Belle’s Bagels: The End of a Long Journey
Bagels are an essential part of my diet. I must have one at least once every couple of weeks.
I grew up in New York City, the bagel making Mecca of the world, and “the bagel” is not only a part of a New Yorkers diet but also a part of their culinary heritage.
Now I love Los Angeles.
I sincerely do. In the past decade or two the food scene here rivals anywhere else in the world; and it excels in some areas, but has fallen short in others.
And as far as bagels are concerned LA gets a D+, maybe a C, if I am feeling generous.
They just suck here.
(The scallion cream cheese at Brooklyn Bagel Bakery is amazing!)
However, even the best of the best bagel makers in Los Angeles haven’t nailed the texture of a truly fine bagel.
A perfect bagel must have not only a chewy and soft inside but it requires a firm, hard, thin crunchy shell on the outside. For some reason LA bagels have had an aversion to this outer-layered texture.
Don’t ask me why.
And for the past 17 years my diet has been made to suffer with less then properly prepared bagels.
Angelenos, I would like to introduce you to Belle’s Bagels in Highland Park, CA.
Belle’s Bagels is run by two friends, Nick Schreiber and J.D. Rocchio, who share my love and respect for what a bagel should be. They didn’t try to recreate a New York Bagel, but they succeeded in creating the excellence of what a fine quality bagel should be.
They are hand rolled, made out of organic ingredients “whenever possible” and they source their materials regionally.
If you want to find out more about the process of how they make their bagels, their pricing and how to purchase go to their website.
This is a burgeoning start up and they don’t have their own store yet. You have to order their bagels on-line from their website for pick up at La Perla Bakery or you can get delivery; orders must be placed at least three days in advance.
They offer plain, sesame, poppy seed and everything bagels. I’m hoping they come out with an onion bagel soon.
They also sell Sierra Nevada Cream Cheese and a house made lox schmear.
Now for a FLAVORBONER BONUS!
They also sell some of the best Smoked Atlantic Salmon that I have ever had in LA. And I’ve had a lot. It is provided by Michel Cordon Bleu, and it is truly outstanding.
Thanks to Belle’s Bagels I can enjoy one of my all time favorite breakfast and brunch meals… a bagel with Smoked Atlantic Salmon, capers, red onion, cream cheese and freshly squeezed lemon.
FYI, you prepare your smoked fish plate like so…
After toasting, you dress your bagel first with cream cheese, and then decorate with your red onion and caper.
Then you put her pretty little summer dress on gently…
Squeeze your lemon wedge over generously then take your first bite of nirvana.
If you are a fan of bagels, if you are a proud card carrying member of the N.L.A. (National Lox Association), you will not find this delicacy anywhere better than your own kitchen; as long as you have these ingredients.
Next Sunday, plan ahead, place your order, pick up Belle’s Bagels, Michel Cordon Bleu smoked salmon, and get your FlavorBoner on.
There is even a Trader Joe’s nearby in Eagle Rock to pick up your accoutrements on the way home.
You’ll thank me, as I have thanked, Belle’s Bagels.