Water Water Everywhere... What’s Your Water?

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debunix
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Thu Feb 20, 2020 2:33 pm

I was planning tap vs filtered vs Crystal Geyser and maybe one other bottled source to start, probably with sencha, and porcelain gaiwans to minimize variation. I can put together 4 kettles at once for simultaneous testing, so that's as many waters as I can compare at one time.
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Victoria
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Thu Feb 20, 2020 2:51 pm

debunix wrote:
Thu Feb 20, 2020 2:33 pm
I was planning tap vs filtered vs Crystal Geyser and maybe one other bottled source to start, probably with sencha, and porcelain gaiwans to minimize variation. I can put together 4 kettles at once for simultaneous testing, so that's as many waters as I can compare at one time.
For comparison I can recommend Iceland Spring water it will give somewhat different results. It’s TDS and Alkalinity is half of Crystal Gyser Olancha, Ca. and calcium, magnesium, sodium much lower with hardness way down less than 1/4. Here is Icelandic Spring water analysis. We switched to it during our pu’erh tasting last Sunday.
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Thu Feb 20, 2020 6:08 pm

Victoria, which brand of Icelandic water are you using? I tried 2 (if I remember correctly) that did not seem to make better tea than the cheaper Poland Spring.

Note: The cost of doing anything is an issue for me. In case there are others with very limited means, I write that equal amounts of Poland Spring water with water filtered by ceramic filters is almost completely the same as using 100% Poland Spring water.
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debunix
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Sun Feb 23, 2020 11:00 pm

My old standby Pino kettle died after the jostling of being brought home from the office, so I was only able to compare 3 waters today, Poland Spring, Crystal Geyster, and filtered Los Angeles tap. I could not find Iceland Spring water.

I was infusing some of the Kabuse from Obubu that I've been drinking this week, 1 gram each in teeny-tiny gaiwans, water at 170 degrees to within the accuracy of the kettles.

There might have been some slight smoothing of the chosen tea with the two spring waters vs the filtered tap, but it was a very slight distinction at best. It's pleasing to realize how well my usual filtered water performed.

I'll keep two kettles set up for a few days; I'd like to compare my filtered and unfiltered tap at some point, but can't start any more caffeinated tea tonight.
Vanenbw
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Tue Feb 25, 2020 9:52 am

debunix wrote:
Sun Feb 23, 2020 11:00 pm
My old standby Pino kettle died after the jostling of being brought home from the office, so I was only able to compare 3 waters today, Poland Spring, Crystal Geyster, and filtered Los Angeles tap. I could not find Iceland Spring water.

I was infusing some of the Kabuse from Obubu that I've been drinking this week, 1 gram each in teeny-tiny gaiwans, water at 170 degrees to within the accuracy of the kettles.

There might have been some slight smoothing of the chosen tea with the two spring waters vs the filtered tap, but it was a very slight distinction at best. It's pleasing to realize how well my usual filtered water performed.

I'll keep two kettles set up for a few days; I'd like to compare my filtered and unfiltered tap at some point, but can't start any more caffeinated tea tonight.
Poland Spring in Los Angeles? I thought they only distributed Poland Spring in the northeast. I use Poland Spring, but I have tried some other waters like Fiji and a couple of New Zealand, including a gallon of a brand from NZ that they sell at Trader Joe's (I don't recall the name of the water).
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Victoria
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Tue Feb 25, 2020 1:36 pm

debunix wrote:
Sun Feb 23, 2020 11:00 pm
.....I was only able to compare 3 waters today, Poland Spring, Crystal Geyster, and filtered Los Angeles tap. I could not find Iceland Spring water.
Iceland Spring stores & labels:
Nice Iceland Pure Spring @Walgreens
V Iceland natural spring @theVitamin Shoppe
Iceland Natural Spring @WholeFoods
Glacier isle @RiteAid
Vanenbw wrote:
Tue Feb 25, 2020 9:52 am
Poland Spring in Los Angeles? I thought they only distributed Poland Spring in the northeast. I use Poland Spring, but I have tried some other waters like Fiji and a couple of New Zealand, including a gallon of a brand from NZ that they sell at Trader Joe's (I don't recall the name of the water).
Yes, Poland Spring is easy to find in Los Angeles. Personally I can’t recommend it though since it’s pretty controversial. Poland Spring, owned by Nestle, has had lots of lawsuits. It has low TDS but is also apparently just cheap water from landfills and waste areas :( https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/29/busi ... -ios-share
Trader Joe’s water is Artesian New Zealand.

