Concerning culinary inauthenticity

Does anyone know why bagels are largely unprocurable outside New York?

It’s not that I have any strong objection to the fluffy toroidal rolls available under that name in bakeries and supermarkets, but they aren’t actually dense, chewy bagels. Are real bagels somehow more expensive to make than the imitations?

Or is that that many more people like the thought of eating bagels than actually like bagels? Presumably that’s also why pastel-colored, delicate-flavored “nova” has displaced real red, fishy-tasting, salty belly lox.

It’s not that I’m in any ethical position to complain; no doubt the “Thai” and “Cambodian” and “Hunan” food I love would come as a considerable shock to actual Thais, Cambodians, and Hunanese, and I’d probably find the real version of any of them too far-out, and too spicy, for my taste. It’s just that it’s been a long time since I had a real bagel with cream cheese, red onion, and real lox.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: