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Ernie's Cafe

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1005 E Walnut St, Columbia, MO 65201
573 874-7804
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6:30 am - 2:00 pm
Closed now
See all hours
Sun - Sat 6:30 am - 2:00 pm
Dining options: Breakfast, Seating, Takeout, Waitstaff

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 58 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 24
  • 25
    Very good
  • 6
  • 1
  • 2
Rating summary
  • Food
    4.5 of 5 stars
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
    4 of 5 stars

Me, my wife and stepchildren enjoyed our breakfast which was well cooked and served well. The diner has a very friendly atmosphere

4 of 5 starsReviewed October 27, 2015
Chorley, United Kingdom
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58 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Saint Louis, Missouri
Level Contributor
26 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 5 weeks ago

Ernie's is an treasured haven in Columbia. If you want a hearty breakfast or healthier fare you'll find it here. Known for their omelets and fried potatoes, there's nothing on the menu that isn't yummy. Peak breakfast hours can mean a wait....it's a small diner. But it's worth your wait. Also serves lunch/dinner. Prices are reasonable.

Thank Dawn B
Columbia, Missouri
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 29, 2015

We live in Columbia and visit Ernie's at least once a week. We have been going here for over 20 years. We love the breakfast with made to order omelettes and homemade french toast. When we take vegetarian friends with us, they rave on the vegetarian options as well. Lunch is also a treat with the classic "chopped cow" fresh... More 

Thank MO-dancemom
Jefferson City, Missouri
Level Contributor
102 reviews
46 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 108 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 23, 2015

My wife and I recently re-discovered Ernie's Cafe, which has been located in the same spot as long as I can remember. The wait staff were friendly and attentive, and the food was absolutely wonderful! My wife and I both ordered a Philly and rings and were not disappointed! The inside looks almost exactly the way I remembered it (50's... More 

2 Thank Bryan-and-Sheila
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
97 reviews
64 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2015

Ernies is a Columbia institution situated in the downtown and very close to the university. Its decor is from the the fifties (dick tracy) and sixties (rock and roll icons). The food is very good and the prices are reasonable and affordable. Service was attentivevand smooth. My sister worked here 40 years ago!! Really should go - you wont be... More 

1 Thank elfinforesttony
Chorley, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2015

Me, my wife and stepchildren enjoyed our breakfast which was well cooked and served well. The diner has a very friendly atmosphere

1 Thank vic856
Columbia, Missouri
Level Contributor
21 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2015

I have eaten here countless times over 5 decades. This is my go to place for breakfast, & the one that I compare every other restaurant to all around the country. It is unique; it is an experience. Not fancy, not going to inflate your ego. Just great food, great atmosphere. This is the real Como. Just go!

Review collected in partnership with La Quinta

1 Thank fossil5775
Crystal Lake, Illinois
Level Contributor
34 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 22, 2015 via mobile

We stopped here for breakfast on Sunday morning around 10:00. There was a line with quite a few people ahead of us but the wait was not very long. We were able to sit outside which was nice. Our waitress was very good. The food was nothing special but was very good and cooked perfectly. We will definitely return next... More 

1 Thank rgkeys
Milford, Connecticut
Level Contributor
19 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2015

I really liked breakfast at Ernie's. The staff was attentive, the food was quickly delivered to the table and very tasty. The other diners were friendly and chatted with us, even though we wore tee shirts of Mizzou football's next opponent. Tip: if you're there before 9 am, you don't need to feed the parking meter.

1 Thank kellym506
Columbia, Missouri
Level Contributor
433 reviews
236 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 213 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2015

Ernies is one of the premier places for breakfast in Columbia. It's not very big, with a counter and maybe ten tables, and often full during breakfast time. The menu is pretty traditional, with a choice of eggs and omelettes ... don't expect frou-frou options. Service is efficient and they move a good number of people through every morning.

1 Thank LMOverby
Level Contributor
174 reviews
117 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2015

This is a great little cafe with good portions and many repeat customers that will stand in line on the sidewalk and wait to share a table with complete strangers. Breakfast food is good and all then normal suspects are served along with some good lunch features. No dinner since they close in the afternoon.

1 Thank swimdiva

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Restaurant Details

Location and Contact Information

  • Address: 1005 E Walnut St, Columbia, MO 65201
  • Location: United States  >  Missouri (MO)  >  Columbia
  • Phone Number: 573 874-7804

Price and Cuisine

  • Cuisine: American

Restaurant Characteristics

  • Good for: Families with children
Open Hours
6:30 am - 2:00 pm
6:30 am - 2:00 pm
6:30 am - 2:00 pm
6:30 am - 2:00 pm
6:30 am - 2:00 pm
6:30 am - 2:00 pm
6:30 am - 2:00 pm

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Ernie's Cafe staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?