DES MOINES, Iowa – The small blue building might not catch your eye as you drive by, but B&B Grocery, Meat & Deli has a habit of turning first-timers into regulars.

The lunch hour at B&B provides no break for brothers John and Joe Brooks. The third generation owners grew up in the building at 2001 Southeast 6th Street. Their grandfather and great uncle started the business back in 1922.

“Our niche to B&B was we got to make our own lunch,” John A. Brooks, Jr. said. “Now we don’t make lunch for us, we make lunch for everybody else.”

Expect a certain style when you go in to order. Customers come for the specialty subs and meats. They come back for the unique brand of hospitality. 

“We’re kind of a hole in the wall, but we’re a good hole in the wall,” Joe Brooks said. “We’re polished on our stuff and we do take care of people and they get a quality product. We’ve been serving up Des Moines for a hundred years, keeping them on top of the food chain.”

Throughout a century, B&B has survived the Great Depression, the Great Recession, and a pandemic.

As they look ahead to the next one hundred years, John and Joe have kids and grandkids who could eventually take over the family business. They have no plans of taking a lunch break anytime soon.

“People still have to eat,” John A. Brooks, Jr. said. “And if you wanna work and you like what you do, that’s what B&B is for me.”

Family, friends, and former employees will be on-hand at B&B on Friday to help celebrate the 100-year anniversary.