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The Best Bagels In Los Angeles | Best Of The Best

Jun 08, 2021
People always say that Los Angeles has terrible

bagels

. I'm a New Yorker and my mission is to find the

best

bagels

in Los Angeles. I know there are good bagels in Los Angeles. We just have to find them. To help me on my mission to find the

best

bagels in LA, I'm bringing my friend Evan Fox, owner of Yeastie Boys Bagels, to show me where the best ones are in the city. Evan is going to take me to his truck, Yeastie Boys, we're going to Courage Bagels in Silverlake, and we're going to Brooklyn Bagels in Westlake.
the best bagels in los angeles best of the best
We're here to eat bagels! First, we headed to the Yeastie Boys truck parked outside Alfred Coffee in West Hollywood. This is the famous Evan Fox. He owns Yeastie Boys, which is right behind me. Yes do it. So tell me how Yeastie Boys came to be. So back in 2014, we were just making bagels in our apartment and just for fun. It was like, "Let's start a band," and we did, and we started taking them out to people in the city to see what they thought. People liked it and they were like, "Hey, we should do Coachella." So I contacted them, they said, "Yeah, great idea.
the best bagels in los angeles best of the best

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the best bagels in los angeles best of the best...

Let's go." Week after that, we got our first truck, and now we are, two trucks later. So what gives you the authority to drive me around Los Angeles and show me the best bagels the city has to offer? I think I know what I'm doing. Sydney: Yeastie Boys trucks roll through the city serving up their giant bagels loaded with delicious toppings. They offer classics like lox and cream cheese or heartier options like bacon, sticky cheese, and egg. Then there are some slightly more, shall we say, wild options like this one made with pastrami, fried eggs, melted cheese, and turkey.
the best bagels in los angeles best of the best
But before we try your bagels, let's talk a little about what makes a good bagel in the first place. You can hear the... Crack. Yes baby. It has that shell, you know? You want to hear the, you want that shell. So tell me, when you were developing this recipe and your bagels, what were you looking for? What was your hope? I knew I wanted a chewy interior, and I knew I wanted it big for sandwiches. So do you see these little bubbles here? That comes from the gas convection oven we use, as well as the rise time, which is very important when you make a bagel, cold risen like when you make a pizza.
the best bagels in los angeles best of the best
Any good bagel will have that. Besides boiling them, those three things, the most crucial component. I'm learning a lot. The Yeastie Boys make their bagels at Diamond Bakery on Fairfax in Los Angeles. It is a legendary institution that has been around since 1946 offering bagels, pastries and more. The bagels are 5 ounces each and remind me of what I can only describe as the best of both worlds between a Montreal style bagel and a New York style bagel. But more on that later. Have you perfected the sandwich bagel? Yeah, honestly, historically you go to a bagel place, and you get vegetarian cream cheese, and there's like two pieces of carrot and a scallion.
Uh huh. - And it's like, wait, why don't we just add veggie cream cheese, turkey, bacon, fried eggs, sprouts, tomato? It's fun, you know? Yes, I wanted a bagel sandwich. That's what I need, like, on a Saturday or Sunday morning. Hangover life, big time. Absolutely. Well, we've talked about bagels. I'm hungry. eva: let's eat Sidney: let's eat. It's lovely. evan: look at that Sydney: And that's some cream cheese, that's some smoked salmon. That's what happens, and poppy seeds, you can't beat it. I love the texture you get with poppy seed bagels. - Me too. It has, like, the right amount of bite.
Lots of smoked salmon here too. You already know what happens. Do you know what you are doing. I'm glad you're taking me on a bagel adventure because you're the guy. I. I mean, we just moved in down the street, and we see this truck all the time, and this is my second time, so I'm definitely going to be a bagel loyalist. Many people like cream cheese on both sides, top and bottom. Dude, just 2 to 3 ounces of cream cheese is way more than enough. If you're doing up and down, it's too much for me. At least that's my taste.
