Meet the ‘Bagel Lady of Niagara’, serving up the only true Jewish bagels south of Hamilton

Jessica and Steven Bretzlaff own The Bagel Oven, the only Jewish bakery in in the Niagara Region. (Supplied photo)

From Niagara Falls to Grimsby, Port Colbourne to Port Dalhousie, you’d be hard pressed to find authentic Jewish baked goods outside of one young bakery: The Bagel Oven.

What began in the basement of a St. Catharines synagogue, and later moved to a remote building off a bumpy rural road in Beamsville, is now a fully fledged Jewish deli in Thorold South, serving up specialty challahs, deli-style cream cheese, smoked salmon and true Montreal-style bagels.

Its owners, Jessica and Steven Bretzlaff, join Ralph Benmergui on Yehupetzville, The CJN’s podcast about small-town Jews, to tell their story of why they moved to Niagara, how they started their business, what makes the perfect bagel and how Jessica became known across the region as the “bagel lady”.


Yehupetzville is hosted by Ralph Benmergui. Michael Fraiman is the producer and editor. Our music was arranged by Louis Simão and performed by Louis Simão and Jacob Gorzhaltsan. Our sponsor is PearTree Canada, which you can learn more about at This show is a member of The CJN Podcast Network—find more great Jewish podcasts at Learn about the Bagel Oven at