Nelson Street, L1
Review by Lawrence Saunders
Chinatown isn’t necessarily the first place you would expect to find one of Liverpool’s trendiest foodie venues, but tucked away amongst some of the city’s most established Chinese restaurants, The Bagelry is quickly making a name for itself.
As Liverpool’s first independent eatery specialising in bagels, The Bagelry is part of a growing fashion of food spots focusing on just one particular ingredient and doing it really well.
It was started by friends Rhondda and Natalie who successfully ran the operation from home supplying independent cafés and coffee shops across the city before opening their own place after receiving incredible public backing.
Despite being slightly off the beaten track, plenty had clearly got the message about The Bagelry as it was standing room only when my dining partner and I arrived on a chilly Saturday morning.
Taking the last table remaining by the entrance and studying the menu, my date and I observed as a constant stream of patrons made their way into the café and queued up to take their pick from an impressive selection of sweet and savory bagels.
Like us, plenty had decided to settle in for a more substantial portion choosing from The Bagelry’s limited yet intriguing menu. It didn’t take me long to pick the marvellous sounding Sunnyside bagel (£4.50), split in two with a fried egg in the centre of each.
After consulting with our waitress, I was easily persuaded to spice things up a little by having mine served with a salted jalapeño bagel.
The perfectly cooked runny egg complemented the salt and heat of the bagel, which was chewy yet still tender – an effect partly down to the high levels of calcium in Liverpool’s tap water which is similar to that of the bagel-making capital, New York City.
My dining partner went for something a little sweeter with French toast (£5.50) made with The Bagelry’s own rich butter brioche and served with indulgent thick yoghurt fruit compote topped with maple syrup.
After finishing my breakfast bagel I thought it would be rude not to try one of The Bagelry’s most popular sweet creations. The Black Forest bagel with rich chocolate and morello cherry (£1.35) served with creamy cinnamon butter (£1.50) seemed a logical choice.
Good bagels and good coffee go hand in hand. The V60 filter coffee (£2.75), which we drank throughout our meal, did just the trick accompanying both the sweet and savoury bagels well.
Before I left I grabbed a quick word with Rhondda and Natalie – the latter was rushed off her feet in the kitchen. Speaking to the two owners their passion for The Balgery was evident – something that certainly came through both in the food and the inviting atmosphere.
Whether you go there to pick up a fresh bagel to take home or to sit in and enjoy a relaxing brunch, The Bagelry is certainly worth seeking out.