I confess, the first thing that came to mind when seeing a press release about Purity Coffee, was purity culture. (Thanks a lot, Colorado Springs.)  

Turns out, that's not the case. So, I'll tell you what the company's actually about, since it's not religion: health

The company's claim to fame: "We are the only organic coffee company in the world that is entirely focused on maximizing health benefits throughout every step of the production process... our organic coffee is defect-free specialty-grade, which is a standard of bean used in only 1% of the coffee produced worldwide. We also rigorously test our coffee for mold and mycotoxins, roast to minimize unhealthy byproducts like acrylamide and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and nitrogen-flush our packaging to maximize antioxidants."

Yep, that was a mouthful of big words. We'll have to take them at their word (though they claim 20,000-plus positive customer reviews since their 2016 launch.) 

Anyway, I said yes to some samples of their recently rebranded products, specifically four different coffee roasts with different health claims, named: Calm, Flow, Protect and Ease. 

From their wording: Medium roasted "Flow promises a clean, sustained energy lift for improved physical and mental performance." Dark-roasted Ease has "reduced chlorogenic acids and an increased pH, making it gentler on the stomach... perfectly balanced to support gut health with prebiotics and low acid to ease digestion." 

While Calm is "naturally Decaffeinated Coffee, which delivers a similar flavor and bounty of antioxidants found in our FLOW coffee." And Protect is a light-to-medium roast "so-named after its liver health benefits. Protect also has the highest antioxidant levels among the four."

I'll say now there's a lot of marketing underway here, as many craft-level coffees out there could make many of these same claims (outside of the lab testing) — light roasts will have more antioxidants (because they haven't been charred out), the liver can benefit from any clean-sourced coffee, etc. 

What's missing from Purity's detailing is actually countries of origin for their beans and blends. The bags just say "arabica coffee." (The species.) There's no description of how the beans were processed (washed, natural, honey, etc.) or what types of aromas and tasting notes to expect. Note that the descriptions above are about supposed health impacts, not the flavor experience of drinking the coffee. Which is what craft-coffee-obsessed people are all about. 

Methinks this might be limiting for the company as they expand, missing that niche demographic but perhaps capitalizing well off the fitness and health-and-wellness crazed crowd. 

But to my tastings, tried throughout an experimental week at home making coffees via French press, pourover and Aeropres: All kinda remind me of hotel coffee, which is exactly the first thing my girlfriend said, too, unprompted. (The option for sachets instead of whole beans would be ideal to set in a hotel room, or short term rental for that matter, or they'd be easy to take camping.) 

Overall, the coffees feel safe and mild and everyperson-pleasing without being very bright or pronounced in any big way. No grievance on the noticeable smoothness throughout each label, though. And there's no off, over-roasted flavors or any off-putting burnt element too common among dark roasts. 

I found the Calm thin-textured, with a slight nuttiness; it's pleasantly agreeable. The Ease has a little more body, retaining the smoothness, dropping the nutty element, and it doesn't hold much aroma; it's fine, not remarkable. The Protect keeps the thin mouthfeel going but has a more robust flavor; it's richer and a quite decent medium-roast coffee even if it's lacking something to describe, like fruit essences or the all-coveted chocolate vibe. Lastly: Flow tasted a little more strong, roastier and pleasantly bitter to me, perhaps the smoothest of the batch, yet still so middle-hitting I reached for any good aroma descriptors. 

As for how I felt after drinking each one... well, I tried not to overthink it and went about my day as normal. Nothing tweaked me out (with too much caffeine) and I can't say the Calm blissed me out like CBD or anything. I wouldn't know if my liver was getting a good scrubbin' by any body perception I've felt. Flow probably would be my choice for an active work day, though. 

Anyway, if it's not obvious, these are all available for purchase online. I would be remiss not to say that I recommend supporting our high-quality local coffee roasters around town, first, but if it's health you're after, and you like what you've heard above, then perhaps Purity culture (the coffee kind) is what's best for you after all.  

 

Food & Drink Editor

Matthew Schniper is the Food and Drink Editor at the Colorado Springs Indy. He began freelancing with the Indy in mid-2004 and joined full-time in early 2006, contributing arts, food, environmental and feature writing.