112 Koornang Road
Carnegie, VIC 3163
(03) 9568 3866
Oh, what joy the humble bagel brings. Give me a bagel and a schmear any day and I’m happy as a clam.
You know how Lorelai and Rory have Luke’s? And the gang from How I Met Your Mother has MacLarens? I like to think of Huff as my own little hangout. Whenever the age-old question, “where to eat?” pops up and I’m in the area, I (somehow) inevitably end up here. While most Melburnians will understandably flock to Aviv or Glick’s, I will always have a soft spot for this place.
Perhaps it’s because the bagels are consistently awesome. I’ve never once stepped foot into Huff and found it empty, so I guess I’m not the only one who digs them. They’re constantly swarming with people sitting down to lunch or picking up a bagel and coffee to go at the tuckshop-esque window out front. The staff are a friendly bunch and the warm, relaxed atmosphere of the café instantly makes you feel at home.
BFF C and I swung by for a quick bite on Wednesday afternoon. As luck would have it, there was a table being cleared just as we walked in. I plonked my bag and camera down on the cushion-littered bench and turned my attention to the chalkboard menus opposite. In addition to your stock standard original, sesame and poppy seed bagels (0.9 each), Huff boasts a selection of other less traditional varieties, including garlic, salt and rosemary (my personal favourite), onion and poppy seed and the lot (sesame, onion, garlic, salt and caraway).
A fillings board is also up on display if you’re unsure as to how to piece together the perfect bagel. It changes from time to time, but the usual suspects are always up there: smoked salmon, cream cheese and capers, tuna, meatloaf, and so on.
I was jonesing for a Huff hot chocolate before I had even parked. You can always count on a steaming mug of chocolatey goodness here, rain or shine. What they may lack in coffee-brewing skills (from what I’ve heard, anyway) they more than make up for with their hot chocolate-making prowess. C ordered a mocha for a bit of a caffeine hit.
If you ever get the chance to visit, try to get there as early as possible – they tend to run out of their bestsellers around lunchtime. To C’s disappointment, they were already out of onion and poppy-seed bagels by the time we got there. She ended up going with my bagel of choice – garlic, salt and rosemary – filled with chicken aioli, avocado and iceberg lettuce. It’s like the healthier, tastier and infinitely more attractive twin brother of the McChicken burger.
I settled on a garlic, salt and rosemary bagel filled with chicken schnitzel, cheese, red pesto, rocket and mayo. A rainbow of colours and flavours, this number went down the hatch in a matter of minutes. Yummy in my tummy, as my godson likes to say.
For an upgrade on your humdrum ham and cheese sandwich, you can’t go wrong with Huff. Whether you like your bagels on the uncomplicated side, lathered in cream cheese, or filled to the brim with your pick of gourmet goodies, this place has it all.