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Old 01-19-2011, 02:09 AM   #1
strat_thru_marshall
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Default mixing distilled with tap water to achieve soft brewing water

I am going to be doing a Belgian Dark Strong tomorrow, and I understand that I should be using relatively soft water to brew this.

I live in Oklahoma, and our water is moderately hard. I don't have a water analysis, nor am I worried about hitting an exact water profile. I just want to cut my filtered tap water with distilled to get a reasonably soft water for my Belgian.

I would compare OK tap water with what seems to be a pretty standard US suburban water profile, not so hard that it instantly leaves scale on everything it touches, but hard enough that you can taste a very noticeable mineral flavor when comparing activated charcoal filtered tap water to bottled.

Just as a rough estimate, again not shooting for anything exact here, I was thinking about starting with a 50/50 mix of tap and distilled. Anyone out there have any advice for me?



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Old 01-19-2011, 03:34 AM   #2
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That worked great for a Pilsener my buddies and I brewed - and I read this is an approved strategy, so to speak. Go for it!



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Old 01-19-2011, 03:55 AM   #3
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My advice is to go to the brew science forum and read the primer by ajdelange that is stickied at the top. You probably will end up with a better beer following the route you are choosing but it will probably not be optimal. I have been following AJ's advice and am very happy with the improvement in my beers.

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Old 01-19-2011, 12:32 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strat_thru_marshall View Post
I don't have a water analysis, nor am I worried about hitting an exact water profile.
Without an analysis or place to start, it's going to be hard suggesting a course of action.

Quote:
Originally Posted by strat_thru_marshall View Post
...but hard enough that you can taste a very noticeable mineral flavor when comparing activated charcoal filtered tap water to bottled.
I wouldn't go by taste. My water doesn't have a "mineral flavor" at all, and it's actually some of the hardest water i've ever seen. Also, keep in mind running tap water through an activated charcoal filter isn't going to remove any major "brewing ions" (Ca, Cl, SO4, etc), nor change the acidity/alkalinity/RA.

Quote:
Originally Posted by strat_thru_marshall View Post
Just as a rough estimate, again not shooting for anything exact here, I was thinking about starting with a 50/50 mix of tap and distilled. Anyone out there have any advice for me?
Again, without having a report, recommending a starting point is arbitrary. Even for me, WITH a report, my water changes from winter to summer (different city wells), so i have to change how i treat my water accordingly. THIS would be a good place to start.
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