My go to bottled waters (when I need to replace filtered tap);
Iceland Spring: Nice Iceland Pure Spring @Walgreens, V Iceland natural spring @theVitamin Shoppe, Iceland Natural Spring @WholeFoods, Glacier isle @RiteAid. Lower TDS 53, higher pH 8.89, Alkalinity 25 ppm
or
Crystal Geyser, Alpine Spring (by CG Roxane Olancha, CA), local in LA. Higher TDS 120-150, lower pH 7-7.6, Alkalinity 58-67 ppm
Vanenbw
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Tue Feb 25, 2020 3:44 pm

Victoria wrote:
Tue Feb 25, 2020 1:36 pm
Vanenbw wrote:
Tue Feb 25, 2020 9:52 am
Poland Spring in Los Angeles? I thought they only distributed Poland Spring in the northeast. I use Poland Spring, but I have tried some other waters like Fiji and a couple of New Zealand, including a gallon of a brand from NZ that they sell at Trader Joe's (I don't recall the name of the water).
Yes, Poland Spring is easy to find in Los Angeles. Personally I can’t recommend it though since it’s pretty controversial. Poland Spring, owned by Nestle, has had lots of lawsuits. It has low TDS but is also apparently just cheap water from landfills and waste areas :( https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/29/busi ... -ios-share
Trader Joe’s water is Artesian New Zealand.

My go to bottled waters (when I need to replace filtered tap);
Iceland Spring: Nice Iceland Pure Spring @Walgreens, V Iceland natural spring @theVitamin Shoppe, Iceland Natural Spring @WholeFoods, Glacier isle @RiteAid. Lower TDS 53, higher pH 8.89, Alkalinity 25 ppm
or
Crystal Geyser, Alpine Spring (by CG Roxane Olancha, CA), local in LA. Higher TDS 120-150, lower pH 7-7.6, Alkalinity 58-67 ppm
Wow, that's an eye opening. I have been drinking Poland Spring for so many years. Even if I had the best water filter in the world, I don't think you can filter out all of the contaminants in the New Jersey tap water. I wouldn't feel comfortable drinking it, but maybe I'm just too ignorant about this subject. Thanks for the name of the Trader Joe's brand from New Zealand.

How are you finding the TDS for all of these waters? Are you testing it yourself, or did you find the information online?

I drink a lot of water (at least 64 oz a day, not including water for my tea or green smoothies). It could become very costly switching to some other brand of water, even though Poland Spring is not the cheap either. I used to pay $.99 for a gallon, but now it's $1.39 in two major supermarkets near me. I read that Fiji, and Evian are supposed to be healthy bottled waters, but I didn't research it. I just read that on a couple of websites, but neither is that cheap. Fiji is probably one of the more expensive waters out there. I don't mind splurging on water for specialty teas, but for everyday consumption, I'll blow through way too much money every month if I were to buy the more expensive bottled waters. I read Pure Life, also by Nestle, is supposed to be good. It's only $.20 less than Poland Spring though.
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teasecret
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Wed Feb 26, 2020 5:56 pm

Glad this water thread is still active!

I'm working on home water purification right now to get the purest-tasting water before minerals are added. Once I can replicate a spring water so it's indistinguishable in a side-by-side comparison, that will be a major milestone.
Also up next for me is comparing calcium vs magnesium in water while keeping all other ions the same concentration, and sulfate vs chloride in a similar way.
It's a long journey!
.m.
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Wed Feb 26, 2020 6:49 pm

teasecret wrote:
Wed Feb 26, 2020 5:56 pm
Glad this water thread is still active!

