inclusive leadership approach.

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