A Bagel to Finagle For

Josh B., University of Virginia

As a person of the Jewish faith more than acquainted with my religion’s brunch cuisine, I do not take the consumption of bagels lightly.  In fact, it took an entire semester last year before building up the courage to enter Bodo’s Bagels on the Corner and ordering a single everything bagel for 70 cents. I remember biting into that bagel and instantly regretting two things: waiting an entire semester to try Bodo’s…and only ordering one bagel.

Bodo’s Bagels boasts freshly baked, traditional, New York style bagels, and justifiably so. A legitimately impressive substitute for H & H Bagels, Bodo’s has three locations around Charlottesville offering an extensive selection of sandwiches, soups, and salads. Bodo’s keeps it simple: pick a bagel; pick a cream cheese. Although ordering a sandwich mandates a little more creativity, the myriad choices are laid out clearly and executed with consistent delectability. Unfortunately, even with all the simplicity in the world, nothing could condense the long line of people that always seems to stand between hungry customers and the register.

After waiting in a line for ten minutes, no doubt guaranteeing a late arrival at my one o’clock discussion section, the ends certainly justify the means. Unwaveringly fresh with a finely tuned balance between moist chewiness and salty crispness, the bagels keep students coming back for more. Additionally, customers can easily diversify their bagel with anything from delicious lox spread or walnut raisin cream cheese to an egg cooked-to-order on the flat top. The hummus and avocado spreads stand out in particular as flavorful renditions of usually boring sandwich garnishes. Alternatives to spreads and eggs include a large selection of condiments including onion, horseradish, and plain butter, as well as plenty of deli meats and salads; hell, do you want natural or crunchy peanut butter?

Bodo’s  offers a stellar combination of light speed service, amiable employees one would expect to find in a college town, and unequivocally cheap food. A college student would be hard pressed to find a filling meal, even one on a lower tier, for less at the McDonalds a mile away.

Bodo’s managers might consider renaming the restaurant “Frodo’s Bagels” because given the amount of bagel recipes in existence, Bodo’s truly has one bagel to toast them all, one bagel to “schmear” them, one bagel to cream (cheese) them all and in my mouth transcend them.

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