COPA in St. Pete fuses world travels with wine-based cocktails
COPA isn’t your typical lounge. Yes, there’s going to be a laid-back vibe where everyone can go to relax and chill. The difference is guests can clearly see how influential are the world travels of the Thuriere brothers. Sebastien recently ended his professional soccer career where he played in domestic and international teams for 9 years while Maxim also has a sustainable jewelry and accessories line name Enbois Originals.
When I went to interview them, the space was still under a bit of construction but the brothers are looking to have their grand opening this month.
“Brothers Sebastien and Maxim Thurière fuse their world travels with wine to bring a new kind of atmosphere with their forthcoming concept, Copa, which sits at 1047 Central Ave. in St. Pete’s EDGE District.
Copa is the duo’s first venture together. Prior to entering the restaurant industry, the two were in very different fields — literally. Sebastien played professional soccer for nine years; he made international rosters including Malaysia’s and Haiti’s, and played on squads right here in Tampa Bay. Maxim’s skills saw him open a sustainable jewelry and accessories business, Enbois Originals. Now the two are back in the ‘Burg and wanting to mix things up with their new concept.
“St. Pete is home; we grew up here. The city has definitely grown over the years and changed for the good. Being away for so long made me appreciate it,” Sebastien tells CL. Putting their heads together, they decided to create an escape for locals through food, wine, and a little smoke.
“St. Pete doesn’t have something like this right now. We’re unique and I think it’s something people here can appreciate,” Maxim says, adding that the menu and wine list is meant to take guests on a trip around the world.
“We’re trying to implement a little bit of where we’ve been from the foods to décor to music. It’s a taste of different cultures,” Sebastien explains. The décor is a mix of Mediterranean, Caribbean, and rustic vibes. Initially, the brothers were striking out searching for venues near the 600 Block. But when Genaro’s Café’s former location became available, Sebastien said they couldn’t help but jump on the 1,400-square-foot parcel.”