Experimenting with Water

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May 31st, '16, 23:40
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Experimenting with Water

by PuerhCollector » May 31st, '16, 23:40

For the last few weeks I have been conducting a little water experiment to assess the influence of different sources of water on brewing tea. The aim is to find a good source of water for brewing special teas. The test involved 4 different bottles of natural spring water from places like Australia, Fuji, Iceland and Scotland available at my local supermarket. Do you have a favorite bottle of mineral water used for brewing a particular tea? … would love to hear from you. :)

For those interested I share my experience and the different outcomes in the link provided below.
http://theguidetopuerhtea.blogspot.com/ ... r-for.html

Best, Varat
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Jun 3rd, '16, 12:24
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by theredbaron » Jun 3rd, '16, 12:24

PuerhCollector wrote:For the last few weeks I have been conducting a little water experiment to assess the influence of different sources of water on brewing tea. The aim is to find a good source of water for brewing special teas. The test involved 4 different bottles of natural spring water from places like Australia, Fuji, Iceland and Scotland available at my local supermarket. Do you have a favorite bottle of mineral water used for brewing a particular tea? … would love to hear from you. :)

For those interested I share my experience and the different outcomes in the link provided below.
http://theguidetopuerhtea.blogspot.com/ ... r-for.html

Best, Varat

After the tea leaves water is the most important ingredient in tea. Filtered water will indeed never bring out the best.
My go to water here is Volvic as it is the best freely available water here where i am. There is a good Taiwanese (I think) water also imported here, but it is only available at a department store some time away from where i live.

Jun 3rd, '16, 12:45
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by ethan » Jun 3rd, '16, 12:45

I have not tried very many brands of spring water. I do know some are much better than others.

From my experience, I disagree w/ the conclusion that filtered water ruins tea. I am sure that distilled water & reverse osmosis water hurts tea but also am sure that the water I get from my British Berkefeld filter makes very good tea. In fact, I get better tea using this water than from the 3 brands of spring water that I had been using. (All are cheap spring water.)

Anyone can search on computer to read about the ceramic filters employed & what they do to clean & enhance. I bought my set-up used for $100. I could not afford the expensive bottled water that many prefer. Now I am happy.

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Jun 3rd, '16, 23:57
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by PuerhCollector » Jun 3rd, '16, 23:57

theredbaron wrote:

After the tea leaves water is the most important ingredient in tea. Filtered water will indeed never bring out the best.
My go to water here is Volvic as it is the best freely available water here where i am. There is a good Taiwanese (I think) water also imported here, but it is only available at a department store some time away from where i live.
Thanks for sharing. I have yet to try brewing with Volvic. Do you have a particular tea or type of tea you would recommend that matches especially well with Volvic?

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Jun 4th, '16, 00:07
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by PuerhCollector » Jun 4th, '16, 00:07

ethan wrote:I have not tried very many brands of spring water. I do know some are much better than others.

From my experience, I disagree w/ the conclusion that filtered water ruins tea. I am sure that distilled water & reverse osmosis water hurts tea but also am sure that the water I get from my British Berkefeld filter makes very good tea. In fact, I get better tea using this water than from the 3 brands of spring water that I had been using. (All are cheap spring water.)

Anyone can search on computer to read about the ceramic filters employed & what they do to clean & enhance. I bought my set-up used for $100. I could not afford the expensive bottled water that many prefer. Now I am happy.
I dont think anyone has said "filtered water ruins tea".

The extra effort and budget that goes into obtaining good bottled spring water is probably not something I will be doing regularly anyways. That said for special occasions and for special teas I am willing as it really does elevate my enjoyment and appreciation to another level. - All in all its really just about finding what works for you :)

Jun 4th, '16, 00:24
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by ethan » Jun 4th, '16, 00:24

Puerhcollector, Of course you are right. We should do what works for us. I was a bit strong about my experience because I had been fairly sure that I would not find an affordable filter that gave water good for tea, but then I did. I was paying 89 cents a gallon for good spring water, so the cost was not so much. Unfortunately, living on the third floor & not owning a car, means carrying the water along w/ groceries was tiresome. Cheers.

