The CIA at Copia Launches Conversations at Copia Live Talk Series

All-star panelists include series host Andrew Zimmern and chefs Rick Bayless, Traci Des Jardins, Dan Giusti, and Kwame Onwuachi

The Culinary Institute of America announces celebrity chef speakers and programming for Conversations at Copia, hosted by four-time James Beard award-winning TV personality, author and chef Andrew Zimmern. Held at The CIA at Copia in downtown Napa, this new live talk series brings together pioneers and innovators within the world of food to share their stories of positive change.

The topic kicking off the 2019 series on September 7 is Culture & Cuisine.

Chefs will come together to discuss the question, “What does it mean to be authentic and who gets to cook what?” Featuring Mexican cuisine expert Rick Bayless from Frontera, modern soul food trailblazer Tanya Holland from Brown Sugar Kitchen, Emiliana Puyana, program manager at La Cocina, and Michael Twitty, author of The Cooking Gene, the conversation will center on how chefs prove their authority around a specific cuisine and how they are adopting, embracing, and immersing themselves in the cultures that have inspired their cooking.

Additional Conversations at Copia topics include:  

  • October 26 – Food for Good: How can we expand access to food and reduce waste? 
    Featuring Daniel Giusti from Brigaid, Matt Jozwiak from Rethink Food NYC, and Michel Nischan from Wholesome Wave.
  • December 7 – Setting the Equity Table: Where is social change in the food and beverage industry coming from? 
    Featuring acclaimed chef and restaurateur Traci Des Jardins from Jardinière and The Commissary, Brandon Chrostowski from Edwins Leadership & Restaurant Institute, Kwame Onwuachi from Kith and Kin, and Angela Dunleavy-Stowell from FareStart.

Emiliana Puyana, Daniel Giusti, Brandon Chrostowski and Kwame Onwuachi are notable CIA alumni.

Each event will also include a fundraising dinner in support of the newly created Andrew Zimmern’s Second Chances Scholarship at the CIA. The dinner will take place after the panelist event in The CIA at Copia’s Hestan Kitchen, where guests will be invited to continue the conversation and interact with Andrew Zimmern and the all-star panelists while enjoying dishes influenced by featured guest chefs.

The scholarship was created to support students in overcoming extremely adverse conditions on their pathway to a CIA degree and a successful culinary career. By reducing the financial burden, the fund is intended to increase college access and success for motivated students working

Tickets for each Conversation are $95 per person and include a pre-conversation reception with wine and bites and the opportunity for guests to meet-and-mingle with featured panelists.  Early bird pricing is $75 per person and is available for a limited time prior to each event. Tickets for the scholarship dinner are $500 per person, and include the pre-conversation reception, the conversation and VIP dinner with host, Andrew Zimmern, and panelists. All Conversations at Copia events take place from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m.

For additional information on Conversations at Copia and to purchase tickets, please visit:

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