Boichik Bagels in Berkeley, California achieved Bay Area legend status when the New York Times declared their bagels the best in America.
For Boichik owner Emily Winston, a former engineer, there was only one thing to do: scale up.
To that end, Winston launched a crowdfunded bagel factory on 6th Street in Berkeley, California. The factory includes a bagel cafe with a giant window showcasing Winston’s pride and joy: a fully-automated bagel-making robot that puts Willy Wonka’s fictional chocolate factory to shame.
Here’s a video showing the new Boichik Bagel robot in action.
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Bagels by the Barrel Full
The robot automates many of the steps of making a Boichik Bagel. First, dough moves up a hopper and is extruded and shaped into bagel rounds.
These cruise down a conveyer belt, where they’re placed on baking trays.
An operator fixes any errant bagels and ensures the trays are full. They then zip down the line to a holding area where the real star of the show, a robot arm, takes over.
The arm carefully lifts each fully-loaded tray and gently places it into a vertical baking rack. The full racks can then be manually moved along in the baking process.
It’s a joy to watch, and Boichik has thoughtfully set up a viewing area complete with an elevated platform for the kids.
It’s a meditative process watching the robot spin up bagels!
Visiting the Factory
If you visit Boichik’s factory, of course, you’re probably not just looking to watch a robot. You want to eat bagels!
The new factory is a great place to do that. It has a few indoor tables, as well as an outdoor dining area.
You can take photos of yourself in a giant Boichik bagel. There’s even several modern restrooms, which the OG Boichik location on College avenue lacked.
Parking can still be tough on the weekends. But it’s totally worth it to see the bagel robot in action and try Boichik’s amazing bagels.