Lox of Love
Bagels and lox from Bagel Baker, Virginia Beach
It’s Sunday Morning, and the moms’ group that I have been part of for three years is meeting at The Bagel Baker off of Great Neck Road for bagels and girl time. The smell of garlic and fresh baked dough greets me as I walk in with my cohorts. The owner, George Stepanovich, greets us as if we are old friends. A bold sign reads “New York Kettle Boiled Bagels,” and I begin to happily anticipate the possibility of eating a real New York Bagel here in Virginia. I scan the menu and, after some consideration, I decide on the Long Island Lox Sandwich. I choose an everything bagel as the vehicle to deliver what I hope to be a tasty breakfast. We all order Bloody Marys as well, a welcome and surprising offering. One of our less daring members orders a Greek Frappé.
We sit down in a warm and inviting dining area and wait for our meal. The Bloody Marys make their debut with little to no wait. They’re spectacular—with the perfect mix of spice and tomato and an unexpected but perfect garnish of bacon and olives, a great beginning to our meal. The Greek Frappé is perfectly frothy with a strong, toasty flavor of coffee, set off by the ideal amount of sweetness. I find myself returning Monday morning to get my hands on this caffeinated day-starting treat.
Steady streams of people come and go during our visit. This is obviously a favorite neighborhood spot. Next come the stars of the show: the bagels. A tray holding two halves of a large bagel covered in slices and slices of beautifully colored lox are staring back at me. Under those lox rest cold slices of fresh tomato, purple onion and briny capers with a generous schmear of cream cheese served with two thick, juicy lemon wedges. I grab a half and bite in, barely managing to fit the generous open-faced sandwich in my mouth. All of the flavors and textures maintain their singularity but meld perfectly together. The tender and not at all fishy salmon is velvety smooth and goes perfectly with the salt of the capers and the zip of the crisp onion; the tomato comes into play and cools the sting of the onion. And the cream cheese brings everything together in a symphony of deliciousness. The bagel itself is impeccably crisp on the outside and tender and soft inside. This is, in fact, the New York Bagel I had hoped for.
My tablemates try not to stare at my breakfast. I know they’re a little jealous, but no one complained. There are nothing but raves from all at the table, and we are unanimous in our vote to make The Bagel Baker a regular Sunday Spot.
If you’re looking to lower your carb intake, The Bagel Baker will “scoop” your bagel, eliminating most of the inside, leaving the crust intact. For more info on The Bagel Baker, visit their website or Facebook page.