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Zink’s Grocery Store Heritage Site

Zink Store Heritage Brandon

Former Zink Grocery Store, built in 1932. photo: Heritage Brandon

Built and operated by Albert Zink and his family, this full-service grocery store, complete with a busy meat section and Brandon’s first sub-post office, was a landmark in the neighbourhood it served for nearly 50 years.

The stucco-clad building, a simple wood-frame shop with an attached residence, was constructed in 1932.

The one-storey structure is set within an older mixed-use neighbourhood that has undergone considerable redevelopment since full-service local grocery stores were at their commercial height.

The store retains much of its original character.

In scale, design, materials and finishes, the structure displays its small business roots, as well as physical compatibility with its residential surroundings.

The large storefront windows, convenient corner location on a major traffic route and attached residence similarly reflect the building’s dual commercial and domestic functions.

Key elements that define the utilitarian exterior of Zink’s Grocery Store include:

• an L-shaped box-like design with a tar-and-gravel flat roof, light-coloured stucco finish and concrete foundation

• the original storefront window space extends across the entire front of the store and around the southwest corner to one section facing south.

Key elements that define the store’s interior character and its connection to Albert Zink include:


• the layout, with the central recessed entrance opening onto a low-ceilinged open space unbroken by columns or other fixtures and with the area at the back separated from the public space by a wall with a pass-through

• original tongue-and-groove wooden ceiling and wall panelling

• the still-used shelving on the north and south walls built by Albert Zink

• original artifacts such as the meat cooler, walk-in freezer and post office wicket.

Key elements that define the character of the attached residence include:

• its rectangular form with small flat-roofed porches on the front and back, stucco finish of the same shade as the store and ample rectangular windows

• interior features such as the stained and varnished original wooden doors and transom windows and hardwood flooring.

Canada’s Historic Places

Albert Zink was born in Brandon in 1901 to parents William and Katherine Zink.

Albert’s father was co-owner of Zink Brothers Shoe Co. on Rosser Avenue.

Albert and his wife, Elsie, operated their neighbourhood grocery store at 361-1st Street until 1980 when Mr. Zink retired shortly before his death in March 1981.

It was truly a family affair with Albert’s son, William, working as the assistant manager of the store until it closed.

The building is representative of the type of family corner grocery store prevalent in the city’s neighbourhoods until the onset of the large national grocery chains.

Since the closing of Zink’s Food Store in 1980, the building has been occupied by several different restaurants.

Heritage Brandon



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