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So that suggestions on blends of readily available bottled water are more easily searchable, here's a new thread split away from the general/making water for brewed thread, as that now seems to be concentrating more on making/enhancing water for coffee.http://coffeeforums.co.uk/showthread.php?21305-Water-for-Coffee

 

For those that just want to pick up one bottle from the supermarket & brew away, then Volvic & Waitrose Essential are pretty good datums (of course, these can be blended with each other too).

 

Currently liking:

 

1 part Strathmore to 2 parts Glaceau to 3 parts Volvic.

 

2 parts Harrogate to 3 parts Glaceau.

 

A/B'd these 2 and really couldn't tell a difference. (Red figs highlighted in yellow are estimated).

 

Water%20HarampGlac%20StrathampGlacampVol_zps2tvnwxju.jpg[/url]

Edited by MWJB

“Coffee evokes the most insane reactions in people”, Rene Redzepi.

 

https://markwjburness.wordpress.com/

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@Step21 wrote:"I'm just beginning to sense the possibilities with Glaceau. At approx 10:1 GH:KH it can markedly reduce the alkalinity of some of the harder waters while slightly reducing the hardness. I think Highland Spring/Glaceau might be good at 50/50? Don't have any Buxton at the moment to try your suggestion."

 

Highland Spring & Glaceau alone tends to look like it gets soft very quickly, but still with quite a high bicarb content, maybe 1 part each would work, but I'd be inclined to add in a 3rd water, one part each with Waitrose Essential? Or even skip the Glaceau with Highland Spring and just use Highland Spring & Waitrose Essential (think you were already on to that one?)

“Coffee evokes the most insane reactions in people”, Rene Redzepi.

 

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Thanks for starting a new thread.

 

I just tried a brew (Brazen) with a 50/50 Highland Spring/Glaceau mix with a bean i've brewed in the same manner on the last couple of days. Tastewise it was good. Not brilliant. No bitterness whatsoever. Sweetness but less so than WE/Volvic mix. Not dry. It's a darker roast (present) so it's a sweet toffee type bean. Higher TDS (+0.2) with a slightly coarser grind than WE/Volvic.

 

My thinking on why it would work goes something like this - please correct me if wrong

 

The aim is for water with approx 2:1 GH:KH ratio with values around 120:60 mg/l and TDS (dry residue) around 120 - 150?

 

Highland Spring by my calcs (from the label - which is representative and the best we've got to go on) has GH of 143mg/l , KH 123mg/l , dry residue 170

Glaceau (from website -no info on bottle) GH of 88mg/l, KH 8.2mg/l TDS 35

 

50/50 would give approx GH of 116, KH 66, TDS 102.5

 

I'm using the fomulae GH = (magnesium * 4.2) + (calcium * 2.5) and KH = bicarb value * 0.82

 

I'll experiment further with HS/Waitrose

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You prefer Strathmore Harrogate and Glaceau to Waitrose Essential then?

I think the value here is in making what you can of the water you've got or can easily obtain. In theory there are endless possibilities for creating blends that may come somewhat close to "ideal". Each will bring slightly different characteristics to a brew. What one is "best" will be personal preference.

 

I tried MWJB's 1:2:3, Strathmore:Glaceau:Volvic earlier and it was delicious.

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Reason I asked was merely due to the fact that I've only just managed to get my hands on 20 litres of Waitrose Essential after often reading that a 50/50 mix of that plus Volvic (my usual bottled water that I've always used) was recommended.

 

Pretty sure the large local Sainsbury's stocks one or more of the other bottled waters mentioned above so shouldn't be a problem picking some up to try.

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Reason I asked was merely due to the fact that I've only just managed to get my hands on 20 litres of Waitrose Essential after often reading that a 50/50 mix of that plus Volvic (my usual bottled water that I've always used) was recommended.

 

Pretty sure the large local Sainsbury's stocks one or more of the other bottled waters mentioned above so shouldn't be a problem picking some up to try.

