General Manager Darren Espy is truly in the prime of his career. Most recently, he: 

Now he gets to join the nation’s top 100 Taco Bell Managers and Area Coaches on a trip to Hawaii. Taco ‘bout some awesome news! 

Darren is a Manager Supreme, overseeing one of the busiest Taco Bells in the world. Whether playing host to a pack of hungry tourists or serving up Taco Bell faves at weddings and special events (like DRG’s race day watch party), the Vegas Cantina is a popular hotspot. 

At the time of our interview, Darren and his team were gearing up for Super Bowl Sunday on the Strip!

The Gold Standard

So what’s the big deal about this latest accolade?

Golden Bell metrics are based on the number of customer complaints, CORE audits, and star ratings.

“We came out on top,” Darren shares proudly. “It’s truly exciting to achieve that goal.” But, one and done” is not his plan here — Darren’s already planning what’s needed to keep the Cantina’s spot on top.

“What do I do to maintain that standard?” he’s been asking himself.

But this is a guy who’s spent his entire career in Quick Service Restaurants (20 years with KFC!). If anyone can figure out a recipe for success, it’s Darren.

Darren’s motto: Work smarter, not harder. 

His other nuggets of wisdom: 

  • Surround yourself with great people.
  • Continue to be the best you can be.
  • Respect the people around you.
  • Equip your team with the tools they need to be successful.


For now, Darren appreciates the uniqueness of his job as manager of a Taco Bell Cantina in Las Vegas.

“When you’ve been in the business this long, you can get bored,” he says. But according to Darren, the Cantina setting is so different — especially in Sin City — that it keeps things new and exciting.

It’s fun to come to work,” he says. “I enjoy what I do.” Read more about why here.

“If I can retire doing what I’m doing, I will.” – Darren Espy, RGM

In the meantime, he’s got a trip to look forward to! This isn’t Darren’s first chance to see Hawaii — he once graciously gifted his parents a trip that he’d won while being a top performer at KFC. But finally it’s his turn!