(Photo: flickr/ezra wolfe)
The Bagel Factory, St. Louis
This is some serious early rising. Beginning at 1 a.m. every morning (or should we say night?), 20 varieties of bagels are made at The Bagel Factory in the same way that they’ve been made since 1974: boiling in water followed by a quick trip through a ripping hot oven. Sounds like it’s time to go to St. Louis.
New York Bagel and Bialy Corporation, Lincolnwood, Ill.
Anything named “New York” something usually calls for eaters (and native New Yorkers) to be wary, but the bagels here live up to the Big Apple’s standards. Oh, and it’s open 24 hours a day.
Bialy's Bagels, Cleveland
Bialy’s doesn’t joke around when it comes to bagels. Want it sliced? Do it at home. Want lox or cream cheese? Grab a package from the cooler. Want to pay with a credit card? Go somewhere else. Ask what’s hot and eat it right out of the paper bag.
BB's Bagels, Alpharetta, Ga.
Who said the South is only good at fried chicken? BB’s Bagels will certainly prove any naysayers who claim you can’t find a good bagel down South dead wrong.
Kaufman's Bakery and Delicatessen, Skokie, Ill.
All right, Illinois. Don’t get too confident about your bagels; but even a native New Yorker wouldn’t be able to deny that the chewy, dense bagels from Kaufman’s are pretty fantastic.