WATER, Bottled or filtered

RadarRick

New member
Aug 30, 2004
10
0
West Virginia
Fairly new to the board, but long time observer. I am opening a espresso and tea cafe soon.

Question, which is best for specialty coffee and teas?

Bottled water or filtered water?

Please elaborate a little with your answers. If there is a good web site that can educate me, let me know also.

What brands bottled water or models of filters (I've heard of everpure and ciqua) do you recommend?

Is it better (cost) to filter the entire shop or just the indivdual machines?

West Virginia
 

CCafe

New member
Aug 11, 2004
1,557
0
Des Moines, Iowa
JohnC you will get better tasting coffee if you use tap water and then filter it. Distilled water is missing certain mineral deposits that actually help improve the taste of your coffee. Just a heads up! :roll:
 

sky

New member
May 2, 2005
1
0
The Ozarks
I read alot about filtering tap water. What type of filter is best ? Should I filter the tap water that goes into my drip machine?

Lots of good info here, thanks. New to forum, not new to coffee.
 

ron45

New member
May 4, 2005
53
0
New Mexico
I don't understand this thinking [use filtered water because of certain minerals interacting with the coffee] As I learned when learning to brew beer there is a vast difference in the mineral content of water from one region to another. From one well to another in the same region for that matter. So you have a very hit or miss situation here. It would be better to start with pure water r/o or whatever, and then add the proper minerals in the proper amount if it's that important to you. But it seems inadequate to just say to leave whatever minerals may or may not be in someones water hoping the right ones will be present to enhance the coffee's flavor. It is many of these `minerals' that make tap water coffee so bad. It's not just the chlorine or flouride tho these are certainly better removed. I don't mean to disparage your views, maybe some clarification would help. Which minerals are known to improve the taste of coffee?

Ron
 

CCafe

New member
Aug 11, 2004
1,557
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Des Moines, Iowa
I don't think it is so much a certain mineral that you are looking for but more of how it interacts with coffee molecules. From my limited understanding of the subject, the mineral content of the water will help in the extraction process but can also hinder it if the mineral content is to high.

The process of removal requires the use of some filtration and scale inhibitors. You how ever do not want to use a softening system for drip coffee for this will give you quite a few negative side effects.

As for filtered water, yes you need to remove fluorine, chlorine, rust, dirt, and many other things. I use Everpure products, most commonly the MC cartridge. Here's a pdf of what it takes out http://www.everpure.com/pdf/EV961206.pdf.

They have many other types of cartridges that remove contaminates and this is what I mean by filtered water.

Now for RO water. A lot of people have read my views on Reverse Osmosis. The water quality is almost perfect if not perfect, but there are some bad qualities most people don't know about RO. RO is wasteful, in most applications you are wasting 2 to 3 but up to 4 gallons of water to produce 1 gallon of drinking water.

Next RO is slightly acidic which in the long run will eat up your equipment if it is not post treated as it leaves the holding tank. Again if it is not treated as it leaves the holding tank, RO has a tendency not to work with fill probe systems. RO water can be pure enough that it is not conductive of electricity and this is bad if you rely on a fill probe.

For people who are not familiar with a fill probe system, it is nothing more then an insulated wire attached to a tank through a fitting. This grounds the water inside the tank to a circuit. When no water is present it breaks the ground and fills the tank. Now if your water is pure enough it has no conductivity and can cause a problem.
 

ron45

New member
May 4, 2005
53
0
New Mexico
Well, without access to a chemist there isn't much further we can go on the subject of minerals in water and their role in coffee extraction. But I agree that r o is wastefull. I had not heard about it's acidity.

I also know that minerals and certain trace minerals play crucial roles in human metabolism. But here again relying on minerals in local water is a crap shoot. This is another black mark against r o water. We use a nutrient suppliment program that is rich in asimilable minerals. All iron is not created equal.

