Of course I've been getting bialies, onion rounds, and sesame sticks for years from Kossar's at 367 Grand, but I've eschewed the bagels. They always seemed somehow wrong to me, as if the bakers' heart wasn't into trying to bake the essence of a BAGEL rather than just a round shiny bialy with a hole in it.
Two night ago, the bagels looked irresistible. And I'm chomping one now, and it's splendid. Very dense and chewy, with brown slightly crunchy skin. I think they're using sugar rather than malt, alas, but it's a low dose, at least.
I can't promise this isn't an aberration--a single magical night of bagel greatness--but here's hoping they keep it up.
Follow-up reports would be greatly appreciated!
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