Pascoe Vale locals have embraced new cafe Bagels Baby, snapping up more than 300 bagels before lunchtime each day in the cafe's first week.
Owners Claudia and Anthony Carnovale have been so overwhelmed, they had to close the kitchen for a day to catch up on prep.
"We always really wanted to open in Pascoe Vale," says Claudia, who until recently worked in events and sales at the Vue Group. "We live on the north side. A few bagels were popping up but there's not much out there."
Bagels Baby offers nine options, all on bagels from Elsternwick bakery Savion, with two vegan choices that chef Harry Angus (himself vegan) worked long and hard at. The miso mushroom marries king oysters with pickled veg and a house ranch sauce, while the tempeh BLAT uses liquid smoke and maple syrup to channel bacon flavours.
Other fillings include a fresh and light labne, zaatar and tomato number, classic salmon lox, chicken katsu and the crowd favourite, brisket and gruyere with sauerkraut and pickles.
The cafe's other star attraction is Padre coffee, which joins freshly squeezed orange juice and Yumbo lemonade on the drinks list.
"We just wanted to do really simple things well," says Claudia.
Claudia and husband Anthony, a tradie, called on friends to help them convert the former butcher shop into a 20-seat corner cafe, unearthing original brickwork and adding timber bench seating, white walls and a neon sign that quotes Dirty Dancing and reads "Nobody puts baby in the corner".
Open Mon-Fri 6.30am-3.30pm, Sat-Sun 7.30am-3pm.
36 Derby Street (corner Gaffney and Derby streets), Pascoe Vale