Welcome to the North American Pizza and Culinary Academy! NAPCA is a 4500 square foot pizza innovation center conveniently located near one of the world’s leading food cities – Chicago. We are one of only two locations for Scuola Italiana Pizzaioli in the USA.
NAPCA Chicago opened its doors in 2017, introducing the world to the first dedicated, state-art pizza and culinary academy of its kind. NAPCA offers the classic teachings and traditions from where it all began in a contemporary educational facility for all levels of students. We are a one stop shop for pizza training, cooking classes, private events, consulting and equipment sales.
Courses are led by Maestro Istruttore Leo Spizzirri. Leo is a master technician in dough formulating and pizza innovation. All pizza classes taught by Leo are limited to 8 people for a truly hands-on immersion into classic Italian pizza.
NAPCA is also home to a beautiful kitchen and event space that hosts, events, book signings, corporate team building and recreational cooking classes almost everyday of the week. From Date Nights to Bread Baking Workshops – from Pizza to Pie.
Leo Spizzirri is a native Chicagoan and lifelong pizza lover who grew up in his family’s bakery. Leo is an artisan pizza and bread maker by trade. He was certified as a pizzaiolo by 11 time world pizza champion Tony Gemignani at the International School of Pizza. He completed his studies at the Scuola Italiana Pizzaioli in Italy under headmaster and world pizza champion Graziano Bertuzzo. His work has been seen and tasted all over the world both as an international pizza competitor and as an instructor. Leo a respected authority in Chicago style pizza and lives in Carol Stream, Illinois with his wife Melisa and their daughters Angelina, Isabella, and Giada.
Anthony Iannone is a native of Queens, NY. He grew up in his family restaurant, Iannone’s Restaurant in Hicksville, Long Island. After graduating from Johnson and Wales he went on to become the Head Chef for the Bice restaurant group in New York which brought him to Chicago, Miami, LA, Cleveland and Washington D.C. He later moved to Perth, Australia to work with Sorrento Restaurant and Vaticano Restaurant in Mexico City.
In 2000, he moved to Chicago to start a Boar’s Head Brand Distribution hub, but you can’t keep a chef out of the kitchen too long. He began teaching classes out of Casey’s Butcher Shop and Famous Liquors in Lombard where he honed his skills for education.
Like every great educator, his passion is contagious. Opening The North American Pizza and Culinary Academy has been the natural progression in his lifelong journey of food. He currently lives in Medinah, IL with his wife and daughter.