Ben Herrera, Head Chef & Owner of 121, is a native of Boulder, Colorado. He grew up in a large Italian family gathered around the Sunday dinner table. The women in Ben’s life growing up, his mother, aunt & especially his grandmother fueled the fire for cooking in him at an early age. He would beg them to let him in the kitchen to learn and help. Well it paid off… he has been cooking & loving food for over 25 years as a professional chef and restaurant owner.
When Ben was 15, he got his first job working in a diner on weekends, holidays and the summer. This experience solidified his desire to become a professional chef. He began college and then transferred to culinary school. Ben graduated from Emily Griffith School of Opportunity, Culinary School in Denver, Colorado. He went on to earn the American Culinary Federation accredited apprenticeship with Westin Hotels, Tabor Center, followed by the “Chef de Cuisine” accreditation.
He has worked under many chefs and many talented culinarians. Bens work experience ranges from large hotel and resort properties to small independent fine dining and casual restaurants. All of which has molded his career to be what it is today. His family life brought him to SWLA 17 years ago where the food & culture are rich and the people are colorful! A great palate to pursue his passion of great food for great people! When asked, what is it that drives you? His answer is “I simply love food; I love the different cultures behind the food. I love wines and how they pair with the food.”