By Sabina Mollot
Tal Bagels, which earlier this year Town & Village learned would be replacing the now-closed Ess-a-Bagel alongside a new Bank of America, should open in June, one of its owners said.
Mohammed Kamal, who, with a partner owns three other Tal Bagels shops in New York, also explained why signs announcing the small chain’s newest location have been seen on other storefronts. (One sign’s next door to Ess-a-Bagel at the former Rose, a chicken restaurant, the other at a space nearby on First Avenue last occupied by kiddie salon Beehives & Buzzcuts.)
The owner of the Ess-a-Bagel/Rose building, an LLC owned by L&M Development CEO Ron Moelis and others, will be chopping down the wall inside that separates the two aforementioned storefronts, so that Tal and Bank of America will both be able to fit, Kamal said. Another partner at Tal, Sam Zebib, explained that the bank will only occupy 350 square feet for ATM machines. The rest of the space at 359 First Avenue, about 1,000 square feet, will be for the bagel shop. Along with bagels, Tal will also offer some pastries and espresso.
Additionally, Kamal said that with other partners, Tal will be opening a shop/restaurant for smoked fish, similar in style to downtown institution Russ & Daughters. That business will go into the space at the former Beehives & Buzzcuts at 365 First Avenue, which has about 2,000 square feet, Kamal said. It may not be called Tal and there is not yet a planned opening date.