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Lets talk about COFFEE

Piobaire

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The water thing has been one of the most mysterious/frustrating things about making coffee. Haven’t been able to get RO for a while and seeing scale build up in my kettle now. May switch to mixing with distilled.
Where I live the water is super hard and most homes have a water softener for general house use and an undersink RO system for drinking.
 

edinatlanta

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I got a stagg ekg kettle for my birthday. Now i have to get a pourover system.
 

Despos

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Where I live the water is super hard and most homes have a water softener for general house use and an undersink RO system for drinking.
What supermang was alluding to is RO water alone will not extract well when brewing. There are minerals in the water that bond with the coffee and release flavors. RO water without the additives creates a flat taste. I use RO with additives to avoid a build up of scale.
If you want another rabbit hole, look into TDS, total dissolved solids and EY, extraction yield.
 
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A Y

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There's a theory that roasters, perhaps unconsciously, choose a flavor profile that's influenced by their local water quality, so people from another city drinking their coffee may get a different taste experience than what the roaster intended. Some cafes now mix their own water, so we may have substituted one hidden variable for another, but at least it's replicable in theory.
 

edinatlanta

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Welcome, it's one hell of a rabbit hole. My recommendation is a scale, they can be relatively cheap and will help you create consistency.

-DL
Yeah im in it deep (fellow aeropress espresso attachment, nespresso machine, two beans canisters, baratza encore and hario hand grinder, aeropress and a scale). I hadn't wanted a nice kettle because i knew id go: no reason to not have a pourover now....
 

Piobaire

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I am now pissed off I read the stuff about RO water being inferior. Ignorance is bliss.
 

A Y

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I use RO water at home, but it has enough minerality that I didn't find mixing my own water made a difference.
 

Despos

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I use RO water at home, but it has enough minerality that I didn't find mixing my own water made a difference.
How did you test the water? That’s my next step. Been putting it off. Been adding Crystal Geyser with RO.
3 parts RO 1 part CG,
 

A Y

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How did you test the water? That’s my next step. Been putting it off. I guess. Been adding Crystal Geyser with RO 3 parts RO 1 part CG
Amazon TDS meter? Mixing the recipes is giant PITA too even for concentrates because you have weigh out with 0.1g precision.
 

Despos

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Amazon TDS meter? Mixing the recipes is giant PITA too even for concentrates because you have weigh out with 0.1g precision.
Can you taste the difference? Worth the effort?
 

A Y

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I could not taste the difference, but I didn't use the coffee-specific recipes. Instead I used one I found on Good Eats, but if that didn't make a difference, I'm not sure the coffee-specific ones (much less something like 3rd wave water) would make a difference. My mind is still open on this, but at this point, other variables make bigger differences in my setup. YMMV!

At least one of my local coffee shops mixes their own water, but our local area water is notoriously hard.
 

Despos

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Get RO water from the machine at Whole Foods. The machines aren’t being used at present so switched to tap water. The coffee has not tasted the same with tap water. It’s actually tastes pretty bad. Maybe it’s a local thing but the only thing that’s changed is the water I’m using. It’s hard to find specific brands of bottled water right now.
 
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