HOMEBREW Digest #148 Thu 11 May 1989

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  Homebrew Digest #146 (May 09, 1989) (ferguson ct 71078)
  Novice Questions Responses (Michael Bergman)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Wed, 10 May 89 09:31:09 EDT From: ferguson%X102C at HARRIS-ATD.COM (ferguson ct 71078) Subject: Homebrew Digest #146 (May 09, 1989) >From: Darryl Richman <darryl at ism780c.isc.com> > >Your kitchen tap might still have a bit of spaghetti sauce under the >lip from yesterday's dishes--do you trust it enough to put it into the >beautiful culture medium you've just spent 2 hours making? Some >people get away with it--for a while. I previously posted that I have used tap water in my brew. Two things I forgot to mention that you and several other posters have reminded me of -- I always sanitize my faucett and sink with bleach prior to brewing and I had a water softener which removed much (but not all) of the iron and other minerals. If a homebrewer has water questions, he might try taking a one quart sample of his brewing water to a swimming pool supply store for testing. They will measure the ph, total alkalinity, and chlorine content. Most such stores also have instruments for determining iron and other solids content. It may not be as accurate as a water report but is a good start and it's free since the pool supply place would love to sell you the chemicals ($$) to correct any deficiencies (:-)). Return to table of contents
Date: Wed, 10 May 89 11:00:37 edt From: bergman at m2c.org (Michael Bergman) Subject: Novice Questions Responses Date: Mon, 8 May 89 08:45:59 EDT From: rogerl at Think.COM Date: Fri, 5 May 89 12:01:47 EDT From: gh0t+ at andrew.cmu.edu Subject: More novice questions ... I've noticed, in "complete joy" and elsewhere, directions that call for boiling wort with part of the water required, and then adding the rest of the water to it in the fermenter. I'm not exactly sure how to interpret this. In particular, does this mean that it's OK to just add tap water to the boiled portion of the wort, or should pre-sterilized (boiled) water be added? Another question concerning water: is there any advantage to using anything but tapwater? The water here in Pittsburgh is not bad, but it's not great, either. (It took some getting used to when I came here from Oregon, where municipal water sources are typically snowmelt. Pittsburgh water comes from the Allegheney river, which has its source, I believe, in an oilwell upstate.) First, remember that brews are mostly water. So the water you use will effect the final product. If the water is particularly unappetizing I would suggest using bottled water. The town water where I am is safe to drink by all standards but has a strange musty oder to it.('they' say it's algee in the supply) But we took no changes and had an active charcol filter installed in the main into the house. Yes, it was a bit expensive. But the way I figure it, it has paid for itself in the 5 years we've had it based on the price of bottled water being delivered to the house. I lived for a while in a town that used copper sulphate to control the algae in the water supply. Not realizing what I was doing, I used some of this stuff to make mead. Smelled terriblly of sulphur, and had a bit of an aftertaste. In short, be careful what water you use. I recall Pittsburgh water as being unpleasant to drink, and wouldn't be surprised if it had sulphur compounds and perhaps a lot of iron--but as several people have suggested, talk to the water company. I believe that the Allegheny is what Rolling Rock and Iron City (thus presumably Sam Adams) use in their brew--but that they get it much farther up the river. They may get it from a tributary anyway. I don't think there are any oil wells upstate...the Mononghahela passes through a number of steel mills and other unpleasant factories on its way to Pittsburgh, but given the state of the industry, it should be drinkable any day now... --mike bergman (w) 75 North Drive, Westborough, MA 01581, USA +1 (508) 870-0312 UUCP: harvard!m2c!bergman INTERNET: bergman at m2c.org Return to table of contents
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