Unbearable Bagels – the new grab-and-go step-sibling of Zero Fox – opens in Teneriffe
There’s been a bit of a stir taking place down on Vernon Terrace, Teneriffe’s leafy main drag. Clusters of carb-loving locals can be seen swarming the entrance to Unbearable Bagels, a new attitude-laden bagel-slinging concept that opened on Monday July 19. The brainchild of a hospitality crew that has made a name for itself by doing things a little bit differently, here loaded bagels (stuffed with drool-worthy ingredients or slathered in a simple schmear) and black coffee are a specialty – and the crowds are already loving it.
If we had to say what really sets a bagel sandwich apart from its sliced-bread counterpart, we’d chalk it up to some combination of its lightly chewy texture, its dark and shiny crust speckled with flavourful toppings, and a density that allows it to carry an assortment of fillings for longer periods without sacrificing structural integrity. Some folks, this writer included, deem bagels to be the superior sandwich foundation (apologies to our loaf-loving compatriots), though most of us would argue that bagel representation across Brisbane has been lacking. Léa Angeles and Shaun Fugill of Teneriffe boozer Zero Fox had their own revelatory encounters with bagels during their travels across Europe and New Zealand, and have since similarly lamented the fact that their pocket of town didn’t boast a bagel joint of its own. Well, the duo – along with a couple of their pals – have decided to rectify the situation, this week opening Unbearable Bagels a short dough-ball toss from Zero Fox. The idea for the venture spawned (as many adventurous notions tend to) from a casual conversation over drinks – a former convenience store space across the road on Vernon Terrace had become available and the crew were debating how the site could be best put to use. Unbearable Bagels is best described as the unruly step-sibling of Zero Fox – there’s different DNA in the mix but a shared upbringing centred around doing things well, going against the grain and pushing folks outside of their comfort zone. With this in mind, the new-age sandwich shop making a splash by championing three key things – bagels, specialty black coffee and eco-conscious operation.
Unbearable Bagels’ focused scope is reflected in a tight menu spearheaded, naturally, by bagels. Upon opening, Unbearable Bagels is serving eight regular sandwich options and two rotating specials, with each choice offering something for most tastes – think one breakfast bagel, a carnivorous choice, a vegan alternative, one vegetarian option, a pescatarian-friendly pick and so on. The Bagel Boys has been selected as the joint’s supplier of bang-on bagels, which are then stuffed with flavourful fillings. Highlights include The Dealer (chorizo crumb, egg, cheese, caramelised onions and house-made ketchup), The Nightshift (salmon gravlax, cream cheese, cucumber, capers, dill, onions, a squeeze of lemon and salt and pepper), Peas Please (smashed peas, mint, garlic, vegan feta, vegan ricotta, salt and pepper, and sprouts) and the Big Al (pastrami, seeded mustard, pickled cabbage, coriander, aioli and Swiss cheese) – with seasonal changes and frequent specials keeping the selection interesting. Other than sandwiches, Unbearable Bagels offers schmears (we’re talking cream cheese, confit garlic and herb, blueberry mascarpone, and strawberry and pink peppercorn) slathered across your choice of bagel. A rotating salad and soup option is also available for those looking for something with less carbs. When it comes to specialty coffee, the Unbearable Bagels crew is offering black coffee exclusively – that means there’s no milk, at all. Although a controversial choice to some, the Unbearable team is confident that those that extend their palate beyond milky coffee will find the drinking experience rewarding. A range of rotating single-origins from Single O and Almanac Coffee will be available across batch brew, cold drip, V60 pourover and cold brew on tap, while green and black tea, kombucha from Probiotic Kitchen, HRVST St. juices, nitro tea by East Forged and non-alcoholic beer from Heaps Normal is also on offer. Unbearable Bagels is also looking to take an environmentally conscious approach in order to encourage locals to adopt good habits. In addition to ditching milk, single-use cups will soon be phased out too, with a reusable cup leasing program launched in conjunction with Green Caffeen allowing customers to check out a cup, use it and exchange it for a fresh one when visiting one of 50 participating venues.
Unbearable Bagels is now open to the public – head to the Stumble Guide for opening hours and contact details.
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