I hadn't made bagels from scratch since culinary school. Making bread of any kind can be a bit intimidating and it requires a willingness to make a mess as well as the energy to clean it up. My alarm was set for 6:00 am -- "time to make the bagels," a rhythmic chant circulated in my head.
Being so intimately familiar with the dense and chewy texture of Murray's bagels in New York, or the reliably large kettle-boiled ones from Nussbaum & Wu, I wasn't expecting much from Montreal. But I was deliciously surprised.