These gross bagel orders would make even Cynthia Nixon gag


The most divisive issue in New York politics right now? Bagel blasphemy.

Cynthia Nixon, “Sex and the City” star turned gubernatorial candidate, sparked a citywide controversy this week when she was videotaped ordering a cinnamon-raisin bagel with lox, cream cheese, capers, tomato and onion at Zabar’s on the Upper West Side.

“Don’t knock it till you try it,” she said while campaigning on Monday.

Her sweet-savory combo has the whole city talking about acceptable bagel etiquette — and how to order them without looking like a rube.

The Platonic ideal, according to the bagel “traditionalists” at Zabar’s, is plain and simple.

“Plain bagel, lox, plain cream cheese, tomato, capers, onion,” general manager Scott Goldshine, 58, tells The Post. Everything and sesame bagels are also acceptable vessels, and you might consider a scallion cream cheese, he says. But beyond that, “You don’t put anything else on it. And then you have a fantastic sandwich.”

At the NYC institution, cinnamon-raisin bagels are considered the kooky cousins of sesame and plain — and Nixon’s order was “bizarre,” says Goldshine. His co-worker Francisco Bisono, who mans the bread counter, adds that the combo is usually only ordered by tourists.

“They say it’s delicious. Personally, I’m never going to try it,” says Bisono.

But to Zabar’s shopper Leslie Wolfowitz, 56, Nixon’s order — “a travesty to the tradition of eating bagels,” she tells The Post — was doomed before she even got around to the schmear.

Francisco Bisono works the bread counter at Zabar’s.Brian Zak

According to Wolfowitz, bagels should “never” include fruit such as raisins, in the dough or the toppings. They’re not pastries, she explains.

But Nixon’s cinnamon-raisin-flavored faux pas isn’t the only crime being committed in the name of New York noshing.

Another breach of bagel law? Adding luncheon meats, says Absolute Bagel cashier Addi Sabeogan. The 62-year-old thinks it’s strange when her customers order deli-meat delicacies at the Upper West Side spot: “They order roast beef with cream cheese, with lettuce, tomato and [sliced] cheese,” she tells The Post.

An even worse bagel sin: When her patrons order lox bagels with fruity cream cheese, such as strawberry or blueberry. “They love it. I don’t know why,” she says.

Daniel Boch, manager of the East Village’s Tompkins Square Bagels, says that he also witnesses this unholy mixing of the sweet and savory. “People sometimes do sweet cream cheese and meat, like a strawberry cream cheese and turkey — maybe on a plain [bagel] to split the difference.”

He’ll allow the combination. What he won’t stand for, though, is unnecessary toasting. “We have a sign that says, ‘Don’t toast a piping hot bagel,’” he tells The Post.

Ashley Dikos, 35, owner of Bo’s Bagels in Harlem, stands firm with Boch on the issue of reheating. “Don’t toast,” she tells The Post.

Still, the Michigan native is more flexible than most when it comes to odd flavor combos — after all, her shop has exotic offerings such as za’atar bagels and berry-almond cream cheese.

“There are people from New York who come in here and think it’s a travesty that we have chocolate-chip cream cheese,” she says.

But it’s mostly tourists who try the really outlandish creations.

“Yesterday somebody ordered an onion-and-garlic bagel with chocolate-chip cream cheese and turkey,” Dikos says. “You just smile and make it and say, ‘OK.’”

— With reporting by Suzy Weiss



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