Last Updated: September 7, 2021
Everybody loves a good bagel, but I think I come close to being an expert judge in matters of the bagel. The hunt for a good stack goes above and beyond, and I even have a Telegram group aptly named ‘Bagel Crew’. Best believe I’ve got the scoop!
Now, bagels don’t have seasons—they’re always in-trend. With sweet and savoury options such as cinnamon, sesame, and onion, it makes the perfect breakfast option, post-workout lunch, team meeting refuel, gift box and more. Talk about versatility. It’s about time someone took one for the team with a guide on where to get some bagel bangers. Presenting, 9 bagel places to visit with your bae, gals, or pals. May your passion for the gallant carb transform from luxury to necessity.
When my bagel buddy Joy told me about Able Bagel, opened by our ex-Junior College batchmate, I knew I had to suss out what the hype was all about. The current Instagram-based home business was born out of ‘Circuit Breaker’ kneading. Lucky for us, the close-knit crew often collaborates with local hippie cafésto serve up seasonal specials, aside from their regular menu.
To locate them, simply spot their rainbow-reflecting standee. I managed to snag two bagels at their recent pop-up held at Maxi Coffee Bar late in August 2021. The surprise from attending these physical pop-ups lies in the exclusivity of the menu, often offered as a one-off special for one day only.
Struggling to make my way to the counter amidst the young crowd, I (finally) walked out cradling the La Bamba (S$15) and Mexi (S$17) bagels. I’m a fool for breakfast bagels, so the former was what I was here for. It was filled with scrambled eggs, onion rings, chipotle aioli, and essential bacon.
Although I expected the bagel to be fluffier, the high-quality ingredients certainly came through within the first bite. The bacon was smoky and sweet, almost like smoked applewood bacon charred to a nice crisp. The chipotle aioli had just the right ratio to balance the spice and creaminess. And of course, what’s a breakfast bagel without fluffy scrambled eggs?
For a refreshing spin to the conventional bagel, the Mexi presented a pair of open face bagels, topped with ground beef, avocado slices, sharp cheddar, pico de gallo, tzatziki, and iceberg lettuce. Boy, was this a mess to dig into but such a worthy one. Just like the other special, the quality of the ingredients seriously hit the mark, which made every dollar spent to support the local business even more worth it.
If you’re looking to give their bagels are try, the OG AHH LEMAK (S$14) and LOVE YOU LOX! <3 (S$15) are available for delivery and pickup from Thursday to Sunday. Otherwise, I’d definitely recommend keeping a watch out for their next collab and get ready for a bagel run.
Pro tip: Get your pre-orders in early to avoid disappointment. While they have limited bagels available for walk-ins at their bi-weekly pop-ups, those run out as soon as one hour after opening!
Along Bukit Pasoh Road you’ll find Baker’s Bench Bakery, a surreptitious café and kitchen, boasting handcrafted bakes. What you might not know, is that within lies a hidden treasure chest of beautiful bagels.
Unlike most places I’ve visited for bagels, the team here serve their bagels without any fanciful fillings. Being the over-committed bagel enthusiast, I got the Cheezy Mess (S$4.50), Cranberry Walnut (S$4), and the Everything Bagel (S$4). Simply ask and you shall receive a side of cream cheese, butter, and jam—free of charge!
Albeit a tad dense, the depth of flavours within made up for it. The Cheezy Mess deserves an honourable mention, with generous amounts of savoury cheese making it so good on its own. Definitely, one for the bagel lovers to cop.
The standalone shop makes a good weekend pitstop if you’re in the area, to grab some bagels to-go ahead of your busy work week. Whether it’s fueling up for breakfast, making a bagel sandwich for the kids, or packing lunch for the office, Baker’s Bench Bakery will rise to the occasion.
Enter Baker & Cook, one of the well-loved bakeries that won hearts with its earnest bakes and wholesome savouries. While my favourite outlet has to be the one at Dempsey, their fresh bread and pastries are well worth the trip from East to West. After all, it’s Dempsey we’re talking about—the enchanting little town situated atop a hill.
Location aside, we’re here for the Bagels. From blueberry to onion sesame, walnut, plain and more, the choices are endless. Let variety be the spice of your work-from-home lunches with an assortment of flavours. Personally, my favourite’s got to be the onion sesame.
If you’re lucky, you might just find pre-packed bags of goodness on the shelves at Fairprice Finest. Boasting fresh bagels amongst other bakes, we’re so heartened to see how far this local bakery has come despite the circumstances. I know I’ll be grabbing a bag the next time I’m there!
Tucked along a small, quiet corner at Fusionopolis, you’ll find Bread Yard started by Ivan Ting in 2011, who was an SUTD student at that time. The cosy family-run cafe is well-known for its freshly-made bread, pastries, brunch items and coffee. The faithful crew is also the team behind Hathaway at Dempsey.
