In theory, I was in Prince Edward County last September to report a story about the incredible Pinot Noirs and Chardonnay they make there, but a part of me—a very Saturday-morning-hungry part—was there for bagels. In researching this trip, I'd read about Henry Willis and his wood-fired Humble Bread. I'd been spying on his Instagram for a month and knew exactly where to find him. When I woke up that morning, it was wonderfully cold and crisp. I’d stayed at Janna and Duncan Edmund’s modern, home-y Edmund B&B in Bloomfield, in a room with orange-striped walls that made the room feel energized—an almost circus-tent vibe. Despite having had a massive bowl of granola, I high-tailed it off to the Wellington farmers' market in search of Henry, just as a storm started to move in over Lake Ontario. Unfortunately, the storm blew most of the market away, leaving some great pumpkins in sight—but no bagels.
So I stalked the bagel guy. I tracked down his email address and invited myself over the next day.
When I pulled into the gravel driveway at Henry Willis’s house, he was sitting at a table out in front of his big red barn wearing a bandana and bright orange headphones, sharpening a gigantic knife. He’d found the knife, he told me, in a nearby river and was shining it up for his friend Matt DeMille, the chef at the new Drake Devonshire hotel in town. He put the knife down and greeted me with a big smile and a hug.