Food & Drink

The 10 best bagels around Chicago

Published On 10/10/2014 Published On 10/10/2014
Kaufman's bagels
Jim Vondruska
Huge Galdones
Reno Chicago
Jim Vondruska
Jim Vondruska
The Bagelers Coffeehouse
Jim Vondruska
Flickr/Quinn Dombrowski
Fountainhead
Andres J. DeLeon
Brobagel
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1. Little Goat 820 W Randolph St, Chicago, IL 60607

Right across the street from its upscale sister Girl & The Goat, Stephanie Izard's Little Goat is an all-day upscale diner that serves insanely creative takes on classic American comfort food. Split between a sit-down restaurant and a bakery, Little Goat is the place to go for over-the-top breakfast (breakfast spaghetti, banana peanut butter waffles), exceptional burgers (you can choose between a beef, goat, and veggie patty), and crazy desserts (smoked pork & toffee crunch milkshakes, Cheez-It sundaes). If you can't sit and stay -- or handle the long weekend waits -- then hit the "Grab and Goat" take-away area.

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2. Reno 2607 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647 (Logan Square)

Local, organic ingredients go into making Reno's mostly handmade American cuisine, including its delectably stacked wood-fired pizzas. Decked with choice cocktails and an extensive list of fairly priced wine, this resto knocks it out of the park.

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3. Kaufman's Bagel & Delicatessen 4905 Dempster St, Skokie, IL 60077

Kaufman’s, a staple on the North Shore for more than 50 years, burned down a couple of years ago, but it re-opened bigger and better, and it’s still packed to the gills almost any time of day. Grab a number ticket (to the right of the door) when you enter, order the just-baked bagels, and be prepared to wait a solid 30 minutes. And yes, it's worth it -- there's a reason this place is an institution.

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4. The Bagelers Coffeehouse 2461 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL 60614 (Lincoln Park)

While the bagels are still boiled, a la NYC style, expect this Chicago-style bagel to be a bit sweeter. Try the Bageler sandwich: bacon, egg, and your choice of any of their house-made spreads and sauces, including chipotle mayo or, for those who like ‘em sweet, real maple syrup.

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5. Fountainhead 1970 W Montrose, Chicago, IL 60613 (Ravenswood)

This Ravenswood tavern is a mahogany-ensconced destination for craft beer and beer-focused comfort cuisine (burgers, fried chicken, steak frites). The beer list, which features a mix of local gems and international brews, is always fantastic, and there's an equally robust selection of whiskey if you're looking for something a little stronger. During the warmer months, the rooftop garden is always happening.

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6. NYC Bagel Deli 300 S Wacker, Chicago, IL 60606 (Loop)

Showing respect to its name, NYC Bagel Deli makes its bagels the real-deal traditional New York way: by first bringing them to a raging boil in an 80-gallon kettle of just hot water. The result: a hard outside, a soft inside, and an actually, truly authentic kettle-boiled bagel.

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7. Brobagel 1931 W North Ave, Chicago, IL 60622 (Wicker Park)

With tried-and-true recipes for delicious bagels paired with new-fangled toppings like Sriracha & garlic confit cream cheese, Brobagel offers a reliably tasty and refreshing experience for your coffee-and-a-bagel runs in Wicker Park.