THANKSGIVING TRAVEL: Traffic | Travel Guide | Weather | Holiday Guide

Food & Drink

Top Bagels In Philadelphia

September 30, 2010 10:30 AM

View Comments
credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

People don’t talk about bagels in Philly the way they do in New York, but there are a few notables. Some recipes have been passed down through generations, and some are just now kneading a name for themselves.  One West Philly man, in fact, is starting his own sourdough revolution.  – Suzanne Woods

Four Worlds Bakery

4634 Woodland Ave
Philadelphia, PA  19143
(215) 967-1458

There is no parallel for the taste and texture of a “Challahman” bagel. Instead of the typical yeast starter, Michael Dolich uses sourdough in all his breads and bagels. People may give him a hard time, saying that his doughy creations taste too much like bread and not enough like “bagel,” but the Challahman answers, “What is a bagel?”  He’s defined it as a one of the best things we’ve eaten for breakfast. If you head there for your “everything” on a Thursday afternoon, chances are you’ll get to meet the Dolich clan.  This spot is a throwback to a time when everyone knew their baker, not just the cashier that rang up their bag of Stroehmanns.

gleaners Top Bagels In Philadelphia

credit: thegleanerscafe

Gleaners Cafe Gallery

917 S. 9th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147-3904
(215) 923-3205

Gleaners uses bagels from Cacia’s bakery out of South Philly. They get a shout out for having one of the best breakfast bagel sandwiches in the city; the “Painkiller” is referenced daily around the Italian Market. This bagel sandwich is complete with egg, cheese and house-made spicy ketchup. It will stop the shakes and set you right after a long night on the sauce.

103267759spencerplatt Top Bagels In Philadelphia

credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Philadelphia Bagel Co.

1100 South Columbus Boulevard, #2
Philadelphia, PA 19147-5513
(215) 336-7211

Located directly off Columbus Blvd, this place has been a faithful stop for many on their morning commute to Rt. 95 for the last 25 years. They even carry bialys, a switch-up on the common bagel.  This dough never makes it to the kettle; they shape it and smear a blend of onions, olive oil and poppy seed on it, then bake it right away.  You can enjoy them as early as 5 a.m. And FYI, this spot has the contract for our the local Whole Foods.

73189208zachburstein Top Bagels In Philadelphia

credit: Zach Burstein/Getty Images

South Street Philly Bagels

613 S. 3rd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147-2332
(215) 627-6277

In its 6th generation of management, South Street Bagels does an enormous amount of wholesale business. There’s a 50% chance that if you’re in a café around Philly spreading your cream cheese on a bagel, it came out of their ovens.  Customers have their choice of 18 house-made spreads, too. Manager Aaron recommends the Everything Wheat with a lil’ whitefish.

Wild Flour

8701 Torresdale Avenue, Unit I
Philadelphia, PA  19136
(215) 624-3300

It seems as though almost everyone in culinary Philadelphia knows Nishon Yaghoobian, former Executive Pastry Chef at the Striped Bass. His egg-y brioche is touted as brilliant, and his artisan breads are available at Philadelphia’s farmers’ markets or for pick up. You can also find that brilliance at Green Aisle Grocery on 1618 E. Passyunk.

Suzanne Woods has resided in Philadelphia since 2001. She’s freelance writer, craft beer enthusiast, and is president/founder of the Philadelphia Women’s Beer Club. She eats out two meals a day, churns out exotic ice creams as often as she can, and has her records spinning more often than not. You can follow her drinking and dining adventures at
View Comments
  • Bob G

    I used to buy bagels at Manhatten Bagels in NE Philly.They lefy & now I don’t know anywhere to get good bagels. HELP.

  • Stitz

    THE best in jersey are Plaza 70 Bagels in Marlton, I still drive back from Philly to get them now and then

  • Anonymous

    I totally disagree about Gleaner’s bagels. They suck. They;re like bread.

  • Bob

    Live in mayfair,can’t get bagels unless I drive 7-8 miles.

  • lovebagels

    whole foods bagels are from south st bagel? the whole foods in devon too? they are awful

    • FOODIE


  • Kavi

    Cream and Sugar bakery is awesome. I live about 3 blocks from it. They do have really good homemade cream cheese. The honey walnut on a south street bagel is my favorite on the go meal. It’s also a really convenient place to get an after work treat and some great coffee.

  • Bradley

    South Street Bagels are available fresh in University City 7 days a week at Cream & Sugar, 4004 Spruce Street, Philly, 19104. Try one with Cream & Sugar’s homemade veggie cream cheese or homemade pumpkin spread.
    You can also find Four Worlds Bakery Croissants at Cream & Sugar – try their almond croissant with real almond paste in the middle…. mmm mmm delicious!

  • PJBorbi

    Best bagels EVER in South Jersey are in medford, NJ at MEDFORD BAGEL SHOP….. You all should go and see….

  • John Jaz

    Best bagels in South Jersey are in Evesham at T’s Bagels in Elmwood Shopping Center (intersection of Elmwood and Evesboro-Medford). These are comparable to Brooklyn bagels.

blog comments powered by Disqus
Taz Goes Big!
Download Now!

Listen Live