Unique Eats: B.B.'s Bagels Brings NYC to Atlanta -- Really!

4:38 PM, Feb 25, 2011   |    comments
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Since the beginning of time -- or, at least, the beginning of the Internet, passionate communities have debated an important culinary question:

Is it possible to find a truly great New York City bagel outside of New York City?

B.B.'s Bagels in Alpharetta is the latest to say, "Yes, you can."

Recently manager Eddie Siino gave 11Alive's Matt Pearl the grand tour of B.B.'s McFarland Parkway location.

"A New York bagel is a classic in itself," Siino said. "Our bagels are hand-rolled, and then we bring them to the kettle, where they are rapid-boiled."

The kettle-boiling, you might say, is the not-so-secret secret. Most bagel-makers steam their bagels; boiling enables them to get fluffy and plump, which is why B.B.'s bagels seem gargantuan compared to the typical kind.

"After 7-8 minutes," says Siino, "we have a little bit of heaven."

Often, people who say New York bagels are exclusive to New York cite the water in the Empire State. Siino is aware of this theory -- and doesn't necessarily discount it.

"The water from New York has a lot of minerals in it. Down here, we may not have the water, but the experience, love and care we put into it makes up for a few minerals."

Beyond the bagels, Siino says, "our cream cheeses are homemade; we use fresh ingredients."

Although B.B.'s Bagels has only been open for three years, it has fast become an award-winning favorite in Metro Atlanta -- winning several fan votes last year for "Best Bagels in Atlanta".

But they still consider themselves an authentic New York establishment.

"A lot of customers who go home for visits will bring memorabilia back here," Siino says. "New Yorkers, Connecticut, New Jersey -- they say our bagels are the best, and a lot of them say [the bagels are] better than New York."

Upon being greeted with a skeptical eye, Siino laughs and continues: "I blush, and I get a little sentimental when they say that, but it's the truth."

B.B.'s Bagels has two locations -- one on 770 McFarland Parkway and one on 10995 State Bridge Road -- both in Alpharetta. Check out their web site, www.bbsbagels.net.

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