Let me start this review by stating that I wasn’t in the best of moods when we walked through the door at 1610 Bagel. It was a red hot day in Turin, a restaurant that we had gone in search of wasn’t there and we had been wandering around looking for a decent place to have lunch at. Step forward 1610 bagel.
From the outside, unlike me, the place was quite jolly. Big chalkboards with imitation bagels and arrows indicating the many combinations of fillings, it all looked very promising. One bagel caught my eye in particular containing the bra sausage, native to Piedmonte, with the description indicating the ‘slow food’ movement – a retaliation by the natives against fast food chains.
One lonely counter girl was available in the empty restaurant so we decided to place our orders. It was a bit tricky given that we had to communicate in broken Italian but we got there in the end. My day got a little worse when I picked up sparkling water instead of still, argh! This bagel had better be good.
We ordered the Salsiccia di Bra bagel and a Smoked Salmon ‘Alaska’ bagel too. Just after the order went in we sat down only to be approached by the very jolly owner who had brought some friends in with him, not a word of english between us but somehow we understood one another. This is one of the joys of travelling.
The owner then brought over our bagels, rather strangely with those darkened doughs that are popping up all over Asia these days. He then passionately described my bagel as ‘very interesting’ as i inspected the sliced and skewered arrangement in front of me. The bagel from what I could gather contained truffle cream, lettuce and the famous bra sausage – lots of bra sausage.
I wish that I could have matched the guy’s enthusiasm…this wasn’t great. He was right about the interesting part given that the flavours of the truffle cream were nice but the sausage was overkill, a ton of what felt like raw meat in the mouth although the sausage is cured. It was just too much. The bagel itself was alright but you have to really love the salsiccia for it to work. For me it just didn’t.
The salmon one (shock surprise) was delicious and far better proportioned than mine. I watched on in envy as Ali demolished it before me while I contemplated how to pay the bill and leave without hurting our new friends feelings. In the end the Salsiccia set me back €9 (£7.91) and the ‘Alaska’ which was the salmon rolled in at €8.50 (£7.47).
Overall it’s hard to know what to say about 1610 bagel. The Alaska bagel is spot on but the Salsiccia di Bra is one that will divide the crowd. Saying that though the service couldn’t be faulted in a friendly and welcoming restaurant which going by recent reviews is getting a good trade from visitors to Turin. At least I can know say that I have tried one of Piedmont’s most famous sausages, a whole lot of it…..
Opening times: Tuesday – Saturday 1115-1530, 1830-2245
Nearest Metro: Re Umberto