Next level at Bel-Air Hilton Hotel
Molly Frazier grew up with two passions in life. One was to learn ballet, and the other was to be a professional pastry chef. At a young age, she attended the Audrain Ballet Academy and danced ballet in community theaters and parades, fulfilling that fascination.
And then just this week, her telephone rang offering her the "sweetest" opportunity to further explore her second passion. The Bel-Air Hilton in Los Angeles offered Frazier a job as a pastry cook, under the tutelage of many culinary professionals, including celebrity Chef Wolfgang Puck.
"I officially accepted the job Tuesday," the Mexico High School Class of 2008 graduate said Wednesday afternoon.
Frazier said she sent her resume to the hotel in April and was interviewed via Skype in June. Her first response to the proposition, she said, was pure excitement.
"I've always loved sweets and wanted to be a pastry chef, so hearing them say they were interested in me and wanted to know if I was interested in coming out for a working interview was fantastic," the 22-year-old said. "It's been a long time coming and a lot of hard work and prayer to get me here."
Frazier credits God, her parents and favorite teacher/mentor Chef Della Gossett for her golden opportunity. Frazier said Gossett was the person who inspired her to do an internship in Chicago.
"It's all just like a dream come true," Frazier said.
Frazier said her mother and grandmother are both good cooks. It's no wonder her culinary skills are so honed. She said her love for food started around sixth grade and increased by college.
"My roommate (Jessica Wieberg, another MHS graduate) would get excited when I was upset, because I would cook. Baking always makes me happy," she said. Her favorite element is chocolate sculptures and chocolate candies.
Frazier's job at Bel-Air as pastry cook will entail doing prep work for banquets, weddings and hotel room service as well.
"It's just an entry-level position, but it means the world to me. I look at it as the start of my career," Frazier said. "Most pastry people go out to a restaurant and work their way up. This, I believe, will take me so much farther."
She also noted that the Bel-Air Hilton is part of the Dorchester Collection, and that there are only two – soon-to-be three – in the United States. The other is the Beverly Hills Hotel.
Frazier attended Ozark Technical College on her A+ Scholarship and received her degree in culinary arts and a baking certificate. After graduating in December 2011, she entered the French Pastry School in Chicago, a six-month course that led her to an internship after she completed the program.
"It was an intense program that worked you every day, six to seven hours a day. But it was lots of fun," Frazier said.
To work with Chef Wolfgang Puck, Frazier said, will be "awesome."
"I am really to the point of just being ready. I worked with people at the pastry school — chefs Jacqui and Sebastian — who are considered the kings of pastry at the moment, so I think I will be fine," Frazier said. "And, I don't think I will be star-struck from the experience, because I'm not there to be on TV, that's not my desire. I want to learn from him and pick his brain to see how his mind works as far as pastry and cooking."
Asked how it felt to be a hometown girl who made it big, Frazier said "It may not be big in most people's eyes if I make it big, I just want to further my career and know people, who know people," To further her career, Frazier said, "It's not what you know, it's who you know."
Frazier has only been to Los Angeles twice. Her plans are to live with her father's cousin and his wife until she gets on her feet. Her ultimate dream has always been to go to Paris and open her own business as a pastry chef. This "experience of a life-time" that Bel-Air has extended, she said, "is the next step in my life, preparing me for that."
The young go-getter added: "I've worked really hard for this. Now, I'm just ready to get back into the craziness of a big volume kitchen."
Orientation for Frazier's new position starts Aug. 6 and she plans to leave for Los Angeles on Aug. 4 or Aug. 5.
"This is going to be like a never-ending access to knowledge to things I don't know, that can only make me better as a pastry professional in general. I am so excited and can't wait to get started," Frazier said.
She is the daughter of Jeff and Margaret Frazier of Mexico and one of six children. Her siblings are Caleb, Grady, Sadie, Connor and Haden. Her father is a Mexico native and her mother originally was from Ash Grove.