Visit our partners Travel Portland to learn more about visiting our beautiful city.
Move Over Seattle
Portland is the Coffee Capitol of the U.S.
The Coffee Capitol
Portland is home to over 40 micro-roasters and hundreds of independent retail coffee businesses and has established itself as the pioneer in quality coffee. Portlanders have coffee running through their veins. When in town, you will be able to visit some of the most renowned coffee bars in the world for inspiration, and mingle with coffee entrepreneurs and career baristas.
Portland is a city located in the Pacific Northwest, near the confluence of the Willamette and Columbia rivers in the U.S. state of Oregon. Portland is the third most populous city in the Pacific Northwest after Seattle, Washington and Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Approximately 2,260,000 people live in the Portland metropolitan area.
Culinary & Craft Beverages
In Portland, a passion for seasonal ingredients — from salmon to Dungeness crab, pears to Marionberries, hazelnuts to chanterelle mushrooms — pervades kitchens throughout the city. Fine-dining restaurants and down-home food carts alike celebrate the region’s bounty with fresh, innovative creations.
Wherever you dine, you’ll find it’s hard not to eat local here — and harder still to resist.
It’s not just chefs who find inspiration in the Portland region’s bounty. Vintners produce ethereal Pinot noirs from the hillsides of the Willamette Valley, while microbrewers craft award-winning beers with Oregon-grown hops. The city is even home to a growing number of distilleries, which use local grains and fruit to create spirits with a distinctly Oregon flavor.
Travel & Transit
In Portland, you’ll find an award-winning airport, efficient light rail system, pedestrian-friendly city blocks and miles and miles of bike paths — all of which make getting around town a real pleasure.
• Train: There is a Light Rail train (public transit) that will take you from the airport to Downtown for only $2.50. It is called the MAX, and you can plan your trip using trimet.org. There is also a Streetcar system that connects areas of Downtown, the Pearl District and Northwest Portland–you may want to utilize this to see Portland a bit.
• Taxi Cab: Lyft and Uber are both available in Portland. Trips to or from PDX are subject to a $2.00 surcharge. Taxis are also available. One local company is Radio Cab. You can reach them at 503-227-1212. Another local company is Broadway Cab, available at 503-333-3333. As everyone meets each other on Monday, and you learn where everyone is staying, you might be able to share cab rides.
We are accessible via car, uber, lyft, bus, light rail, streetcar, bicycle, or walking. For walking, the building is nestled between the east ends of the Hawthorne and Morrison bridges – either bridge will get you here (from the West bank of the river). Walk on the south side of the Morrison Bridge (this is usually fastest and most direct route from downtown) or you may also walk the north side of the Hawthorne Bridge.
If you will be driving, parking can be found underneath the viaduct 2 blocks south of our building at Main Street (underneath I-5). From Water Ave, turn west on Main Street and go one block to lot entrance (Lot is to the Left). Cost is $6.50/day, and you pre-pay at the payment station and put the receipt in your car window for the day. Parking on the street is only allowed for 2 hours at a time – please keep this in mind. If you park in a 2 hour zone, you will have to leave class and move your car every 2 hours, which is very disruptive to your training process. Parking Tickets are very common in these zones – please be aware and plan accordingly.
If you have any specific questions about getting to your hotel, or from your hotel to our location, please let us know.
American Barista & Coffee Workshops
We are located inside the Water Ave Commerce Center Building
Our building is brick, painted in a greenish-yellow color on the bottom half, burnt orange on top. If you are walking across the Hawthorne Bridge from downtown you will notice it says Water Ave Commerce Center on the visible side of the building. From the bridge you might also notice the “Eastbank” Building, which has a prominent clock near the top of it– this building is right in front of ours.
You may enter the building one of two ways:
The best way to enter the building is through the “Water Ave Coffee” bar on the side of the building (entrance on Taylor Avenue). The cafe employees will be expecting students that day, so just tell them you are there for the workshop. We’ll be keeping an eye out for everyone that morning as well.
There is also an entrance on the Water Avenue side of the building between the entrance to Boke Bowl and the southwest corner. There is usually an a-frame sign for the yoga studio near the door.
Once you are in the building, we are located directly to the right of the stairs as you enter (1st floor).
What They Are Saying
“What really impressed me about the school was the razor sharp focus on the things you need to know to start and run a successful coffee business. This focus came from seasoned professionals who had tried everything and learned through trial and error what works. You have their undivided attention for a full week. On the practical side you learn that there is only one way to prepare a specialty coffee drink - it has to be perfect or you don't serve it to the customer. They show you how and you practice until you get it right. In short, the course is invaluable.”Clifford W.Atlantic, New York
“Attending ABCS is really a great way to learn about coffee using all of your senses. The class taught me how much more I could expect from a coffee beverage and to not settle for “just coffee.” ABC’s shares with its students a world of knowledge and the experience is priceless. The hands-on training is fantastic. I had an amazing time and really learned so much. I couldn't believe how much I didn't know. I think the class is just superb and I have been recommending it to a lot of people, telling them it is crucial they attend. Thank you for enlightening me and enhancing my love of coffee.”Heather H.VP International Sales, Cappuccine
“The Ghirardelli Chocolate Company had a very positive experience with the America Barista and Coffee School (ABCS). We invited two of their instructors to attend a national sales meeting to train our foodservice sales force. They were very well prepared and brought invaluable expertise to the team. We now feel that we are better equipped to work within the field of specialty coffee to meet the needs of our customers. I would definitely recommend ABCS to any individual or group hoping to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the specialty coffee industry.”Chris E.Director of Sales and Marketing, Ghirardelli Chocolate Company
“Absolutely a great experience. I didn't really know what to expect from the class, I was nervous in the beginning because I thought it would be too intensive for me. I didn't know much about coffee, except that I love to visit coffee shops and would someday open one of my own in the future. I met amazing people and the instructors were great! They were very supportive and friendly and in each class I felt productive. By the end of the class I had so many ideas. I'd built my confidence in great coffee-making and have new appreciation for the values its based upon.”Maria E.Okinawa, Japan