Jun 4th, '16, 01:36
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by theredbaron » Jun 4th, '16, 01:36

PuerhCollector wrote:
Thanks for sharing. I have yet to try brewing with Volvic. Do you have a particular tea or type of tea you would recommend that matches especially well with Volvic?

I am rather limited here with water, so i use Volvic for all my teas.
Water for tea needs the right balance. Often excellent drinking waters might bee too hard for tea. Tea needs soft water, but not completely without minerals. Your icelandic spring water might possibly be better, but just continue to compare.

Jun 4th, '16, 01:40
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by theredbaron » Jun 4th, '16, 01:40

ethan wrote:I have not tried very many brands of spring water. I do know some are much better than others.

From my experience, I disagree w/ the conclusion that filtered water ruins tea. I am sure that distilled water & reverse osmosis water hurts tea but also am sure that the water I get from my British Berkefeld filter makes very good tea. In fact, I get better tea using this water than from the 3 brands of spring water that I had been using. (All are cheap spring water.)

Anyone can search on computer to read about the ceramic filters employed & what they do to clean & enhance. I bought my set-up used for $100. I could not afford the expensive bottled water that many prefer. Now I am happy.

I am not saying that filtered water will ruin tea. But it will not bring out the best in fine teas. Good spring water will be better. If one does not live close to a source, bottled water is the only option.
If i run out of Volvic, and the shops are closed, i also use filtered water - which we drink at home - but i am not drinking my finest teas with it.

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Jun 4th, '16, 05:01
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by Tead Off » Jun 4th, '16, 05:01

theredbaron wrote:
ethan wrote:I have not tried very many brands of spring water. I do know some are much better than others.

From my experience, I disagree w/ the conclusion that filtered water ruins tea. I am sure that distilled water & reverse osmosis water hurts tea but also am sure that the water I get from my British Berkefeld filter makes very good tea. In fact, I get better tea using this water than from the 3 brands of spring water that I had been using. (All are cheap spring water.)

Anyone can search on computer to read about the ceramic filters employed & what they do to clean & enhance. I bought my set-up used for $100. I could not afford the expensive bottled water that many prefer. Now I am happy.

I am not saying that filtered water will ruin tea. But it will not bring out the best in fine teas. Good spring water will be better. If one does not live close to a source, bottled water is the only option.
If i run out of Volvic, and the shops are closed, i also use filtered water - which we drink at home - but i am not drinking my finest teas with it.
Do you find the Volvic works well with Puerh? It's been awhile since I've used Volvic and I remember liking it, but being expensive for use in Bangkok. I loved it for green teas, but can't remember how it fared with oolongs and puerh.

Jun 4th, '16, 06:15
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by theredbaron » Jun 4th, '16, 06:15

Tead Off wrote: Do you find the Volvic works well with Puerh? It's been awhile since I've used Volvic and I remember liking it, but being expensive for use in Bangkok. I loved it for green teas, but can't remember how it fared with oolongs and puerh.

I find Volvic a good all around water. But we are rather limited here. I am sure there are better waters - if you know of one, please tell. And it's available in the Tesco just down the road. I remember 15 or 20 years ago there was a rather expensive glacial water for sale here, which was excellent, but they stopped importing it.

Volvic is between 60 and 70 Baht per 1 1/2 lt bottle. But then, i mostly use pots in the range of 65 to 90 ccl, so, expensive is relative, in a way, especially compared to what i spent on teas, and pots, etc ;)

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Jun 5th, '16, 03:50
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by Tead Off » Jun 5th, '16, 03:50

theredbaron wrote:
Tead Off wrote: Do you find the Volvic works well with Puerh? It's been awhile since I've used Volvic and I remember liking it, but being expensive for use in Bangkok. I loved it for green teas, but can't remember how it fared with oolongs and puerh.

