What makes New York bagels so great? One bagel bakery in the Atlanta area claims the secret is in the water.

The Original Brooklyn Water Bagel Co. in Vinings and at other locations nationwide uses a proprietary water treatment system to copy the mineral content of water from New York. But what does it mean for your bagel? Purportedly, New York water contains lower amounts of calcium and magnesium, making boiled bagels softer when cooked.

Brooklyn’s Manhattan Nova Bagel is good but not worth the $8.49 price.

Brooklyn’s Manhattan Nova Bagel is good but not worth the $8.49 price.

Does “Brooklynized” water make bagels taste better? We find out in this week’s edition of Better Know a Bagel.

Atmosphere

The interior of Brooklyn Water Bagel is full of throwbacks to its namesake New York borough. Names of Brooklyn-born celebrities, including Jerry Seinfeld, Zero Mostel and Barbra Streisand, line the walls. All that separates the bagel assembly line from patrons is a sprawling window, so guests can see where the bagel-making magic happens. The seating area is laid out like a traditional New York deli with generic booths and tables. Altogether, this is a good spot to stop in and enjoy a Sunday morning bagel and coffee.

Verdict: 3/5 bagels

Bagels

Do the bagels taste just like New York? That’s tough to say, but they do taste like bagels and good ones at that. Coming in a bit smaller than their competitors, the bagels at Brooklyn are dense, thick and more than adequate for enjoying an egg sandwich or standing up to a shmear of cream cheese. After eating bagels in New York and Atlanta, I found no discernable difference between these bagels and those at other delis in the Atlanta area. Nothing spectacular, but a good bagel nonetheless.

Verdict: 4/5 bagels

Spreads

While there’s nothing earth-shattering about the variety of cream cheeses, the shop’s best offering is undoubtedly its selection of egg sandwiches. If you visit Brooklyn Water Bagel, make sure to try the Staten Island, a toasted bagel stuffed full of spinach, mushroom, melted Swiss cheese and egg whites. However, I can’t recommend Brooklyn’s signature Nova bagel, which was small, flavorless and not worth the $8.49 price. My advice: Stick to the egg sandwiches and wash them down with one of the excellent varieties of freshly roasted coffee.

The Staten Island omelet platter is a great choice for breakfast on the go.

The Staten Island omelet platter is a great choice for breakfast on the go.

Verdict: 3/5 bagels

Overall

All in all, the Original Brooklyn Water Bagel Co. is great for what it is: an excellent place to stop in for a quick bagel breakfast or grab some bagels to go. Unfortunately, the bagel shop lacks the character and color of some of Atlanta’s less generic bagel establishments.

Verdict: 3/5 bagels

Next time: Sunny’s Bagel & Deli in Kennesaw

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