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Review: Modern Bread & Bagel: Gluten-free has never tasted this good

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Photo credit: Francie Wallack
Pastries and baked goods rest in the display case at Modern Bread & Bagel. Modern Bread & Bagel is a 100% gluten-free bakery that offers dishes and flavors from across the globe.

As a self-proclaimed gluten-free expert, you can trust me when I say I have truly seen it all in the gluten-free bakery scene. I’ve had one too many loaves of bread that taste (and feel) like cardboard, cupcakes that crumble at the slightest touch and, worst of all, so-called “donuts” that are just small cake rounds with holes in the middle.

I have been gluten-free since 2015 following a diagnosis of celiac disease, so a life of sub-par gluten-free treats was my reality for years. But to my amazement, my life of lackluster gluten-free baked goods was put to an end by the rapidly improving gluten-free bakery realm.

Until last March, I believed gluten-free baked goods had reached their prime. This, however, was before I stepped through the doors of a completely gluten-free bakery that shattered my highest expectations: Modern Bread & Bagel.

Established in 2019 in New York City, Modern Bread & Bagel was founded by Orly Gottesman with the intention of creating delicious gluten-free foods that did not compromise on taste. After trying the majority of the menu, I can confidently say that Gottesman achieved just that. With a wide variety of fresh baked goods and delectable brunch foods, Modern Bread & Bagel has become a staple in my life.

There are currently four restaurants across New York City and Los Angeles. I have visited the two LA locations, which are situated in Woodland Hills and Santa Monica. Although parking can be a hassle at the Santa Monica location, it is undoubtedly worth the wait.

In addition to being 100% gluten-free, Modern Bread & Bagel is also kosher and offers many vegan options. The tofu cream cheese and vegan bacon are two vegan substitutes available among many others that are uncannily like their original forms.

The first item I tried at Modern Bread & Bagel has remained my absolute favorite sweet treat they make: the glazed raspberry donut. Although I was skeptical to try their donut, wary of the high chance it would merely be a donut-shaped piece of cake, I was delightfully surprised upon taking my first bite. The fluffy, airy and flavorful bite packed a punch and left me wanting more (I did in fact eat the entire thing within two minutes). To this day, I cannot visit Modern Bread & Bagel without taking home one (or two) of these scrumptious treats.

Along with the raspberry donut, flavors include chocolate, plain glazed and a rotating seasonal donut.

Now, let’s chat about the hot-ticket item — the bagel. As it states in the name, the classic New York gluten-free bagel never fails to steal the show. With six bagel flavors and seven types of cream cheese, the bagels are freshly made and always guarantee a glossy and crunchy outside with a soft and fluffy inside. Along with the build-your-own bagel option, there are 17 hot, cold and sweet bagel combinations on the menu. My personal favorite is the Avo & Smoke, which comes on a perfectly toasted bagel topped with pickled onions, arugula, tomato and smoked salmon.

While some may say this bagel is “too much,” I can personally attest to the perfect and always exquisite combination of the aromatic pickled onions, crunchy arugula and smokey salmon.

An important facet of this bakery is that many flavors and recipes are influenced by cities and states around the world, including but not limited to Sydney, Paris, Tel Aviv and New York. The global influences can be found throughout the menu in items ranging from their “Za’tar Tuna Bagel” and “Trip To Mykonos Salad” to the chocolate babka (a personal favorite).

Some of my favorite bakery items include the raspberry and chocolate rugelach, “Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread” and, of course, a forever classic: the chocolate chip cookie.

Because this bakery is completely gluten-free, kosher and partly vegan, the food tends to be pricier than your average bakery. Bagels range from $10.50 to $16, baked goods tend to be $2.95 to $6.95 and all sides and extras are $6.50.

On the topic of sides and extras, it would be a missed opportunity to not shout out the savory delights that are the “Latke Tots W/ Parmesan, Chives, And Truffle Aioli” (which I happen to currently be indulging in). These warm, crispy latke-esque snack bites are packed with flavor and come with a spicy, mouthwatering aioli that is sure to leave you wanting more.

Whether or not you are gluten-free, try this bakery and let it challenge your preconceived notions of what gluten-free baking can be. Providing a safe haven for those like me who eat a gluten-free diet, who keep kosher or who are vegan, Modern Bread & Bagel is a delicious and unique bakery that never fails to amaze me or my taste buds.

  • Enjoyment
  • Affordability
  • Allergen/diet friendliness
  • Service
4.1

Summary

Modern Bread & Bagel is a 100% gluten-free bakery that offers foods and baked goods that do not compromise on taste. In addition to being gluten-free, the bakery is also completely Kosher and has a wide variety of vegan options. Whether or not you are gluten-free or Kosher, Modern Bread & Bagel will defy your expectations and become a regular on your go-to bakery or restaurant lists.

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About the Contributor
Francie Wallack, Multimedia Editor
Francie Wallack joined the oracle in 2022 and returned as multimedia editor in 2023. Francie is a representative on Student Council, she is on the Ambassador Leadership Team advisory board, and is a member of the Jewish Student Union executive board. In her free time, she enjoys hanging out with her friends, volunteering at Teen Line and playing tennis.

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