From the careful selection, roasting, and blending of coffee beans, to the hand-pulled extraction of the ristretto, Spella Caffè takes pride in serving espresso in the Italian tradition.
Visit us at our caffè in downtown Portland for fresh-brewed, single-origin coffee; handcrafted, made-to-order chai and tea; Italian sodas; local pastry and biscotti; and gelato, sorbetto, and affogato.
Raised above his grandmother's European bakery in Chicago, Andrea Spella first knew espresso as the thick stuff brewed on a stovetop and drunk with pastry after school. This childhood ritual, steeped as it was in old-world tradition, isn't far from the espresso experience Andrea has cultivated over the past ten years in his caffè.
Before the caffè, there was a cart. And before the cart, Andrea dedicated himself to learning all that he could about coffee and fine dining -- and he studied with some of the best. He apprenticed with Kevin Knox and Paul Songer of Allegro coffee in Colorado for many years, and considers the time that he spent training with these industry veterans to be paramount to his personal process of figuring out what he loved (and what he wanted to avoid) in the business of roasting and making coffee.
In committing to honoring the time-tested preparation of Italian espresso, Andrea is also constantly seeking and calibrating the best modern techniques available in order to keep this tradition alive. With one foot in the past and one foot in the present, his holistic approach includes taking great care with the product and respecting all of the hands it passes through on its way to the demitasse cup. Although he initially created and built Spella Caffè as a sort of one-man show (sourcing, roasting, distributing, brewing, and serving all on his own), Andrea sees his business -- and the team who helps run it -- as something much greater than any single person. It must be, in order to carry this rich tradition authentically into the future.
Smart as a whip and quick on her feet, Tasha is our go-to problem solver. The only member of the Spella crew to have worked with Andrea since the cart days, Tasha found her way to Portland's coffee scene from Florida. In the caffè, you'll know her by the upbeat Indie rock playing behind bar -- and the perfectly glossed and fluffy cappuccino on the counter.
If you find yourself walking out of the caffè with an affogato when you came in for a drip coffee, chances are you chatted with Sophie. As sweet as the (house-made) whipped cream she'll encourage you to indulge in, Sophie loves connecting with our customers over travel, good food, and adventurous craft cocktails. She's been hand-pulling beautiful, rich espresso for us since early 2014.
Jon moved from Phoenix, Arizona, in the summer of 2015 to join the Spella team. When he isn't steaming and pouring velvety latte in the caffè or dashing across town to take care of the various restaurants and shops we collaborate with, then he's probably having a run along the waterfront -- all with an easy and warm smile. Jon loves helping our customers feel comfortable in the caffè, so if you don't know what to order, or would like to try something new, he would love to surprise you with a drink of his choosing.
If you've ever wanted to speak German with a tie-wearing barista in an Italian espresso bar, Maika's your girl. (She speaks English, of course, too.) She's brought a particular dry wit and charm to the caffè experience since she joined the team in 2015 and it's difficult to imagine afternoons without her thoughtfully managed low stakes electro / high stakes aural enjoyment playing from behind the bar. Andrea has deemed her almond milk cappuccino some of the best he's had.
Chances are, if you’ve been to the caffe in the last year, you’ve been greeted by the kind and welcoming smile of Sommer. With 20 years of experience in the coffee industry, she’s a natural behind the bar (seriously, her espresso shots are divine) and we were lucky enough to add her to the team in August of 2017. A native of Oregon, Sommer never misses an opportunity to spend her time outside of the caffè adventuring with her family along one of our many river and forrest trails.
Sabrina works behind-the-scenes magic for the Spella team, chauffeuring our beans from the roastery on the east side of the river to the downtown caffè. Over the weekend, she infuses the caffè with a little fresh Sia or Rihanna energy from behind closed doors as she stocks our retail bean shelf and makes sure all is in order for business on Monday.