Hello kids and welcome to another installment of WHAT THE #%@! IS KEN TALKING ABOUT.
The topic is bicarbonate. I know that I can "neutralize" it with lactic acid so I can reach a proper pH but adding lactic acid does not REMOVE bicarbonate, right? If the answer is no and the level of bicarb is still as it was when the water was filtered from the source (140ppm for me) then the next question is: Does bicarbonate contribute negatively to overall beer flavor? Does bicarbonate contribute negatively to any other aspects of beer (mouthfeel, head formation and stability, clarity, etc)? I made a helles a few weeks ago and used 25% distilled water which I had done a few times in the past with [what I concluded was] minimal effect. That beer is now cold, carbed and kegged but I have not tried it. I'm just curious about whether people with high levels of bicarb always dilute with distilled/RO, etc. Thanks and Cheers Beerheads.