WASHINGTON — The amount of bagels Andrew Dana has consumed in the last nine months “is disgusting.”
“Nobody should ever eat that many bagels,” he said.
But it’s all in the name of research. Dana, a co-founder and co-owner of Timber Pizza Co. in D.C.’s Petworth neighborhood, is gearing up to open a bagel shop and deli just down the street in Park View with his Timber team. The name of the establishment is Call Your Mother.
Dana, a D.C. native, said bagels have always been on his radar. They were a favorite weekend breakfast growing up, plus, since he and business partner Chris Brady launched Timber in 2014, he has gotten pretty good with dough.
“The dough is what makes all of this possible,” said Dana, inside Timber Pizza Co., which was named 2017’s “Pizzeria of the Year” by Bon Appétit.
The magazine’s senior editor, Julia Kramer, called their wood-fired pies “pizza perfection.”
“And I think a bagel is in a similar vein, so it’s sort of a natural extension. If we can nail the dough for Timber Pizza, let’s try to nail the dough for the bagel, and that will allow us to do some cool bagel sandwiches and things like that.”
Dana describes Call Your Mother’s bagels as a cross between a Montreal-style bagel and a New York-style bagel. The recipe he and Timber executive chef Daniela Moreira landed on has a hint of sweetness (Montreal), but a lighter, fluffier chew (New York). After the bagels are boiled, they’re baked in a wood-fired oven.
“If Montreal and New York-style bagels had a baby, that’s sort of what we’re going for. We’re just trying to blend the best of both worlds,” Dana said.
As for what goes on and between the bagels, Dana and his team have a few ideas up their sleeves. First up, is a from-scratch cream cheese, which they’re making using dairy from Trickling Springs Creamery and serving at the FRESHFARM Dupont and Silver Spring markets.
When Call Your Mother’s Georgia Avenue location opens, look for bagel sandwiches with pastrami, egg and cheese — plus whitefish and salmon options. And because Dana said the concept is a “Jew-ish” deli, there will also be a bacon, egg and cheese bagel sandwich.
At lunch, deli sandwiches will be served on homemade challah, rye and wheat breads. Come dinner, the space will switch to a communal supper club concept, featuring rotating menus and themes.
“We’re talking about fried chicken dinner, a Peking duck dinner. We want to do a New York-style pizza night, with big pies, fried calamari, garlic knots — your stereotypical New York-style pizza dinner, but done really well,” Dana said.
“We just think it’s a really cool way for people who live in the neighborhood to come and have this shared dining experience, allow Dani to show off some of her cooking chops, and then we also want to allow some local talent, other chefs to come in and host dinners.”
Dana said Call Your Mother will have plenty of patio seating — and hopefully it will open in time for the patio to be enjoyed. (Dana said there isn’t an opening date just yet — it all depends on licensing.)
“I’ve been jokingly saying either this May or next May … hopefully this summer,” Dana said.
Until then, you can test the bagels, which Dana and his team are baking overnight using Timber’s wood-fired oven, at the two farmers market locations. You won’t find Call Your Mother’s full menu, but Dana said expect bagels with cream cheese, Ivy City smoked salmon and various veggies from the market.
“Last weekend that was micro arugula, cucumbers and tomatoes, so we’ll see what they have this weekend.”
Stay on top of opening updates on Call Your Mother’s Instagram account.