50 years ago today, on July 23, 1962, every Hoya's favorite hangout opened. (And that other restaurant above it where most of us only get to eat once in our lifetimes if we're lucky...)
And of course, some things (*cough* *jerk neighbors* *cough*) never change:
When Richard McCooey (C'52) arrived at Georgetown in the fall of 1948, he asked himself why Georgetown did not have an eating establishment along the lines of Mory's (Yale) or the Nassau Tavern at Princeton. Nearly a decade later, enjoying a successful career in advertising, McCooey never gave up on the idea. He left the ad business in New York, returned to Washington, and purchased a building at the corner of 36th and Prospect streets (then occupied by a laundry and the Hilltop Cafe), with hopes of opening a restaurant by 1960.
McCooey ran into a formidable foe just as well known today: the local residents. A three year run of litigation tried to stop McCooey at every step of the journey, from fighting the zoning permit, to the construction permits, to the beverage license. Residents argued the case as far as the U.S. Court of Appeals, with one arguing, according to The HOYA, that McCooey and the University were in a "conspiracy" to depress housing prices in Georgetown with the opening of a saloon in their neighborhood.