By David Greenberg
I grew up and spent my first 21 years in New York City. Bagels were a staple of our diet. I’m talking about real New York bagels – not Jersey and not Connecticut – but fresh, delicious bagels made on the spot in those little New York City storefronts.
I’d say that makes me an expert, as much as anyone in Gainesville, on what is a real New York bagel. If you want to experience the fresh, delicious taste of a real New York bagel, go no further than the Bagel Bakery in the Millhopper Shopping Center.
That’s because every day the bakers at the Bagel Bakery arrive at 2 a.m. Starting with bags of flour, four days a week knead and shape the fresh dough. Every morning, the bagels are boiled and then baked. If they are not boiled, they are not real, fresh New York bagels.
That may be enough for some people to get their bagel fix at the Bagel Bakery, but there’s more.
Bagel Bakery offers fresh-ground, specialty coffee, roasted on site. Much of the coffee comes directly from farmers in Guatemala. Bagel Bakery owner, Ken Rembert, makes trips every year to Guatemala to do charitable work, and he pays the farmers better-than fair market price for their coffee.
There’s delicious pastries or muffins, and if you prefer, you can have sandwiches for breakfast or lunch substituting wraps or focaccia for your bagel.
You can eat in, take out or have the Bagel Bakery cater your special affair.
Plus, Ken is known for his charitable activities in Gainesville, as well as Guatemala. The Bagel Bakery regularly sponsors special events in the community.
But that’s still not enough. The Bagel Bakery may be the friendliest place in town. Stealing a line from the TV-show Cheers, it’s the place where everyone knows your name.
Here’s an example. Recently two people met at the Bagel Bakery. One had moved away from Gainesville years ago and just returned. When they saw each other, they realized they went to elementary school together – 50 years ago.
The Bagel Bakery is a spot where Gator fans tolerate Seminole and Hurricane fans. You can’t find that in a lot of places.
Even more than that, it’s a place where a Red Sox fan and a Yankee fan can get along – at least some of the time.
So, if you want to experience a place with delicious New York bagels, great fresh-ground coffee and other culinary delights, as well as a friendly atmosphere, you’re looking for the Bagel Bakery. Join us!