Former Merrill Lynch vice president Adam Pomerantz founded Murray's Bagels in 1996, naming it for his father, who endowed him with a love of bagels. Though authentic, quality bagels are the core of the business, this sweet, cozy spot has expanded beyond its original premise. At breakfast, guests can choose from omelets on a bagel, bagel sandwiches and Irish oatmeal, advertised affectionately on the extensive, chalkboard-written menus. There's often a line for counter service and a wait for a table, but proceedings move at a pretty fast pace. The spirited space is perpetually packed with assorted bohemian locals and New York University students, in for a quick nosh or an intimate chat.