LYNCHBURG, Va. – There aren’t a lot of bagel places in southwest and central Virginia. When we passed a big sign on Timberlake Road (20584 Timberlake Road to be exact) advertising The Bagel and I, we had to go!
Owner, Andrew Mather, tells us, “It’s the biggest sign on the road.”
Clearly, a sign that big has garnered a lot of attention. “Boy, the first week, it was out the door.”
While the novelty has worn off a little, he says business is still booming. The authenticity is part of why. Mather says he’s the only thing from New York in the building, but he “Has all the ingredients in it that causes the bagels to taste like New York.”
That means things like the bacon, egg and cheese are flying out the window.
“We go through a ton of bacon. Everybody loves bacon, right?”
It’s not just savory that they do well. They know how to sweeten things up a bit.
“We have a French Toast bagel and a Cinnamon Crunch bagel that are both excellent.”
He tells us that those go great with a homemade honey walnut shmear.
From his nearly 40 years in the hospitality industry, Mather knew he needed more than good food. He strives for convenience and comfort too.
“I knew I needed to have a drive-thru. I knew I would have this room, the room where the guests are able to watch the bagels being made.”
Proving that if you build it, they will come and relying heavily on faith.
“This is the Lord’s business, not mine. He has ordained it. Therefore, he will bless it.”
Big plans are still in the works for The Bagel and I. Mather tells us online ordering and catering are soon to come.
If you have a place you want us to visit in 2022, let me know by sending me a message on Facebook.