Inside the mind of a London Bagel Lover: Uncle Bagel R & D

Uncle Bagel R&D Participants

Well here we go, the first of the Uncle Bagel, bagel intel R & D reports. I wanted to connect with the people of London, Joe Public and find out exactly what goes on in the mind of a bagel lover. In all the business manuals I’ve read they always mention ‘know your customer’. Especially when launching a new business, in any of the Lean Business books so popular nowadays they suggest testing your business idea through questionnaires before throwing a ton of resources at making it happen.  I’ve always been pretty sure that London was missing something when it comes to bagels. But there was only one way to find out.

I spent today outside Beigel Bake on Brick Lane, interviewing bagel fans. So for this cohort (swanky academic term for research group) the key requirements are that people love bagels and that they live in London. Simple. Without giving you a thorough analysis ( I don’t wanna send you to sleep)  But prepare yourself as this is a fairly damning report. Here are the salient points of interest.

Firstly it’s interesting to note that almost 35% of the cohort were actually born in America. They all mentioned that London had a poor selection of bagel shops and Brick Lane Beigels was the only one they knew about. All of them were happy to travel to find the right bagel.

Texture & Size: Overall Bagels in London are too soft, comparing them with their US counterparts which are crispy/crunchy on the outside and soft/dense doughy on the inside. 65% of people mentioned that they would like to have more of a crunchy, harder exterior.

Also many felt that London bagels were too small, especially the freshly baked bagels. Supermarket packaged bagels are a better size, but then they taste fairly rank.

One particularly passionate bagel fan said London was missing a signature bagel / a signature style. New York and Canada have their style and we should have ours. Getting the write style is a matter of balancing the amount of water used and the humidity of the oven.

Ingredients: Yes, as you would expect freshly baked bagels and fresh ingredients that come from good sources were at the top of almost everyone’s list of of important factors. Although 10% of people requested gluten free options, and more vegetarian options too

Overall nearly 100% of participants said that London had a pitiful selection of bagels stores. One person went as far as saying all of them were ‘stuck in their ways, with no creativity or style’, furthermore that the old  North London Bagel locations needed an overhaul.

All the participants felt that bagels had good vibes and created homely, warm feelings in many cases reminding them of their families and fun childhood experiences. Yup, real good feel good vibrations!

So to summarise all of the above was what I had hypothesised, but it feels good to know my suspicions were correct. Cue Uncle Bagel to the rescue. So, without further ado, let the games begin. Join us on our bagel adventure, we want to create the best, most tasty, sexiest, good vibrational bagels in London. Watch this space.