Shmear It OnPopular James Island Bagel shop, Bagel Nation, expands into West Ashley
October 4, 2017
By Rachel Castejón | Contributing Writer
Bagel Nation finally made its way to West Ashley with hopes to continue a successful formula of long-time-favorite menu items served up by employees who are like family. With a loyal customer base who have been known to travel from as far away as Sam Rittenberg Boulevard to the James Island location just for a perfect bagel sandwich (This may or may not be a reference to many a Saturday morning at my place.), the new Ashley Crossing location is slowly living up to its sister store’s good reputation.
Starting at 3 a.m. the bakers for Bagel Nation are in the kitchen making bagels from scratch, later moving on to whip up cinnamon rolls, muffins, and more breakfast and lunch essentials. Gazing over the extensive menu it appears you could almost have any combo of any sandwich on one of their warm, chewy bagels.
Owner Andrew DuPre counts on two trusted managers to run the show from open to close along with other skilled employees, some who have been with DuPre for 17 years. They are experts on making shop favorites like the Bacon, Egg, and Cheese on an Everything bagel for breakfast and the Philly Cheesesteak for lunch.
Don’t forget the local King Bean coffee served up along-side the breakfast menu. “It’s the best,” says DuPre simply. He swapped out the lunchmeat to Boar’s Head products for the same reason. This was a “big change,” says DuPre, but “I think it helped grow our business,” he reflects.
Having the same employees with you for years and treating them like family extends to the way employees interact with the clients as well. DuPre credits the chain’s success on this way of doing business.
“We know 50 percent of our customers by first name. It’s family,” he says. “We try very hard to create a friendly atmosphere where we put customers first.”
As far as innovation goes DuPre doesn’t have many changes in mind for Bagel Nation, other than the bagel chips he’s looking into producing. Over the years he has expanded the menu, adding some breakfast items and switching the lunchmeat brands, but the original Bagel Nation menu (pre-DuPre ownership) still remains, so far with no complaints. There are no plans for a third location as of yet. DuPre makes it clear that “the West Ashley store is enough for now.”
Bagel Nation is open 6 a.m. until 3 p.m. Monday through Fridy and 7 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. It is located at 1975 Magwood Road in the Ashley Crossing Shopping Center. For more
infomation, call 779-0700 or visit facebook.com/bagelnationwestashley.