courage bagels

courageously claiming the title of best bagel

Some people have very strong opinions about bagels. While I do not have very strong opinions, I do appreciate a good bagel. And that’s why I tuned right into the controversial statement of THE New York Times naming Courage Bagels of Los Angeles the best in the country. Bold statement coming from a respected media institution. I don’t eat enough bagels to agree or disagree but Courage does make a damn good bagel. Organically shaped Montreal style bagels topped off with Californian ingredients, famous in a city that runs on fame.

Waiting is a core part of the experience. You circle around the blocks a few times to find parking. You stand in line, place your order at the window, and the loiter on the sidewalk as you wait for your precious bagels, disassociating as you watch traffic pass you by on Virgil, seeing the crowds fill up Sqirl down the street, having an existential crisis about participating in the gentrification of the neighborhood. And then they call your name, you get the goods and snag a table on the sidewalk or drive back home and marvel at the almost burnt to perfection bagels. In true LA fashion, these perfectly composed, perfectly garnished bagels are as pretty as they are delicious, not needing any more than basic unbranded take out boxes and bags to let it shine.

the details

Address777 N Virgil Ave, Los Angeles
Hours7am – 2pm every day, closed Tuesday and Wednesday
Price$$$ – does it feel excessive to be paying $10 for half a bagel? yes. but is it worth it to indulge once in a while? also yes
Aestheticpretty minimal industrial, they didn’t do much to the building

good to know

Go here for: apparently the best bagels in the country! but like yeah go here for a breakfast that will make you feel like you are obligated to have a good day

Order this: smoked salmon, run it through the garden, honestly one of everything plus an extra bagel

Amount of time to spend: give yourself at least 20 minutes, there sometimes is a decent wait

When to come: early! like before 9 for sure, and weekdays are moderately better

Getting here: if you come early it usually doesn’t take more than a couple loops around the block to find street parking, if anything Hoover usually has some

Other things to note: 

  • Come early, they run out quick. They limit the number of loose bagels per customer.
  • They have cashew cream cheese for vegans.

Last visited: October 2021

Last updated: October 2022

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