It’s an ambitious move when any new restaurant in New York takes on one of the city’s biggest staples. So it’s an incredibly ambitious one when they take aim at two. Black Seed Bagels saddled up to the challenge this September, and that ambition has certainly paid off. The Nolita shop has built one of the best pizza bagels around — and they’re serving it all night long.
Ever since opening in April, Black Seed has rocketed in popularity at its smallish 170 Elizabeth Street storefront, making for long lines and trouble keeping up with such a high demand. After the restaurant’s first week of business, they shut the place down for a day just to take a breather and gauge the crowd situation. Now it seems they’ve gotten it all on steady footing, and they’ve even expanded their wares.
Noah Bernamoff (of Mile End fame) and Matt Kliegman (from The Smile) are at the helm of the whole thing, so the resulting bagels are a mix of both Montreal and New York styles, an homage to both of their hometowns. Each bagel here is lovingly hand-rolled, boiled, then wood-fired for a resulting eat that has all the best qualities of both opposing schools of bagel-thought. The toppings you’ll find here aren’t your typical fare for either one, with options like tobiko caviar, house-made almond butter and beet-cured lox.
Now, in addition to their regular morning and lunch hours from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., they’re adding late-night feasting to the menu. Every Thursday through Saturday, barflies will now find themselves stumbling upon this oasis, wondering what sort of Faustian agreement they’ll have to come to just to step inside. It’s real, though, and you won’t need to sell your soul to get a bite.
From 10 p.m. to 4 a.m., folks can order the spot’s cheesy basil or pepperoni topped renditions of the ol’ pizza bagel. Yes, what might’ve previously emerged from a sad vacuum-sealed bag in our freezer now comes fresh and bubbling to our eager hands circa 3 a.m. Or for the ravenous group, they’ll also offer bulk orders of their regular bagels, with a side of cream cheese. Hey, sometimes “ambition” just means the will to polish off a whole baker’s dozen after midnight — and we’re okay with that.