Archive for November 11th, 2011

November 11, 2011

Frank Dodd, Jason Parsons are good friends running separate wineries

[Story first appeared on Vacay.ca]

NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE, ONTARIO—Survive war and you’ll have friends for life. For chefs Frank Dodd and Jason Parsons, the field of battle was Cliveden House, a 160-year-old manor built along the Thames in a suburb of London. With a turreted roof and massive opulence, it looks like the kind of place a tyrant would call home and, according to the chefs who’ve apprenticed there, one has.

frank dodd hillebrand winery

Frank Dodd is the chef at the outstanding Hillebrand Winery, close to his friend's restaurant at Peller. (Julia Pelish photo)

Dodd spent six months training in the British armed services and says the best thing about that experience is it prepped him for Cliveden. Parsons calls the 12 months he spent at Cliveden between 1995-96 the toughest of his 37 years of life. His wife, Meg, says the man who used to run this particular hell’s kitchen “makes Gordon Ramsay look like a pansy.”

His name is Ron Maxfield. During his time in the Cliveden kitchen, he churned out a good amount of chefs and at least one pair of brothers in arms.

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