3. Gage & Tollner (1892)

Gage & Tollner, Oyster and Chop House circa 1960, Photographic postcard, V1988.54.22; Brooklyn Historical Society.

372 Fulton Street was once home to the famed restaurant Gage & Tollner, frequented by icons like Truman Capote, Mae West, and Jimmy Durante. The building was built in 1875 and the restaurant operated here from 1892 until the mid-1990s. It was a place where New York city’s elite families and the celebrities of the day dined amidst elegant surroundings. A 1930 restaurant guide proclaimed that “Gage & Tollner is to Brooklyn what the Statue of Liberty is to New York Harbor,” and another guide went so far as to say it was “Brooklyn’s main contribution to civilization.”

The building is an interior and exterior landmark of New York City — the first dining establishment to be designated with this label. After years of use as a discount clothing and phone shop, the space reopened with a new tiki bar upstairs, the Sunken Harbor Club. Much of what made the restaurant famous will remain, including “the ornate brass chandeliers (though they won’t be gas-lit unfortunately!), original Lincrusta panels, the arched, gilded mirrors running the length of the room,” according to Gage & Tollner.