How did you come up with the name of your company?
Stephanie: Updike’s Newtowne was actually the original name of Wickford Village. Mark and his family have lived in the area for a long time and he wanted to pay homage to his ties here.
What do you think separates your business from the other cafes and coffee shops in the area?
S: Mark roasts all our coffee in the shop. Everything you drink or take home has been roasted in small batches with the best coffee beans we can source from around the world.
Who makes the coffee at home?
S: Mark makes the coffee and brings me a cup in bed every morning. He’s done this since we met and even though it is our business now, he still does.
Mark, you used to be a Master Automotive Technician. Why did you change careers?
Mark: Roasting coffee has always been a dream of mine. When the opportunity was presented to me I couldn’t resist.
What is your favorite brew?
M: Devil’s Foot Espresso.
S: El Salvador Peaberry.
Your opinion of dark roast in one word... go!
You have some pretty wild blends. Do you travel a lot to find inspiration?
S: Before we owned the shop we used to travel a lot. We went to Venezuela and that trip was epic for us. With the incredible people, beautiful country and amazing locally roasted coffee — we were hooked.
Tell us more about Java Worx.
M: Java Worx is a business that Stephanie launched in December 2011. We use our coffee to inspire local artisans to create products that we can showcase in our shop. One of the products is JAVA Jewels — beautiful earrings designed by local artist Jeff Johnson.
Your private label gifts allow customers to create their own label and photos to put on the packaging of your fresh roasted coffee. What was your most memorable customer order?
M: This year we did a private label for the Quonset Airport. We called it PLANE COFFEE with their logo. They have told us they have received great feedback. It is really fun to partner with businesses, learn who they are and create a product with them.