Ever planned a weekend getaway around a bakery visit? I have, and if the idea sounds crazy, then you obviously have never been to Wild Sweet William’s Bakery in Searcy.
We are smack dab in the middle of a global pandemic, a time when quick, plane-free road trips are all the rage. Knowing this, I set out to find a quiet spot within a two-hour drive of Little Rock. Hello, Pangburn. A secluded AirBnB right on the Little Red River–which also happened to be a short, 20-minute drive from Wild Sweet William’s Bakery—would do the trick.
As the rest of my family slept in on a Saturday morning, I scooted off for a lovely backroads drive into Searcy, making sure to arrive by 8 a.m. That is the thing about Wild Sweet William’s, you better get there plenty early or run the risk of them running out of your favorite confections. Although, truth be told, it is hard to pick a favorite.
Everything at Wild Sweet William’s is amazing, and that includes a vast assortment of scones, rolls, cookies, muffins, and, of course, the kolaches. The latter is a doughy, yeasty pastry traditionally filled with fruit or cream cheese. Wild Sweet has those, but whether the kolache is sweet or savory, the shop also enjoys veering from the norm, offering flavors like pimento cheese, coconut pecan, and sausage pesto. Weekly themes, like “A Trip to the Tropics,” push owner Lisa Ford’s creativity to the max, as evident by the Pineapple and Dulce de Leche Kolache I happily devoured standing outside the shop. Hey, I had to have one for the road. My family was probably still asleep, anyways.
I am particularly fond of the lemon blueberry roll, a massive, spiral delight with a subtly sweet glaze. The lavender white chocolate scone is a winner, as are any of the buttery baby cakes. If chocolate babka is in the case, get it.
With all my travels throughout Arkansas over the past several years, I can safely say Wild Sweet William’s is the best bakery I’ve come across in the state. Just being inside the small shop–inhaling the sweet smells, watching regulars come in and out, and eyeing the bakers doing their thing in the open kitchen–is an absolute joy. Whether you agree or not with my hyperbole, one thing is for certain, Wild Sweet William’s will not disappoint. Just walk in and ask one of the staff members to fill a box with whatever they want.
It’s all good.
And the AirBnB wasn’t too shabby either.
Wild Sweet William’s Bakery
304B S Main Street (Searcy)
Phone: (501) 593-5655
Hours: Wednesday-Sunday 7 a.m.-noon; Closed Monday & Tuesday