Talia’s Grille Has Some of the Best Bagels in Philly & The Feeling of Visiting Your Grandparents
I don’t know about you but for me to frequent a place or better yet recommend a spot, it has to have great customer service. The Soup Nazi skit on Seinfeld is a bit of a stretch. I don’t care how great your dishes are, if I don’t feel welcomed or appreciated, my dollars will be spent elsewhere. If you share the same sentiments then boy do I have a place for you to check out. Talia’s Grille (122 W Girard Ave.) located on the corner of NoLibs & Fishtown boarder, not only serves some of the best bagels and mediterranean sides in Philly, but delivers the customer service in spades.
My first visit was actually several months ago. This unassuming place would normally be overlooked if you didn’t know any better. Besides nearby Fishtown is home to a bagel spot that was featured in a national publication. Nonetheless I gave it a shot. As soon as I entered I was immediately greeted by an older burly Greek & Egyptian man who runs the joint and his toddler aged daughter (Talia) who converted one of the tables into an art studio and was heavily focused on coloring. Right then and there I felt the “homey” vibes.
The owner Adel and his wife Doa not only took my order but insisted that I sample just about every type of side dish and salad in this place. Now I didn’t go in telling them who I am and how I write for a blog. I was just a regular Joe Shmoe.
The vibes I immediately got were that of visiting my grandmother. The first thing grandmas ask is “did ya’ eat?” and then proceed to stuff your face. Same difference. Even after paying for my to-go order I found myself sitting down and enjoying my turkey bagel sandwich on the spot while Doa kept making her rounds to my table with a new sample to try. It wasn’t long for her to break out the desserts and I was in heaven.
As I was living out my dreams of being a professional taste tester I couldn’t help but notice the photos and newspaper clippings on the wall. Heavy hitters such as Sylvester Stallone, President Nixon and Susan Sarandan where all featured next to Adel. He caught me glancing over and proceeded to break out in an impromptu story telling session. Apparently he was a chef at a big wig restaurant in North Jersey called Valentino’s. At this restaurant he had the honor to serve some of the biggest names in sports and entertainment. So what is a big shot chef doing in a hole in the wall bagel spot in Philly? Well, Adel wasn’t shy about spilling his life story and how he came to Philly to start anew when things went awry with some personal issues.
Fast forward about an hour and I’m still in Talia’s Grille enthralled by Adel’s stories. As we proceed to chop it up it was at that moment this visit instantly became my best customer service experiences ever. Oh and by the way the bagels and salads are all banging. I am talking A1 New York style bagels and homemade dishes and deserts. Everything is made from scratch on the premise. I left both satisfying full of food and tales.
So if you’re ever in the Fishtown Northern Liberties area and have a hankering for some bagels and a great conversation, you gotta’ check out this place.