I agree. - Do you know what I'm saying? Yeah, it's not about the cream cheese. It's about the bun. Although there are people who are fans of cream cheese. I know many people who would happily say that cream cheese is their favorite food. I'm looking at you, Charlie Weisman. Charlie True story, cream cheese is my favorite food. I'm excited to talk about it. That's gross. I'm back in New York now. Oh yeah. What I really love about these bagels is that the bottom is also like a pizza. Yeah. - Like pizza dough on the bottom. This is delicious.
You already know what happens. Thanks. So show me all the other bagels I'm missing. Let's crush it. And let's show that LA has amazing bagels. The next day, I ran into Evan at Courage Bagels in Silverlake. We're here for the best bagels ever. Alright, so it's Sunday. - Yeah. You left your truck. Yes, I quit my business. To come here. - Yeah. And eat courage bagels. Worth it. Absolutely, so they're set up in the Broome Street General Store, which is really kind of a bougie, and everything there is very expensive, but I want to buy it too. $70 candles. $70 candles, but you can get really delicious bagels too.
I am very, very excited to try these. I am a huge fan of Montreal style bagels. What do you think of Montreal-style bagels? Evan: My favorite style. Sydney: Really? Yeah. It's... So not for sandwiches, but just for bagels and bagels and cream cheese every day, just to eat them, 100%. Can you explain the difference between a New York-style bagel and a Montreal-style bagel? Sure, sure, which is why New York-style bagels are fat, plump, and chewy. It's almost like a mini Neapolitan pizza. They are so fat and plump. Montreal are usually boiled in honey, so they are a bit sweeter.
They are handmade. They're so much thinner, crispier, and crunchy, and it's almost like you really have to sit there and enjoy it. Yes, what he said. Partners Arielle Skye and Chris Moss offer farm-fresh toppings like heirloom tomatoes, cucumbers, and labneh for their Montreal-style bagels. I lost my job and I didn't really know what I wanted to do, but I wanted to do something. And I worked for a really bad company, so I was like, I need something real and pure and like with my hands. And that just turned into random bagels, and soon after that I started selling them on my bike around the neighborhood.
And then last summer, we walked into a farmer's market, and now here we are. She's obsessed with the history of bagels and bread in general, which is so fascinating. So she started reading to me from this book, and in this book she was talking about how bagels represent Jewish courage, which we both love. And right when she said that, I said, "That's the name, Courage Bagels." There is no commercial yeast, so they are all wild yeast, and we adhere to baking principles that are probably thousands of years old. You know, the flour and water are left out to collect the natural bacteria and yeast that is in the air and on people's hands and in the flour itself.
It makes a much more digestible bread or bagel in this case, and it also makes the flavor amazing. The texture, we get it really crunchy, almost like a glass crust, but inside it's tender, chewy and very tasty. Sydney: What really sets these bagels apart for me, though, is that you can burn them a bit. I know, it's a little weird, but it's super delicious. The one thing New York bagels definitely don't have is fresh produce like this. Fresh tomato, fresh cucumber, the onions even smell good. Like, where do you get a tomato like this? Not in New York, that's for sure.
Really. Okay, let's go for it because I'm dying. It's so crunchy. If it is too good. Mmm-hmm, I love how it burns. It's a bit nutty, and the labneh is just, you know, it's really nice and smooth and, I think, light compared to traditional cream cheese. They should put some lemon juice in here too. Mmm-hmm, this rules. It's so good. This is California to me. 100%. Holy Cow. Yes. I think these are some of the best lox I've had in Los Angeles. I was just going to say that. Yes. Where is this from? I dont know. I didn't even ask.
I just saw smoked salmon and I was like, "Yeah, give me smoked salmon." Lox are not like prosciutto, don't call me. It has to be as thin as paper. You can call me. I'll eat any smoked salmon. Thank you for leaving your truck today to come. I know, it's worth it. Crispy, crunchy, Montreal-style. Very different than the other bagels we have had. I'm lovin 'it. Our last stop on this bagel tour is the Brooklyn Bagel Bakery. The store opened in 1953, but had to close in 2015 due to a wall collapsing in the original space. However, in 2018, it made a triumphant return and is back to churning out some of LA's favorite bagels.
