Mother and daughter duo Anna Berlyn, and Bernadette Sheppard, will soon open George Street Deli in Redfern, selling NYC-style bagels with homemade ‘schmears’, along with pretzels, babka, chewy cookies and home-made lemonade.
George St Deli opens to the public this Saturday, August 27th at 8 am. The following weekend, on Fathers’ Day weekend, Saturday, September 3rd at 8am, 200 free bagels are on offer for the first customers through the door. Treat your dad!
With a combined background in hospitality and interior design, it has long been the dream of the two to open a bagel store inspired by iconic NYC spots such as Katz’s Deli, or Russ & Daughters. This is a dream steeped in family tradition: Bernadette’s mother (and Anna’s grandmother) Colleen lived in New York, and as a young woman, was a frequenter of Russ & Daughters in Rockefeller Centre, where she would go every day during her lunch break for a bagel and lemonade – and sometimes, a bit of ice-skating. As a child, Anna travelled to New York frequently with Bernadette, to tread in her Grandmothers’ footsteps, ordering bagels from Russ & Daughters, and now Anna is thrilled to continue her grandmothers’ legacy in downtown Redfern!
“There’s nothing like a hot toasted bagel packed with pastrami or salmon, and coupled with a homemade schmear,” says Anna, “I feel like bagels are in our blood, opening this shop would make my Grandmother so proud!”
Says Bernadette of the decision to specialise in bagels: “Sydney is definitely going through a sandwich obsession, and we feel like there’s a lot of Italian delis around but there’s a gap in the market for American style delis selling traditional bagels and pretzels. We hope Sydneysiders will love our offering as much as they go mad for sandwiches!”
Plain, sesame, and poppy seed bagels form your base options at George St: then as far as fillings go, you’re spoilt for choice.
There’s a LOX CLASSIC bagel (Smoked Trout, Cream Cheese, Red Onion, Capers, Tomato), with lox cured by seafood king Stephen Hodge (mentor to Josh Niland), a tasty PASTRAMI (Pastrami, Cream Cheese, Sauerkraut, Russian Dressing, Swiss Cheese), an old-fashioned EGG & POTATO SALAD (Egg, Potato, Mustard, Capers, Dill) as well as an option for vegetarians: THE VEG (Cream Cheese, Carrot, Alfalfa, Red Onion, Tomato, Iceberg Lettuce, Beetroot, Pesto). The bagels are paired with the Deli’s traditional homemade schmears.
Sweet bagel options such as a RICOTTA & FRUIT PRESERVE BAGEL, NUTELLA BAGEL, and a CRUNCHY PEANUT BUTTER BAGEL are also available, however, the dessert stand-out would have to be the BABKA (by the loaf, or slice). The mother and daughter duo personally taste-tested Babkas from around Australia and believe they’ve found the very best version of this delectable Jewish pastry and will be offering chocolate and cinnamon versions with weekly Babka specials, along with mushy, chewy NYC-style cookies.
Home-made lemonade, with George Street Deli branding, is also on offer. Will & Co Coffee is on offer with a range of teas by Apotheca by Anthia.
The design brief for the store was “when you walk in, it has to feel like you’re on Fifth Avenue” and architectural design studio Studio P, in collaboration with SHEETH, have risen to the task, going for a retro-look, in monochromatic tones. The aesthetic will be reflected right down to the ambience of the space, which will play music from the 50s and 60s Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Ella Fitzgerald, Etta James, Dean Martin, and black and white uniforms that are aprons, T-shirts, socks and caps.