These 20 US restaurants are the oldest in the country

The restaurant business in the United States is notoriously competitive. Approximately 60% of new restaurants don’t survive more than a year in business, and 80% don’t last five years.

While there’s no single specific reason why these restaurants endure as others fall by the wayside, consistently good food and a welcoming atmosphere combined with a location that gets lots of foot traffic probably helps more than it hurts.

Keens Steakhouse (New York City)

This era is long gone, but you’ll still see hundreds of these pipes displayed throughout the restaurant. You can admire them as you enjoy delectable food,. The menu is chock full of steaks, lobster and some desserts that are pretty hard to pass up.

Claudio’s (Greenport, New York)

Like a lot of restaurants that survived the prohibition era, it served only food in an official capacity during those horrible dry years, and had a speakeasy upstairs. Today, you can openly drink there while you dine on the goods from its predominantly seafood menu.

Pete’s Tavern (New York City)

“The Gift of the Magi,” a moving story about two people who give each other presents neither can use. The establishment serves “O. Henry chicken wings” in his honor and even allows you, the intrepid diner, to “build your own burger.”

The Old Clam House (San Francisco)

It was originally called the Oakdale Bar & Clam House, and it survived such calamities as the Great Earthquake and Fire of 1906, most likely because the food keeps people coming back. The menu contains lots of seafood, although the landlubbers might prefer their “Wicked Wiches”.

McGillin’s Olde Ale House (Philadelphia)

The menu boasts everything from “fun food for grazers” (translation: fries, wings, and nachos) to sandwiches, burgers and “Mile High Meatloaf,” which one assumes is for people who need to gain a lot of weight very quickly.

Gluek’s Restaurant & Bar (Minneapolis)

The building that it’s in suffered a devastating fire in 1989, and it was completely restored one year later, so that today it can bring customers the cheddar curds, fried pickles and Bavarian pretzels that perfectly compliment the cornucopia of beer that the restaurant offers.

Old Ebbitt Grill (Washington, D.C.)

Old Ebbitt Grill has been serving that function since 1856, and even though it’s not in the same location where it started, you are highly unlikely to care about that once the food arrives at your table.

McSorley’s Old Ale House (New York City)

Founded in 1854, McSorley’s Old Ale House does not actually serve food unless you count the complimentary saltines that you can eat there. The main attraction here is ale, specifically McSorley’s Ale, which is the only thing they serve.

Breitbach’s Country Dining (Balltown, Iowa)

Opened in 1852 thanks to a federal permit from President Millard Fillmore, it serves all-American comfort food and even has an all-you-can-eat buffet.

Tadich Grill (San Francisco)

Founded in 1849, their website proudly proclaims that it has “large portions [and] fresh ingredients,” and the menu contains a diverse mix of salads, seafood, steaks and among much, much more.