Bites Nearby: Restaurant Echo Focuses on Fresh, Local Ingredients
New Cranberry restaurant is sure to be a favorite.
Overview: Restaurant Echo in Cranberry Township focuses on fresh and local products. The clean, rich, contemporary setting is perfect for this upscale new eatery that executive chef and owner Brian Hammond has created. The menu changes often, offering new tastes and temptations, depending on what is in season.
Decor: Formerly Hereford & Hops Steakhouse, the renovated building is modern, fresh and decorated with warm colors. The large bar is open and inviting with a sitting area next to a roaring fire. Even on a warm spring day, the setting was lovely. My only complaint is that the dining room was fairly dark, making it difficult to read the menus.
The drinks: Restaurant Echo has a full bar and an extensive wine list with selections available by the glass or bottle. There are more than 50 brands of beer available. Of course, there are non-alcoholic beverages including teas, coffee and sodas.
Appetizers: We went for lunch, so we skipped the appetizers (listed as small plates), but there are plenty of choices including soups, salads and flatbreads. There are choices for the more adventurous, including marrow bones, steak tartare and a charcuterie plate.
Entrees: The crab cake with risotto was the best crab cake that I have had, hands down, and I consider myself a crab-cake expert. The risotto was rich and creamy and the addition of grapefruit perfect. The shredded pork shoulder sandwich was delicious and generous in portion. It came with a side of spicy slaw. Dinner entrees included salmon, ribeye, tagliatelle pasta with prawns, pappardelle with lamb, and roasted trout.
Desserts: The dessert choices are overwhelming. A friend recommended Meyer lemon pudding cake, a moist cake topped with lemon curd. Echo also featured a sticky toffee date cake and truffle brownie, to name a few.
Service: The waitress was outstanding, welcoming and happy to explain the background of the restaurant and answer any questions. The service matches the remarkable food.
Address: 1740 Route 228, Cranberry Township, 724-779-3246 or www.restaurantecho.com.
Prices: Small plates: $7 to $12. Entrees: $ 9 to $14 at lunch, $18 to $26 at dinner. Desserts: $ 7.50 to $12.