The popularity of bagels extends far beyond New York, with the simple recipe being adopted and tweaked in every corner of the globe. The bagel shops in Melbourne are thriving in all parts of the city, both in the suburbs and the city. Understandably, the Melbourne CBD has the highest concentration of bagel shops, appealing to city workers and early risers. If you are ready to go on a comprehensive schmear tour, here are the best bagel shops in Melbourne’s CBD.
The bright green signage is probably a very happy site for city workers who are in offices at the top end of the city. Brightside Bagels is a large cafe space that has a selection of pre-made bagels as well as fresh bagels ready to be toasted and made up with your own custom order. There is also a cabinet at the front of the Brightside Bagels store which has brownies, almond croissants and other sweets you may want to add to your bagel order. The coffee is great too, and with the cafe space so large, we can see many city workers having breakfast meetings and lunch here.
There are also gluten-free and vegan options available on the Brightside Bagels menu, so it’s an ideal spot for bigger group orders for those with dietary requirements. We can absolutely recommend a stop at Brightside Bagels as the staff are so friendly.
Brown Bagels Melbourne is located on Collins Street, closer to the Southbank end. Despite Collins Street being a major thoroughfare for morning commuters, Brown Bagels is not immediately visible but has a great local vibe. With over ten years of operation, they are also well-known with Melbourne residents who live in the city. Brown Bagels does not have a website and their Instagram is not always updated. That said, they have an extensive selection of bagel choices so if you are someone who likes to know what they are ordering before you arrive – trust that Brown Bagels has exactly what you need.
Schmucks Bagels Melbourne
If the history, soul and identity of a restaurant are important to you, then you have to stop in at Schmucks Bagels Melbourne. The store can be found on Guest Lane in Melbourne, owned and operated by a man of Polish roots and a descendant of Holocaust survivors. If you have believed bagels are traced back to the Jewish community living in New York, you might be surprised to learn they are actually from the Polish city of Krakow. With that in mind, we can trust Schmucks Bagels know what they are talking about.
Of the many bagels we have ordered from Schmucks Bagels, our favourite has to be the Truffle Peporoni which has truffle cheese, smoked salami, chilli kewpie, McClure’s pickle and lettuce which we had on a sesame bagel. We also like the Fiery Chick Bagel that has free-range chicken breast (crumbled), harissa slaw, cheese, kewpie and sweet and fiery chilly sauce on a sesame bagel.
Bobby’s Coffee and Bagel Shop in Melbourne
Bobby’s Coffee Store is located on Lonsdale Street, with a great menu that would even impress any New Yorker. For example, bagels with lox are very popular in the United States, which we know to be smoked salmon. Many menu items are a nod to these classic favourites, packing bagels although not too many ingredients that the perfectly baked bagels are lost in the fillings. We can recommend the Halloumi and Egg bagel on an Everything bagel and stick around for the coffee as they are just as much a coffee store as they are a bagel shop, so they should be enjoyed together. If bagels with cream cheese and other fillings are too rich for you in the mourning or at lunch, there are healthier options to order like the Garden State, which has a raw green slaw, hommus, seeds, avocado and pickles.
Ok, this one is not technically one of the bagel shops in Melbourne CBD – but it is getting an honourable mention! Bagels Baby is conveniently located on the corner of Derby and Gaffney Street, offering bagels, coffee and delicious menu items 7 days a week. After driving past this bagel shop in Melbourne after a few months and then seeing them on social media, I was converted. We headed in to get some takeaway bagels and were pleased to see that there was a gluten-free bagel on offer and even some vegan spreads. We tried the gluten-free bagel with cashew cream, and the pulled breed and Gruyère on an Everything bagel. This is one of the bagel shops in Melbourne to visit.
There is also a cold press selection on the tap which we were curious to try, and it tasted very good like it had been brewed through a painstakingly cold drip. We also bought a bottle of chilli oil and a few other pantry essentials to level up our next breakfast cook-up.
Bowery to Williamsburg
If you are looking for the best bagels in Melbourne… we might have the ultimate winner. You would be forgiven for thinking that Bowery to Williamsburg is in fact, a Williamsburg bagel shop. Tucked away in a little laneway, the venue is more than inviting and the communal table can even seat 60 people. It’s hard to find this kind of eatery in Melbourne, and it’s an accurate portrayal of the bagel stores you would find in New York. Known to locals as B2W, this joint opened up in 2013. The traditional boil-and-bake method is used to create these bagels sourced from 5 and Dime. The menu looks like something you would see in Williamsburg, with metro signage and American-style language scattered through a huge menu. The signature bagel at Bowery to Williamsburg is The Good Morning Cubano which has Cuban braised pork shoulder (slow-cooked), fried egg, pickles, mustard, Swiss cheese and traditional Jewish challah bread. I mean, need we say more?