Originally Posted by mabrungard
But in discussions with Colin Kaminski, he mentioned his personal preference reached all the way above 800 ppm sulfate in some pale ales. He said his customers did not necessarily like that sulfate level though. He did go on to say that his house pale ale is brewed with about 250 ppm sulfate.
By contrast, my local guy was taught in the "water is terroir - don't mess with it" school. His best sellers are what I would call extremely hoppy (and he calls them that too) beers that are just laden with hop flavor and aroma but are not at all harsh, dry or rough. The customers love them. The sulfate level was 47 last time I checked. I'm not a fan of heavy hops but even I like these beers. This, and other experiences, are behind my continual recommendation that people start low on the sulfate and work up. I would never say "hold sulfate below 50" or any other arbitrary number but I would say "Try your recipe, even if it's an I-something with water below 50 - you may like the result." But at the same time I encourage people that like 800 mg/L in their beers to have at it (though they should be prepared for a bit of the green apple quick step).