Poll

What do you use for brewing? Also please add if you treat w/ salts.

R/O, "Drinking" bottled water
16 (36.4%)
Spring Water
0 (0%)
Filtered Tap
11 (25%)
Distilled
4 (9.1%)
Other, please explain
13 (29.5%)

Total Members Voted: 43

Author Topic: Brewing Water  (Read 2633 times)

Offline flbrewer

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Brewing Water
« on: March 09, 2016, 02:31:24 PM »
I have previously just used R/O and thrown in some CaCl. The more recipes I read (especially some pale ale styles) people are really jacking up the CA, CL, and Sulfate...either through salts or perhaps their existing water profile.

I also have been told that water is what brings a recipe from good to great, but I am beginning to think it has more to do than that.

Offline blatz

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2016, 02:34:04 PM »
i use RO and adjust (mostly with gypsum, CaCl, epsom, pickling lime or lactic) according to Bru'n Water to the profile and pH I want to reach
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2016, 02:36:25 PM »
RO with Brunwater. I use lactic to drop, baking soda to raise, and gypsum, CaCl2, and sometimes epsom to hit the right flavor profile for a beer.
Jon H.

Offline neddles

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2016, 03:10:19 PM »
RO with Brunwater. I use lactic to drop, baking soda to raise, and gypsum, CaCl2, and sometimes epsom to hit the right flavor profile for a beer.
Exactly this, sans epsom.

Where and why are you guys using epsom (Mg)? Styles, flavors you are after?

Offline Stevie

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2016, 03:17:47 PM »

RO with Brunwater. I use lactic to drop, baking soda to raise, and gypsum, CaCl2, and sometimes epsom to hit the right flavor profile for a beer.
Exactly this, sans epsom.

Where and why are you guys using epsom (Mg)? Styles, flavors you are after?
Lots of sulfate with no calcium. The amount of magnesium added is fairly small. Martin's Pale Ale profile wouldn't be possible without it.

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2016, 03:26:42 PM »
Also in lagers, where it's sometimes beneficial to keep Ca content fairly low (sub 50ppm), it's a way of getting sulfate content without excess Ca. I never exceed the Brunwater recommendation of Mg.
Jon H.

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2016, 03:30:52 PM »
All of the above but specifically I use distilled, gypsum, CaCl, Epsom, table salt, Baking Soda and Acid Malt to hit my numbers.


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Offline gman23

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2016, 03:37:00 PM »
Tap water adjusted with Bru'n water. Normally just need some gypsum, CaCl, and lactic acid to get me where I need to be. I use baking soda in dark beers to raise the pH near 5.6.
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Offline denny

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2016, 03:42:20 PM »
For 90% of the beers I make, I use my unfiltered well water.  For the other 10%, I either use distilled or cut my well water with distilled.  All depends on the beer color and style.
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Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2016, 04:26:37 PM »
RO with salts adjusted with Bru'n Water. My local water is surface water that tastes terrible and often has high levels of calcium and organic matter. Even clearing out the chloromine still leaves an unpleasant water.
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Offline 69franx

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #10 on: March 09, 2016, 04:41:18 PM »
RO plus Bru'NWater, I have gypsum, CaCl, table salt, epsom, baking soda, pickling lime and acid as necessary to hit my profiles. Usually not more than 4 of the above in any recipe : the simpler the better
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Offline neddles

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #11 on: March 09, 2016, 04:53:35 PM »
Also in lagers, where it's sometimes beneficial to keep Ca content fairly low (sub 50ppm), it's a way of getting sulfate content without excess Ca. I never exceed the Brunwater recommendation of Mg.
I didn't know keeping the Ca low in a lager was a good thing. The Helles I have chilling right now has only 42ppm. What is the reasoning behind the low Ca being desirable?

Offline denny

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2016, 04:56:13 PM »
Also in lagers, where it's sometimes beneficial to keep Ca content fairly low (sub 50ppm), it's a way of getting sulfate content without excess Ca. I never exceed the Brunwater recommendation of Mg.
I didn't know keeping the Ca low in a lager was a good thing. The Helles I have chilling right now has only 42ppm. What is the reasoning behind the low Ca being desirable?

I don't know if it's desirable as much as unnecessary.  According to Martin. Ca is mainly useful for yeast flocculation.  Since you will be cold conditioning a lager, you'll be dropping the yeast by temp, making Ca much less necessary.
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Offline neddles

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #13 on: March 09, 2016, 05:15:21 PM »
Also in lagers, where it's sometimes beneficial to keep Ca content fairly low (sub 50ppm), it's a way of getting sulfate content without excess Ca. I never exceed the Brunwater recommendation of Mg.
I didn't know keeping the Ca low in a lager was a good thing. The Helles I have chilling right now has only 42ppm. What is the reasoning behind the low Ca being desirable?

I don't know if it's desirable as much as unnecessary.  According to Martin. Ca is mainly useful for yeast flocculation.  Since you will be cold conditioning a lager, you'll be dropping the yeast by temp, making Ca much less necessary.
Thanks. That has been my thought process. I got the impression from other comments that there was something to gain by reducing the Ca.

What do we gain by using some Mg (a la Martin's Pale Ale profile)?

Offline denny

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Re: Brewing Water
« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2016, 05:18:54 PM »
Also in lagers, where it's sometimes beneficial to keep Ca content fairly low (sub 50ppm), it's a way of getting sulfate content without excess Ca. I never exceed the Brunwater recommendation of Mg.
I didn't know keeping the Ca low in a lager was a good thing. The Helles I have chilling right now has only 42ppm. What is the reasoning behind the low Ca being desirable?

I don't know if it's desirable as much as unnecessary.  According to Martin. Ca is mainly useful for yeast flocculation.  Since you will be cold conditioning a lager, you'll be dropping the yeast by temp, making Ca much less necessary.
Thanks. That has been my thought process. I got the impression from other comments that there was something to gain by reducing the Ca.

What do we gain by using some Mg (a la Martin's Pale Ale profile)?

AFAIK, Mg promotes yeast health, especially if you intend to repitch.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell