Sgt. Peffers

About Us

About Sgt. Peffer's...

Welcome to Sgt. Peffer’s, where culinary excellence meets a legacy of over 35+ years in crafting delectable, award-winning cuisine! Founded on the principles of delivering exceptional food with a dash of camaraderie, Sgt. Peffer’s has become a household name in the Omaha metro area synonymous with quality dining experiences.

Our journey began over three decades ago, and since then, we’ve grown and expanded, but our commitment to time-honored recipes and love for the food remains unwavering with our new generation of staff members. At Sgt. Peffer’s, we believe in creating unforgettable moments through the perfect blend of great people preparing great food for, you guessed it, great people!

What sets us apart is our dedication to maintaining the authenticity of our classic recipes while constantly innovating to bring you exciting new menu items. Despite our growth, our focus on delivering top-notch, high-quality cuisine at affordable prices is the essence of Sgt. Peffer’s – making us a true culinary gem and a great value for our cherished patrons.

Visit us at any of our two conveniently located spots in Midtown or Millard, and experience the joy of indulging in mouthwatering delights crafted by our Italian Battalion. Whether you choose to dine in and savor the cozy atmosphere, grab a quick bite to go, drive through for ultimate convenience, opt for hassle-free delivery, or elevate your events with our catering services – Sgt. Peffer’s guarantees satisfaction and a smile with every bite.

And remember, at Sgt. Peffer’s, we like to say we’re open “8 days a week”. So, come join us today and become a part of our extended family. Your taste buds will thank you, and the Italian Battalion is ready to raise a smile on your face!


Starting with a single location in Florence, the Peffer brothers opened a second location of their popular pizza joint, Pefferoni’s, one year later in 1981. This would quickly expand to a total of 18 locations in Omaha, Lincoln, Denver and Austin. Popular for its pizza, of course, it also became known for its use of old cars as salad bars which included a 1927 Bugatti Roadster, 1951 MG and 1955 Austin-Healey among others. After Tim and Walter Peffer left the restaurant chain in 1987, there were just four independently owned locations still operating.

Learning the lessons of Pefferoni’s, Tim opened a new restaurant called Sgt. Peffer’s which he had no intention to franchise. The new restaurant was located at 1501 N Saddle Creek in a building that dated as far back as 1946. Prior to his moving into the 1,100 sq ft building, it was the home to Live Wire Cleaners and Chumly’s Root Beer. He said the location was ideal for his new restaurant as it was surrounded by young families most of which listened to The Beatles growing up.

The new restaurant’s name was inspired by The Beatles 1967 album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. The Beatles theme extended to the decor inside the restaurant as well as the name of some of the menu items. The small building had just enough room for a kitchen and seven tables though it did have three picnic tables outside. The dive bar that is the Homy Inn was often used as an informal waiting room for those waiting to snag a table inside the popular neighborhood cafe. The kitchen staff at Sgt. Peffer’s would even communicate with the bar across the street via walkie talkie’s in addition to offering free delivery. The restaurant was too small from the very beginning which made the drive through window important.

The dining room had white walls with green and red borders along the ceiling which represent the colors of the Italian flag. The Italian theme included a map of Italy painted outside next to the entrance. The aforementioned Beatles decor included posters, painting of the quartet and other memorabilia. It didn’t stop there as you’d also find a painting of an Octopus inspired by the song Octopus Garden. Tables were covered with classic red/green and white checkered tablecloths.

The recipes were developed by Christina Bianchi Hayes who moved to Omaha from her native Florence, Italy in 1978. As such, the menu had a Florentine spin to it which included the addition of vegetables and meat. The authentic cuisine was made-from-scratch even though it was adapted to allow for greater volume. Other menu items included pizza, pasta, casseroles, sandwiches, salad and soup.

The restaurant expanded in 1989 with the addition of the garden room that doubled the amount of seating inside. Longtime manager Charlie Thompson bought the name and the recipes when he opened a second location at 13760 Millard Ave in 2006. Larger than the original even if it is lacking the same charm of being in a historic neigborhood, it does feature a full bar and a party room. A third location was opened in Carter Lake at 111 E Locust St in 2013 before closing around 2018.

While Sgt. Peffer’s isn’t as large as its predecessor, its success allowed its founder to be named Restaurateur of the Year by the Omaha Restaurant Association in 1996 in addition to being inducted into its Hall of Fame in 2007. Tim has long put an emphasis on listening to his customer’s feedback which allowed him to make changes quickly as needed. This is apparent in his philosophy which included top-notch service, the dedication of an unbelievable staff, good food and cleanliness. While the restaurant tends to fly under the radar for those not living near one of its two locations, it was listed among the best Italian restaurants and pizza parlors by The Reader in 2022. CLICK HERE FOR MORE GREAT ARTICLES BY OMAHA EXPLORATION

Sgt. Peffer’s Cafe Italiano

an Omaha Staple

Over the years, pizza shops have pushed the limits of what a pizza can hold; from savory to sweet, the imagination for pizza toppings is seemingly endless. There are those of us who are traditionalists and require few items on a pizza to make us happy. A good crust, basic sauce and properly seasoned ingredients are all you need sometimes; and just because it has loads of cheese on top, does not necessarily make it a better pizza.

Sgt. Peffer’s Café Italiano in particular, has stood the test of time, and continues to convert loyal pizza enthusiasts to fans, year after year. Sgt Peffer’s has a long, rich history in the community and so I decided I wanted to know more about the early beginnings of Sgt. Peffer’s Café Italiano.


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