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170 Wine & Spirit Purveyors • 70 of San Diego's Top Chefs
Celebrity Chefs • Cooking & Wine Tasting Classes
Big Bottle Auction • Continuous Food and Wine Tastings
Over 800 Wines • $50,000 Chef of The Fest Competition

Robert Ruiz
Executive Sushi Chef Harney Sushi

san diego wine and food festival chef robert ruiz image

For the last two years Robert Ruiz has been Harney Sushi Oceanside’s Executive Sushi Chef. His skillful determination behind the sushi bar and in the kitchen continues to redefine what real sushi is. Ruiz’s strong desire for knowledge and inventiveness has given him a distinct household reputation as a destination chef.

Chef Robert Ruiz was born and raised in Oceanside, CA and moved to the big island of Hawaii at 17. While at the University of Hawaii, Ruiz put himself through school by diligently tackling all jobs, including mopping floors and cleaning fryers, as a short order cook.  When Ian Whittemore, of the famed Kona Inn, noticed his potential, Ruiz leaped at this mentorship opportunity. The next 3 years were spent focusing on French cooking techniques, basic butchering and sauté. This extensive training and preparation enabled Ruiz to come aboard with Alan Wong at the 5-diamond Hualalai resort. Here is where Ruiz developed his keen sense of Hawaiian regional cuisine by working at all three restaurants on the property, recreating Wong’s signature dishes and embracing the master chef’s philosophies.  Under the continued tutelage of Hualalai Executive Chef Esuji Umezu, Ruiz distinct love of being a sushi chef was born and flourished. Umezu fostered in him confidence as a sushi chef, even to the extent of giving him the honor of serving the princess of Japan.

Ruiz returned home to the states, with a passion to recreate what he experienced in Hawaii and has impressed many critics and patrons throughout San Diego’s North County. He has made sushi at some of San Diego’s best sushi restaurants, including two and a half years at Sushi on the Rock under Head Chef Chad Seki. In 2008, Ruiz joined Harney Sushi for the opening of their Oceanside location as the Executive Sushi Chef.

After all the extensive training and privileged apprenticing under Hawaii’s finest chefs, Robert Ruiz has become one of San Diego’s best non-traditional sushi chefs. His desire for knowledge is unparalled, his creativity is boundless and the guest experience he delivers causes word of mouth ripples throughout the community

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San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival
World of Wine Event, LLC
7556 Trade St.
San Diego, CA  92121

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