New dessert institute opens in Irvine

Chocolate importer Qzina Specialty Foods has announced the opening of a $3.5-million location in Irvine for chocolatiers and pastry chefs.

The Qzina Institute features a state-of-the-art demonstration auditorium, test kitchen, showroom and Bean-to-Bar Chocolate Lab, where participants can make their own chocolate, according to a news release.

"The vision of the Qzina Institute is to provide a place for professionals to experience the best of the chocolate and pastry industry," Qzina Founder and Chief Executive Richard Foley said in a prepared statement. "Our goal is to help chefs expand their dessert repertoire and bring new creations to their guests. Customers who visit the institute will be inspired and surprised with what they can make and learn."

The institute at 9461 Irvine Center Drive was opened in conjunction with the Pompano Beach, Fla.-based company's 30th anniversary. For more information on how to register for the programs and demonstrations, visit

— Sarah Peters

Twitter: @speters01

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