Peter Rubi is legendary name in Chicago produce markets that buyers use to purchase a box of mixed fresh fruits and vegetables specifically to bring home for family and friends. Our family have brought Peter Rubi’s home for four-generations, and now would like to pass the tradition onto yours:
Who, What or Why
We don’t know how the name originated, no one truly does. Only two century-old myths whispered across Chicago produce families leave us with clues:
The first tale is one of love and prosperity; the other a tale of trickery and thievery. Which will you believe?
In the early 1900’s a young Italian couple, Peter and his wife Rubi, set sail for Chicago with nothing but the promise of the American Dream. Together, they peddled boxes of fresh fruit and vegetables door-to-door by horse and buggy across the bustling city. The couple’s reputation quickly spread across Chicago as their produce was unlike any around. Soon enough, expectant residents would shout out, “Peter Rubi’s coming!” every morning the bell of Peter Rubi’s horse jingled down the street.
At the turn of the eighteenth century, the infamous thief, Peter Rubi, stole from the box-car drivers of produce merchant’s while on route to their weekly Chicago deliveries. Unlike Robin hood, Peter Rubi, was not heroic. Every week, he ruthlessly robbed a box of fresh fruits and vegetables from the underpaid drivers. He was never caught. Therefore, Peter Rubi was easy to blame even when box-cars drivers stole merchandise for themselves! It became quite normal for box-car drivers to steal a box of fresh fruits and vegetables from their weekly shipments to bring home to their families and friends. Still, whenever a merchant asked about the missing items, the notorious response from a driver would always be, “Peter Rubi took it!” For a box of fresh produce sure did make for a great tip the drivers would had never otherwise received.