Goldberg’s New York Bagels has a new owner, but so far he’s quiet on any plans for the kosher eatery.
Eun Nam (who goes by the name Vincent) took ownership in May, acquiring the company’s three locations in Rockville, Silver Spring and Potomac from Daniel Keleman, according to a trade name approval sheet filed with the Maryland secretary of state’s office. The business was transferred from Keleman’s Washington Bagels to Nam’s Vincent Bagels.
Nam acknowledged that he had recently taken over, but declined to be interviewed for this article. Rabbi Moshe Walter, executive director of the Rabbinical Council of Greater Washington, confirmed that the organization has continued to certify the stores as kosher since the sale.
The bagels have won praise, being named among the area’s best by Washingtonian and the Washington Post. But they’ve also been at the center of controversy.
The Rockville location opened in 2005, a spinoff of Goldberg’s in Pikesville. Months later, Keleman and his partner, Stanley Drebin, split, according to Washington City Paper. Drebin kept the Pikesville store and Keleman went on to open the other locations. At one point, Drebin nearly sued Keleman over the Goldberg’s name.
At the Silver Spring location, customer Debbie Brandt said that she had noticed no changes. She’s bought bagels at Goldberg’s since 2015.
“I’m from New Jersey, so I’m pretty picky about bagels,” she said. “This is as good as it gets around here.”
Keleman is involved in another dispute, though it’s unclear whether it is related to the sale. In 2015, a former employee, Daniel Atkin, filed a lawsuit against Goldberg’s and Keleman seeking almost $20,000 over $6,482 in allegedly unpaid overtime wages. In a separate filing, Keleman claimed that Atkin was, in fact, a salaried employee earning $40,000 annually. The case is still working its way through the U.S. District Court in Greenbelt, and in a July filing Keleman said it was unlikely that the case would be settled.
Neither Atkin nor Keleman could be reached through their lawyers.