Author Topic: Water options for extract  (Read 701 times)

Online FLbrewer

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Water options for extract
« on: January 10, 2014, 05:13:40 PM »
I'm brewing my third 5-gallon batch tomorrow and am wondering if I should buy distilled water, "drinking" or "purified"? Of course I could use tap water, but I would prefer not to. Thanks gents.

Offline yso191

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2014, 06:11:55 PM »
Distilled or Reverse Osmosis water are your best bets.  This is because your extract will have all the water salts in them already so you don't need to add any, and it has all the bad stuff removed (read chlorine, etc.).
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Offline euge

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2014, 06:14:55 PM »
Any of those are fine but if you can, go for RO without the minerals added back in. But, I've also found "spring" drinking water works well. Something like Ozarka. Whatever brand is in your neck of the woods...

My rule of thumb is if you like drinking the water you'll love it in your beer- even in an extract batch.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Online FLbrewer

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2014, 07:07:07 PM »
Thank you! No luck on RO, found some distilled.

Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2014, 05:51:28 AM »
That got me thinking....a sometimes dangerous thing, I know.  I wonder if the manufacturers of malt extracts would have the water analysis for their extracts available to extract users.  Briess gives a great deal of information about all of the malt used and technical specs on those issues on its website, but nobody mentions the water analysis....or at least I didn't see anything mentioned.  Given the great strides made in improving malt extracts, it would seem to be a logical extension of information to provide.
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Online Jeff M

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2014, 05:58:20 AM »
That got me thinking....a sometimes dangerous thing, I know.  I wonder if the manufacturers of malt extracts would have the water analysis for their extracts available to extract users.  Briess gives a great deal of information about all of the malt used and technical specs on those issues on its website, but nobody mentions the water analysis....or at least I didn't see anything mentioned.  Given the great strides made in improving malt extracts, it would seem to be a logical extension of information to provide.

Id be willing to bet they use distilled water considering the water extraction process from the wort.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2014, 06:01:08 AM »
I would definitely use RO or distilled for extract beers.  As said, the extract manufacturer has already used minerals in their process, so it's best to use water free (or mostly free) of excess minerals. Distilled is fairly expensive, so that's why RO is the best bet. You've probably seen it and not realized it. A lot of grocery stores have a water fill machine where you fill your own in gallon jugs - those are nearly all RO machines. And it's a fraction of the price of distilled. I get my RO for ~ 39 cents/gallon.
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Offline mabrungard

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2014, 06:02:32 AM »
I have obtained water profiles from a number of extract producers. Most are fairly innocuous. However, Breiss is burdened by their water supply from Chilton, WI. It is FULL of sodium due to the city's use of ion-exchange softening for their water supply.  Extract brewers would be wise to steer to producers like Muntons, Coopers, and Alexanders. I have confirmed that none of those producers have excessive ionic content.
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Online dkfick

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2014, 10:29:13 AM »
I have obtained water profiles from a number of extract producers. Most are fairly innocuous. However, Breiss is burdened by their water supply from Chilton, WI. It is FULL of sodium due to the city's use of ion-exchange softening for their water supply.  Extract brewers would be wise to steer to producers like Muntons, Coopers, and Alexanders. I have confirmed that none of those producers have excessive ionic content.
Thanks for the info Martin.  I do the occasional 'quick brew' using extract.  Good to know.
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Offline bluesman

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2014, 10:40:49 AM »
I have obtained water profiles from a number of extract producers. Most are fairly innocuous. However, Breiss is burdened by their water supply from Chilton, WI. It is FULL of sodium due to the city's use of ion-exchange softening for their water supply.  Extract brewers would be wise to steer to producers like Muntons, Coopers, and Alexanders. I have confirmed that none of those producers have excessive ionic content.

I assume Breiss is aware of this fact, and one would think Breiss would attemp to mitigate the situation in hopes of avoiding the potential for a negative perception. This can't be good for Breiss extract sales?
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2014, 11:03:30 AM »
Thanks Martin.  I never knew that about Briess. I remember using a lot of Alexander's and some Briess back in the day.
Jon H.

Offline euge

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2014, 11:10:17 AM »
Martin can you give us a ppm nacl per lb of extract of the breiss?
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Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #12 on: January 15, 2014, 11:27:23 AM »
As luck would have it, I did 2 extract batches (the first in a long while for me) and I used Breiss LME in both!  One is a Saison and the other a dark lager.  I hope they turn out okay!  I used bottled water in both, so I wasn't adding much minerals to either batch.  You would think that Breiss would mitigate that in their malt extract products by diluting with RO or otherwise treating the water...
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Offline euge

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #13 on: January 15, 2014, 11:30:44 AM »
As luck would have it, I did 2 extract batches (the first in a long while for me) and I used Breiss LME in both!  One is a Saison and the other a dark lager.  I hope they turn out okay!  I used bottled water in both, so I wasn't adding much minerals to either batch.  You would think that Breiss would mitigate that in their malt extract products by diluting with RO or otherwise treating the water...

I use breiss LME and 100% RO all the time. The beer will not be salty.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Water options for extract
« Reply #14 on: January 15, 2014, 11:36:14 AM »
Actually I've used their DME on high gravity beers on occasion to raise OG a few points if my preboil was lower than I wanted, come to think of it.
Jon H.