The Bridge Lunch Restaurant was the last of a long line of restaurants, saloons and boardinghouses located at, or nearby, 1323 Front Street, the first brick structure in the city. George Zins, a native of Searsburg, Lorraine, started a brick-making business in Sutterville in 1847 and hauled the bricks for the building to Sacramento by oxen-teams. Zins is also credited with building the first brick building in the state a year earlier at Sutterville.
In 1849, Zins constructed his two-story brick house that measured 35 x 60 feet and was built at a cost of $40,000. The property, 60 feet wide, located on Front Street between M and N streets, extended 150 feet to the alley. It had been obtained from John Sutter who, in 1847, had married Zins to Doris or Dorthea Wolfinger, a survivor of the Donner Party.
The building, known as the Anchor House, was intended as a family residence and store. However, during the flood of 1849-50 when it was used as a haven, Zins rented a portion of the building to John Winters, who opened a lodging house. The renting of the space to boarders was a pattern of use that was to characterize the subsequent history of the building and site. It was one of the few buildings to escape the great fire of 1852. A new 252-room hotel opened on the site in 2002.