Honest Cooking’s coffee house tester Bill Walsh finds a haven of coffee purity in Pure Fare.
By Bill Walsh
Coffee has always seemed to have a love/hate relationships amongst nutritionists. Over the years, I’ve heard from the mouths of experts that coffee will eventually kill me and then out of other seasoned oral cavities of others, I hear that coffee is one of the best foods I could ingest. Since studies never seem to agree, I have taken the time-tested stance of keeping my intake moderate and my outlook positive.
But it certainly helps the positive image of coffee when venues that emphasize healthy and sustainable habits also encourage regular consumption of quality coffee. One such outfit in the fair city of Philadelphia is Pure Fare, a cafe and market where folks can grab a fit lunch and cup of Blue Bottle coffee amidst their busy schedule.
I made my way over to Pure Fare one day when I was in the neighborhood for an errand. I headed to their 21st St location which has a minimal sign and store presence, with nice open windows leading your gaze into the long cafe. Within, the venue has a large communal table in the middle, a cozy atmosphere that felt like a cross between Reading Terminal Market and a small cafe, complete with two counters on each end: one for coffee and the other for food.
Not in the mood for food, I silently approached the coffee counter and ordered an espresso of Blue Bottle’s Hayes Valley Espresso blend and a pourover of their Bella Donovan. The espresso held notes of cocoa, ginger, lemon zest, deep prune, a touch of vanilla and sage, all in a heavy body. Overall, I was pleased with the shots, having a sweet and voluptuous manner about it. The pourover sang of juniper berries, grapefruit, wheat, cornflakes, lettuce and subtle blueberry within a medium body. Also a delicious infusion well worth the wait for the careful pour.
While their food also looked visually scrumptious, I can heartily vouch for a good showing of their coffee. If you happen to be in Philly and in need of a meal and some great coffee, make your way to one of Pure Fare’s locations.