Philly chain Spread Bagelry, the shop known for its Montreal-style wood-fired bagels, just opened its fifth location and this one, the first outside the city, is supposed to look like a train station. The newest Spread, open as of Monday, October 21, is at 925 Lancaster Avenue in Bryn Mawr.
Unlike New York-style bagels, which are more common around here, Spread’s Montreal version is hand-rolled, boiled in honey water, and baked in a wood-fired brick oven. To go with the chewy bagels, the shop sells a variety of house-made spreads, breakfast sandwiches, pizza bagels, and sandwiches like a turkey club or chicken BLT (on a bagel).
The idea behind the decor is that since it’s on the Main Line, and the Main Line is called that because of a section of the Pennsylvania Railroad built in the 1800s, they went with a train station theme. Trains are probably not what most people think of when they think “Main Line,” and a train station bagel is not usually the best bagel. But it does have a flip board that looks a little like the old-fashioned one at 30th Street Station that was replaced. And along one wall, Main Line towns/train stops, like Ardmore, Villanova, and Bryn Mawr, are written on wooden panels. (The flip board is now at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania in Strasburg, which would be a perfect town for a train station-themed bagel shop.)
The new Spread is open every day from 7 a.m. until 4 p.m., or until the bagels sell out.
The first Spread Bagelry opened in Rittenhouse in 2011. A University City location with a bar followed. Spread spread to the Piazza Pod Park in Northern Liberties over the summer. Last month, a big Spread opened at 24th and Walnut with a taproom from King of Prussia’s Workhorse Brewing Co.
Up next is a location at Fifth and South streets, in what was the 1950s-themed Johnny Rockets.