As executive chef at Frackelton’s Fine Food and Spirits, Jordyn Bason is not shy about how much she loves her job.
Bason started with Frackelton’s as a dishwasher six years ago when they first opened, and she didn’t know anything about professional cooking. One day, when the head chef asked her if she wanted to work on the line, she showed enthusiasm and he gave her a chance. Bason learned everything she could over the following years.
“I kept pushing. I offered to do all the little things to catch the chef’s eye and worked my way up. I worked every position on the line,” she said.
Eventually, Bason became the sous chef.
“The last executive chef thought I was good and wanted the best of the best,” she said. “He understood that, at 24 years of age, I didn’t have the experience. I could make specials, but there’s so much more. So, he hired a professional. A guy who could do restaurant rehab. He showed me everything I needed to know.”
The plan was for Bason to move up to executive chef last October, but she had two hip surgeries and was out for three months.
“It was a very boring three months, and I was eager to get back to work,” she said.
In November, she finally reached the goal she had been working toward for six years.
“I love Frackelton’s,” Bason said. “It’s a community in the heart of downtown with big, open windows. I love the people who work here.”
In particular, Bason appreciates, as a person with tattoos and piercings, that she doesn’t ever get judged.
“It’s a refreshing feeling for me,” she said. “It can be nerve-wracking in an open kitchen. People are always watching and can talk to you, but I’ve never gotten any judgment.”
As a chef, Bason keeps pushing forward, creating new things. She is proud to take feedback and accommodate diners’ allergies and preferences.
“I love coming into my job every day,” she said. “There are several regulars who come in because of the atmosphere.”
With its historic building and a progressive atmosphere, Bason said Frackelton’s has a lot to offer.
“It creates a little community,” she said.
Bason grew up in Story and went to Holy Name Catholic School from pre-school through eighth grade with the same 10 kids.
“Living in Story, I was more alone and didn’t have the same stuff town people had,” Bason recalled. “My dog Sadie was my best friend in the entire world. She would walk down the road to meet the school bus every day.”
She developed a huge love for animals, even snakes and spiders, and the outdoors.
“I climbed trees, had treehouses, hung out with deer,” Bason said. “I wanted to be a vet. After high school, I bounced around in my head what I wanted to be – a lawyer, nurse, or a vet. I lost my way after high school.”
That’s how she ended up dishwashing and finding her love of cooking.
“I don’t know what the future holds,” she said. “Life is always evolving. For right now, I’m pretty content doing what I love.”
“If I had to let people know one thing,” Bason said, “it’s this: You work hard, and you get what you want.”
By: Kevin M. Knapp