Times Colonist

Montreal bagels are out of this world


MONTREAL — A famous Montreal bagel factory is reaching new heights, thanks to an astronaut with a yen for that distinctiv­e treat.

It seems Montreal-born astronaut Greg Chamitoff, who began a six-month stint aboard the Internatio­nal Space Station this week, was quite excited about the idea of floating in space with the comfort of the chewy, slightly sweet variety of bagel this city is famous for by his side.

When NASA officials asked Chamitoff for a favourite food to take aboard space shuttle Discovery, he picked the humble bagel as his preferred snack for the flight.

And not just any Montrealst­yle bagel, but 18 sesame bagels from his relatives’ Montreal Fairmount Bagel.

The Fairmount usually competes with nearby St. Viateur bagels for the crown as the city’s best.

“We’re just thrilled,” said Mona Shlafman, his aunt, who reopened the bagel factory in 1979 and with her late husband got the old wood oven burning again.

Chamitoff will be living on the space station for six months, but Shlafman said: “I’m sure the bagels are gone already.”

And what about those messy seeds that always end up on your lap?

“They’re going to be floating, I guess, because they won’t fall,” she said.

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