?This may be the best bagel I?ve ever eaten.?

The second you utter those words in New York, get ready for opinion overload. Murray?s rules! What about Ess-A-Bagel? Are you forgetting Kossar?s? Uh, hello...Bagel Hole.

Though the debate will never end, there is a strong new contender for the top spot: Black Seed Bagels

From the brains behind Mile End Deli (Noah Bernamoff) and The Smile (Matt Kliegman), the Nolita shop blends Montreal and New York techniques for preparation. The dough is rolled noticeably thinner than with the typical overstuffed variety (that?s where the Canadian influence comes in) and boiled in a vat of, we believe, honey-tinged water before getting finished off in a wood-fired oven. You can watch all the magic happen in the open kitchen, then take a seat at one of the handful of chairs to enjoy the spoils.

We recently sunk our teeth into an everything bagel (with scallion cream cheese, cold-smoked salmon and red onions, of course), and it was nothing short of salty, chewy perfection. But next trip, it?s on, tobiko-caviar spread--that is, if we can survive the growing lines.

Even if you stand by a longtime institution, there is no debating how bonkers good Black Seed is.

Black Seed Bagels, 170 Elizabeth St. (at Spring St.); 212-730-1950

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