PARK SLOPE — Love them or hate them, the bagels that look like they just came out of Rainbow Brite's oven are coming to Park Slope.
The Bagel Store, which sells rainbow-colored bagels in Williamsburg, is opening a new store at 69 Fifth Ave. this spring, rainbow bagel inventor Scot Rossillo told DNAinfo New York.
"We’re really looking forward to making Park Slope a happier, brighter area," Rossillo said.
The menu at the Park Slope outpost will include Rossillo's classic multi-hued bagel and some of his other culinary innovations, such as a combination croissant and bagel called a "cragel." He is also responsible for the "pookie," a combination of cookie and pie crust.
Rossillo has also been cooking up some new ideas in his test kitchen just for Park Slope, including a rainbow pizza that he says is a treat for both the eyes and the taste buds.
Rossillo, who describes himself as the world's premiere bagel artist, will continue to create rainbow bagels for the Bagel Store's 754 Metropolitan Ave. location in Williamsburg until 2019 when the store's lease is due to expire, Rossillo said.
The father of six kids, Rossillo started making the multi-hued bagels about 20 years ago to please his children. When he first introduced the variegated bagels in stores years ago, customers gave them a chilly reception. But he persisted because he wanted to perfect the unusual bagel and working on the project felt like a form or art therapy, he said.
"I was never good at traditional art like canvas, clay, paints, but I was gifted with flour and water," Rossillo told DNAinfo New York. “Over many years I never gave up even though many times I wanted to, after 15, 17, 19 years of no one really appreciating it, I almost gave up."
His culinary creation got a boost from current events when the U.S. Supreme Court legalized same sex marriage in 2015 and demand for rainbow-colored items of all types soared. Later that year his rainbow bagel "broke the internet," as he says, after Kim Kardashian's pal Jonathan Cheban posted a photo of the eye-catching baked goods on social media.
Rossillo once made his rainbow bagels for another Bagel Store outpost at 349 Bedford Ave. but parted ways with the owners, who include his brother-in-law, because they wanted Rossillo to divulge his secret techniques, he said.
The store, which closed for a time during the height of the rainbow bagel craze, has renamed itself The Original Bagel Store. It still makes a version of the colorful bagels but calls them "spectrum" bagels because Rossillo owns the trademark on rainbow bagels, he said.
Rossillo, who was born and raised in Gravesend started working in the food business as a child for his great-grandfather, who owned a hot dog cart. At 12, he went to work in a bakery and by 14 he was managing a pizzeria.
Despite the worldwide attention, Rossillo still works on perfecting the rainbow bagel technique, which he says takes about six times longer than baking plain bagels. He makes them because they make people happy, he said, and delights in sending the bagels to kids who are in the hospital.
"It took 15 or 16 years to refine the beauty," Rossillo said. "It’s an art. You’re always looking to do better. ... You always have those days of doubt in every human being's life, but [you should] always preservere."