The Joan Bice Underwood Tearoom

The Joan Bice Underwood Tearoom is a restaurant/classroom teaching operation within Iowa State University’s world-renowned hospitality management program. The facility dates back to 1926, when it was built during an addition project in MacKay. It is named for Joan Bice, a 1952 graduate of Home Economics, who enjoyed working in the Tearoom. In 2001, a generous donation was made to honor Joan Bice Underwood and renovate and restore the facility, just like it would have been when she worked there.

The Food Production and Service Management Experience class (HSPM 380L) currently operates the restaurant/classroom. It is a non-profit, approximately 90-seat learning laboratory. Meal service is provided for faculty, staff, students, and visitors.


Lunch is served from Tuesday – Friday 11:45 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. during the Fall and Spring semesters. We recommend guests arrive at the tearoom between 11:45 and noon for dining room service.

The Tearoom is not open during the following periods:

  • The first two to four weeks of each semester. As a teaching operation, we use the first two to four weeks of the semester to train our students. Watch our social media for each semester’s opening date!
  • Fall Break
  • Winter Break
  • Spring Break
  • Summer

You’re always welcome to call us at 515-294-3330 or email to double check operational hours before you plan to enjoy lunch with us.

Reservations, Cancellations, and Payment

Walk-ins are welcome for dining in the Tearoom. However, we highly recommended you can make a reservation online at any time. Reservations are accepted using the online portal found below.

We accept cash, check, credit and debit cards.

To-Go Options

All dine-in menu items are available as a to-go option. Our retail operations are run out of the back of the Tearoom at the kitchen entrance (16 MacKay Hall). 

Please pre-order food items by 9 a.m. on the day you wish to eat Tearoom lunch by emailing Or, you can stop by between 11:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. to order in person. Note: In person to-go option will be available until we run out of food.

Gift Certificates

Gift certificates are available in increments of $1.00. They are available for purchase Tuesday-Friday, 11:45 a.m. – 12:45 p.m., in the Tearoom.

Fine Dining Events

To make your reservations for fine dining events:

  1. Go to our online reservation system
  2. Select the fine dining event date in the calendar
  3. Select the fine dining start time as your reservation time
  4. Choose the total number of people attending

Check back often for our schedule of fine dining events.

Need More Information?

Joan Bice Underwood Tearoom

23 MacKay Hall
2302 Osborn Drive
Ames, IA 50011-1078