Tag Archive | Brooklyn Center of the Universe!

A Worthy Quest: The Bagel Pub

 

2015-08-15 10.25.21

Part One, August 15

As I walked up to the store front I immediately thought, “We are off to a great start… this is promising!” What impressed me right away from the sidewalk was the statement, “Bagels baked on premises.” There was all sorts of tasteful and artsy signage customary to NYC style of sidewalk chalkboard stand up signs. I was blown away by the freshness, cleanliness, and simplicity. I took a look around and saw a full staff with 7+- persons in the front end behind the counter and more than were2015-08-15 10.28.20 not visible through an open doorway to the kitchen area. They do a lot more than bagels and this place has a very steady stream of customers coming for baked treats, bagels, wraps, deli salads, fresh fruit juices, shots, and smoothies. Another observation was that at 10 a.m.+/- all the deli and baked items displayed in the open cases and closed cases were fully stocked with as near to perfect presentation as you can imagine.

Let’s talk about the bagel experience.

I ordered the my favorite as I have been doing through my NYC bagel quest, “A whole wheat everything bagel with lox spread on one side and scallion spread on the other, and then squish the two sides together.” These are the very close if not the exact words I use when I order. I try hard to not alter my wording much so I can keep the scientific aspect of this quest consistent.

2015-08-15 10.36.48They make the bagels on site. +1

They boil them. +1

They had all the traditional primer recommended flavors available.

The clerk asked if I wanted it toasted, instead of assuming. +1

The bagel was wrapped in thin paper prior to cutting. Then they wrapped it again in a 2015-08-15 10.37.56sturdier paper.+2

The bagel had all the appropriate seasonings that make it an everything bagel. +1

They gave me a whole wheat everything bagel with scallion spread, fresh lox, capers, red onion, a lot of thin slices of tomato* (I have a high standard for tomatoes). -3*

The bagel itself was visually great. It had the ideal small blisters here and there and the very visible signs of stretching of the dough as it cooked. I took a bite to test the texture before I returned it. It was crisp and just right crunch that requires use of the teeth. Plus great on the inside as well. +2

I re-ordered the bagel. I point out what I got and I repeated my order clearly and concisely. No one offered me any kind of refund for the cost variance of the bagels. I know enough about the bagel business to know that fresh lox will cost more than 1 or 2 spreads. -2

2015-08-15 10.47.01The second chance bagel came wrapped in one sheet of paper. It was cut before it was wrapped. -1

The bagel itself looked great. Awesome quality on the outside and inside just as the first one. +1

The smears were… weirdly applied! Somehow they took what I said to mean put one type on one half, then the other on the other half, and then slice it down the center keeping both flavors separated from each other. I am thinking about it now and maybe this guy worked in a pizza place before? At this point I was talking to myself, shaking my head, and throwing my hands up in the hair. I stood up and got a plastic knife and reapplied the spreads as I like it. DIY! -1

I ate half of the bagel and decided to ask to speak to the owner or the shift supervisor with the intention of letting him address the problem with understanding the order and the lack of any inquiry about the cost deferential that wasn’t offered to me. He took more than 5 plus minutes to come out. I told him I am a freelance/amateur writer and I am writing a series on best bagels in NYC and that this is the third place I’ve visited. I explained to him what happened with my incorrect orders. He didn’t seem to be interested in the quality of the service at his business and simply wanted the bottom line, “What did I want?” I told him as the owner I wanted to hear from him before I write my article and give him a chance to address the concerns. He asked me again what I had gotten and again I explained. He commented about the strange half & half order that was made and said it was because of how I ordered it. I agreed there was a misunderstanding on how I wanted it, but I let him know that this was the only place I have ever been to that came up with that interpretation from what I stated. He replied, “Well, we are one in a million.” That was said with sarcasm and not humor. Again he came back to, “What did I want?” I restated that the two things I wanted to speak to him about were the fact that no one even thought to ask about a reimbursement and that I wanted to give him a chance to address the order/service problems. I was trying to be fair and give him a chance to address, redress, & correct the problems. I felt this would be a great way to gauge customer service of the establishment.

