For the past few years, it’s been all quiet on the bagel front. Until now: Spielman Bagels, purveyors of some of the city’s best boiled dough, schmear, and crazy-addictive bagel chips, is expanding.
Rick and his son Raf Spielman are moving their Southeast storefront across the street to a larger location at 2111 SE Division St., and opening a second location in a former Einstein Bagels location at Northeast 22nd and Broadway.
A quick recap: when the Kettleman Bagel regime ended in 2011, its five Portland locations were sold and rebranded under the Einstein Noah Restaurant Group, a multi-million dollar chain selling bagels that had more in common with a loofah than a baked good. As of last month, every east side location has shuttered. “Einstein makes 2 million bad bagels a day,” says Rick Spielman. “It’s to the east side’s credit that not a single one was bought or consumed.”
Opening mid-July, Spielman’s new Division location (next door to Son of a Biscuit) is three times the size of the original space, set inside a cute, “alpine-style” house with a 20-seat outdoor patio, and a full vegetable garden. “By August, you’ll be able to pick up your heirloom tomato on the way to your lox plate,” Spielman tells Eat Beat.
When it opens in the first week of June, the new Broadway storefront—originally Kettleman’s busiest location—will include a full bakery, selling classic deli pastries like rugelach, hamantaschen, cheesecake, and challah. One day, the Spielmans hope, they will smoke their own brisket and pastrami, expanding into a fully-fledged delicatessen. Do they have what it takes to unseat the Kenny & Zuke’s throne? Stay tuned.