Tom's Restaurant

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Tom's Restaurant
Tom's Restaurant, NYC.jpg
Tom's Restaurant in 2000
Tom's Restaurant
Restaurant information
Street address2880 Broadway
Morningside Heights, Manhattan
City New York City
State New York
Tom's Restaurant interior Tom's Restaurant (Manhattan, New York) P001.jpg
Tom's Restaurant interior

Tom's Restaurant is a diner located at 2880 Broadway (on the corner of West 112th Street) in the Morningside Heights neighborhood of Manhattan in New York City. [1] It is on the ground floor of Columbia University's Armstrong Hall, home to the Goddard Institute for Space Studies. Frequented by Columbia students and faculty, it was founded by Tom Glikas in the 1940s and after a sale at some undetermined point has been owned and operated by the Greek-American family of Minas Zoulis, who retained the original name. [2]


Senator John McCain often ate at Tom's when he visited his daughter Meghan when she was a student at Columbia. [3] Likewise, Barack Obama frequented the restaurant as a student at Columbia. [4]

Tom's Restaurant was the locale that inspired Suzanne Vega's 1987 song "Tom's Diner." [2]

Later, its exterior was used as a stand-in for the fictional Monk's Café in the 1989–1998 television sitcom Seinfeld , where comedian Jerry Seinfeld's eponymous character and his friends regularly convened to dine. [1] [2] The interior shown on the television show, however, looked very little like the real Tom's, as indoor scenes were filmed on a set in Los Angeles. [2] Early Seinfeld episodes showed the entire neon sign; later, the "Tom's" portion was cropped out, showing only the "RESTAURANT" wraparound. Even though the interior and exterior have undergone minor remodeling since the show, the distinctive sign has remained the same. Tom's is featured in "Kramer's Reality Tour" conducted by Kenny Kramer.[ citation needed ] Tom’s can also be spotted in the background of Adam Sandler’s 2000 movie, Little Nicky .

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  1. 1 2 "Tom's Restaurant". The New York Times. Archived from the original on April 9, 2013. Retrieved April 4, 2013.
  2. 1 2 3 4 Vines, Richard (March 13, 2008). "Real 'Seinfeld' Restaurant Is New York Staple". Bloomberg. Archived from the original on September 30, 2022. Retrieved April 4, 2013 via Arizona Daily Star.
  3. "11 questions for Meghan McCain". September 9, 2008. Archived from the original on February 3, 2013. Retrieved April 4, 2013.
  4. Cowan, Alison Leigh (January 20, 2009). "Recollections of Obama's Ex-Roommate". The New York Times. Retrieved August 11, 2018.

40°48′20″N73°57′56″W / 40.80556°N 73.96556°W / 40.80556; -73.96556