Hathaway’s Diner Bids Adieu After 60 Years

The Carew Tower staple will not be renewing its lease beyond January.

Update 2: Hathaway’s, sadly, closed for good on November 8, 2023, citing low business downtown and a mandate from the city.

Update: Following lease renegotiations, the popular Carew Tower lunch spot doesn’t plan to close as early as they had thought. Read more here

For more than 60 years Hathaway’s Diner has served the downtown Cincinnati workforce, but at the beginning of February the nostalgic greasy spoon will close its doors for good.

A fixture of Carew Tower, the popular lunch spot has reached more than just the nine-to-fivers and over the years has become a staple for Fountain Square and Carew Tower visitors. Most known for perfecting all things breakfast, particularly Cincinnati-favorite comfort foods like the goetta omelet, loyal customers didn’t take the news lightly—some even suggested on Facebook turning the diner into a city landmark or starting a public fundraiser to help it relocate.

Photograph by Zach Ghaderi

Owner Danny Holbrook expressed his deep regret for their closing on the restaurant’s Facebook page: “I am not sure why. But I have been more sad to lose this special place then [sic] you guys will ever know. We will miss each and everyone of you…. All you guys feel like family to me.”

Fans took to the post to share their memories of the restaurant. One person said that the diner first opened his eyes to goetta as a Cincinnati newcomer, and he felt it initiated him as a true local. Another said eating at the diner was an annual Christmas tradition with her family. Others said they would miss the sweeter side of the menu, like the complimentary-pie-slice Tuesday lunch special, the warm apple dumplings, and the self-proclaimed “best milkshake in the city.”

Photograph by Zach Ghaderi

Whether a businessperson on the go or a grandparent taking the kids out for a treat, the smiling, familiar staff and decorative 1950s Cincinnati memorabilia always made the place feel like home.

As we bid farewell to our own downstairs Carew Tower neighbors, we thank Hathaway’s for the years of full bellies and, most importantly, the memories.

Photograph by Zach Ghaderi

Editor’s Note: The owners of Hathaway’s Diner have not yet responded to CM’s requests for comment.

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