During the conversation the owner made comments such as, “let’s not get excited,” and “you know we are really busy here.” I can really genuinely say I was not even close to “excited.” I do know when he said that I cocked my head to the right and semi-smiled, but rolled with it to see what other pearls this man was going to toss me. There was a woman in the background that was listening to all the conversation. I am going to guess she is involved in the running of the business and she brought me $5 as a refund. I pretty sure she knew she was witnessing epic fail at customer service. I left there thinking I will come back again and see how it goes the second time around. This place has incredible food fare. Exceptional quality everything in regards to food from what I gauge with my eyes, but service could use improvement and management needs to stay in the kitchen. His staff was very friendly, even if they screwed up they seemed to care more about fixing it than the owner, and they were authentically apologetic for the errors. This reminds me of Catskill Bagels where I loved the product and employees, but the owner is not himself good with people.

Overall this place I would absolutely recommend to go to eat a bagel at in NYC. Yes, even in spite of my mishaps this artsy fartsy place bakes a very good bagel.

*About tomatoes: I believe many, if not most Americans, haven’t seen or tasted an honest to goodness non GMO tomato. I have and it’s a rare thing nowadays for me to eat GMO whitish-pink flesh crap excuse of a fruit grocery stores and restaurants try to pass off as a tomato. I am having none of it!

Part Two, August 20

As promised I went back and gave this place a second chance. I thought they might remember me from last time, but if they did they didn’t say anything or show it in any way I could tell. So again as I entered I found the place very clean and pleasing in overall appearance. Although this time I would say the variety of deli and baked goods were not as well stocked as the first time. Those other deli items aren’t why I am visiting, so that’s here or there for my current purpose.

I ordered exactly the same thing I always get: an everything bagel with two types of cream cheese, scallion on one side and lox spread on the other, squished together.

2015-08-20 11.07.53Observations

This time they got my order right the first time. +1

It wasn’t toasted +1

The crust was blistered all over. The inside was chewy. Damn it was beautiful +2

2015-08-20 11.13.46The seasonings were the right type and they were all over the bagel, not just the top side. The seasonings stuck to the bagel while you handled and are it. +2

They didn’t wrap up the bagel in paper before cutting it this time and they didn’t wrap it a second time in thicker paper wrap like last time. -1

Conclusion

This place has bagels that meet the Good Bagel Manifesto standard.

They really only failed with the wrap/cut section. I feel I finally found a place worthy or ordering bagels from. Now I just need to find out what time I have to get there in order to get one still warm. That will make it perfection.

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A Worthy Quest: Catskill Bagel Company

August 12

After having read the primer about how to recognize a truly good bagel I knew I would have to go revisit my old bagel shop in the historic Ditmas Park neighborhood in Brooklyn. It’s the only place I even remotely recalled having a bagel with a blistering skin. I always liked the bagels here, so I got up early and planned to start my birthday with a fancy bagel. This is my second expedition on the search for a good bagel in NYC and I’m feeling hopeful. Here are my findings:

For consistency through my search, and since it is one of the types in the primer stated as being an acceptable choice, I ordered my favorite a Whole Wheat Everything Bagel. Also for consistency and because they are listed as acceptable smears to choose; I got one side with scallion cream cheese and the other with lox spread (and then I have the two sides squished together).

2015-08-12 08.14.261. First observation is the bagels here are a lot larger (in all ways) in size from the last place I reviewed. +1
2. They make these on site. +1
3. They boil them +1
4. They clerk asked me before he started to even move any direction if I wanted it toasted (he looked shocked because I said, “No.”, but that is because he knows me and it is a big deviation from what I normally say – which is “Toast it a bit on the dark side! —sshhh don’t judge!). +1
2015-08-12 08.14.495. They put both flavors on, but I think they charge an extra $1 (that is because the owner yelled at them once when she saw they weren’t charging extra, before that they didn’t used to) -0
6. They did not wrap the bagel before slicing it. -1
7. The bagel has small tears, stretching of the skin, and a couple places where smallish blisters are on the skin. I couldn’t see the other bagels too well to say if they did have blistered skin or not, but it didn’t look like it. The bagels are kept far away from the counter front. Either way my specific bagel did show some minor signs or blistering. +1

