Thursday, June 16, 2016

Bagelicious, Hawthorn (by invitation) by Bilby Blue

When it comes to bagels, I am a traditionalist. Smoked salmon, cream cheese, capers and maybe some onion (depending on who I might be seeing later that day). It’s a classic, and for good reason. Nonetheless, we are always willing to try fresh ideas and so when Benny and I had an opportunity to check out the new Night Menu at Bagelicious, we were up for the challenge.

Bagelicious, Hawthorn, Nutella, marshmallow, pretzel, bagel
Cinnamon and raisin bagel with Nutella, tiny marshmallows and pretzels 

Bagelicious in Hawthorn opened a year ago, while its Elsternwick parent has been around for about six years. Close to Swinburne University, the Hawthorn outlet is popular with students (discounts are available on presentation of a student card and there is free WiFi). Inside is bright and cheery, with the exposed brick walls adding a warming element to the modern fitout. Seating is available both inside and outside on the footpath with a gas heater to keep the evening chill at bay. We were also pleased to see that the building’s original small leadlights had been retained.

The bagels are proper New York style bagels – boiled then baked. Don’t get me started about the utter travesty of bread rolls that claim to be bagels because they have a hole through the middle. A good authentic bagel has a completely different texture and taste to those of regular bread – dense and chewy, but not too heavy.

Bagelicious, Hawthorn
The bagels are supplied par baked from NY Bagel (providers of bagels throughout Melbourne and beyond) with final baking by Bagelicious. There is a range of bagel styles, from the more traditional (plain, sesame, poppy, and everything – ie both sesame and poppy), flavoured (onion, spinach and parmesan, cheese, and za’atar), other flours (wholemeal and sourdough rye) and sweet (blueberry, and cinnamon and raisin). Gluten free bagels (from a Sydney supplier) are also available, but cost an extra dollar.

And what Bagelicious does with those bagels can only be described as bagel fusion. Yes there is the traditional smoked salmon, but the menu also spans modern Australian, Greek, Middle Eastern and Mexican influences. There are cold fillings, hot fillings, bagel toasties and omelette bagels, including a number of vegetarian options. If you want something non-bagel, there is a daily soup and salad, and the daytime menu has some fillings (eg schnitzel) available on a plate rather than on a bagel.

While the Night Menu is only a subset of the day menu, there was still plenty of choice. Our host, Yonathan, had prepared a sumptuous bagel feast for us.

Bagelicious, Hawthorn, iced drinks
We were welcomed with drinks – I had an iced chocolate while Benny had an iced mocha. These were quite unlike the normal iced concoctions – probably best described as milk-based slushies with a strong flavour hit. Really thick, creamy and icy – I loved it.

Bagelicious, Hawthorn, potato wedges
First up was the Bagelicious potato wedges, served with sour cream and aioli. One of the best wedges we have ever tasted – crispy and salty/spicy outside, and tender, silky smooth potato on the inside. They were so delicious, I made a strategic error. I ate way too many of them….

Bagelicious, Hawthorn, toasted smoked chicken
Then our first bagel (Benny and I were sharing, half each): a plain bagel toastie with smoked chicken, pesto, roast capsicum, red onion and cheddar, accompanied with bagel chips and aioli. This was undeniably one of the two star bagels of the night. Arriving hot, straight from the press grill plate, the bagel had a thin crisp shell that added a wonderful crunch to accompany the scrumptious filling.

Bagelicious, Hawthorn, Mexican chicken bagel
Our second bagel was chicken Mexican, with avocado, aioli, lettuce, tomato and onion. This was a hot filling in a cold (ie non-toasted) bagel. We had asked to try the gluten free bagel, so the accompanying bagel chips were also gluten free. Note to the gluten intolerant: Bagelicious gluten free bagels are amazingly similar to regular plain bagels. The filling was good, but very spicy. And the spillage factor from the avocado and aioli meant that eating it was a rather messy affair (not a major issue given the supplied napkins and wipes).

Bagelicious, Hawthorn, burger bagel
Our third bagel was a salute to dude food – the burger bagel. Another hot filling, this time in an untoasted “everything” bagel, served with more bagel chips. As well as the meat patty, this also had dill pickle, cream cheese, onion and lettuce. Benny was not convinced that a traditional bagel is ideal for a burger, being a bit too dense and chewy, but it was around a perfectly fine filling.

At this stage, Benny and I were regretting our over-indulgence in potato wedges… However after a short pause we were able to soldier on.

Bagelicious, Hawthorn, peanut butter, M&Ms, chocolate, bagel
Our fourth bagel was the other star bagel of the night. A sweet cinnamon and raisin bagel, with peanut butter, M&Ms and chocolate flakes. Now I am not a peanut butter fan, but this was amazing. The mixture of the saltiness from the peanut butter, sweetness from the chocolate, crunch from the M&Ms, and spice from the bagel was just perfection. Yonathan said that normally this is done on a blueberry bagel, but it is hard to believe that this can get much better.

Our fifth (and final!) bagel was another sweet one – a cinnamon and raisin bagel again, but this time with Nutella, tiny marshmallows and pretzels (see first pic). The salt and crunch from the pretzels was definitely needed to offset the sweetness from the other components – it was a good bagel, but I preferred the peanut butter one (although Nutella fans may disagree).

Did Benny and I really eat five bagels plus potato wedges between us in a single sitting? Well no, we confess that we brought home a doggie bag with leftovers. For dinner, one bagel plus a side (eg those wedges) will probably satisfy a normal appetite, and maybe a sweet bagel to share with a special someone.

Bagelicious, Hawthorn, bagels
Yonathan had also popped two (unfilled) gluten free bagels in our doggie bag. We ate them the next day, toasted (as per Yonathan’s recommendation for day-old bagels). Our conclusion: they were just as good as Bagelicious’ regular bagels.


We really liked it
We really liked it and would be happy to return anytime for our bagel fix.


The bagels at Bagelicious are true New York style – boiled then baked. Dense and chewy but not too heavy, and are sure to satisfy any bagel aficionado. We sampled only a few of the fillings, but there is a great range with something to appeal to everybody – even for vegetarians and the gluten intolerant.

Find it at

Bagelicious Hawthorn
646 Glenferrie Road
Hawthorn Vic 3122
Telephone: (03) 9818 0066

Bagelicious Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 

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