Thursday, June 7, 2007

CIA Store

Wine country trekkers may not be aware of it but one of the most pleasurable stops in Napa is at The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in St. Helena.

CIA Store front.JPG

The CIA, as it's commonly known, houses a well-equipped kitchen supply store that sells lots of useful tools and gadgets for the serious cook. I stumbled on the Spice Islands Marketplace, or simply the CIA store, when I attended the Cabernet Society tasting last month. The timing of this discovery couldn't be better as I've been searching for a hard-to-find type of tongs that's very slender like a pair of chopsticks and great for precisely grabbing and turning a tiny morsel of anything, like a shrimp or sliverof zucchini, in a crowded saute pan. Made of stainless steel and looking like an oversize tweezer, I found it there for about $24.

CIA Store inside.JPG

Next time I would grab the cool CIA Greystone logo kitchen apron and maybe the oven mitt as well, as both are always handy and make great souvenirs from Napa, perhaps more useful and cheaper than that bottle of Napa Cabernet. Oh, and I noticed they hold cooking demonstrations there as well. A great idea if you're bored with wine tastings.

CIA store class.JPG

Spice Islands Marketplace at the CIA in Greystone
The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone
California Branch Campus
2555 Main Street
St. Helena, CA 94574
Daily: 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Phone Toll-Free: 888-424-CHEF (2433)or 707-967-2309

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