Terms required Labeling
Color Colorless Water that is colored cannot be used for brewing.
Bright and free of sediment It will affect the brightness of the wort and the beer
No odor Water with odor cannot be used for brewing as it will affect the taste of beer.
Total hardness <6.24mmol/L Achieves residual alkali RA value Non-carbonate/carbonate hardness (2.5-3.0): 1 Ca+/Mg2+ hardness >3:1
RA value -0.89-1.79mmol/L Winemaker’s preferred subtractive value
Na+ <=75mg/L Fe3+ <0.05mg/L Side effects if its content >0.1mg/L
Sio2 (silicate) <20mg/L
Sulfate ion <300mg/L
Different beers have different requirements for residual alkali RA values. The residual alkali RA value is important for the quality of the brewing water.
Therefore, the RA value of residual alkali is a key factor.
RA<=0.89mmol/L for light colored beers RA>0.89mmol/L for dark beers
RA>1.78mmol/L for dark beers
The analysis of brewing water for world famous beers as an example is as follows
Total hardness (mmol/L) 2.64 0.29 7.31 6.88
Carbonate hardness (mmol/L) 2.53 0.23 3.00 5.51
Carbonate-free hardness (mmol/L) 0.11 0.05 4.37 1.37
Ca+ hardness(mmol/L) 1.89 0.18 6.54 4.07
Mg2+ hardness(mmol/L) 0.75 0.11 0.82 2.82
RA(mmol/L) 1.89 0.16 1.02 3.94
Sulfate ion(mg/L) 9.0 5.2 290 216
Cl-(mg/L) 1.6 5.0 107 39
The suitability of the water for brewing depends on the RA value. Another requirement is that Ca2+ should be at least 40-50 mg/L, which corresponds to 1.07-1.5 mg/L.
Another requirement is that the Ca2+ should be at least 40-50 mg/L, corresponding to 1.07-1.25 mmol/L. This is important to avoid oxalate-induced beer runoff.
In addition, it requires a ratio of Ca2+ to Mg2+ in the brewing water > 3:1. If the ratio of Mg2+ is high, it will make the beer taste more bitter.
If the ratio of Mg2+ is too high, it will make the beer taste more bitter. So normally, the Mg2+ hardness of brewing water is <= 0.89mmol/L.
So when doing water treatment, it should be done according to the type of beer you have to avoid any waste.
1) One kind of water softening equipment, this equipment mainly removes Ca2+, Mg2+, etc. from raw water.
As you know, the content of Ca2+, Mg2+ has some influence on the PH value of wort and beer.
In particular, the ratio of Ca2+ to Mg2+ in water should be appropriate.
These ions may affect the color and taste, etc. during the brewing process.
2) Another type of water treatment equipment is reverse osmosis (abbreviation: RO).
This machine can completely remove all the ions from the water, and even remove organic matter, bacteria, etc.
Finally, using this kind of machine, we can get a low salt water.
As you know, various beers depend on different levels of salt, e.g. light beer needs low salinity water.
Therefore, it is better to use a proper water treatment plan to get the right water for beer brewing.