The Echo is a friendly neighborhood joint that takes pride in serving home-cooked, hearty fare at reasonable prices. We’ve been around for decades—and welcome the chance to serve generations of Cincinnati families and newcomers alike. We’ve evolved over the years (read Our History for more information), expanded our menu, and even added a liquor license recently, but our commitment to serving excellent food at a fair price with a friendly smile remains unchanged.
We invite you to explore our site to learn more about what we offer. We hope to see you soon!
Recognize someone? Chances are we’ll recognize you, too. Our staff likes to stick around– you’ll see the same friendly faces time and again. Our team has shared many memorable events with our guests, and we’ve seen them through weddings, hardships and their everyday experiences. We’ve made some good friends in the process!
In 1945, Louise Schwartz opened The Echo, a little sandwich shop near the corner of Edwards and Erie Avenues in Hyde Park, a bustling, blue-collar neighborhood.
The Echo developed an increasing following over the years, offering home cooking at reasonable prices. Patrons would stand in line out onto the sidewalk, particularly for dinner offerings, although breakfast and lunch were available. All ages were regulars, from school kids hanging out after school drinking milkshakes to the more elderly set enjoying chicken croquettes and homemade pie at the dinner hour. Lunch customers included folks from the neighborhood as well as employees from businesses and factories in the surrounding areas, such as Ford, Milacron, BASF and Kirk and Blum, to name a few. On any given day, you could see judges, mayors and fur coats beside working class and the retired on a fixed income sitting side by side at the counter discussing the news in the daily paper.
In 1975, Louise expanded to include what we call “the back room,” which originally was a laundry (in case you’ve always wondered why our restrooms are so small). Business thrived over the following years, with generations of customers enjoying the neighborhood meeting place, hosted by sassy waitresses who would not hesitate to tell you to “shut up and eat your vegetables.” (Yes, we say waitresses, no political correctness applies, and no males were ever serving customers.) The staff and customers were like family, and if you didn’t show up for a few days, particularly if you were older and lived alone, the staff would try to hunt you down to check on you.
In 1978, a tragedy closed The Echo temporarily, as a kitchen fire ravaged the restaurant with flames and smoke damage. The Echo reopened and thrived once again. Louise sold the restaurant in 1989 after long, dedicated service. Two owners followed, each for about three years.
In 1995, The Echo was purchased by its current owners, and although 90% of what Louise had built remains the same, we have made slight changes. We certainly kept the things that have kept loyal customers coming back day after day, week after week, year after year—like our homemade pies (we still use Louise’s original recipes) and a commitment to hearty, home cooked food at a fair price. But we have made a few updates, like opening seven-days-a-week. In fact, The Echo had never been open on Sundays, but we realize that’s one of folks’ favorite days to grab a hearty breakfast or brunch. In fact, Sunday has become one of our busiest days.
We also added some modern touches, like payment by credit card! And, as people have become more health conscious, we’ve added new menu items to reflect lighter, healthier choice, like salads. We’ve also expanded choices, including breakfast any time, and (drum roll, please), in 2005, we added beer, wine and liquor! Now folks can grab a cold beer with their burger, sip a Chardonnay with their entrée, or nurse a Bloody Mary over Sunday brunch.
Hyde Park itself has changed over the years, as well. The Hyde Park Square has become a booming, bustling business district, full of retail, restaurants and independent businesses. (See the Hyde Park Square Business Associations site here for more information.) We’re thrilled to be a part of this tremendous community and a piece of Cincinnati history.