The Original Coffee Educators

For over 30 years, we at Bellissimo have made it our mission to help people live out their dreams of opening a coffee business. Through our consulting and workshops, previously the American Barista & Coffee School, we have helped hundreds of aspiring coffee shop owners learn the skills they need to survive and thrive in the coffee industry.

Attendees range from representatives of large established corporations, to entrepreneurs seeking insight to open their first coffeehouse. We draw in existing retailers looking to boost profits as well as baristas looking to fine-tune their skills to prepare for barista competitions. We have hosted students from over 60 different countries and all 50 States. Led by nationally-recognized coffee experts, providing students with the fundamentals of opening a successful specialty coffee business both from the business and technical coffee perspective. Bellissimo exposes its students to a broad range of coffee-related equipment, products, and educational materials.

Our program was created to help industry professionals by giving them actionable information and the confidence to go into business for themselves. Since their inception, our workshops have grown and now include topics on everything a coffee business owner needs to know. The topics we cover are all taught by experts in their field.

For some, our workshops and digital resources are just the start of their work with us. We offer continued consultation and services long beyond our workshops. These services are one-on-one personalized advice on anything your business needs directly from our experts.

Many of our graduates have gone on to open their own businesses. Our testimonials come from real business owners who have used our workshops to get a head start on their dreams.

Our Team


Matt Milletto


Matt has worked in specialty coffee steadily for over twenty five years, in management, consulting and ownership of retail and roasting operations. He has helped hundreds of small and large coffee businesses open up and succeed around the world. Working with Bellissimo Coffee Advisors/Coffee Business, Matt transformed a legacy training and consulting business into the digital era, developing the industry’s first Digital Coffee Resource and Online Barista Training platform. Matt is Co-Founder also of Water Avenue Coffee, a roastery and retail operations in Portland, OR and helped grow the company to over $3M in annual revenue. He founded Barista Exchange in 2006, the industry’s first online focused community and social network, with over 18k members.

Matt is a past President of the Oregon Coffee Board, a board member of Dollar For and is on the Headwaters Council of the Freshwater Trust.


Natalie Nicholl


Natalie has worked in the specialty coffee industry for 10 years as a barista, cafe manager, and trainer. As a Portland local, Natalie has witnessed the growth of the Portland coffee scene from its DIY roots to the expansive and vibrant community that exists today. She is deeply invested in creating more accessibility and educational opportunities in the specialty industry, and most enjoys working with new baristas. She has been a part of the Coffee Business education team since 2018, and has created training curriculums, educational materials, and conducted comprehensive in-person barista workshops.

Natalie spends her days off record shopping, visiting neighborhood bakeries, and drinking coffee, of course! Her regular coffee order is a cappuccino with whole milk.


Austin Burt

Director of Roasting & Production Operations

Austin Burt, Director of Roasting and Production Operations, leads the Green Buying, Roasting and Production teams at Coffee Business. He brings over a decade of experience in coffee operations, specializing in scale, system processes and multi-channel growth. His attention to quality and passion for process supports end to end solutions while driving sustainable growth throughout.


Bruce Milletto


Bruce is recognized by the press and the coffee industry internationally as the voice of the specialty coffee industry. He has been interviewed by, or quoted in: the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Time Magazine, Newsweek, 60 Minutes, Kiplinger’s, Starbucks Annual Report, Forbes, the Economist, Harvard Management Update, Crain’s Business Review, the Seattle Times, the Washington Post, Business Week and Entrepreneur.

The Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) named Bruce Milletto one of its 20 “Coffee Luminaries,” and he appeared in Gourmet Retailer’s 25th anniversary issue on the list of the 25 individuals who helped shape the specialty coffee industry.

Bruce wrote a column for many years for Fresh Cup magazine, the specialty coffee industry’s leading publication. He continues to frequently author articles for the magazine as well as provide articles and interviews for such trade publications as Fancy Food, Gourmet Retailer, Coffee and Beverage Euro Coffee and Coffeenet.

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