Melbourne mourns coffee icon Sisto Malaspina

Sisto Malaspina

Melbourne’s coffee community is mourning the loss of Pellegrini’s Bar Co-owner Sisto Malaspina who was the victim of Bourke Street’s terror attack on 9 November. 

The popular Melbourne restaurateur was tragically killed just a few hundred metres from his business, which he had run for more than 40 years with business partner Nino Pangrazio, when he was caught up in the horrific attack.

The Italian immigrants took ownership of the Melbourne institution in 1974. 

Pellegrini’s is an iconic part of the city’s Italian coffee heritage and a popular tourist attraction.

Pellegrini’s has been closed for business since 10 November where tributes and flowers lay outside the shop, including a handwritten sign from Pellegrini staff with the words “best boss”.  

“Thank you for making us, your staff members, as part of your life. You always looked after us like family. You always said to have fun at work because we all worked so hard,” the note said.

“Pellegrini’s was your life. We will never forget all that you have done and given us all. We will love you forever and ever in our hearts.”

BeanScene offers its condolences to the Malaspina family. 

“This tragic event has shaken the city and the close-knit coffee community of which Sisto was largely a part of,” BeanScene Editor Sarah Baker says. 

“We thank Sisto for serving coffee to the people of Melbourne for the past 44 years with a smile that will forever be etched in the hearts and memories of those who knew him. We have lost a true gentlemen and an important part of Melbourne’s historic coffee fabric.”

The family of Sisto has been offered a state funeral.

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