Black Seed Bagels shut down all seven locations of its popular mini-chain back in March, and have been taking it safe and slow with the reopening process since June. Today there are four Black Seeds open, in Bushwick, the East Village, Nolita, and the Financial District, still with limited hours but eagerly firing up Dianna Daoheung's signature Montreal-style bagels, served whole for your at-home creations or as the foundation for all sorts of housemade sandwiches.
Even better news for those of us who unapologetically eat dessert at any time of day, the first Black Seed chef collab of the pandemic era sees Daoheung partnering with the excellent ice cream makers at OddFellows. And they're now serving up a Chocolate Babka Ice Cream Sandwich, available at all four Black Seed locations until the end of August.
Daoheung bakes up a chocolate babka that is dense, chewy, and sweet, and the OddFellows vanilla has an intense flavor to it that can hold its own between the bread. For structural integrity the sandwich, once assembled, is completely sealed in melted chocolate, then frozen, then wrapped for easy sidewalk eating.
That's the theory, anyway. They're still working out some engineering kinks with the sandwich's construction and storage, but I can tell you that, as messy and completely melted as yesterday's batch was in the East Village, they definitely did taste delicious, even if they haven't mastered the art like Russ & Daughters.
The East Village Black Seed operates under now-standard pandemic protocols, with required masking, distancing guidelines, and outdoor ordering from the counter person set up just inside the front door. When it's not raining, Black Seed puts out a few tables in their curbside dining space on First Avenue.
The Chocolate Babka Ice Cream Sandwich is part of Black Seed's long-running series of collaborations with NYC chefs and restaurants, and is available through August 31st. Black Seed is currently open, with reduced hours (until 2 or 3 p.m.), in the East Village, Bushwick, the Financial District, and Nolita (blackseedbagels.com)