Overall I would say this place makes decent bagels, but I don’t think they hit it totally on the mark. Definitely above the average bagel though. One warning, I will say the owner is absolutely horrible. When I lived here I actually would look in through the window first to see if she was there and if she was I would turn around no matter how hungry I was. Her employees are top notch though. I give it up to her for hiring good employees and keeping a well run business. You know some people can be good at running a business, but not good with actual people.

Parades, Carousels, and Birthdays, Oh My!

20150619_122736What an incredible month in the city with Folsom Street East, The Coney Island Mermaid Parade, carousel hunting, and spending birthdays and happy moments with those close to me. All this and I moved, yet again, but still in “Brooklyn Center of the Universe”! I can’t recall how many times this month I thought about the idea that I really am finally having my NY Adventure that I imagined when I first agreed to move here. The adventures I am having though are nothing like what I planned and neither are my adventures really what I had originally imagined, but life is beautiful that way; it is so unexpected, full of twists and turns, and we adapt and grow in the process. I am more of myself than ever before and that is a beautiful thing.  Continue reading

Service and the value of property

Today I plan to go to the Brooklyn Public Library and participate in the Plaza Swing Series. They are offering a free mambo dance class and I get to listen to Orlando Marin, the last of the great mambo kings of NYC. Often enough in D/s, M/s, and O/p relationships we hear the question asked about what a submissive or slave brings to the table. I offer as food for thought, that by learning to dance, by opening my ears to hear and experience Orlando Merin’s music, I am increasing my value.

I’ve often heard people focus on things like administrative skills, bootblacking, cooking, cooking specialized diets, domestic and household maintenance, and clearly those are all valuable skills sets, but I desire to belong to someone who wants more from me. Can I do those things listed? Frankly, yes. I feel I should be in constant growth in all areas, so as to be a well-rounded person. I constantly search to enrich myself culturally, through music, theatre, dance, sports, current affairs for example. And I believe that adds to my value as someone’s potential property.

I carried on this topic for a short while with my sister jade and I asked her why she thought that people more often associate our value to things along the line of labor type tasks. She discussed with me the general influence of historical slavery, specifically Roman, Asian, and the geisha which she has studied. One can fairly easily search for information to substantiate the economic value and need for slaves to the state on past eras. Jade, being the wonderful sister that she is, pointed out to me that slaves that were educated and had artistic skills were of great value and added to the prestige of the owner’s household.

Last year I recall receiving a notification from the MAsT NY men’s only group about a toga party that had a discussion topic of Roman slave history and of course a lesson on the proper way to tie a toga… 😀 Perhaps my friend boy kevin will help me out and find the presenter for our MAsT Metro NY group. I will reach out to him and see what more information I can get on this topic. I plan to revisit this topic of Service, and Value of property in the future when I have gotten a chance to do some research.

For now, I am off to dance mambo, and listen to Orlando Marin, The Last Mambo King of NYC.

Hello, My Name is…

You know, just like the little sticky tags you are given when you go to an event. When we go to our not-so-underground events and meetings we have those as well. See, kinky folks are geeky and nerdy too! So, here we go, this is how I used to introduce myself at the secret double handshake meetings and events….

Hello, my name is karida, and I am a girl. I moved from Florida to NY a year and a half ago. I have been living in Brooklyn, NY, the Center of the Universe! with my Daddy dominant. We were the International Power Exchange 2013 titlist. yada yada yada…

There were other times though that I just said, “Hi, I’m karida, and I’m with him” and then pointed to the guy next to me. We can call him Mr. Big…

Notice I say a lot about I was or I did? My life is changing. Soon I am going to be doing more things on my own or with people other than Mr. Big. The plan is I am going to share here all about the life of a single girl living in NYC exploring the sexual underground of the world of BDSM and various kinky places, people, ideas, etc!