By Becky Billingsley
Tuesday, October 26, 2010, North Myrtle Beach - Andy and Kim Greene brought their hand-rolled New York-style bagels to North Myrtle Beach and are causing a Kraving throughout town.
The couple opened Krave Bagel Bistro on Oct. 14 at 1434 U.S. 17 S. in North Myrtle Beach, next to Bargain Beachwear at the former site of the Outrigger seafood restaurant. The space has a deli case with meats, cheeses and salads; a long and curving order counter; a tall plastic display area shielding bagels, muffins, cookies and other baked goods from sneezes and inquisitive fingers; a coffee station with sugars, honey, half & half, 2% and whole milk; and a roomy dine-in area with a beige tile floor, six brown ceiling fans and black tables and chairs.
The overall effect is a blend of natural and rustic with modern and efficient, although the efficient part is still coming along. The Greenes, who owned Bagel Tree in Franklin, New Jersey, for 12 years, still have out a ladder and tools as they put finishing touches on the store, and a few menu items such as salads were not available on Oct. 25 as they fine-tuned vendor orders.
Like many new Grand Strand restaurant owners, the Greenes vacationed in the Myrtle Beach area for many years - even staying here through Hurricane Hugo - and they decided it would be a nice place to live. Andy Greene worked at Carrabas starting in November 2008, and then decided to take the bagel route again.
Those hand-rolled bagels are what they call "Brooklyn Style," and they are lighter in texture and density than other bagels in the Grand Strand area. Bagel flavors are Plain, Cinnamon Raisin, Blueberry, Honey Whole Wheat, French Toast, Marble Rye, Pumpernickel, Egg, Sesame, Poppy, Salt, Onion, Garlic and Everything.
Bagels (90 cents each or $10 for a dozen) can come with cream cheese or served with breakfast sandwich ($2.20-$4.05) fillings such as Taylor ham, bacon, sausage and cheese. Cream cheese flavors include Scallion, Veggie, Low Fat, Strawberry, Olive Pimiento, Bacon Horseradish and Walnut Raisin. There's also a Lox Spread, and a seasonal Pumpkin Bagel with Pumpkin Cream Cheese. Mini Pumpkin Bagels are also available.
I tried an Everything Bagel with Taylor ham and cheese, and Andy said diners can also ask for condiments or sandwich fillings such as tomato or lettuce. The light and garlicky bagel was a nice background flavor for the salty Taylor ham, and the portion size on the ham was generous.
Other morning baked goods ($1.50-$1.75) include muffins, croissants, scones and a Cinnamon Coffee Crumb Cake that's more sweet crumbly topping than it is cake.
Sandwiches ($6.50-$7.50) are added to the lunch menu. There are three Panini, and I tried the Baby Blue with roast beef, caramelized onions, blue cheese and baby spinach. Once again the portion size is generous - you get two large sandwich halves. I liked the sandwich, but next time will ask them to go easy on the blue cheese. Other panini are French Italian and Grilled Veggie.
Krave also has Reubens, Tuna Melts, Grilled Chicken Cordon Bleu, Triple Deck Club Sandwiches, Hoagies and Cheesesteaks. There's a sandwich called a Sloppy Joe, but it isn't the ground beef with red sauce served on a bun you may be thinking of. This Sloppy Joe is a "triple decker on rye with Swiss, coleslaw and Russian dressing," and a choice of turkey, roast beef or corned beef. You can also get a deli sandwich such as chicken salad, tuna salad or egg salad.
When all the ingredients and serving containers are in stock, two salads will be available for $4.50-$5.25, and they have ingredients such as seasonal fruit, caramelized nuts and crumbled cheese. Sandwiches come with pickles, or you can order a side of their wonderful julienne coleslaw that Kim Greene developed with mentoring from Ina Garten, a.k.a. The Food Network's "Barefoot Contessa."
If you need a little sweet to offset all that healthiness, Krave offers cookies such as White Chocolate Macadamia Craisin, Carrot Cake, Banana Nut Bread and Pound Cake for $1.25-$2.15.
Krave Bagel Bistro has a drive-through window, and the restaurant is open daily from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. The number is (843) 427-7310, and you can fax an order to 427-7311.