By Shannon Bond
As St. Joseph natives wait out the coronavirus pandemic in their homes, it’s nice to know that D&G Pub and Grub is offering great curbside service and delivery. It’s the same great food Joe town locals have come to love. The only thing missing is the atmosphere and sound waves from Café Acoustic Concert Hall next door. But stay tuned, they may have a virtual event on the horizon. If you haven’t visited D&G, you can read reviews on Restaurantji, Tripadvisor, Facebook, and Yelp or visit their website.
Folks at D&G are working hard to support the St. Joseph community. And as unemployment claims rise to record highs, it’s important for Joes to support local businesses as they fight to keep people employed and customers fed.
“My staff’s safety is our number one concern,” said Christina Grimes, who owns the D&G along with her husband. “The staff here chose to keep working and for safety, no customers have access to the building. All of us agree to come straight to work and go straight home. This way, we keep each other safe. We all wear masks and gloves and sanitize the entire restaurant every single hour.”
As a thank you to customers, D&G is offering free house chips and salsa with every order. Grimes said that one of the biggest challenges is trying to keep customer service to the highest standards. They are also trying to break even since food is not their largest revenue source. With the bar shuttered, for now, and Café Acoustic Concert Hall silent, until the pandemic passes, they are missing two major revenue streams. Still, Grimes is optimistic and dedicated to her staff and the community they serve.
“We’re going through a complete reinvention phase of our business but our curbside pickup has been amazing,” she said. “It’s filled with regulars who are supporting us. One young lady has even left 20 to 30 dollar tips on 17 dollar orders. We’re so grateful to be part of this community.”
On the D&G Facebook page, visitors will see posts supporting other local businesses and the community, like the one from Joe Town Fun. It lists resources for community members, such as food distributions, medical assistance, and health and wellness services for families who need it.
“We just want everyone to stay healthy and safe and to keep our community safe. If we keep doing what we’re supposed to be doing, hopefully, this will pass soon.”
In her off-time, Grimes is collecting what she can and delivering care packages to families across the city. She has delivered nearly 50 so far and for safety, makes sure she has zero contact with others. Items in the packages include personal hygiene and non-perishable, sealed, snacks. She feels compelled to help her neighbors just like her customers are trying to help the D&G.
“Our customers have been over-the-top and are still tipping on to-go orders when most people don’t,” Grimes said. “A lot of effort goes into to-go orders and we are trying to give customers the same high quality without raising prices. We still cook everything to order and use only the highest-grade ingredients.”
She explained that the full menu is available except for a few dishes that don’t travel well. For example, they are still selling one of their most famous dishes, the George Harrison Rueben, but it is deconstructed and separated so the bread doesn’t get soggy.
The D&G has a long history of quality and was established during prohibition, serving customers in the St. Joseph community for about 100 years. The last owners closed the restaurant in 2009. But Christina and Steve Grimes bought the place in 2016 and after extensive planning, reopened at 1918 Frederick Ave. After owning Café Acoustic for six years the Grimes’ were no strangers to running a business.
“My mom used to wait tables at D&G when I was a kid,” Grimes said. “Back in the day, you took your kids to work with you. After a while the owners let me walk around with a basket and hand out silverware. D&G felt like home. So, when I saw the opportunity to open D&G after it was closed for so long, I knew my mom would love it.”
While she had the vision for D&G, her husband brought the vision for a new Café Acoustic Concert Hall next door. Her goal was to build a relationship between great food and rock-and-roll.
“After three years, I was finally able to launch the new menu with dishes based on rock-and-roll legends. These musicians had a huge impact on so many lives,” she said. “People love it.” Original creations like the twisted taquitos, by prep cook Sam Ajuzie, the Twisted King, keeps customers coming back for more. On the Rock-and-Roll Legends menu, you can also find dishes such as “Chris ‘Scrappy Melt’ Cornell,” and the “Sam Cooke.”
Unfortunately, the coronavirus pandemic has postponed live performances at the Café Acoustic Concert Hall for now. But, Grimes said, they are exploring virtual options that follow local guidance and ordinances, and keep her staff, and the community safe. But D&G curbside pickup and delivery will carry on.
If the pandemic has you locked in and craving great food, give D&G a call or order on their website. Once that German Platter, overflowing with meaty goodness, or the Nat King Cole fish platter shows up, crank up the tunes and enjoy your own private rock-and-roll dining experience. You will be supporting a local business who is working hard to keep their employees safe and on the job.
Read the reviews
“The appetizers were delish and the tenderloin most definitely lived up to my (high) expectations.” in 3 reviews
“Also great beer cheese, berry jam and onion petals.” in 2 reviews