Monday, July 19, 2010
Last Monday, I pointed out that a bagel shop may open at 165 Avenue A in the former Monk Thrift space... that it would be from the people who own the Bagel World stores in Brooklyn.
Well, Christopher Pugliese who runs those shops has confirmed the opening. As he said: "We're going to bring the bagel back to the East Village."
Pugliese, who has lived in the East Village the last four years, shared a lot of information with me (including the rent amount: $9,000 monthly) ... so here are some excerpts:
If all goes well, we should be open by October the latest. When David's closed, I was very angry/disappointed. That's when the seed was planted to open a shop. I was kind of on the fence about it for a while. After I learned about how David's was pushed out by Hot and Crusty, I was motivated and on a mission to open.
My partners and I grew up in Brooklyn and we've been making bagels since we were kids. We're going to hand roll and kettle boil our bagels. The whole place is going to be old school NYC. We're naming it Tompkins Square Bagels. We're all big into NYC history. We'll have a full deli with cold cuts, home made cream cheeses, lox, whitefish, etc. I'm going to bring in a chef to do some simple breakfast, brunch and dinner food.
We are going to try to keep the prices really low in hopes of becoming more of a local neighborhood folks kind of spot. I'm hoping to work closely with the schools and Boys and Girls Clubs in the area, be active in the community, sponsor different events, and hire kids from the neighborhood.
We have three shops in Brooklyn and none of them sell beer or cigarettes. I won't here either. We won't seek a liquor license. That said, I now understand why Alphabet City is overflowing with bars and restaurants yet at the same time lacking the most basic of neighborhood businesses; butcher, bookshop, fish market, etc. The only way anybody can afford to pay the insane rents that landlords around here are asking is to sell something you can markup as much as liquor.
Honestly, some nights I get really freaked out about whether or not I'm making the right decision. None of my shops pay anywhere near that amount [of rent] and I'm in great areas: Park Slope, Cobble Hill and Fort Greene. If we're not extremely popular right from the get go, we probably won't last a year.
Previously on EV Grieve:
Bagels for Avenue A?