Eckl’s Restaurant and History of the Buffalo Beef on Weck Sandwich

The official origin of beef on weck is not known and may never will be, but the dish is rumored to be traced back to the 1901 Pan-American Exposition in Delaware park. Descendants of Delaware House owner Joe Gohn claim that he created beef on weck with the German baker who supplied rolls to his restaurant, aiming to sate tourists’ ferocious appetites as they knocked back a few beers. The baker in question is also rumored to be German immigrant William Wahr, who operated a bakery from 1886-1924 and is thought to have brought the kummelweck roll to WNY.

While Eckl’s may not have been the first restaurant to serve beef on weck, it started serving customers in a time where beef on weck was rapidly reaching popularity within the Western New York community. German cuisine was in high demand at the time of the original 1906 opening by Luis Schroeder (Dale Eckl Sr.’s great uncle), largely due to the influence of the Pan-American Exposition on the cultural climate of WNY.

After the re-opening in 1934, Eckl’s beef on weck became a local favorite, garnering the identity of a “southtown staple” and drawing loyal customers from multiple generations of families. Eckl’s atmosphere is evocative of the true WNY spirit, serving up good food to dedicated locals all year round.

The down to the earth atmosphere is only bolstered by the fact that Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Super Bowl Sunday, are the only days each year that the restaurant closes. To date, the only unplanned closings have been during the blizzard of ‘77 and the November 2014 storm.