When I’m looking for a truly pleasurable food experience, everything matters to me. I expect the food to be worth the money, the staff has to care about the customers and the establishment to make me feel comfortable. I don’t usually find the perfect mix, if I am being honest. Something is usually lacking.
Recently, my husband and I stumbled on a crazy cool bagel joint that seriously knocked it out of the park.
Pearl’s Bagels is a popular bagel shop in Washington DC, located in the Shaw/Mount Vernon Square neighborhood near the convention center. Known for its traditional, hand-rolled New York-style bagels, fresh spreads, unique sandwich combinations and cool vibes, Pearl’s Bagels is a gem.
Michael and I had the opportunity to visit on a recent overnight in DC and were seriously impressed. (That is saying something. Michael is from the New Jersey/Philadelphia area and is VERY PICKY about his bagels.)
As soon as we walked in we knew we had made a good choice. Although busy, the place was clean, bright and cozy. Staff members were happy and friendly, and the aroma of freshly baked bagels was intoxicating. (Is there anything that smells better than warm bread? I think not.) Seating was a bit limited, but we managed to secure ourselves a cozy corner to eat breakfast and people watch.
I selected the everything bagel and topped it with Nana’s Hot Jalapeno Cheese spread. The bagel was fresh and chewy with a crispy crust and a perfect density. And Nana’s spread was out of this world. (They are super generous with the shmears, by the way.) I don’t know what they put in that secret recipe but consider this spicy gal officially obsessed!
My husband got a breakfast sandwich which he customized and thought was delicious. “Hearty and well worth the price tag” were his exact words. We also fell in love with the coffee they serve. I was too caught up in the experience and forgot to ask the kind, though.
I would be remiss if I didn’t give a shout out to the vibe and branding found at Pearl’s Bagels. The name itself pays homage to owner Oliver and Allee Cox’s French Bulldog Pearl who plays a pivotal role in the identity of the restaurant. From the color scheme to the tiles, Frenchie decor, packaging, merch and custom wallpaper, one cannot be anything but impressed at the attention to detail. It just makes for a uber-positive customer experience.
Did I mention the custom wall paper? 🙂
If you are in Washington DC and looking for a superior neighborhood bagel shop, I highly recommend visiting Pearl’s Bagels!
Location: 1017 7th St., NW., Washington, DC
Hours: 8am – 2pm daily
Pro-tip: Seating is limited and once the city wakes up a line forms out the door. As they say, the early bird gets the worm so be sure to take that into consideration.