Maidenhead Bagels has been an NJ Bagelrater mainstay for quite a while, so when we heard that Udo’s offered some stiff competition (“better than Maidenhead,” several commenters said), our interest was naturally piqued.
Halfway between New York and Philadelphia, Lawrence is a transit crossroads, so it’s not surprising that Udo’s is nestled in a corner formed by I-95 and Rt. 206 (how opposite those roads are in speed!). The shop itself is standard suburban NJ fare: it occupies the corner space of a strip mall. Neon signs adorned the front window (usually a good omen).
Once inside, one notices that there are a lot of people waiting. It is Sunday morning. There are two tables for four people each. All are occupied by patrons waiting for orders. It’s not that the service is slow, it’s that everyone gets their orders to go here (what else can one expect from a transit crossroads!).
When the bagels came (which did not take longer than average, despite the larger waiting crowd), they were immediately different: thin with a large hole in the middle, reminiscent of the legendary Watson bagel of Newark. Missing were the hand-rolled striations of the Watson.
The plain bagel had a very good consistency—a crunchy shell with a glossy glaze and a soft, doughy interior, but with no special flavor. The poppy and everything, however, had traces of sourdough or hard water flavoring. The cream cheese was especially smooth and soft, but not runny.
THE TAKEAWAY: The poppy and everything were intriguing, and the plain was above average but not stunning. We need to give this one another visit to make a determination.
STAY TUNED for our take on competitor Maidenhead Bagels in downtown Lawrenceville
160 Lawrenceville Pennington Rd
Trenton, NJ 08648