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Earl Ruff

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My first job was at the age of 13 as a dishwasher for a family café in Elkhorn, Nebraska, called Cowpokes. When I was 16, I moved to Omaha where I worked at Pizza Hut for eight years, learning every position and becoming part of management. When I realized I wanted to cook for a living, I started out at bars and grills, some local ones like Big Johns Billiards and Muldoon’s Pub.

I moved to fine dining restaurants, working at a steakhouse in Kearney called The Cellar, and operating the kitchen and designing the menu at The Driftwood Inn outside Blair, Nebraska. I was the first kitchen employee hired for Rick’s Café and Boatyard, the only restaurant on the river walk. My next employment was at country clubs; I was employed at the Omaha Country Club.

Finally I got to operate my own kitchen for three years after moving to Iowa. I then discovered the job opportunity here at Hy-Vee - and I am here to stay!

I love cooking and I love to teach others how to cook. I love making pasta and working on the grill. I can spend all day making a good soup. I want to be a valuable resource for Hy-Vee customers. I want them to come to me with any and all questions regarding food, recipes and wine/beer.