Customers visiting Ess-a-Bagel’s 3rd Avenue store can now order a new sandwich called Fire in the Hole, containing Stockeld Dreamery’s non-dairy cream cheese. The cheese alternative can also be added to any bagel, with a choice of two different flavors — Smoked Paprika & Chili and Garlic & Herbs. This is the first time Ess-a-Bagel has ever offered a plant-based option in its 47-year history.
The cream cheese is already available at three other New York City establishments — Ground Support Cafe, Kossar’s Bagels & Bialys, and Zucker’s Bagels & Smoked Fish. It will also soon be launching at another NYC store, Zaro’s Family Bakery.
Stockeld Dreamery’s cream cheese is made from fermented chickpeas and lentils, alongside other ingredients such as coconut oil and spices. It was launched last year following over two years of product development, with the company stating that it intends to “replace dairy cream cheese”.
The development of the cheese was made possible by a €16.5 million Series A round in 2021, which Stockeld Dreamery said it would use to accelerate the scaling of its team and product portfolio as part of a mission to create “the world’s most ambitious cheese”.
“I am personally responsible for this [Ess-a-Bagel] partnership, having cornered, stalked, and politely pushed this New York institution to partner with us,” said Stockeld Dreamery CEO and co-founder Sorosh Tavakoli. “When I finally got to meet Melanie, whose aunt initially started the company, we hit it off immediately! We could instantly appreciate the contrasts between the new meeting tradition and the newcomer meeting the established. We could also instantly find alignment and energy in the desire to push boundaries to deliver healthier and more sustainable foods to the masses.”