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The Huntington News

The independent student newspaper of Northeastern University

The Huntington News

The independent student newspaper of Northeastern University

The Huntington News



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Spreading some schmear: Rating four bagel spots around campus

Kristina DaPonte
A bagel with cream cheese from Render Coffee.

With several different bagel shop options around Northeastern’s campus, sometimes it can be overwhelming trying to decide where to pop in. For students, especially those from New York and New Jersey who consider themselves bagel connoisseurs, finding the perfect one can be challenging. But what constitutes a perfect bagel?

These reviewers, who ordered a plain bagel with regular cream cheese at every location below, are like Goldilocks when it comes to bagels: they have to be toasted, but not too much, and have a just-right amount of cream cheese. College students often consider three main things when deciding where to eat: taste, price and location. 

Here’s the breakdown of those three factors at four bagel shops around Northeastern.

Render Coffee — Taste: 8/10, Price: 5/10, Location: 6/10

Located on Columbus Avenue, Render Coffee is a spot few students at Northeastern are aware of. Despite being on the outskirts of campus, Render is definitely worth a try, especially for students living in residence halls on Columbus Avenue.

Relative to other bagel spots in the area, Render’s price is average — a plain bagel with cream cheese costs $4.50. The bagel-to-cream-cheese ratio was near perfection: not an overwhelming amount of schmear, but also not too little that it would leave someone wanting more. The toast of the bagel was a bit on the crispier side, but the fluffy interior offset the edge’s sharp crunch.

When it comes to cream cheese, consistency and taste are key. Render’s plain cream cheese lacked flavor. It was not too sweet nor too sour; instead, it did not have much taste at all.

Dunkin’ — Taste: 3/10, Price: 8/10, Location: 7/10

A Dunkin’ bagel may be the most convenient choice for Northeastern students. There are two on-campus locations, one in Ruggles Station and a couple hanging around the edges of campus on Massachusetts and Huntington avenues. Because it is a fast food restaurant, the bagel is fairly cheap, coming in at just $3.73; however, price and location are its only strong suits.

This bagel disappointed the reviewers. It was flat, cold and lifeless. The most disappointing feature, however, was the bagel’s serious lack of cream cheese. When split in half, all of the cream cheese stuck to one half of the bagel, and the other half was left empty. The only thing that could have saved this bagel was a perfect toast, which it unfortunately lacked. It definitely wasn’t Dunkin’s best work.

For the best experience with a Dunkin’ bagel, put the cream cheese on yourself, or choose another holed food and get a doughnut instead.

Pavement Coffeehouse — Taste: 6/10, Price: 3/10, Location: 8/10

For ultimate convenience, Pavement Coffeehouse on Gainsborough Street is the way to go. With many students residing by St. Stephen, Forsyth and Hemenway streets, Pavement is the go-to for a decent bagel. While the location is convenient, Pavement’s bagels can sometimes lack quality and fall on the pricier side — $5.89, to be exact.

After waiting almost 20 minutes for a single bagel with cream cheese, the taste did not make up for the wait. The bagel itself was slightly crispier on one side, instead of being uniformly toasted throughout. 

However, it was hard to even experience the bagel’s toast under the mountain of cream cheese that was plastered to it. When pulling the bagel apart, one half was a near-perfect spread, whereas the other was shrouded by too much cream cheese. For cream cheese enthusiasts, this may seem like a dream come true, but the slight sour taste dissipated any hope left for a solid score. 

Manhattan Bagel & Coffee — Taste: 7/10, Price: 5/10, Location: 3/10

Ordering a bagel from this small coffee shop is a great choice if you’re in the area. Located across from the Berklee College of Music’s campus, Manhattan Bagel & Coffee is a solid walk from Northeastern. For the bagel it provides, however, the walk is worth it.

Not only did this bagel have the perfect amount of cream cheese, it also had a near-perfect toast. Unfortunately, none of this made up for the fact that the cream cheese was unsettlingly warm. Because of its temperature, the spread tasted a little off and affected the overall eating experience. The actual bagel’s quality taste raised its score to seven, but Manhattan Bagel is still in these reviewers’ good graces — after all, it has bean bag chairs.

It also doesn’t hurt that Manhattan Bagel offers a 5% student discount. It’ll only knock a few cents off your order, but for a bagel that’s already $4.75, a discount is a discount.

The bagel crawl doesn’t have to end on Northeastern’s campus. Other great Boston bagel spots include Finagle a Bagel, Bruegger’s Bagels and Jaho Coffee Roaster & Wine Bar.

About the Contributors
Kristina DaPonte
Kristina DaPonte, Lifestyle Editor
Kristina DaPonte is a third-year journalism major with a minor in communication studies. She is the deputy lifestyle editor for The News as well as a contributor to Spectrum Literary Arts Magazine. She's excited to bring exciting, engaging stories to the table. Follow her @dapontekristina on Twitter for updates.
Christina McCabe
Christina McCabe is a second-year journalism and data science combined major. This semester she is serving as the copy chief for The News. In the past she wrote for her hometown newspaper and managed the Instagram for the New England High School Journalism Collaborative.
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