 

There are a few other waters you can mix with that WE, so it won't go to waste.

 

4 parts WE to 1 part Strathmore?

5 parts WE to 1 part Abbey Well?

WE would seem to mix well with Highland Spring in various ratios from 3-6 parts to one Highland Spring?

...as well as Volvic of course.

Edited by MWJB

“Coffee evokes the most insane reactions in people”, Rene Redzepi.

 

https://markwjburness.wordpress.com/

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Nice idea, the other thread was getting a bit confusing with people coming into it trying to ask what the best bottled solution was, while other people are getting stuck into serious science and making their own.

 

Would it be of any use if I moved across the posts from the other thread that list the content of the bottled waters and consolidated them into one post?

 

Also, when you talk about Glaceau, is that 'Smart Water' as it seems too be sold in the shops round my way?

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I've created a spreadsheet at

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1JGdQvvGyXHmIisp9Ce87cQPA2m01sccsaZOL9V6pfFg/edit?usp=sharing

to calculate the numbers for blends. It's only got 3 bottled waters in at the moment, PM me with an email address (gmail or other) if you'd like access to add more waters (otherwise, please keep all questions on this thread). Wait until it's a bit more populated and then you can make a local copy to play with the blend proportions (2nd row).

 

It calculates KH both from the bicarbonate and from everything else (using the fact that water must be electrically neutral). If the two numbers aren't close (e.g. Strathmore) then something's wrong. Same for TDS.

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Re Volvic, I find it quite unpleasant to drink by the glass - a bit bitter. So what's it doing to my coffee?

 

It's pulling out a decent amount of dissolved solids, without pushing the brewed coffee to chalky, abnormally acidic, or dry. Water that tastes good by itself doesn't necessarily make good coffee, water that doesn't taste great by itself can still make good coffee. Volvic is a good 'datum' water, easily available, reasonable brewing water.

 

The dissolved solids in Volvic are ~130ppm, in a typical brewed/filter coffee the dissolved coffee solids are ~13000ppm, that doesn't mean you can't taste the impact of the water in what it pulls from the coffee during extraction (& other interactions), but it's probably a long shot to compare the taste of the raw water to that of the coffee?

“Coffee evokes the most insane reactions in people”, Rene Redzepi.

 

https://markwjburness.wordpress.com/

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Are there general findings that tell us what particular elements of water produce particular flavours? Presumably it must be possible to create different waters within a limited range of "ideal" that can highlight specific aspects of a coffee over another?

 

e.g. I had a couple of aeropress brews - same coffee, same brewing parameters, different water. Both tasty brews.

 

A - Deeside:Strathmore 3:1 mix - taste - very creamy, big (almost viscous) mouthfeel, sweet with just a little fruit - Estimated GH/KH 87/52

B - Waitrose Ess:Strathmore 4:1 mix - sweeter, much more fruit but markedly less creaminess & mouthfeel - estimated GH/KH 107/54.5

 

Water B being harder (and nearer "ideal") than A with very similar alkalinity. Harder water favouring fruitiness over body?

Very difficult to say which one was "better" or which one i liked most.

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Are there general findings that tell us what particular elements of water produce particular flavours? Presumably it must be possible to create different waters within a limited range of "ideal" that can highlight specific aspects of a coffee over another?

 

From the other thread:

 

the Magnesium brings out the sweetness where calcium brings out the creamyness so in an ideal world an equal mix is desirable.

 

Right I've updated the speadsheet. Worth perhaps editing the first post to explain what's going on in this thread, about the first 4 pages of the other thread should probably be moved across to here as they deal with bottled water, while the other thread is focused now on the xpenno method and use of bottled waters was abandoned as they are too inconsistent (in terms of the water in the bottle not meeting the specification listed on the label)

Edited by risky

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Experimentation with Deeside:Strathmore blend.

 

Initially 3:1 estimate of GH/KH 87/52 Taste decent but lacking fruit

 

Tried a 5:2 blend - estimate of GH/KH 96/56. Tasting much better - more fruit sweetness, body. Really good.

