Q: What do you call a seagull when it flies over the bay? A: A bagel.
hillary — 5 years ago
I love me a good Jewish bagel. You can find me on most Sunday mornings scowering the Forest Hill area for the best bagel in Toronto. So when someone told me there is a bagel shop in Ottawa (off all places) selling the best bagels in the WORLD you better believe I had to check it out.
Now if having the best bagels in Ottawa (or the planet, as coined by the ‘Robb Report’ isn’t enough, the bagel shop also has the biggest selection of dark chocolate in Ottawa. Yes, this is where it all comes together. I suddenly became a lady on a mission- chocolate and bagels- the absolute best things to eat, sign me up!
Entering Ottawa’s Bagelshop feels a little like coming home after a long vacation. The delicious smell of a wood-burning oven fills the air and although I have no direct relation to owner Vince Piazza, his warm heart, gentle smile and jolly laugh makes it feel like he is a long lost relative. And with perfectly golden, pleasantly chewy, slightly smoky, and never bready bagels Vince had me singing, ‘Honey I’m home’ in no time flat!
In 1984, Vince brought the first wood burning oven bagel to Ottawa. In between his day job as a teacher Vince would wake up at 4am to stoke the fire. He would work at the Bagel Shop until 8am and then go teach a full day of classes. And if that wasn’t enough, he’d come back to the shop after 4pm and work until close. But all his hard work paid off. “The store was a success since day one. There used to be line ups around the block on Saturday and Sunday mornings full of people waiting for bagels,” explains Vince. The stores small 800 square foot radius quickly outgrew its humble beginnings and required Vince’s fulltime attention. “Our first expansion was to 1,400 square feet and then quickly to 3,000 and today we are 8,000 square feet!” Although, the bagels are absolutely fantastic, it’s Vince’s award winning personality that keep customers coming back for more, year after year. And with each expansion the products grew as well. Here is where we at Choco-locate come in.
Vince has the largest selection of dark chocolate in all of Ottawa. An entire walkway, the size of a large grocery aisle is devoted to the darkest and sinful of chocolaty delights. It’s clear that this shop is more than just authentic, hand rolled Montreal-style bagels. “I had always been a lover of chocolates, especially world renown chocolates,” say Vince. Over the years he has developed a refined taste for dark chocolate. “I was one of the first to introduce Amadeus which I consider to be one of the worlds best chocolates.” It’s also has the big O’s seal of approval, ranked quite high on Oprah’s favourite things list. When I mention this Vince merely laughs and replies, "I've learned how to look for a good chocolate."
O. Town is lucky to have a chocolate connoisseur like Vince on their side. We found intense and exceptional chocolate from the likes of Valrhona, Degas, Vosges lining the shelves and also local chocolate from Olivia Chocolat and Roger’s Chocolate. “I like to distinguish between a chocolate and a candy bar. I love dark chocolate, when you crack it and you smell the aroma and the crispiness,” says Vince. A man after my own heart. And with a selection of close to 300 varieties of Cheese, the perfect pairing is just around the corner. Maintaining that Ottawa Bagelshop and Deli is so much more than just bagels. Visit today: http://www.bagelshop.ca/
Love to try new chocolate flavours? Be sure to check out our previous blog here