Shaun King was named executive chef of The Dawson in late 20214. With a resume encompassing modern American, French and Japanese cuisine and technique, chef King has crafted a style born from his wide range in experiences. His cooking, inspired by American Regional cuisine, uses bright, fresh ingredients to create dishes that are full of flavor. From French technique and American ingredients to Japanese-inspired seasonality and simplicity, King considers his style to be an aggregate of his experience and the genesis of his inspiration. All of these influences, along with his creative approach to texture, color and unexpected flavors, help to create a range of diverse dishes at The Dawson.
Raised on the central coast of California, King took an avid interest in cooking from a young age. His love of seafood played a large part in deciding to become trained by a Japanese master chef, his childhood friend’s grandfather. It was through this experience, King learned to appreciate the bold, yet subtle flavors of Japanese cuisine, as well as the disciplined seasonality each plate presented. While King ultimately considers himself self-taught, he utilized this training and began his early professional career working his way through a variety of Japanese restaurants.
In 2005, King was named the chef de cuisine at Rick Moonen’s RM Seafood in Las Vegas. He credits Moonen as one of his mentors and someone who taught him about the importance of seafood sustainability and traceability, as well as impeccable attention to detail. In 2007, King became the executive sous chef of Sushi Samba in Las Vegas and travelled extensively to the other national locations. Following Sushi Samba, King was the executive chef at ASH Management Group for two years and then the executive chef of Los Olivos Wine Merchant & Café. In 2012, King served as chef de cuisine and helped Bradley Ogden open Root 246, a farm-to-table restaurant that places a strong emphasis on specific food & beverage pairings. Most recently, King was the executive chef at Martis Camp, a Lake Tahoe club that was voted, “#1 private club in the nation,” by Forbes Magazine.