Bagel World is considered to be a landmark in Toronto for fresh bagels, they're known for their unique style of the bread called "Flagels".
Combining the word flat and bagels gets you a thinner, crispier version of the bun that can be ordered on its own or in sandwich style.
The first Bagel World location opened over 55 years ago at Bathurst and Wilson, its now expanded to a chain with stores in Newmarket and Thornhill as well.
The brand began as a hub for Jewish communities in the area, originally owned by Charles Sherkin who then passed it onto his son Michael who now co-owns with Ephraim Dloomy.
Both men were featured on the Food Network in 2007 for a show called Restaurant Makeover, where the entire store was remodelled top to bottom to bring in newer, and younger customers after being around for so long.
Cindy Regidor has been a manager at the original store for over six years. She says the brand has grown to be a place for anyone from any background to enjoy, adding that they roll like a close family with their customers.
Pre-lockdown era, a group of elderly men called the Breakfast Boys would ritually show up to the bakery every weekend at the crack of dawn, to enjoy the fresh bagels and coffee.
Although the world works differently now, the rituals with other regulars still continue. They walk inside and get greeted on a first name basis by employees who take the time to remember their exact order and chat about how their day is going.
Even a few city mayors have caught the Bagel World bug, with Mel Lastman popping by before his passing in 2021 and John Tory coming in to enjoy the food too.
A small kitchen at the back is where the mass production of their beloved bagels happen. Fresh dough is kneaded and shaped, then boiled in a bath of hot water to ensure a crust is formed after its baked.
The options are endless when it comes to the types of bagels available, they carry up to 12 kinds each day, the top seller being their Twister Bagel, which is triple-coated in poppy seeds.
If you're looking to pick up a bag, a dozen bagels go for $13.00 here, and singles are priced at $1.20 each. The flagels are a little pricer, at $1.65 each, and the store will happily prepare orders up to 100 of them, if you call in and pre-order.
It's not just bagels you'll find here, the store carries rows upon rows of other fresh pastries, tarts and sweets, along with a fridge of juices and container of their loved sandwich mixes.
Speaking of sandwiches, Bagel World also has a menu of breakfast deals that can be made using their famous bagels and flagels.
A delicious and classic take on a tuna melt, this sandwich ($13.99) also has melted cheddar cheese, tomato and red onion wedged between a sesame flat bagel and served with a side of tomato cucumber and lettuce, if you'd like to add a fresh crunch to it.
A popular breakfast dish in Israel, the Shakshuka ($11.99) is to die-for, it's bursting with flavour from the rich Turkish tomato sauce, with two poached eggs that soak up inside the pan its served in.
Add a garnish of goat cheese ($2.99 extra) gives this dish a 10/10, I highly recommend asking for a few slices of bagel to dip inside and eat with it.
A longtime favourite at Bagel World is the Lox Sandwich ($15.99) on your choice of bagel, we chose Everything and it complimented the smoked salmon nicely. Layered with cream cheese, cucumber, lettuce and onion, I promise this is the breakfast sandwich of your dreams.
If you're in the mood to switch up from bagel mode, order the Eggs and Onions ($11.99) which you can get any style you want. A side of poppy seed bread comes with it that has a fluffy, buttery interior.
A huge sign spreads across the plaza where Bagel World's original store is located, once you spot the life-size bagel, you'll know you've made it to the beloved bakery.