H & H Bagels Lives

Let's Eat by Kitty Kaufman

In the Times in 2010, the owner of H & H Bagels on the west side of Manhattan, pleaded guilty "to grand larceny for cheating on his company's taxes." Helmer Toro said he didn't turn over to the state the thousands he withheld in payroll taxes. He must know what to do with the dough.

On the chance that you might not know what to do with your bagels, his website explained. You might say it's too much information. They make sure that you, the bagel buyer, know how to store them, warm them up, slice them, and receive them from UPS. Too bad this site is gone now.

You used to be able to see a lesson in how to heat bagels in your microwave and conventional oven. Knife wielders got warnings to keep away from children. Even though there was no caveat about playing with plastic bags they were very clear they would not be liable for what happens if you're using a knife near children while wearing a pacemaker. Of course.

Bagel accessories! All the usual along with a book called, "Bagel Thoughts." Here's a quote: "The easiest way to control a man (if you are a woman) is to feed him with love… have him smell a warm fresh baked bagel."

Anyway, Mr. Toro will/may have spent 50 weekends in jail and paid more than half a million in restitution. I understand about the money but not about the weekends. Did that mean he gets to go to work during the week? Manhattan's district attorney said, "Under no circumstances can employers gain in business by cheating their employees." I guess it's possible the Times reporter caught him off guard. He might try waving a hot bagel under the nose of his next criminal client to see if that works.

I'll take one of each please - no blueberries, no bran, no whole wheat, no cinnamon, no carrots, no zucchini and absolutely no raisins. Just plain, toasted, with cream cheese.

P.S. H & H closed in June 2011. Some months ago on Twitter, someone with handle Pump Ernickel @HandHBagels started following me.

July 2012:Chatter at New York magazine's Grub Street about a possible reopening on Fulton Street.

November 2016:Gothamist reports a fake H&H opened on the Upper West Side. Fake H&H

February 2017:West Side Spirit tells the story: The Story Goes On

November 2020:Grubhub shows them alive and well on Columbus Ave: Is it them?

November 2020: Either it's real H&H or it's a fake with 5 locations. They ship. Buy NY Bagels

© May 28, 2010, November 2020
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