Ultralife thrives at second location – Newport News Times

Ultralife Cafe, a local drive-through coffee stand, has expanded to a secondary location in Nye Beach, at 715 NW Beach Drive. After settling in for a few months, the busy shop is expanding its menu.

After the new year, Ultralife obtained a liquor license. Now, in addition to classic cafe drinks — such as lattes, mochas, cold brew, matcha and chai — they are offering draft beer, house wine and craft cocktails.

“Expanding into the other drinks gives us that opportunity to be open later,” said co-owner and co-founder of Ultralife Matthew Harner, “and we’re going to be doing tons and tons more of coffee-based cocktails and champagne-based cocktails.”

The new location also offers later hours and space rentals to groups under 40 people.

“When we started this whole thing,” Harner said, “we wanted a coffee house or a cafe that was more European in nature than mom-and-pop hours … There’s so many great ones (mom-and-pop shops) already, we just felt like we wanted to bring something where the locals felt like they were somewhere bigger than Newport.”

But while they’re not a mom-and-pop shop, Harner said they do try to have “something for mom and something for dad.” In other words, if one customer wants something plain and simple, and another wants something specific for their diet, both can walk away happy. The pastry case has vegan doughnuts and old fashioned pastries with eggs and butter, the coffee can be made with oat milk or cream.

“We can customize anything we have, whether it’s food or it’s drinks,” Harner said.

Dairy-free, gluten-free, sugar-free, vegan, keto, paleo — Harner said they try to keep at least one item in those categories on every section of their menu, and the staff will be happy to alter other items to fit the needs of the customer.

But the unifying factor in all of the food and drinks at the cafe is their quality and local sourcing.

“As much as we can get, as close to home as we can get is how we do it,” Harner said.

The Ultralife coffee is roasted in Lincoln City, the tempeh is made in Eugene and, of course, the shrimp and oysters are from Newport.

“We just really want to enjoy that gift of the ocean,” Harner said, “and being able to see the ocean from basically every spot that you sit at. So even if you’re sitting facing opposite, you can look in the mirrors and see the ocean. It’s designed that way.”

The new location also offers outdoor seating, so that customers can enjoy their beverage of choice in the open air and bring their dog along.

To keep up with new announcements from the Ultralife staff, follow @ultralifecafe on instagram. To view the menu and check hours, visit ultralifecafe.com.