New York-style bagels have arrived in Surry Hills. How do they stack up?
Commonwealth Street has long been the home to the KB – one of our favourite old-school pubs. It’s also where you’ll find Bodega – tapas bar to the stars. And now Brooklyn Hide has joined the fray offering bagels and coffee. That’s lunch, dinner and beers sorted without leaving the street.
This new Surry Hills bagel café’s take on a Reuben uses a nice, rich salt beef with melted Jarlsberg and a very generous amount of sauerkraut. The lurid purple pickled cabbage drips all the way through our rye sourdough bagel (sadly underwhelming). By the end, our ‘Midtown’ (all the bagels are named for parts of Manhattan) is dry, bready and wet at the same time. Luckily for our laps, it’s served on greaseproof paper with a side of pickles in one of those plastic baskets you generally see in some US taquerias.
We order our ‘Manhattan’ on a poppy seed bagel, which is definitely a glossy, chewy step up from the rye sourdough. This is Brooklyn Hide’s version of the classic – slathered in cream cheese, then layered with smoked salmon. It’s not bad at all.
Interestingly, when Time Out visited and posted this review online, the bagels were $13.50 and $12.50 respectively. They’ve now lowered the price to $10 across the board, which raises the question: how much is too much to pay for a bagel? At Brick Lane Bagel Bake in London, a salt-beef bagel is £3.10 – around $5. But then you’re lining up in a shop where hammy-armed matrons yell at you.
At Brooklyn Hide, you still order and pay at the counter, but you’ve got the chance of a seat rather than having to scarf your lunch on the side of the road. To put things into perspective, these bagels are cheaper than Lox Stock and Barrel’s in Bondi, and one is enough to fuel you from late brunch to early dinner. But if you’ve spent time anywhere in the world with a big bagel-loving population (NYC’s Russ and Daughters has 15 variations on cured salmon alone), you’ll likely know how good a piece of boiled dough can get.