I've been coming here since 1982. I came every day, and on a Saturday I came in, Saturday night, and they were open after Shabbat at 8 p.m. in half an hour, an hour. Not many people can do something as original as they can here. It's amazing what they do. Sydney: Their production facility produces thousands upon thousands of bagels for both the store and wholesale. The bagels are a little smaller than what you might find in New York, but they definitely have more of an old-school feel to them than other places we've tried. I haven't had these bagels yet.
Let's try them. And it has that nice touch that you want to hear. Yeah, oh wow, dammit. Yes that's fine. I love poppy seed. The texture is so good. You have to try this. Yes, we are going to negotiate. Here, take the other half of mine. Commerce. Oh yeah yeah, what are we doing? I did not expect that. And you know another thing I like about this is the size. Three and a half ounce bagel, that's what's up. Correct size. The reason why I really like these. Yes. Sometimes when you toast it, the chewiness disappears. Yeah, and that's a thing in New York, like you don't toast your bun.
You don't toast them. - Yeah. So here they make them hot, so they're doing that, but it has that chewy texture. I like the crunch on the outside. The other thing I love is the original sign they have with the original prices. A quarter for a bagel, 25 cents. How are you going to have a baker's dozen for $2? It says if you buy $59 worth of bagels with cash, you get a free dozen. Ready for it. I think we've done a good job eating here today. And these bagels are pretty good. I agree. Yes, correct size, good chew.
Different method than Evan uses, so it's fun to see how LA has different types of bagels, and it's great to see that they've reopened and saved this legendary business. This is such a beautiful place. It is an institution without a doubt. The time has come. We've had some of the best bagels in LA and now I have to pick my favorite. First up, Yeastie Boys. So the thing about the Yeastie Boys is that they're the best version of, like, a New York-style bagel meets a Montreal-style bagel. And I'm from New York, but my mom is also Canadian, so she combines my two favorite things.
Yeastie Boys bagels are big and heavy enough that you can load them with whatever toppings you like. I'm talking about cream cheese. I'm talking about bacon. I'm talking about smoked salmon. I'm talking about cheese. Courage bagels next. Courage Bagels are more of the Montreal bagel style. They're on the other side of the spectrum from the bagels we've tested in this experiment, if you will. They are really crispy on the outside, nice and chewy on the inside, but there are a lot of little air pockets in the dough, and that comes from the naturally leavened dough they use.
So, there are little puddles that you can fill with cream cheese or labneh or whatever toppings you like, and I really liked that. And finally, Brooklyn Bagel Bakery. They are definitely more like an old school style bagel. It reminds me the most of New York of all the bagels we've tried. They do a slightly smaller bagel, which is nice if you're not looking to eat a giant sandwich and just want some cream cheese, some lox. Nothing fancy, Brooklyn Bagel Company is perfect for that. It's definitely the place you'd go to get a bag of bagels to take to the office.
There's something for everyone in LA, and I think after seeing all the different bagels we've tried, no one can say that LA doesn't have great bagels. We have shown that they do. Therefore, there. If I have to pick a favorite, it will be Courage Bagels. I know, I'm sorry, but they're Montreal style. I have a weakness for that. It is my personal favourite. Everyone else, I'm sure, has a preference. But for me, it will be Courage Bagels. The reason I loved Courage so much was because the outside is so crisp and the inside is so light and airy.
It's not heavy. It is not dense. And I love that they give you the option to buy a burnt bagel because I love that really nice depth of flavor that you get from burning something just a little bit. And their toppings are premium. I mean, like I said, the heirloom tomatoes, the good olive oil, the sea salt, the labneh, the za'atar. They run the gamut of interesting toppings, and the bagels are great, but when you add something unique like that,it just takes it to another level. I hope I've shown you that LA has amazing bagels.
We're having something of a bagel renaissance in Los Angeles right now, so I hope you'll try some of them. Please let us know if we missed somewhere and enjoy. Paul, come here. Alright, so Paul and I are going to have some more bagels, right, buddy? He also wants to go get some dogs. OK Bye.

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