By 2 o’clock on a Saturday morning, Jeremy Kratzer is out of bed in Saco. By 3, he has driven 45 miles to Brunswick, where he and his wife, Marina, started Dutchman’s Wood-Fired Bagels a little over a year ago. By sunup, Kratzer has shaped hundreds of bagels by hand and cooked them Montreal-style — boiled in honey water, finished in a wood-fired oven — except that, since he shares the space with a pizzeria, he uses residual oven heat from the night before instead of a live fire. The result of that tweaked process is a bagel superbly balanced between chewy and airy, which explains why a line has already formed before doors open at 8. For the next several hours, a constant stream of customers orders bagels with house-made cream cheeses or as sandwiches (and there are bialys and muffins too, plus coffees). By late morning or early afternoon, the bagels are, invariably, sold out, and Kratzer and his staff start closing up shop. By midafternoon, he can make the 45-mile drive home. And by 2 the next morning, he’ll begin all over again.
Kratzer previously worked at two other bagel hot spots: North Yarmouth’s Purple House Bakery and Portland’s Rose Foods. Dutchman’s, in Brunswick’s Fort Andross Mill, is open Thursday to Sunday. 14 Maine St.
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