View Full Version : Let's talk about water

10-10-2007, 05:44 AM
We are in the process of our build out for our new microbrewery and just received information on the water from a local Analysis firm. I am hoping some of you with more "water" experience can help me with some ideas on what I should do with our water. I have done very basic water treatments in the past,(gypsum, Calcium Carbonate etc) but at the last brewpub I worked at, I didn't treat the water at all... liked it the way it was.(lucky me, but for 4 years stopped thinking about the water)

Some info on what we will be doing here...
We will be brewing a Golden Ale(cream style), an Eng/Amer Pale Ale , a big bold IPA and a Robust Porter. these are just to start off with. We expect to do a few seasonals as well as we move forward.

Here are some numbers from the water folks...

Alkalinity -- 71.0
Hardness -- 24.6
pH -- 8.1
Turbidity -- 0.40
Calcium -- 4.38
Chloride -- 52.3
Sodium -- 50.2 (!?!?)
Nitrate, Nitrogen -- 0.73
Magnesium -- 3.32
Potassium -- 1.06
Sulfate -- Not Detectable
Most others like Manganese, Copper, Nitrite, and Iron were thankfully all undetectable.

Please help in anyway you can... and feel free to be as basic as you feel fit, I am still learning here.

Thanks so much

Captain Mullet
10-10-2007, 08:27 AM
ppms or mEq/L ?

10-10-2007, 09:00 AM
ppms or mEq/L ?

According to the sheet...
mg/L for all
except for pH = S.U.
and Turbidity is NTU

Thanks, I forgot about that .

Captain Mullet
10-10-2007, 12:01 PM
Looks like you got a bit of NaCl in your water. It doesn't look that bad but you are going to have to up the Ca a bit, I shoot for around 200 to 210 ppm.

10-10-2007, 03:56 PM
wow matt. your alkalinity and hardness are really low. no detectable sulfate either? you'll essentially be able to brew whatever style of beer you want to by adding minerals... sweet. and with all of the sodium, you could brew a gose! just kidding... might be able to get away without using food grade acid, too with such low hardness/alk... but it never hurts to adjust pH. ever. my brewery is nearly 200ppm alkalinity and nearly the same hardness...

can't wait to try the beers!

shaun e.

10-11-2007, 06:51 AM
I am pretty psyched about the water except for the sodium, but figure i will add Calcium. As far as having soft water, i expect that our water will work great for the Golden Ale.

So how Calcium Carbonate should one add to reach that 200ppm?
starting from 4.38 mg/L

dick murton
10-13-2007, 09:38 AM
Add gypsum or calcium chloride, or a mixture of the two, your water is already rather alkaline, so you may also need to acidify it a little as well. See what the mash pH is like. suggest it is often easier to add "dry" salts to the mash vessel, rather than the water. Gypsum is slightly less soluble in hot water than cold.

The pale ales in particular will benefit from mainly gypsum. I'm not familiar with cream ale, so can't comment on this. Stout, you may get away with more CaCl2 if you want a sweeter stout, perhaps more gypsum if you want a dry stout.

Ca - atomic weight 40, CL - 35.5, S - 32, O - 16. Don't forget to allow for water of hydration, particularly in the CaCL2.

Exact addition ratios - according to beer style and end result flavour. Never less than 25 ppm Ca in final pack, normally somewhat higher.