Why Small Businesses Matter
Shop small, do big things for your community
Why Small Businesses Matter puts a spotlight on the local merchants who donate their time, talent, goods, and services for the betterment of our community. The shop local movement spreads virally as local businesses who are “tagged” have the opportunity to share their story!
You're IT A Bagel King!
Four questions with Nida Bhatti and Babar Sheikh, founders of A Bagel King.
Why did you start your business?
Necessity. The pandemic put us in a tough position like millions of other Americans and we had to find a way to supplement our situation. We had food industry experience and this location was not being properly run after so many years of doing well. So, we thought; location is great, the place has history, and the potential for online sales growth makes it a pretty safe gamble, so we rolled the dice. We hope to restore this location to its former glory.
What is your best-selling product/service?
Our bagels and Tres Leches French Toast are the best sellers. Our most popular bagel is everything and in the words of the legendary Lauryn Hill, everything is everything. With bagel and lox is how we recommend it but it's also great for egg sandwiches. Dessert and breakfast are my favorite two meals of the day so I decided to infuse two of my favorite dishes and make Tres Leches French Toast. It's a special recipe using three varieties of milk and lots of love.
How many local businesses do you use to support your business (products and services) and can you name them?
We work with the original Village Bagel guy, New York Bakery on Main Avenue, and with Sand Wedge Deli & Catering near Wilton. We don't see other food businesses as competitors, we believe there's plenty of business out there for everyone who does a good job. Other than buying some products from these businesses, we also help each other out in a pinch if someone needs something they couldn't get from their vendor that day. There's been plenty of supply chain issues in the past few months.
One thing we learned because of these supply chain issues and the toilet paper shortage earlier in the year is that it's good to have friends.
Have you "reimagined" your small business?
We are going virtual. The stunning growth of online sales has changed the industry forever. Other than being A Bagel King, we hope to have one or two virtual concepts running out of this location. Mr. Beast Burger, Mariah's Cookies, and Tyga's Chicken Bites are some online franchises already operating in the Norwalk/Westport area. We are currently working on a virtual concept called Wings & Tings and hope to have it up and running soon so watch out for that.
We might even rent out our kitchen in the evenings to a third party that has an idea they want to try. We close early, breakfast and lunch is our thing, after 3 pm our kitchen is sitting idle. So, all you Foodies wanting to be entrepreneurs out there, who think they have a good idea, contact us.
Nida and Babar would like to nominate Cafe Aroma on Wall Street to be featured next!
HamletHub thanks Fairfield County Bank for making our Why Small Businesses Matter series possible!