What's the Best Bagel Shop in Clifton? Vote Now to Weigh In!

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New Jersey is known for many things: Bruce Springsteen, The Sopranos, the incomparable white sand beaches of the Jersey shore, and of course, its bagels. In fact, some would argue that the best bagels in the nation are made right here in the Garden State. Crispy on the outside, soft and fluffy inside and unlike the poor-excuse-for-a-bagel you’ll find in just about every other state in the country. Some say it’s our water that makes them so good, but whatever it is, it’s hard to dispute that our bagels are supreme.

In Clifton, we are blessed with several really good bagel shops — where you can pick up a dozen bagels in flavors from plain to cinnamon raisin, sesame seed to onion, and the ever-popular everything bagel. There are bagel sticks, flagels (oversized flat crisp bagels that are virtually all crust and no insides), and even rainbow colored bagels. But, whether you take your bagel unadorned, with butter or cream cheese, or as a full-on bagel breakfast sandwich, bagels are about as New Jersey as you can get.

Of all of the bagel breakfast sandwiches out there, the most quintessential Jersey one of all is Taylor ham, egg and cheese, topped with salt, pepper, and ketchup (said as a single word in bagel shops across the state: “saltpepperketchup”). It’s loaded with cholesterol and fat, and worth it with every single bite.

Although there are places in town that feature bagels on their menu, Clifton has 7 self described bagel shops:

  • Bagel Station - 1223 Van Houten Avenue
  • Barry’s Bagel & Deli - 10 Market Street
  • Clifton Bagels - 106 Kingsland Avenue
  • Goldberg’s Old Time Water Bagels - 391 Piaget Avenue
  • Hot Bagels Abroad - 859 Clifton Avenue
  • Lakeview Bagel & Deli - 78 Lakeview Avenue
  • Plaza Bagel & Deli - 850 Van Houten Avenue

Every single one of Clifton’s bagel stores have something great to offer, but my go-to bagel shop is Plaza Bagels & Deli, located at 850 Van Houten Avenue (at the intersection of Van Houten Avenue and Mt. Prospect). Truthfully, I needed to look up the name of the bagel shop to write this article because like most Cliftonites I refer to it by one of the following names: Heavy Metal Bagels, Punk Rock Bagels, or Rock ’n Roll Bagels. Whether the various nicknames come from the vintage punk rock posters on the walls or the ultra cool owners and staff members, once you try their bagels, you’ll be hooked. Weekends get very crowded, so prepare to wait outside on line, but definitely worth the wait.

I clearly have my favorite place, so Clifton… what’s yours? Take our survey and let us know!

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