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Meet Cheryl Holbert of Nomad Bakery in Derry

Today we’d like to introduce you to Cheryl Holbert.

Cheryl, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I was always inspired by the baking of my mother and grandmother, but preoccupied with my own goals until feeling a bit homesick in my first apartment after college. Creating a simple sandwich loaf filled my kitchen with wonderful aromas and memories and made me feel more at home.

Years later, when I chose to stay home and raise our children, I itched for a creative challenge that might also bring us all around the table in a meaningful way. Nothing could accomplish that like bread. I was smitten by every part of the process and baked daily, sharing bread with family and friends.

As I continued my home baking, I also became involved in tapestry weaving and other fiber arts and created a second career as a teacher and coordinator for arts outreach programs at the Currier Museum in Manchester, NH, as well as other schools and community centers in the Southern NH area. As much as I enjoyed the experience, baking beckoned me back to the kitchen, so I started a homestead food business and began selling my bread at farmers markets, retail stores and to individual customers in my community of Derry and beyond.

Eventually, weaving and baking found their ways back to each other and I now integrate the two in special commission bread designs.

Has it been a smooth road?
My homestead bakery has unfolded steadily without major issues up to this point, but I was also very purposeful about taking my time and allowing the growth of my skill as a baker to run parallel to that of my business. The main area of challenge has always and will always be creating a loaf that is better than the one that preceded it, to wield the mysterious elements and process which result in a loaf of bread in a way that honors and elevates the craft of true artisan bread baking.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
I bake for my community, using organic and locally sourced ingredients. This has led me to amazing partnerships with area farmers and food producers and I’ve been thrilled to be part of an evolving local food movement here in Southern NH. I’ve become known for my organic sourdough loaves, Middle Eastern flatbreads, and challah designs, which have taken on an artistic quality from my love of weaving. My own diverse heritage has inspired me to learn the breads of many cultures and include them in my repertoire. And my monthly baking classes draw students from my hometown to different regions throughout the U.S.

Is our city a good place to do what you do?
I think Boston is an ideal city for a bakery such as mine. Its love of food, culture and community is wonderfully conducive to the warm sense of gathering that a bakery creates. That said, the cost of starting an artisan bakery can be very high, and I would recommend doing one’s homework before embarking on that venture.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Jessica Ramos

Getting in touch: BostonVoyager is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

1 Comment

  1. Tess Crick

    June 12, 2018 at 5:08 pm

    Cheryl’s bread is second to none. While a work of art in itself, it is also a sensory delight in sight and taste. Get a loaf! You won’t be sorry.

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