The restaurant originated in 1960 when Richard J. McCooey, a Georgetown alumnus, bought two enterprises that occupied a Federal home dating from the mid-1800s. The building’s basement was opened as The Tombs, a casual restaurant geared to Georgetown University students and faculty. The upstairs evolved into 1789 Restaurant, which offered the ambiance of a stately home with its handsome prints and working fireplace. Its original classic French menu and gracious service were hailed by Washingtonians, and it soon became one of the city’s most noteworthy restaurants.
Later in the 1960s, McCooey purchased a third, and then a fourth, adjacent property. These two sites became F. Scott's, an Art Deco nightclub named after F. Scott Fitzgerald, the embodiment of style in the Jazz Age. The restaurant houses museum-quality travel posters from the twenties and thirties, original cartoons by Hirschfeld from The New York Times, cut glass blocks from the Chrysler Building in New York and Art Deco stained glass windows. It is currently reserved for private parties only, accommodating up to 125 people.