Where to find the best bagels in NYC
Some bagel shops are in the business of wacky flavors—not this Gramercy storefront, which earned its ways into the upper echelons of New York bagels for its traditional rounds (salt, sesame, poppy), sporting crowd-pleasing chew factor and expert seasoning. Pick your poison and build your own sandwich with choices of deli meats and smoked fish galore.
Bialys may be the namesame at this historic Lower East Side Jewish bakery, which opened back in 1936, but the bagels stand up on their own as a reason to visit. Made in three stages—kettled boiled, baked on burlap boards and finished on stone—the bagels have a rich sweetness courtesy of pure malt syrup.
This century-old kosher spot has an old-world reputation for producing cutting-edge artisan breads. Though aside from the classic rye, the bagels bring a new-world flare to the table. Instead of the classic boiling and baking, they use a high-tech steam oven to get the same glossy finish on each soft beauty.
The old-fashioned boil-and-bake technique stays true in this diner upgrade. Small-batch batches of low-rising dough rings are set on burlap-covered boards and given a spin in a rotating tray oven, resulting in springy-yet-crusty vehicles for spreads like beet-horseradish, cucumber-dill and wasabi-tobiko cream cheeses.
Enjoy your morning coffee in this 25-seat East Village café while you get to enjoy the show of bakers boiling rings of dough in the open kitchen. The menu includes homemade lox and regular bagels, plus "old school" versions—smaller, chewier rounds made without the dough conditioners that lend latter-day bagels their fluffiness.