I find Volvic a good all around water. But we are rather limited here. I am sure there are better waters - if you know of one, please tell. And it's available in the Tesco just down the road. I remember 15 or 20 years ago there was a rather expensive glacial water for sale here, which was excellent, but they stopped importing it.

Volvic is between 60 and 70 Baht per 1 1/2 lt bottle. But then, i mostly use pots in the range of 65 to 90 ccl, so, expensive is relative, in a way, especially compared to what i spent on teas, and pots, etc ;)
I never found one water that fit every tea. I'm not sure it exists. Because I drink Japanese green teas, I found the Aura water here in Thailand to be the best and most affordable at 18 baht/1.5L. But, it doesn't work for me with oolongs, puerh, and Himalayan teas, which I also drink. Others might have a different experience as there is a lot of subjectivity involved.

Jun 5th, '16, 08:30
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by bankung » Jun 5th, '16, 08:30

I don't totally agree that RO water ruin every tea, especially a very high grade one. Its just that Volvic is a much more forgiving water to any tea, make the body fuller and smoother, easier to drink, and particularly impressive for a fist several infusions. However, there is a price to compensate for that goodness. I prefer RO water for great great sheng puerh. It gives better clarity, aroma, and even the feeling than volvic. But yes, crappy tea would be undrinkable with RO water.

Talking about bottled RO water, there are also variations in this category. If you are in Thailand, you can try crystal and 7-11 brand. I think they are one of the best for RO water. Avoid Nestle and Singha. They are horrible.

Jun 5th, '16, 10:27
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by theredbaron » Jun 5th, '16, 10:27

bankung wrote:
Talking about bottled RO water, there are also variations in this category. If you are in Thailand, you can try crystal and 7-11 brand. I think they are one of the best for RO water. Avoid Nestle and Singha. They are horrible.

Thanks - i will give it a try :)

Jun 5th, '16, 14:03
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Re: Experimenting with Water

by TofuMiso » Jun 5th, '16, 14:03

PuerhCollector wrote:For the last few weeks I have been conducting a little water experiment to assess the influence of different sources of water on brewing tea. The aim is to find a good source of water for brewing special teas. The test involved 4 different bottles of natural spring water from places like Australia, Fuji, Iceland and Scotland available at my local supermarket. Do you have a favorite bottle of mineral water used for brewing a particular tea? … would love to hear from you. :)

For those interested I share my experience and the different outcomes in the link provided below.
http://theguidetopuerhtea.blogspot.com/ ... r-for.html

Best, Varat
Personally I use Volvic mineral water from France for sheng puerh both young and aged , and also for green tea from Yunnan . I find that it really brings out far greater and better defined complexities from these types of tea . I have tried using it for brewing other types of tea , but it really isn't very nice . So for everything else - Oolong , Hongcha , Shu puerh , Green tea produced outside of Yunnan , I find Highland Spring from Scotland to be the best .

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Re: Experimenting with Water

by PuerhCollector » Jun 6th, '16, 02:19

bankung wrote:I don't totally agree that RO water ruin every tea, especially a very high grade one. Its just that Volvic is a much more forgiving water to any tea, make the body fuller and smoother, easier to drink, and particularly impressive for a fist several infusions. However, there is a price to compensate for that goodness. I prefer RO water for great great sheng puerh. It gives better clarity, aroma, and even the feeling than volvic. But yes, crappy tea would be undrinkable with RO water.

Talking about bottled RO water, there are also variations in this category. If you are in Thailand, you can try crystal and 7-11 brand. I think they are one of the best for RO water. Avoid Nestle and Singha. They are horrible.
Thank you for sharing in such detail. You have made me include a visit to the 7-11 store to my to do list. :lol:

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