Howard County Savage Bonaparte Bread


Nestled in Howard County is an unincorporated community. It is set apart, it has history, it has a vibe and it has a name: Savage. On a quest to find a unique home, Savage came to mind whilst house hunting online from Pacific Grove CA. Charm, art and proximity to major commute routes peaked my interest then and it is what draws me back to this place every so often now.

Wrapped in a cloak of mystery, I ask around and no one seems to know much about Savage. Sure, it exists and it’s cool, but it is clandestine.  Savage is not a booming real estate market like most Maryland historic areas are; I’ve shown houses here a just a handful of times.

It is exclusive, but not in the way you’d think ; ie. this isn’t a great place to invest for a profitable return. You live in Savage because you want to. Things do not move at a fast pace and if you’re looking for chain store convenience, this is also not the place for you. If you seek ultra private space, a serene spot to ‘be’ this could be right for you. At this time, there are only 6 houses for sale, not much inventory for you, but I did take the time to tour my favorite style of home here (yeah…you’re going to want to click that link). She celebrated her 118th birthday this year, oh if the walls could talk! There are a limited number of duplex style homes, each with major character; boasting spiral staircases, multiple fireplaces, B&W checked flooring and some even have slate roofs. These duplex homes are the former residences of the workers in the 1800’s who made sails for the ships in Baltimore out of Savage Mill.  Drive down Baltimore St, you will pass the worker homes and feast your eyes on the beautiful Savage Mill Manor planted at the very end. If you’re curious, click here to see an updated inventory of homes in the historic area.

Now… my favorite part: what does  a Savage resident eat? Croissants! Loads and loads of delicious, fresh-baked CROISSANTS! Bonaparte Bread in the heart of Savage Mill, just guess how I found it?

I was looking for a closing gift for a client and heard there was a store at the mill that will dip anything in chocolate (even a bottle of Johnny Walker Blue). But as I walked, my nose would not allow me shop: where is this heavenly aroma originating? Literally, I walked the halls of Savage Mill following my nose. Along the way I saw: a young bride-to-be trying on a wedding dress, an artist spinning the pottery wheel and a super bougie couple antiquing. There are many hidden gems within the walls of the Mill.   

Finally, I arrived to a cafe full to the brim with families munching, an elderly couple sipping espresso and a handful of professionals with notebooks and laptops in tow. Mixed wood chairs with earth-tone leather swing back chairs,  both round and rectangular tables each donned with a small pumpkin, it was inviting and felt very lived in. Vintage photos on the wall and Parisian style music lingering in the background completed the feel. All ornate focus is on the open bakery towards the back: the massive bricked-face ovens and rows of trolley bread racks.

Surprised by the variety on the menu, there must be a follow up visit. This day, I tried both an almond croissant as well as a ham & cheese croissant because, I do not fear carbohydrates. Naturally light and flaky, but boasted with flavor. I mean it is bread, it’s bland by nature, but not here. It was thrilling to eat, the owner was so proud to deliver it to me at one of the patio tables outside. The experience, the sights and smells but also the passion with which the bakery operates inspired me to share with you. Look at this description directly from their site:

“Baking bread is a magical union of culinary science and an art form – and certainly a labor of love. Every evening our bakers arrive, mix and hand form the dough, and bake the bread all night long in a wood-fired oven so it’s ready in-store the next morning. Bonaparte’s fresh bread, with no preservatives, and made with organic flour, has to be prepared and eaten within 24 hours to experience the product at its peak. So as you’re enjoying our breads and pastries, you know they are at their peak in that particular moment in time. Real food is not only about amazing taste, it’s about how, who, and where it was made!  Bon appetit!”

So….you scrolled to the bottom just to get a synopsis

  • It is totally OK to buy a home in a place that you like, just because you like it and you will be happy there
  • Savage is historic, eclectic and exclusive with less than 10 houses on the market at a time
  • Savage Mill has fun shops ranging from wine bottles dipped in chocolate to handmade pottery
  • Bonaparte Bread is currently ranked #1 on the Local Wander’s hunt for the best Croissant
  • Support local business, support those who are passionate about their craft and you will have a truly good experience


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