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Old 01-11-2017, 12:50 AM   #1
BrewinSoldier
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Jul 2015
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Hey guys! I usually do IPAs for the most part, but want to start having blondes on tap for the light beer drinkers that come over. I made up a recipe for a Vanilla Blonde Ale and am going to brew it in the next few days. I'm trying to build up a water profile for it but can't find anything anywhere. I start with 100% RO water.

I spent about 4 hours last night reading and all I could come up with that the most desired pH was about 5.2-5.3(low is better for light beers like this).

I can't find what the ideal water profile is for this type of beer. As of now, I am using the "yellow balanced" profile on bru'n water for this beer but have considered using the "American lager" profile instead because it has barely any minerals, and I know that with this style, you don't want the mineral flavors to come through.

I want this to be a very clean, crisp beer with a hint of vanilla(using Madagascar bourbon vanilla beans at end of boil mostly to sanitize, and then transferring to fermenter for flavor). If I don't get enough vanilla flavor from that, I will add some pure vanilla extract to the keg.

I just want to have the right water profile before I brew this.

Thanks for any help.

 
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Old 01-11-2017, 09:41 AM   #2
Gnomebrewer
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There's not right or wrong answer. I'd personally go with a Calcium chloride addition to get to 40ppm Calcium, and target 5.4 for pH (use acid if needed). Keep it simple.

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Old 01-11-2017, 12:40 PM   #3
BrewinSoldier
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gnomebrewer View Post
There's not right or wrong answer. I'd personally go with a Calcium chloride addition to get to 40ppm Calcium, and target 5.4 for pH (use acid if needed). Keep it simple.
Alright going with this logic(only using CaCl), with my grain bill entered as well as total water additions, this is where it leaves me numbers wise..All in ppm
Cal-40
Mg-0
So-4
Sul-1
Cl-71(the chloride jumps up pretty high)

Then with adding .50ml/gal of lactic, it brings my pH to 5.37.

Is this going to be OK having the Cl that high and not balancing it out with SO4?

Now playing with the same grain bill but using CaCl, gypsum, and epsom, I got the numbers to this..
Cal-55
Mg-5
So-4
Sul-73
Cl-61

Again using lactic at .50ml/gal, pH is 5.37

 
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Old 01-11-2017, 09:34 PM   #4
Gnomebrewer
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Use either - I doubt you'd be able to taste the difference between the two. I'd use the all chloride option because it's easier and I try to err on the side of less mineralisation.

 
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Old 01-11-2017, 09:40 PM   #5
McKnuckle
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Wow, I totally agree with @Gnomebrewer! Many brewers seem to overdo the minerals in an attempt to match questionably accurate historical water profiles. I do just what s/he does - get the Calcium in line to a minimum of 40 or 50 ppm, then aim to nail the pH with acid (if it's not there already). You can use just CaCl, or CaCl/gypsum in roughly equal parts to achieve the same thing. Doesn't really matter at those levels.

For a dark beer, skip the acid, and get to pH with baking soda. But that's not what you're brewing here of course.

Tip: You don't balance SO4 and Cl. The "ratio" has been largely debunked. It's more about each of those elements in its absolute amount in terms of how it contributes to the beer, not about how they balance with each other.
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