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Who We Are


We are Sherif and Nadine Farag, and the Elephantine Bakery is our dream. How we got here is a journey with twists, turns, and heaps of serendipity. The short version is this: Nadine rebelled first. After earning a Masters and completing one year of doctoral studies in global health, both at Harvard, she left to delve into her passion: the art of dress, where she writes about why and how fashion matters. A short while later, living in New York City, and working in management consulting at McKinsey & Company, Sherif too started asking the big questions: what matters, what is success?

The Elephantine Bakery is our collective answer. It is an endeavor that we believe in, one that reflects our deepest values: good food, a beautiful setting, the nurturing of community, and the art of living well.

Born and raised on the Seacoast, Sherif is a graduate of Ferandi in Paris, where he studied bread and viennoiserie under the mentorship of Didier Chaput.

For the longer version, come by the Elephantine and we’ll tell you over a cup of coffee.



The Elephantine Bakery

Elephantine Island in the Nile River, Egypt

Elephantine Island in the Nile River, Egypt

Bread is ancient. 4,000 years ago, on Elephantine Island in the Nile River, a bakery stood. Millenia later, we are still baking bread, still eating it. A testament to the fundamental place bread occupies in the human experience. For thousands of years, bread has mattered. Human beings have gathered around it, shared it, broken it. It has fed and nourished and sustained human life.

We are inspired by this history, by the timelessness of bread. Elephantine Bakery is an artisanal bakeshop serving fine breads and pastries on the New Hampshire Seacoast. We are trained in the French tradition, but our curiosity and tastes are informed by the diverse and dynamic countries that border the Mediterranean Sea.  



Our Philosophy

elephantine bakery portsmouth nh new hampshire handmade breads and pastries from scratch.png

We believe in making slow food, honoring the craft, and using exceptional ingredients. We make our bread and pastries using traditional techniques, and most of what we do is by hand. Everything at the bakery is made on site, from scratch, daily. We don’t intend for this to ever change.

We believe food is an experience, one shaped by the space you’re eating in and the music you hear and the intention of those making and serving your food.

If we had a guiding principle it would be this: the only things worth doing are those done well.

Good bread is the most fundamentally satisfying of all foods; and good bread with fresh butter, the greatest of feasts.
— james beard



A place is nothing without people. We are incredibly grateful to have this team of curious, passionate, and hard working beings making the Elephantine Bakery what it is. They pour themselves into making beautiful food, and bringing people joy.



Our small but mighty front of house operation is anchored by Brittany, a lightning bolt wrapped up in the sweetest package, a mastermind of operations who beams with curiosity and a passion for making things work better. At the bakery since its earliest days, she can do in a few minutes what takes the rest of us much more, does it always with a smile and with wit and with a sense of humor and so much grace. Her inextinguishable spirit is an endless source of joy to everyone who interacts with her, and especially to those of us fortunate enough to work alongside her.

Brittany is most at home traveling. She wants to see it all and try it all. Her adventures have taken her from Copenhagen and Hanoi, to Scotland and Norway. She has lived in five states and two countries. Her very favorite place is New Zealand. A photographer and writer, she documents her travels here.



Chris is a perfect amalgamation of polarities. He is strong and sensitive, serious and goofy, energetic and calm, incredibly driven and fun loving, all at once, all the time. An expert baker, he makes bread and croissants with so much passion for the craft, and no one shapes a more beautiful baguette. Feeling strongly that palmiers, or elephant ears, were missing from our offering, he introduced our orange zest and cardamom palmiers and is looking forward to crafting more delights.

Chris is an avid Crossfitter and loves to be outdoors, especially on a mountain. He’s hiking his way through the nearly 50 4,000-foot mountains in New Hampshire.



It took Haley no time to become utterly indispensable to our bakery. What she does here starts with her open-hearted spirit—she spreads so much joy just being. After this, the other layers that make her great come into play, and with her tireless work ethic, a natural knack for working with bread and croissants, and the artistic way she approaches her work, Hayley enriches every aspect of what we do. Prior to an interest in baking, she worked on a small organic farm in Northern New Hampshire. There, she learned to understand the land and developed a passion for soil, as well as an interest in local and sustainable agriculture.

In addition to her baking, Hayley is an artist and sculptor. She loves being outdoors, riding her bike whenever she can, doing things with her hands, and above all, loves Halloween.



Jenny set her sights on a summer job at the Elephantine Bakery while on a gap year in Indonesia. After just one FaceTime call, we were certain that Jenny would be a magical addition to what we are building here. In such a short time, she has exceeded all of our expectations with her ebullient and warm spirit. Her ample wisdom and genuine curiosity about the world are a source of daily inspiration to our entire team.

Jenny loves the ocean, and envisions building a life conserving the world’s oceans and marine life. Her spirit animal is a dolphin, which will be eminently clear once you meet her. In the Fall, she will be starting her freshman year at Bates College, where she’ll be majoring in biology and environmental studies.



When one of your most wonderful customers casually suggests her daughter is looking for summer work, you thank your lucky stars and hire her site unseen, which is what we did with Grace. Grace is whip smart, humble, hard working, passionate—in short, a bona fide force of a human being—with remarkable greatness within her and ahead of her. Her name is fitting; she does it all with such presence. And possesses a wisdom and work ethic far beyond her years.

Grace is entering her sophomore year at St. Olaf College in the Fall. She loves the ocean, and spent two weeks this summer pursuing independent research about marine parasites on the New Hampshire seacoast. She loves to tuna fish, garden, and bake. She is committed to the idea that small things have a big impact.