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Old 05-28-2010, 02:50 AM   #1
BriarwoodBrewer
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Default Distilled Water??

I was always told to use distilled water when I brew beer. Give me your thoughts on it. Does it give me a true beer flavor or is it giving me an off flavor? I've been practicing this method for a long time, so I don't know the difference.

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Old 05-28-2010, 02:52 AM   #2
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What are you brewing, extract or all grain? Some people recommend using distilled when brewing with extracts because you're already getting the minerals from the extract and you have no idea what those are, so using tap water or even bottled spring water could overload on some of them. But if you're doing all grain or even partial mash brews you want to avoid using distilled (unless you're building water with mineral and salt additions) because you need a lot of the extra stuff that comes in regular water.

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Old 05-28-2010, 02:53 AM   #3
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i don't think it's necessary unless you are brewing a specific style and adjusting the dissolved solids in the water to mimic something like an English style with Burton salts, etc.

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Old 05-28-2010, 03:02 AM   #4
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I brew extracts/crushed grain bag kits from my local brew shop typically.

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Old 05-28-2010, 03:04 AM   #5
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Then it looks like you're doing fine Distilled water isn't going to hamper anything and is probably the best course of action. Using a different water source would also probably produce great beer, but since all water (and extracts for that matter) are different there's no way to know for sure unless you try. So you could always take a beer you've brewed previously and try the recipe again with tap water or spring water or something and see how it compares.

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Old 05-28-2010, 01:34 PM   #6
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Check your water profile. Get a report from the city, or if you have well water, get it tested. Unless it is way off in one area or another, using tap water should be fine. Unless, like fineexampl said, you want to better mimic a specific beer, then you want your water to match whatever water is in that beer. It also depends on what you are making. Some water is better suited for bitter beers and some water is better for malty ones.

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Old 05-28-2010, 01:56 PM   #7
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if you want to uber-geek out on your beverages, you need to have a known starting point (especially for all-grain). SO, what IS in your water?

Distilled=nothing= *purely* additive (wanna make a burton-on-trent-biatch? start dumping in chalk and epsom salts, etc.

apart from that, its a great way to say "Well... *MY* beer cost a whole LOT of $ to make!"

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Old 05-28-2010, 02:13 PM   #8
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I would suggest using distilled for extract, and spring water (or tap water if it tastes good) for AG.

If you are doing extract, you have no idea what the mineral content of the extract is, so you don't want to risk adding too much of everything by using tap water.

If you are AG and want to geek out even more with brewing, check out your water profile and adjust as needed for the beer you are making. If that doesn't sound like fun, just use your tap water. It will be ok for most beers, except maybe the very light, or very dark beers. (And might be fine for one of them, but you won't know which one).

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