Spella Caffe, located on 5th Avenue downtown, is definitely one of the smallest coffee shops in Portland. It’s hard to even call Spella a shop, as the inside of the shop only includes the espresso equipment, menu board, pastries, and a small standing area to pay. However, there is seating outside reserved for Spella customers. While Spella may be small, the coffee is excellent. The smallest size is 8 ounces, which is nice if you want a small cup of coffee for a pick-me-up, but aren’t looking to get overly caffeinated. Spella has all of your traditional espresso beverages—macchiatos, cappuccinos, lattes, and mochas. They also have straight espresso shots, black coffee, teas, Italian sodas, chai, and hot chocolate, which are to be expected. When I was in Spella, I saw a customer order an affogato, which for those of you who don’t know, is a scoop of ice cream with an espresso shot poured over it. It’s one of my favorite desserts and is delicious! They also serve gelato (hazelnut and straciatella, I believe) and pastries from a local bakery.
The baristas are very knowledgeable and helpful at Spella as well. When I didn’t see my favorite drink, a café au lait (it’s just half house coffee, half steamed milk), on the menu, the barista happily accommodated my order. She only charged me $1.75 too, so it was a great deal! The customer after me seemed to have a similar positive experience when she didn’t see a flat white on the menu, but once again, the awesome baristas at Spella were happy to make what she wanted.
If you’re looking for a cute little café to stop at while you’re shopping/working/walking downtown, check out Spella, which is just a few blocks past Pioneer Courthouse Square. It’s probably not the best place to meet with a friend, due to the lack of seating, but it’s great quality coffee and perfect when you’re on the go.