These classic bagels are also known as New York bagels. If the secret ingredient, as New Yorkers always contend, is indeed the water, out-of-town bakers are out of luck. However, minus the Hudson River, these bagels are still a good replica of the bagels many think of as the definitive model.
Make Ahead Tip: Freeze fresh (and properly cooled) bagels immediately unless you are eating them all that day.
Don't let bagels rise too long before being shaped: the dough becomes slack and the hardy rings cannot hold their shape in the boiling water. Also, the characteristic, appealing denseness is lost.