Penne Cole's thoughts on food, travel and more
I don’t think I’ve had a decent bagel since I left New York City nine years ago. I miss living in the Big Apple, if only because it meant that I could pop over to the nearest deli and get a delicious bagel. Seemed like every deli in New York had good bagels, but outside America, a decent bagel is as rare as hen’s teeth.
So I was pleasantly surprised to find that Melbourne’s 5 and Dime had not just a decent bagel, but actually a pretty good one.
First, a bit of the back story. New Jersey Chef Zev Forman came to Melbourne, decided that the bagels just weren’t up to scratch, and decided to make his own. Cue the theme music and the Rocky-style training sequence: Zev goes to New York and San Francisco to train with the best bagel makers in the business, then comes back to Melbourne where he starts selling his creations at farmers’ markets. Two years later, he’s done well enough to open his own CBD café, complete with glass-walled kitchen where his minions churn out rack after rack of delicious bagels.
5 and Dime’s bagels come in nine flavours – plain, onion, rye, poppy, everything, cinnamon & raisin, sesame, salt and dill. Bagels are $2 each or $11 for half a dozen. Of course, you can’t have a café that just sells plain bagels, so patrons get their choice of cream cheese (plain or flavoured), butter, or PB&J. And no bagel place is complete if it doesn’t have the classic lox and cream cheese, so of course, that’s on the menu too. But if you’re not after bagels, they’ve also got some other pastries on offer.
My lox and cream cheese bagel came with a healthy schmear of cream cheese (although not as full-on as those in New York, where the cream cheese is easily an inch thick) and a decent amount of house-cured lox. As the star of the show, the bagel is the perfect combination of chewiness and fluffiness. I would have loved to do the overnight test – leave it out overnight and see whether it’s rock hard in the morning – but I was leaving that day. Too bad. I’ll be sure to next time, although with bagels this good, having any leftovers would be a challenge.
Related post: awesome breakfast at Melbourne’s Grain Store.
5 and Dime
Melbourne, Vic 3000
03 9621 2128
Open Monday to Friday, 7am to 3pm
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