Tableside with Chuck Pfahler, La Terza Founder


Illustration by Chris Danger

La Terza Coffee’s founder brings Italian espresso culture to the suburbs with his new shop, Adesso.

What got you interested in specialty coffee? I’ve been working in coffee for—gosh, it’s been maybe 17 years now. I started as a home coffee roaster using a hot-air popcorn machine. I had a friend who was doing that, and I thought, Man, that’s really cool. I began to actively engage in the roasting process…I fell in love with it.

How is Adesso different than La Terza? I started Adesso Coffee to be a front-facing retail presence. Adesso means “now” in Italian. I want this shop to be a place where people unplug, unwind, and connect in the present moment and enjoy the beauty before [them].

Why espresso? [There’s a] tradition in Italy where you’ve got people who come up to the espresso bar, they talk about their coffee, they move on, and they repeat this throughout their day. It’s just a part of their lifestyle, and I want to promote this sort of culture to get people really passionate about espresso.

What makes you most excited about Adesso? Taking something very familiar but sharing it in a way that people haven’t experienced before…. For many people, coffee is just a form of caffeine injection. I really want to shift that for people to understand that coffee is a culinary expression.

Adesso, 125 E. Main St., Mason, (513) 441-3817,

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