My first visit to the one-north café back in 2019 left me with one firm conclusion: Bread Yard couldn’t be more aptly named. The plethora of sweet and savoury bakes are so drool-worthy, the team even offers weekly bread delivery subscriptions to lovers of their bakes!
The sole bagel offering on their menu is a classic combination of flavours. Behold, the Lox & Bagel (S$14). The unassuming stack constitutes a homemade multiseed bagel, citrus dressing, a hefty portion of fresh greens and the quintessential smoked salmon and cream cheese.
The memory of a good bagel always comes down to the bagel itself, regardless of its filling. If you’re all about that jazz, head down to Bread Yard or count on their trusty delivery to sort your bagel cravings.
Well-known for their coffee and cakes, Dutch Colony is one that needs no introduction.
If you’re meeting a friend for brunch or chat, give the Pastrami Bagel (S$15) a try. The fancy rendition of a classic staple is a bold statement on its own, almost like the wealthy aunt that would visit you once Christmas came. Filled with beef pastrami, jalapeno and spring onion cream cheese, cheddar cheese, sauteed onions and a bunch of fresh greens.
Of course, other classic combinations Avocado, Bacon & Egg Bagel (S$15) and Salmon Bagel (S$15) will always satisfy. A great post-workout meal, if you’d ask me!
Now hear me out before you skip on Firewood Chicken & Bagel. Within the Katong ‘hood, you’ll find the Korean establishment, which is unusual for the stereotypical fancy, brunch-loving crowd. Many come here for the Korean Fried Chicken but as the title of the article goes, we’re here for some bangin‘ bagels.
For me, the cross-section of a bagel matter just as much as the taste. I mean, how else am I going to snap one for the gram? Thankfully, the Chickey Bagel (S$10) understood the assignment.
I was pleasantly surprised when the hunky stack was served over the top. bursting with a generous portion of tender chicken, chilli mayo and the usual sandwich suspects (yes, I mean the vegetables). The first bite was assuring, as the flavours complemented nicely with the tasty bagel. I mean, what else was I expecting from an eatery that had ‘bagel’ in its name? A true testament to how bagels don’t have to come from a bakery to taste good.
The latest contender to enter the bagel showdown is none other than Onalu Bagel Haús. The humble bagel bar is conveniently located in the heart of Singapore Management University’s campus, and has garnered quite a following since its opening.
Breakfast fillings are without a doubt my go-to choice for sandwiches, bagels—basically everything and anything.
Onalu Bagel Haús’ The Big Breakfast (S$14) was one hunk of a chunk, with smoky bacon streaks, honey baked ham, crispy hashbrowns, fluffy scrambled eggs, cheddar, and Monterey Jack cheese, alongside their secret sauce. A hard yes for me.
Unconventionally named Somethin’ Fishy (S$11) instead of lox, this rendition was an upgraded version of the bare-bones combination with a sandwich stuffed with red onions, tomatoes, dill, and capers.
What’s interesting about the story behind the shop is that the concept was born out of ‘Circuit Breaker’ baking. After meticulous experimenting and recipe tweaking, the homemade bagels achieved peak bagel integrity. The next time you’re in the area, grab a bagel or two and if you’re in luck, snag their seasonal special Pandan Coconut Bagel.
Yes, you read that right. There are bagel options at the acclaimed café along Telok Ayer Street, Sarnies! Inspired by the Australian brunch scene, their hearty menu items and aromatic coffee are well-loved by many. When I found out they had another bagel besides the salmon option, I made a special trip down before work to get my hands on them. Behold, the Mortadella Bagel (S$12.50) in all its glory.
Filled with cream cheese, pesto and mortadella (cold cut meat), this was one combination that blew my mind. The creaminess of the cream cheese paired delightfully with the umami pesto just like eggs and bacon. Perhaps I have never quite tried pesto in bagel before, yet this flavour combination had me wanting more. And for that reason, this bagel makes the list.
No stranger to most would be everybody’s favourite, Two Men Bagel House. Without fail, I always come across a story or post of someone declaring their love for the bagels here—myself included! Guilty as charged, I will now confess my adoration for these New-York style bagel sandwiches. While options differ with each outlet, one thing that remains consistent across them all would be the superb service and bagel consistency.
You can never go wrong with a classic American combination of bacon, egg and cheese. Close to that would be the Supamu (S$13),BEC (S$13), and King Kong (S13).For better-tailored recommendations, trust the team to know sure-fire combinations.
My only gripe would be the opening hours because this would be the ultimate post-work dinner for me. If you haven’t jumped on the bandwagon, the time is most definitely now. Now, excuse me while I draft up my petition to make bagels an all-day thing—including late nights.
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