The New York bagel renaissance is in full swing with the opening of two cafes bringing new life to the institutional food.
Baz Bagels and Russ and Daughters Cafe both opened within days of each other, and just blocks away on Manhattan’s Lower East Side.
As the name suggests, Russ and Daughter Cafe is an expansion of the legendary appetizing shop Russ and Daughters, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. The sit-down spot will, not surprisingly, focus on the family’s famous cured fish, like “smoked salmon, sturgeon, sable, kippered salmon.” All breads are baked at a related facility in Queens; and the counter will serve up cocktails as well as LES classics like egg creams.
The cafe is on Orchard Street, around the corner from Russ and Daughters on East Houston. The decor is taken straight from the original Russ and Daughters, with illuminated signs and memorabilia on the walls.
Meanwhile, on Grand Street, Rubirosa GM Bari Mussachio and Barney Greengrass vet David Heffernan have opened Baz Bagels. The Jewish Daily Forward describes their housemade bagels:
“Plump and soft, with perfect chew, they’re hand-rolled, kettle-boiled, and baked on burlap-covered boards in a rotating oven.”
Both Baz and the Russ and Daughters Cafe are part of a trend of reinvented bagels in the city, kicked off by Black Seed Bagels last month–and that’s just north of East Houston in Nolita.