Wednesday, April 28, 2010

H & H Bagels


H&H Bagels, located at Broadway and 80th St. in the Upper West Side of New York City is the largest bagel manufacturer in NYC, selling around 100,000 bagels per day. It is an extremely popular Bagel spot, some say the best in the city.

Although the bagel is not a food native to Puerto Rico, H&H is owned and operated by a man named Helmer Toro from Puerto Rico. The main store is located on Broadway and 80th St., but the bagels are made in a separate bakery facility on 46th St. at 12th Avenue.

H&H Bagels is so well-known that it has become a landmark in the city. It is often shown in TV shows and movies that film on the streets of NYC., including the movie You've Got Mail, and many different television shows including Entourage, Sex and the City, and Seinfeld.

From the New York Times:

Today Mr. Toro hears one question again and again: How did a Puerto Rican become a bagel maven? ...

Actually, he began to learn about dough and bread baking at the age of 12. One of 11 children, he worked after school at bakeries in the Bronx, where his family settled in 1958....

With no formal business training for guidance, Mr. Toro built H & H on instinct. One of his first decisions, in an effort to reach more customers, was to call in rabbinical authorities to make his bagels kosher.

"It was very good for business," said Mr. Toro, who rolled dough and made his product by hand for two years before buying an automatic bagel machine.

In the beginning, H & H had 20 employees. Today there are 120, with H & H's two red-hot ovens turning out bagels around the clock, seven days a week....

You can order H&H Bagels online and have them overnight shipped. Actually, thirty percent of their sales are now shipping to regions outside of NYC. They have pretty much anything you can imagine, including Plain, Onion, Garlic, Poppy, Sesame, Pumpernickel, Whole Wheat, Cinnamon Raisin, Sour Dough, Blueberry and, for people who cannot make a decision, "Everything."

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