 

I think this can take a little more Strathmore, so plan to try 7:10 and 2:1.

 

I also tried a 5:2 blend of Glaceau:Buxton - estmate GH/KH 125/64. Good taste bringing out all flavour descriptors of the bean. Plan to try again with a little less Buxton.

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If anybody is considering blending with Harrogate, it's worth pointing out that the 500ml, 750ml, and 1.5l bottles all appear to have different mineral compositions (according to the ASDA, Ocado and Morrisons sites). They are:

 

[TABLE=width: 700]

[TR]

[TD]Volume

[/TD]

[TD]Ca2+

[/TD]

[TD]Mg2+

[/TD]

[TD]2CaCO3

[/TD]

[TD]Dry Res.

[/TD]

[TD]GH

[/TD]

[TD]KH

[/TD]

[TD]GH/KH

[/TD]

[TD]Mg/Ca[/TD]

[/TR]

[TR]

[TD]500ml[/TD]

[TD]53[/TD]

[TD]17.5[/TD]

[TD]235[/TD]

[TD]229[/TD]

[TD]206[/TD]

[TD]192.7[/TD]

[TD]1.1[/TD]

[TD]0.33[/TD]

[/TR]

[TR]

[TD]750ml[/TD]

[TD]57[/TD]

[TD]19[/TD]

[TD]215[/TD]

[TD]???[/TD]

[TD]222.3[/TD]

[TD]176.3[/TD]

[TD]1.3[/TD]

[TD]0.33[/TD]

[/TR]

[TR]

[TD]1.5l[/TD]

[TD]46[/TD]

[TD]13[/TD]

[TD]185[/TD]

[TD]224[/TD]

[TD]169.6[/TD]

[TD]151.7[/TD]

[TD]1.1[/TD]

[TD]0.28[/TD]

[/TR]

[/TABLE]

 

The GH and KH values were calculated using the formulas in @MWJB's post at the head of this thread. I don't know quite why Harrogate seemly go to the trouble to produce a water with three different kinds of mineral composition. Small differences, but something more for us to play around with.

 

Another thing that's interesting to note is that Clearview appears to have disappeared from the Tesco site... which is a shame as I'd spec'd a blend earlier today that I'd wanted to test this afternoon.

 

Edit: the Mg/Ca values were reached simply by dividing the Mg value by the Ca value - I'm guessing the correct way to determine their proper ratio would be to covert both into ppm as CaCO3 (Ca x 2.4 and Mg x 4.2) and divide by those values?

Edited by themartincard
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Edit: the Mg/Ca values were reached simply by dividing the Mg value by the Ca value - I'm guessing the correct way to determine their proper ratio would be to covert both into ppm as CaCO3 (Ca x 2.4 and Mg x 4.2) and divide by those values?

 

That's also a question I have, perhaps @Xpenno could advise, when looking for say "equal parts Ca:Mg" are we talking ppm as per label, or as CaCO3?

 

EDIT: Original post & charts updated WRT Ca:Mg, in lieu of Xpenno's response below.

Edited by MWJB

“Coffee evokes the most insane reactions in people”, Rene Redzepi.

 

https://markwjburness.wordpress.com/

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i use tap water personally

 

So do I where it's practical & tastes good enough (like everyday at work), but tap water at home is pretty dire, mixing a couple of bottles into the kettle is no real faff, especially given the results over my tap water.

“Coffee evokes the most insane reactions in people”, Rene Redzepi.

 

https://markwjburness.wordpress.com/

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That's also a question I have, perhaps @Xpenno could advise, when looking for say "equal parts Ca:Mg" are we talking ppm as per label, or as CaCO3?
@MWJB I've always worked in as caco3 as that normalises the mass and gives you the same concentration of ions. If you just use mg/L and you had even numbers then you would actually have loads more Mg ions.

DE1Pro, EK43 SSP, bloody tasty coffee!

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