El Bagel, like so many of life’s great pleasures, requires patience. When the little MiMo bagel spot first opened (just weeks before the pandemic) it drew Drake-performing-at-E11even kind of lines. And they almost always sold out by noon.
Why all the fuss? Well, their bagels are just wonderful - big, chewy, and baked fresh daily. They also use those bagels to make some phenomenal bagel sandwiches, stuffed thick with ingredients like guava marmalade, whitefish salad, and roasted jalapeños.
When lockdown hit, El Bagel transitioned to accepting online takeout orders only. Since then, they’ve merged the two methods, accepting orders both online, and in-person. They still sell out on the weekends, and wait times can range from 30 minutes to over an hour. But, it has (thankfully) gotten easier to get your hands on an El Bagel bagel.
We should be clear that, at the time of this writing, the shop is still very much in the process of tweaking their ordering system. So you'll want to check their Instagram page or website for the most current info.
However, after placing dozens of orders ourselves, here’s our best advice for a smooth El Bagel experience in just four words: Order early. Order online.
The Best Bagels In Miami
Just do what we do: roll out of bed, place an order on your phone, and by the time you’ve brewed your first cup of coffee, your bagel will nearly be ready. Being a restaurant that has almost exclusively operated during the pandemic has allowed El Bagel to get their online ordering system down to a pretty smooth science. So all it takes is a little planning on your part to avoid sweating in the parking lot, anxiously watching the minutes tick away while your angry stomach causes you to get into a stupid fight with your significant other.
No matter how you order, El Bagel is almost entirely a to-go operation. But there are a couple tables in the shop’s back patio, as well as two great picnic options nearby: Legion Park (which is just across the street) and Morningside Park (which is a mile south, but better for a picnic thanks to its waterfront view and plethora of benches).
And, look, we know: this is a lot of effort for a bagel you’re going to eat in six minutes. That’s what we thought too - until we ate one.
If you don’t mind a little sugar in the morning, this might be your go-to order here. The King Guava comes stuffed with guava marmalade. It’s sweet, but the salty papitas and savory fried egg balance the whole thing out beautifully. We should warn you that this is probably the messiest sandwich on the menu. So maybe don’t order it on a second or third date.
Whitefish is definitely what you taste in this one. The chunky whitefish salad also comes with dill, cucumber, and red onion for texture. If you’re in a fish mood, but not feeling the lox, it’s a solid choice.
The lox is the star of the show - and it’s great lox, too: salty, served in a generous portion, and accompanied by dill, cucumber, pickled onions, tomato, and capers.
The EB comes with thick bacon, scallion cream cheese, and (the best part) roasted jalapeños that add just enough heat to let you know they’re there. This one is so good it makes a case for roasted jalapeños being a top-three bagel topping.
We’re going to assume you’re familiar with the beautiful symphony of flavors that is the bacon, egg, and cheese sandwich. El Bagel’s version is as good as any we’ve ever had, thanks to the thick bacon and egg, which is cooked to a level of runniness we’ll call “medium rare”. Adding tomato jam for an additional $1.50 is a decision you will absolutely not regret.