Sunday, May 16, 2010

Humble Bagel: Putting the kill on Einstein Bros. cravings for good.

So, I suppose some disclosures are in order: I have never lived on the East Coast, though I did once see Larry King at a Georgetown bagel shop when on vacation in D.C. (It's almost surprising he didn't try to marry me. It seems I'm the only woman in the country he hasn't considered trying the knot with.) My bagel experience is very narrowly defined by Lender's bagels in the grocery store and Einstein Brothers (formerly Bagel and Bagel).

Inspired by recent adventures in bageldom by my co-blogger, I decided to try one of the other bagel joints here in town. G and I haven't been out for a bagel since we moved to Eugene two years ago, though we always intended to give a couple of them a try. So this morning we settled on Humble Bagel, in part because the parking seemed easier to manage than Bagel Sphere downtown.

So we got to Humble Bagel, where the menu is tiny, battered, and leaning against the wall precariously. No frills here. The choices are fairly standard for a place like this: blueberry, cinnamon raisin, onion, poppyseed, everything, and salt, though that it not an exhaustive list. They have plain and flavored cream cheeses. Is it a New York bakery? No. Please see the sidecar on this subject.

G opted for a benchmark of bagel shops: the toasted plain bagel with fruity (in this case: Marion berry) cream cheese. Cost: 2.35. It was crusty on the outside, very chewy on the inside, and considerably smaller (fit easily in the palm of my hand) than the big-as-your-head chain store bagels I am used to. The cream cheese was tasty: sweet but not too sweet, and clearly made with actual Marion berries, which added a hint of sourness that I found really pleasant.

I am fond of a savory breakfast myself, and so I opted for the bagel scramble, which is billed as two eggs scrambled on a toasted buttered bagel of my choice. Cost: 3.75+. There were a handful of ingredients that could be added to the scramble for $.85 each, and I opted for avocado and cheddar cheese. What came out several minutes later was amazing. The egg part of the scramble was basically an omelette with cheese cooked directly in the eggs. It wasn't some fake round egg disc of microwaved scariness. Fluffy, cheesy goodness, folded in half and laid across a toasted everything bagel absolutely covered with smashed avocado. It was so tall I cut the egg in half and ate the halves like open-faced sandwiches. I could have eaten more, but I left sated, which is probably a better way to be at breakfast than stuffed-to-slowness that you can get when the bagels are too big.

At some point, mid-breakfast, G said to me "You know, since we moved, I have been sorry there wasn't an Einstein Brothers here. Now? I can't remember why." High praise from a carb-loving bagel-eater. I have to agree: these might be the best bagels I have ever had.

Hours: Hours: M-F 6:30a.m. - 5 p.m.; Sat. & Sun. 7 a.m. - 5 p.m. You can only get the delectable bagel scramble until 10:30 on weekdays and 1:30 on weekends, though!

Location: 2435 Hilyard St, next to the Sundance Market.

Discounts: Day-old bagels, by the half dozen, half-price. We bought some to freeze, as well as a tub of herb cream cheese.

Humble Bagel Co on Urbanspoon


  1. I still kind of miss Einstein, but I think it's partly because it was my college bagel shop in D.C. (and because their chocolate chip bagels were lovely). But now I must try this place. That egg sandwich sounds amazing.

  2. I found your blog because I was writing a post about the blueberry scones that I have a recipe for, which my sister got when she worked at Humble Bagel in college (a looong time ago), and wanted to link to them if they had a site. Great I'm tempted to drive the seven hours for a bagel scramble :)