Portland >Costello Travel Caffe
Under new management now. The food is better and so is the service, which used to be deplorable. The interior is a lot of fun and remains unchanged-you feel like you're traveling if you spend more than a few minutes there. It's easy to chat there and the tables are all different. I like it now.
SKIP THIS PLACE - MEDIOCRE FOOD AND BAD SERVICE. This was my first visit to Costello's and it will also be my last. Instead of a nice relaxing lunch I got poor service, a belligerent attitude from one of the owners when I commented on the poor service, and very disappointing and mediocre food. They also try to push you out the door very quickly. There are many wonderful restaurants in Portland -- this is not one of them. I'm astonished this place manages to stay in business at all!
Marginal breakfast. This was my second visit to Costello's, both on a Saturday morning. The coffee was great but the Farmer's Burrito stuffed with egg and potato was less than stellar. Arguably the prices are cheap but I will opt for another meeting place next time.
Plenty of better places to choose from. Read the other reviews of this place and you'll see the story. I've come here a few times and every one led to regret. I keep giving it a chance because it looks cool and it's close, but ultimately the staff are there to make money. The food isn't cheap, isn't special, and the environment isn't THAT great. After you buy, you'll be treated to poor service and what you do receive will get you pushed out the door ASAP. If you come there with the intent to have a leisurely cup of coffee and check your e-mail you will be rushed off, if they even have the internet on at all. If you go there for food with some friends, don't linger and talk for a while, because you'll get the opportunity to meet the manager and she has all the tender pleasantness of a cup of vinegar. Bottom line, go to Peet's, Caffe D'arte, Starbucks (yes, I said it), or Tiny's. They're all close and wonderful, with better coffee, people, and food.
NOT friendly if you plan to work as you eat and drink ....
I can't believe I am leaving a negative review for Costello's, but I am. I was kicked out of this cafe today for working there too long. I am a professor at a university here in the city and I find myself working at all kinds of cafes and coffee shops downtown and on the east side. Costello's is normally a good place for me -- good food, good coffee, friendly staff, a cool atmosphere and free wi-fi (which I rarely use -- I usually just read or grade papers there).
I have been coming in regularly for quite awhile and I have never had any problems. That changed today. After two espresso drinks and about two hours of editing a manuscript the owner asked me to leave and "work at home. We're a cafe and you working here is setting a bad example. People are going to point to you and say, 'Well, he is working here. Why can't I?' and then they are going to keep working here too and I don't want that." I was shocked and embarrassed. I pointed out to him that there were open tables and that my wife and I come in there all the time -- sometimes to eat ... sometimes for coffee ... sometimes with friends -- but he didn't seem to care. He stood over me as I gathered my things, tucked my tail under, and walked out the door. The people who were there at other tables watched me leave, but I was too embarrassed to look at any of them.
So, don't go to Costello's if you plan to work there at all. They want to be a "cafe only" and they only want you to sit if you plan to eat and then leave.
Well, if I plan to eat in the future, I will be going to the Cadillac Cafe a couple blocks down Broadway. The Cadillac has great prices ... better food ... and no embarrassing confrontations. I also recommend Opposable Thumb Gallery & Cafe on 33rd and Belmont and FreshPot on Mississippi Ave. Both are great for working, coffee, and atmosphere.
Great coffee - incredible scones. These scones are not the hard, tasteless ones that you get at Starbucks! Light, flavorful and home made, their scones are worth the trip. My favorite are any of the berry varieties. And if I have time for a real breakfast, the Quiches are highly recommended.
Cool little Cafe!.
What a neat little cafe! I stumbled upon Costello?s and I really liked the whole ambience and feel that they have going. For one, they definitely are a neighborhood place and I felt very comfortable and relaxed. I didn?t try their coffee but based on looking around at how they present their cafe to the public, I?m sure it?s top notch.
While there isn?t a hostel close by, I was told the name of this place was because the owners have traveled, it looks like a lot to Europe, and they wanted to show to others where they?ve been. I saw art, flags, and pictures from Portugal, The Netherlands, and France.
They offer free Wi-Fi, they serve beer and wine, and they even have events here, such as showing soccer matches and foreign films, as well as live music. Cool place!
Always a pleasant experience. All of the food I've had here (in maybe three or so visits) has been great. Most recently, we had a caprese and the hummus appetizer with a bottle of wine - good call. The service is always friendly, but not intrusive, and the atmosphere is comfortable and welcoming. I LOVE the plasma screens showing (live?) scenes from European destinations - awesome people watching! My only gripe? I swear that they used to have a couple of couches and 'comfy chairs' in there and now they don't. Still, a great spot to dine with friends or hang out alone.
Safe Haven on Broadway. I have lived in this neighborhood (Irvington) for about eight years now. One of the best things, in my opinion, that has happened to the street of NE Broadway in recent years is Costello's Travel Cafe. It is a very versatile cafe. Not only can you meet up with friends and family for breakfast, coffee or tea . . . but you can also relax in the afternoon to a book or work on the old laptop and surf the internet . . . not to mention drinking wine or beer in the evenings listening to live music. Costello's is a pretty mellow place . . . perhaps some of the negative reviewers just couldn't get into the European vibe . . . and strangely enough, Costello's does remind me of a Cafe from Amsterdam. Although I'm not too much into soccer, nor can I speak any foreign languages to participate in any of the language nights . . . and I do miss film nights . . . Costello's is one of favorite places to kick back in all of Portland.
You want excellent coffee, food, service... First, imagine yourself far, far away..
There are few places I regularly patronize, but Costello's makes the cut easily. By far, it has become my favorite neighborhood hangout. My worst experience would, on a scale of 1-10, come in at a 6 or 7 (that being slow or average service). Yet, in my experience those occurrences have been rare.
My recent visits have been nothing short of pleasant. Quick and friendly service, good food and pastries (everything tastes fresh and warm, just-out-of-the-oven muffins are wonderful!), excellent coffee (I must confess that I usually only have a mocha, but they do one of the best I've tried). I recommend this little cafe to everyone I meet and often take out of town guests there for a meal or a drink. Their impressions are always positive. The atmosphere feels neighborhood-y, and the travel theme reminds me of old adventures. They do a lot of things right.
My one complaint: I miss the couch and the living room vibe it provided. However, the decision was most likely prompted by increased customer volume. I am glad they are increasingly busy, except for when I can't get a table.
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