A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from September 23, 2004
Flagel (Flat Bagel, or Flat)
The "flagel" (FLAY-gel) -- also called a "flat bagel," "bagel flat" and "flat" -- appears to have been invented in Long Island or New York City in the 1980s and 1990s. Similar bread, however, have existed in the Middle East for thousands of years.


23 September 1984, New York (NY) Times, pg. LI14, col. 2 ad:
... and a full selection of bread, croissants, Genoa toast and bagel flats ...
PAT'S PRIME MEATS
75 Church Street, Malverne, New York

26 July 2002, The Journal News (White Plains, NY), "Readers Choice: Bagels," pg. K24:
Bagel Boys of Nanuet and Bagel Boys of Suffern (tie)
(...)
Eric Fried, who with his brother Mark owns this Suffern location, says the family previously owned the Nanuet shop - and one in Ramsey, N.J.

The Fried brothers continue to operate their original shop, which opened in March 1986. They offer more than a dozen varieties of old-fashioned "kettle" bagels (which means they are boiled before baking) along with their popular "flagels" (flat bagels) and deli fare including homemade salads.

Village Voice (New York, NY)
Fathered By Flagels
TUESDAY, MARCH 25, 2003 AT 4 A.M. BY ROBERT SIETSEMA
In the beginning there was Tasty Bagel, founded in 1983 by two brothers from Bensonhurst. The next year they invented the big wheel bagel, a behemoth dough ring piled high with Italian cold cuts and butchered into 26 sandwiches. A decade later on the same spot the flagel was born -- a flattened bagel liberally sprinkled with sesame seeds or other toppings. A recent road test confirms the appeal of the shape and taste, although it's the dickens to cut and goes stale at an accelerated rate.

Forward.com
19 December 2003, Forward (New York, NY), "Bye-Bye, Bagels: Finicky Fans Flip for Flagels" by Max Gross, pg. 2:
A 65-year-old regular at Montague Street Bagels -- a Brooklyn Heights temple to the traditional treat -- stepped up to the counter one chilly December morning.

"Three flagels," said the customer.

The long line of patrons behind him suddenly perked up. "What's a flagel?" erupted a chorus of eager Brooklyn Heights residents.

Not as doughy as the bagel. Not as malleable as the pita. Crispy on the outside. Chewy on the inside. The word "flagel" derives from the English for "flat" and the, um, Yiddish for "bagel."

The crowd at the bagel shop was intrigued. As soon as the sexagenarian customer had received his flagels and taken them up to the cash register, the next few customers decided to give the flagel a try.

At Montague Street Bagels you can have a sesame flagel with cream cheese. Or a poppy flagel with butter. Or a chicken salad sandwich on a plain flagel. Or flattened versions of any of the millions of variations of the bagel that have become popular over the last few years. Ever since the folks at Montague Street Bagels came up with the idea of flattening their dough, these flagels have been selling like hotcakes.

The flagel has "been around for a while," said Joe Aceto, one of the owners of Montague Street Bagels. "I'm from Long Island and it's been there everywhere."

Nussbaum & Wu, a bakery on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, has been selling flagels for about two years. H&H Midtown Bagels has been selling flagels for even longer.
(...)
"They're not displacing the bagel, but they're still something," said Julie Esposito, the accounts manager at H&H Midtown Bagels, where the flagel is known as the "bagel flat."

New York (NY) Times
LONG ISLAND JOURNAL; A Taste of Home, a Click and a Flight Away
By MARCELLE S. FISCHLERJAN. 23, 2005
(...)
The fresh bagels Mr. Cohen, 49, orders at 75 cents apiece arrive overnight from bagelboss.com, the Web site run by Adam Rosner of Woodbury, owner of four Bagel Boss stores on the Island. Overnight shipping is $27, increasing the cost of Mr. Cohen's usual order, a couple dozen bagels, by 150 percent.
(...)
Waiting to be baked in a refrigerated room in the basement of the Roslyn shop are racks and racks of bagel dough. ''We've been making the same product, same recipe for 26 years: dough, flour, water salt, malt and a whole lot of love,'' he said.

The large, flat bagels are Flagels, Mr. Rosner's trademark. They are less doughy than bagels and get crunchy when toasted.

19 January 2009, Daily News (New York, NY), "Schmearly Fantastic: Free Bagels" by Lore Croghan, pg. 10:
Fifth-generation East Village bagel maker Adam Rosner plans to hand out 1 million free bagels to crowds gathered in Washington for Obama's swearing-in.

"We're looking to turn them on to a little taste of New York," said Rosner of Bagel Boss on First Ave.

"Florida has orange juice, Texas has beef and New York has its bagels," said Rosner, 44, whose mother's family came from Poland in 1935 and set up shop in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

His 200 employees began making dough for the donated bagels on Thursday at their 14 shops in Manhattan and on Long Island.

They worked full-throttle to finish preparing bagels in flavors from plain to poppy seed along with bialys and crunchy, flat bagels -- called flagels.

Daily News (New York, NY)
Face it: The flagel is better than the bagel in every way
BY MEERA JAGANNATHAN
Friday, August 19, 2016, 6:00 AM
(...)
Food historian Francine Segan says to look further afield. “The flagel was first created in the 1990s at the height of the low-carb craze,” she told the Daily News. “But really, flat bagels have an even older history, starting with all the ancient flatbreads of the Middle East, like laffa bread and the Lebanese kaak.”

(U. S. Patent and Trademark Office)
Word Mark FLAGEL
Goods and Services IC 030. US 046. G & S: FLAT BAGEL, PLAIN AND/OR SEEDED, SOLD IN RETAIL BAGEL STORES AND TO WHOLESALE CUSTOMERS. FIRST USE: 19990601. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19990601
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Serial Number 75632780
Filing Date February 3, 1999
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1B
Published for Opposition May 29, 2001
Registration Number 2565604
Registration Date April 30, 2002
Owner (REGISTRANT) ROSNER, ADAM T. INDIVIDUAL UNITED STATES 400 WILLIS AVENUE ROSLYN HEIGHTS NEW YORK 11577
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Register PRINCIPAL
Live/Dead Indicator LIVE
Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityFood/Drink • Thursday, September 23, 2004 • Permalink