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Nov 8, 2011 02:37 AM

Are Spread bagels all that?

I was in Manhattan last weekend and had the best bagel I've ever had from a shop called Essa Bagel. It was everything a bagel should be - a little crispy on the outside, soft and chewy on the inside and hot out of the oven, so no toasting was necessary. Add to that it was HUGE, about the diameter of a saucer

How are the bagels at Spread? Can anyone weigh in on how they stack up?


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  1. They are Montreal style, which is different than NY. That means they are on the smaller side and a little sweet. They are served hot out of the oven so no toasting should be needed.

    I went to Spread when it first opened and wasn't impressed, especially for the price, but since then they had a fire, closed, reopened and lowered prices. I rode by on Sunday and the line was down the block, so I guess they are doing something right, give it a try and let us know.

    1 Reply
    1. re: barryg

      I think the bagels are definitely better since they reopened.
      I also think they're about as big as I'd want a bagel to be - they are pretty dense and filling after all.

    2. I got a dozen for the office a few weeks ago. Everyone raved about them. I'd go again, but sparingly. I think for the bagels plus one cream cheese, it was $23.00.

      1 Reply
      1. re: lbmsw

        I like them. They are a bit crustier and smaller than your traditional bagel but I think that is why I like them. I do wish they have more of a variety of flavors since they all kind of taste pretty similar.

      2. I think it's partly relative: Philly has lacked good bagels, so they're a welcome arrival. They are pricey, so I don't stock up on them regularly.

        Mind you, every time I'm in New York I bring up a dozen bagels to freeze.

        1. as others have said, their montreal-style bagels are ... different. if you try to evaluate them according to the standard of the new york bagel (in my mind, H&H with zabar's cream cheese and lox), they will fail. they will fail hard. personally, i don't think of them as bagels, or else i can't get over that. i think of them as sandwiches with holes in the middle.

          so considered broadly as sandwiches, they're certainly tasty. the frittata scramble breakfast sandwich with smoked bacon and amish farm jam is satisfying.

          i would chalk the lines up to the general dearth of to-go breakfast places around 20th and spruce, and maybe some to the novelty of the place.

          1. btw, if you are looking for a NY bagel fix, Capogiro at 20th & Sansom sells H&H bagels. They come in from NY though, so of course they are not hot. Probably average for NY, but good for these parts. South Street Philly Bagels on 4th St, south of South, are also pretty good. Those are hot, at least in the mornings.

            The best NY-style bagels in there area I've had are Filabagel in Jenkintown, Rollings in Elkins Park, and New York Bagel near City Line. Haven't had the latter two in a while though. Those will definitely satisfy a craving.

            14 Replies
            1. re: barryg

              I can vouch for Rollings in Elkins Park because I get them at Weavers Way Co-op. Best bagels I've had in the Philly area.

              1. re: asmith

                Ditto on the Rollings bagels. I pick up several at Weavers Way Co-op, freeze them and toast when needed. Perfect crust, chewy and not too big. Love the raisin, whole wheat poppy and sesame varieties.

                1. re: traceofbasil

                  They do freeze well. I do the same thing because I don't want to have to drive to get bagels for Sunday breakfast.

                  1. re: asmith

                    Last I checked (a couple of months ago), Max's (sp?) Produce on 20th St carried Rolings, which are far and away my favorite.

              2. re: barryg

                l can vouch for New York bagel near City Line. Regardless where l have to come from, it is my go to

                1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                  Just a tip: Original Bagel on West Chester Pike in Broomall is owned and run by the family that originally owned New York Bagel on Haverford Ave. at City Ave. in Overbrook Park. In my opinion, it is better than the current New York Bagel.

                  1. re: cheesewit

                    We much prefer Ny bagel to original in broomall ... unfortunate for me as I could walk to original bagel.

                    If you goto original bagel, skip the egg sandwich. Microwaved and disappointing.

                2. re: barryg

                  Interesting comment about New York Bagel. A couple of weeks ago I used a Groupon coupon for a dozen bagels at their Glen Mills location. I've got to tell you, they were bad. Just plain baaaaad! Bland, tasteless hunks of baked dough that bore no resemblance to any decent bagel I've ever had, whether from NY, PA or anywhere else. I ended up tearing them into chunks and tossing them outside around my bird feeders. I wonder if NY Bagels products vary from one location to another.

                  1. re: CindyJ

                    It's not the same business as the one on Haverford Ave, just similar names.

                    This the chain with location in Glen Mills (bad)

                    This is the place on Haverford Ave (good):

                    1. re: barryg

                      If it wasn't for this thread, I would have never known about getting breakfast from NY Bagels. I drive by it every morning not knowing that it was THAT good. I've been going to Katz's Deli in Bala Cynwyd instead, which isn't bad but VERY expensive. I'll try NY tomorrow......

                      1. re: paychecktoday

                        NY Bagel on Haverford/City Line also has my favorite vegetable cream cheese spread anywhere, They put it into containers when you order it, not having it sit for who knows how long. Get a sesame flat bagel ( flagel ). You may never go back to regular bagels.

                      2. re: barryg

                        Thanks for the clarification. I'm relieved to know they're two entirely different places.

                    2. re: barryg

                      They have H&H bagels at Hershel's Deli in Reading Terminal too...

                      1. re: barryg

                        Capogiro no longer carries H&H bagels. They are now from South St. Bagel.