Immersed in Food and Wine Experiences

Hailed a “foodie wonderland” by The New York Times, The CIA at Copia is The Culinary Institute of America’s epicurean destination in downtown Napa, designed for the public to immerse in the past, present and future of food. Located in the Oxbow District, it offers an array of enticing culinary experiences delivered by CIA chefs and experts in both private and group venues. Whether it be a memorable or interactive dining experience in one of their award-winning restaurants, a hands-on cooking class or demonstration, attending a lively public event or art exhibit, listening to live music on a Friday night while playing bocce ball, exploring and tasting new wines in a wine tasting class or through an exclusive cult wine tasting from K.LAZ Wine Collection, The CIA at Copia is a culinary lifestyle gathering place that has something for everyone.

cia copiaThis year, The CIA at Copia is excited about the launch of two new immersive dining outlets which are making head- lines with both Valley visitors and locals alike. Created to encourage collaborative culinary experiences to be enjoyed among fellow foodies and wine lovers, they are fast becoming popular on the weekend dining scene.

The first is Le Petit Chef™: 3D Dining Experience,   a   whimsical   “dinner    and a show” dining experience exclusively available at The CIA at Copia. Through a two-hour expedition, guests follow “Le Petit Chef” a thumb-sized 3D animated chef projected on their plates, who guides them along a vibrant journey of sights, sounds, scents, and tastes inspired by Marco Polo’s legend- ary travels along the Silk Road. The evening includes a delicious spice trail-inspired six- course seasonal dinner with a wine pairing option which changes quarterly, prepared by the creative team of CIA chefs led by Chef Rodrigo Vazquez. Available for bookings from Thursday- Saturday, this one-of-a-kind dining experience features cutting-edge 3D technology and visual storytelling by the world-renowned artists of Skullmapping™ and TableMation™.

The second new venue is the spring 2019 opening of the Grove, an outside bistro serving casual al fresco cuisine such as barbeque, summer salads, and wood-fired pizzas. Guests can sit back, grab a glass of wine with friends and enjoy the outdoor gardens, or play a game of corn-hole or bocce ball. On Monday nights, they shake things up with their “Pop-Up Chef” series, where they invite local chefs to prepare menus of their own design. On Friday and Saturday, they have live bands that play from 6-9 pm. Open late, this is a popular location to enjoy a nightcap under the stars.

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Le Petit Chef Immersive Experience Photo by Bob McClenahan Photography


The new restaurant venues notwithstanding, The Restaurant at CIA Copia has been and remains a staple in the new facility, which opened in early 2017. It maintains  its   signature  status  offering a distinctive, modern California dining experience featuring simple, seasonal dishes paired with a curated selection of premier wines, craft beers and artisan cocktails. Guests interact with chefs in a beautiful open kitchen format, allowing for a memorable hospitality experience. Inspired by produce from CIA’s own farms and gardens in the Napa Valley, including Copia’s on-site garden, The Restaurant at CIA Copia highlights the season’s bounty. In addition to the seated dining options, located at the entrance of The CIA at Copia, Contimo Provisions delivers simple, delicious handmade food with the highest-quality ingredients. Owned and operated by Ryan Harris and Kevin Folan, the casual outdoor restaurant creates satisfying sandwiches, salads, and baked goods that are perfect for breakfast and lunch and on-the-go seasonal provisions, such as sausages, marinated chickens, hot sauces, and pickles.

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For those more interested in  what goes on behind the scenes, as the world’s premier culinary college, The CIA at Copia offers both classes and public events that are geared toward curious food lovers. Guests can attend interactive demonstrations in theater-style venues or experience hands-on cooking and baking classes in the expansive Hestan Kitchen. They host both public and private classes for 10-60 people and are very popular for corporate team building events, wine club events, and special occasion celebrations. For wine lovers, The CIA at Copia offers ongoing wine tasting seminars for the public to learn about wine and advance their palates, or even schedule an appointment to sample coveted, hard-to-come-by exclusive cult wines at Kerrin Laz’s K. Laz tasting salon located inside the facility.

The CIA at Copia is dedicated to keeping their programs vibrant and fresh and their year-round curated event schedule always has something happening.

The lively calendar is packed full of entertainment such as culinary competitions in the Hestan Kitchen, fun tasting events in the garden, and seasonal festivals.

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Grove // Photo by Bob McClenahan


Guests can also explore the history of food by visiting The Chuck Williams Culinary Arts Museum, which features over 4,000 items from the Williams-Sonoma founder’s personal collection and the France is a Feast: The Photographic Journey of Paul and Julia Child exhibit, presented by the Napa Valley Museum Yountville.

To great accolade and appreciation, The CIA at Copia is accomplishing what they set out to do–bring locals and visitors together to celebrate the culinary destination of the Napa Valley and all it has to offer.

All happenings can be found on The CIA at Copia’s website. // 707-967-2500

500 1st Street, Napa, CA 94559


Article By: Laura Larson