Dear Mr. Levine,
I hope this note finds you well, I am writing in regards to my family's bagel shop located in Lynbrook, NY (Long Island). My name is Jason Clancy. In 2003 your article in the New York Times, "Was Life Better When Bagels Were Smaller?" was an achievement for my family, although the reason may not be obvious. My mother, founder of Lynbrook Bagels, was somewhat of an apprentice of Bobby Madorski, and originally we had planned to open up with Bobby but in the end decided to go it alone (we are still very close with him).
Our bagels consist of the pure five ingredients (water, malt, yeast, flour, and salt), are small (1/4 pound), are kettle-baked on redwood boards, and crunch with every bite. (And if you are wondering after reading about the Irish and English parts of my family - my mother - in bagel tradition - is of eastern European Jewish decent).
I don't know if you ever venture out to Long Island. But if you do - I hope you would take the time to stop by my family's shop - Lynbrook Bagels.
Having grown up near Lynbrook, and knowing how good Bagelry owner Bobby Midorski's bagels are (and how seriously he takes the craft of bagel baking), I had to try Lynbrook Bagels. The New York area, and the entire country for that matter, needs more high quality bagel bakeries to vanquish the forces of oversized squishy bagel mediocrity that threaten our bagel-centric way of life.
I was skeptical about Lynbrook Bagels. Why? For a couple of reasons.
First, Clancy is not exactly a Jewish name; but these days the best bagels in NYC are made by a Thai family at Absolute Bagels, so why can't an Irish family in Lynbrook make great bagels on Long Island?
Secondly, the Clancy Family are huge New York Football Giants fans. How huge? During football season (which starts for us today with the Giants playing the Redskins) they use food coloring to make Giants Blue bagels. Now I'm a serious Giants fan, too, but I draw the line at blue bagels.
But on Tuesday a huge bag of Lynbrook Bagels was delivered to Serious Eats World HQ.
And you know what? The Clancys make world-class bagels.
They're smallish, with a crispy chew on the outside and light, gutsy bagel innards. And they're baked long enough to get to a beautiful golden brown that verges on dark brown. Mercifully, the Clancys did not send us any blue bagels. We appreciate that.
Lynbrook Bagels deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as New York's best bagel bakeries: Absolute Bagels, Bagel Hole, Bagel Oasis, Murray's, and Bagelry on Long Island. Welcome to the club, Lynbrook Bagels. It's a pretty exclusive one, unfortunately for us bagel lovers. Now, about those blue bagels....
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