People obsess over bagels. Try suggesting that you’ve found the best bagel in a crowded room, and you’re sure to spark a fierce debate. New York has the best bagels, someone will say. Another will say Philly. Another Montreal. The one thing almost everyone can agree on though, is that not much compares to a great bagel.
For years, our customers have been requesting bagels. Much as we would have liked to satisfy their demand, we didn’t have a bagel recipe we loved—until now. Our new bagels are the result of an obsession. Over the last two years, Macrina Bakery’s president, Scott France, has been tinkering with the recipe, refining it, and testing bagel samples. Our MadRy Organic Sourdough Bagels are hand-rolled, given a slow, cool 24-hour ferment, and have just a hint of rye, which adds to their depth of flavor. The caramelized crust has a glossy sheen and the airy interior has a tight, springy crumb that balances the mild tang of sourdough with just enough malty sweetness.
The naturally-leavened bagels will launch in the cafés on Thursday, May 21, and will be available for wholesale on Thursday, May 28. They will come in four flavors: plain, sesame, poppy, and sea salt.
In the many months Scott has been developing these bagels, his kids, Madeline and Ryan, who love bagels, became his steady audience, helping him refine the texture and strike the right balance in the bagel’s complex flavors. Hence the name, MadRy.
All of our ingredients come from the PNW: The organic high-protein flour comes from just north of the border, the organic barley malt powder comes from Skagit Valley Malting, and the organic rye flour comes from Fairhaven Mill in nearby Burlington. We start with a significant percentage of organic sourdough starter and a smidge of yeast. After an initial rise, we handroll them and give them a full day’s cool ferment. The depth of flavor you’ll taste in these bagels comes from the natural leavening and that hint of rye. The whiff of sourdough you get when you tear one open comes from the starter.
We were careful not to let the flavor dominate but wanted it to be distinctive. “It should make sense when you taste the bagel that the name has sourdough in it,” Scott says. “But if you tasted it without knowing the name, someone intimately familiar with sourdoughs would recognize it, but if you didn’t, you might wonder just what that mild tang was.”
The bagels are available individually or as four-packs. Please drop into one of our cafés and try one! It’s a really great bagel.