Pictured below: French toast bagel with birthday cake cream cheese (you can guess which bagel that one is) and a gluten-free smoked salmon bagel with the classic toppings.
Instagram is a place where foodies along with people that just enjoy looking at pictures of food (is that classified as a foodie?) come together and grow. I follow several food pages from many NYU bloggers, which seems more like pages by rich kids who eat all day and occasionally do school, but on the bright side, those kids give me inspiration for my next story. Upon surfing through posts of overpriced dumplings and sangria, I began to recognize a trend, including the birthday cake bagel.
Now, I'm not exactly a bagel person. Don't get me wrong- I adore bagels. A simple toasted sesame seed bagel with egg and cheese was my basic childhood meal. I'd rather be eating pancakes or waffles, but on occasion, I crave the salty satisfaction that comes from biting into a perfectly crisp and melted bagel.
I figured it was time for me to try this Lower East Side joint out on my own. Move out of the way rich kids of NYU, I'm comin' through. We ventured into this little neighborhood shop to get the scoop on the buzz about a bagel filled with sparkly cream cheese.
After touring the factory with the sweetest owner and manager, I got to go down into the basement (not as sketchy as that seems, I promise) and see where each bagel is manufactured and produced. Tompkins hand rolls EVERY single one of their bagels, and each is created in that small little Lower East Side shop. I've never witnessed anything like that, even if I was a bagel fanatic I'd likely still say the same. Tompkins offers some unusual variations of bagels, including french toast bagels, blueberry cream cheese, tofu cream cheese, gluten-free bagels, and a cookie dough espresso cream cheese bagel, all of which make my tastebuds jump for joy.
The three of us stared at the menu for a good 10 minutes before deciding what we wanted to eat. We went with the french toast bagel with birthday cake cream cheese, and the gluten-free New York smoked salmon bagel. I was in awe of the french toast bagel, with the perfect amount of sugar crystallized over the top and a rich and colorful cream cheese filling, it was the perfect eruption of sugary goodness in my mouth. With no resemblance of your over-egg-induced french toast, and bagels to satisfy your every craving, you've got a meal fit for 3 hungry girls.
Visit Tompkins Square Bagels at 165 Avenue A, NYC.