WADING RIVER, NY – The new owners of a longtime bagel shop in Wading River hope to make their business a gathering place for the community.
The former Bagel Palace – located in the King Kullen Mall on Route 25-A in Wading River – was recently sold. The newly named Wildcat Bagel Deli is a family affair, with new owners Jordan and Denis Feise, along with Feise’s father-in-law Michael Galgano, mother Terri Galgano and younger brother Jaden Galfano all working together to unveil the shop.
Feise plans to decorate the bagel shop with sports memorabilia from Shoreham-Wading River High School and become a true community partner, giving back to where the whole family calls home.
“We’re a family business and we all grew up in small towns surrounding the community, so we’ve always loved our neighborhood bagel shop,” Feise told Patch. “Seeing people from school that we knew, our teammates on our school sports teams, our neighbors, etc., was always so exciting in the morning.”
The family moved to Wading River about a year and a half ago, with Jaden attending Shoreham-Wading River High School as part of the Class of 2024.
“We started getting so involved in the area and loved the small town feel, as well as the community,” she said. “We decided to buy the bagel deli because we wanted to give back to the community and become a bigger part of it.”
The family’s vision is to imbue the bagel show with “that neighborhood breakfast/lunch vibe,” she said. “We already notice our customers chatting over a cup of coffee in the morning. They know each other from school, work, or are neighbors. It’s a good thing to see.”
Working tirelessly to prepare for the official grand opening this month has been the experience of a lifetime, Feise said.
“Embarking on this family journey has brought us closer – you never get bored,” she said. “These walls are filled with love and light, that’s the energy we always want to flow through our store.”
With a focus on community, the family has already had the high school football team vote on their new “Wildcat Rumble” menu offering. “It’s a homemade version of McDonald’s McGriddle – and it’s a hit,” Feise said.
She added: “We have already considered community feedback regarding specific items that the majority would like us to wear, as it is important to us that everyone is happy.”
Going forward, the family plans to work closely with Shoreham-Wading River High School and the Wildcat Athletic Association. “We also plan to support our local small businesses in the area,” Feise said.
The family also plans to host character breakfasts featuring Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and others – and also plans to expand its lunch menu. Additionally, they plan to offer delivery through apps such as DoorDash and Uber Eats.
The business is more than just a store for everyone involved – it’s a way to plant deep roots.
“It’s important for us to play a bigger role in the community because we love this place,” Feise said. “Wading River is our home.”
The new owners said they wanted to thank their loyal customers. “We have already started the transition from the old store to the new, and their patience with us has been so wonderful,” they said. “We really appreciate the feedback we’ve received, and we’re very grateful and excited for what’s to come.”
In a time when so much is changing, the routine of getting together for a bagel and a cup of coffee is synonymous with comfort and memories. “A bagel shop means a lot to a community,” Feise said. “After all, New York is known for its bagels and its famous egg sandwiches. We love family too, and our bagel shop is a place for those family breakfasts and those memorable moments. We’ve had a few already. -one ourselves!”
When asked which bagel is her family’s favorite, Feise smiled. “We all love bagels. It’s hard to choose.”
With the hectic holiday season behind them, Feise said, “The best part of opening over the holiday season has been meeting and connecting with so many new people. We are so grateful for the warm welcome from the city.”
For more information on Wildcat Bagel Deli, click here or call 631-870-4224.