Ron
 

bergzy

New member
Aug 23, 2005
6
0
The OC, Baby!!!
ron45 said:
Well, without access to a chemist there isn't much further we can go on the subject of minerals in water and their role in coffee extraction. But I agree that r o is wastefull. I had not heard about it's acidity.

I also know that minerals and certain trace minerals play crucial roles in human metabolism. But here again relying on minerals in local water is a crap shoot. This is another black mark against r o water. We use a nutrient suppliment program that is rich in asimilable minerals. All iron is not created equal.

Ron

as a reef aquarist...i (we as reef aquarists) as a golden rule as a minimal requirement use ro water to make salt water for our tanks regardless how large the system is (my main system just flows over at 300 gallons). in fact, i go a step further and run the water through a deionizer which brings TDS (total dissolved sediments) pretty close to zero.

now, how does this apply to coffee?

i have tested the pH of ro/di water to be about 6.95 (on average because i have three different electronic pH moniter/controllers). this would be barely considered acidic.

here in southern california, the tap water that flows out of the faucet is at best bad tasting for me. i just dont like it. i have made coffee from both ro water and tap water and prefer the ro water hands down. i think that this comes down to preference of 'taste' from plain water. i have not tried using ro/di water as it never crossed my mind. perhaps i will try it one day.

as for mineral malnourishment from using ro water...i have yet to experience it. if you fee that you are lacking a mineral imbalance from drinking ro water, eat a bablanced diet and taking a multivitamin should do the trick.

there is a similar debate in the reef aquaria world where some think that it is detrimental to your health if you drink ro/di water. as for me downing ro/di, i havent tasted it yet as it never occured to me to drink any.

ro units are a wasteful beat indeed. any reef aquarist will tell you that filling their 500g+ systems wastes a ton (literally) of water.

but ah! i have a true 'zero waste ro unit' so their is 'zero' guilt on my making ro water ;)

http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product.as ... =&cat=&s=1

drink on! :D

ben.
 

CCafe

New member
Aug 11, 2004
1,557
0
Des Moines, Iowa
Well I don't use RO, and it’s not about the waste either. I just filter it. But I love how Costco tells you it is a zero waste but doesn't tell you what it does with that water. I had to go look up on google just to find out it is dumping the brine solution in to your hot water heater.

That's even stupider! Think of everything you use hot water for in your house. You now come in contact with the very thing you are trying to filter out of your water when you shower, wash your hands, wash your cloths and your dishes. Not only that but your probably going to wear out your hot water heater faster due to all that dissolved minerals your dumping in there.

Now if your routing your water to a holding tank that you use to water your garden or your lawn sure I can see that. What I also find funny is that a lot of these systems recommend that you soften the water to the RO if you have water over 10 grains. They talk about premature membrane failure.

I'm not bashing RO, I just upset that there is a catch and they fail to mention it on their website.
 

bergzy

New member
Aug 23, 2005
6
0
The OC, Baby!!!
the unit does pump the waste water back into the hot water line but i am not sure if it causes premature hot water tank failure because i dont have a hot water tank. i have an instant on/on demand water heater system that doesnt use a tank...it heats the water when you turn the hot water tap on.

as for the rejection/waste water being pumped into the hot water line, except for possible hot water tank failure, i have not noticed any dterimental (or any) difference to the quality of the hot water coming out of the hot water tap. i don't notice any extra heavy residue on my dishes nor any diminished quality in how my clothes feel washed by the the home washing machine.

one of the reasons i got the zero waste was because i didnt feel like drilling the drain to fit the ro unit under the sink. the zero waste method just screws onto the hot water line.

i dont know and probably dont think that the waste water is particularily brine. unless, of course, your source water was heavily laden with salt...then your waste water would just be saltier.

the biggest disadvantage of the zero waste unit is the frickin' price. it is more than 3x that of a comparable ro unit that is 'wasteful'. but, hey, at least i am in some remote, sorta, kinda way 'saving' the environment! ;)
 
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