Solly’s Cinnamon Bun – Best in the City
Solly’s Bagelry – a Jewish bakery/deli with 3 stores in Vancouver – supposedly make the best cinnamon buns in town. They also make awesome bagels. I like cinnamon buns, but I am not a big fan of bagels. I have to admit, though, Solly’s bagels could quite possibly turn me into a bagel lover.
Solly’s on 7th and Yukon
Had lunch at the one on 7th and Yukon. It was around noon and packed – none of the tables were free and there was a lineup. They take your name when they take your order, then shout your name out when they’re done. There was a bit of a wait for the food, but it wasn’t ridiculously long and they didn’t confuse orders and obeyed all the special requests. (They also have an express lunch/pick up service for those in a hurry.)
Many types of bagel flavors are offered here: onion, poppy seed, garlic, sundried tomato, plain, multigrain, whole wheat, sesame, cinnamon-raisin, cheese… and probably more. They have several types of sandwiches you can order, as well as these eggels, knoshes and schmears. There is a good choice of deli items – lox slices, turkey breast, humus, Taboulleh salad, fresh fruit salad, etc. (Very vegetarian-friendly.) Also on display for your feasting eyes are pastries and sweets like Rugoleh, cakes, muffins, meringue cookies, and a giant stack of bread loaves, including some very beautiful looking challah. Hmmmm….challah.
Their lunch combos are bagel sandwiches with tuna/egg salad or vegetarian toppings, plus either soup or greens. You can pick from all their bagel flavors, and get the Full Deal or the Light Lunch – which is half a sandwich less. The lunches also come with Solly’s bagel chips – which I really like. Crunchy and chewy, and you never know which of the two flavors you’ll get. The chicken matzo ball soup was hearty and tasted quite home-made:
Full lunch: Tuna salad sandwiches with chicken matzo ball soup
Their egg salad was sandwich nice. Spinach salad comes with mushrooms, sliced almonds, and a fat pickle. Veggies are fresh. The stuff on the sandwiches are fine, but it’s really the bagel that makes it. I’d be happy with just the bagel sans filling. (And I don’t even like bagels all that much!) Even the plain bagel was delicious: Solly’s bagels are dense, with good, substantial weight, crispy on the outside, very, very chewy inside. I’m not a bagel aficionado and I have never had bagels from the East, but these are really good (I’ve heard they are among the best on the West coast). Great flavor, with a slight hint of sweetness, they are nothing like other bagels I’ve tried. Solly’s also claim to not add any fat or eggs to these bagels.
Light lunch: Egg salad sandwich with spinach salad
Their cinnamon buns are pretty large. And sweet, with strong but just the right amount of cinnamon. It’s not sweet in that commercial, artificially sugary way that gives you a headache. What’s great about them is that there is this magical crunchy crisp to them on the outisde, and then a very soft moistness inside. These are good as they are without Solly’s real cream cheese icing (which costs a buck!), but I suppose that kind of sweet decadence would just be heavenly.
Their coffee was also quite good. Brought some bagels home; they were great toasted the next morning.
If there happens to be a spot, it’s a nice, super casual place to sit down for lunch, or coffee and a snack. The atmosphere is great whether you are with friends, family, on a date, or by yourself. If there isn’t room, buy some bagels and enjoy them straight from the bag. Either way, be sure to stock up with lots of their baked goods, a cinnamon bun, and a loaf of their challah before you go, and you’ll be happy. And very soon you’ll be a regular.
368 W. 7th and Yukon (featured)
2873 W. Broadway and MacKenzie
189 E. 28th and Main
Open Mon-Sun, about 7am-7pm (hours vary by store, the one 7th now open late)
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