I'm working on home water purification right now to get the purest-tasting water before minerals are added. Once I can replicate a spring water so it's indistinguishable in a side-by-side comparison, that will be a major milestone.
Also up next for me is comparing calcium vs magnesium in water while keeping all other ions the same concentration, and sulfate vs chloride in a similar way.
It's a long journey!
Please, keep us posted with your findings. I'm very interested in the Mg vs Ca part. Any way to add Ca(HCO3)2 or Mg(HCO3)2 instead of the chlorides and sulphates?
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Wed Feb 26, 2020 11:38 pm

Great thread for info & stories.

Victoria, I conclude name brand of water from Iceland does not matter or at least not significantly.

Note to people wondering whether terrible water can be filtered well: The black filters that look like a rod of carbon (I used a pair in my Big Berkey) can get water very very clean. I find that water does not make the best tea. I returned to use of sterasyl ceramic filters (which are 1/3 of the price for the black filters). Mixing water filtered by them 1/2 & 1/2 w/ Poland Springs water works well for me.

Look for 3 packs of 24 bottles holding 1/2 litre of Poland Springs for $10; promotions on about once a week for a month in many supermarkets. = about $1 a gallon.
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teasecret
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Fri Apr 03, 2020 12:01 pm

Wrote a post on the challenges of water.
https://teasecrets.home.blog/2020/04/03 ... d-problem/
This is basically less of a report on any findings and more a report on the roadblocks and difficulties I've had understanding how water works. I've made almost 50 water recipes in the past year, but if anyone can help me with some of the problems in this article, I would really appreciate it.
If posting a blog link in this part of the forum is not allowed, mods let me know!
vuanguyen
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Sat Apr 04, 2020 10:12 am

I just want to share with people my sources of water for brewing tea. There are many natural spring water than can be collected for free. These water are filtered through the earth and they are safe to consume (we boil the water anyway). It's way better than any tap water or bottled water I have in the Bay Area. Moreover, it's fun collecting the water as it adds to the whole experience of drinking tea. The one I use right now is "Red Rock Beach Cold Spring" in Stinson Beach, California. However there are many other springs. You can use the link below to locate the springs:

https://findaspring.com/locations/north ... -beach-ca/
https://findaspring.com/category/locations/view-all/

Enjoy
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Rickpatbrown
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Sun May 03, 2020 12:15 am

teasecret wrote:
Fri Apr 03, 2020 12:01 pm
Wrote a post on the challenges of water.
https://teasecrets.home.blog/2020/04/03 ... d-problem/
This is basically less of a report on any findings and more a report on the roadblocks and difficulties I've had understanding how water works. I've made almost 50 water recipes in the past year, but if anyone can help me with some of the problems in this article, I would really appreciate it.
If posting a blog link in this part of the forum is not allowed, mods let me know!
Why do you have H2S in your water? I know this sounds crazy, but can you run your distilled water through the RO device? You could use you distillation apparatus or buy distilled water.

Also, I know that Mountain Valley Spring sells 5 gallon bottles of distilled water in glass bottles. I don't know if they are available to you, but you could probably find some way to get distilled water in glass. This should be your easiest avenue.

Apparently you can remove H2S from water by bubbling air through it, but I doubt you could get it all out.

I would love to see someone crack the secret water formula with distilled water and easily available additives.
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hopeofdawn
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Sun May 03, 2020 1:20 am

Rickpatbrown wrote:
Sun May 03, 2020 12:15 am

I would love to see someone crack the secret water formula with distilled water and easily available additives.
Qi Fine Teas in Portland has some premixed mineral additives, designed for people who don't have access to really good water and have to go the RO or distilled water route (one of the customers they said used them was a gentleman who lived on a boat with no access to good spring water). They said they have tested them against all their teas and have specific recommendations on which to pair with which. I've not tried them myself, as our local water is pretty good and a simple charcoal filter works for me, but they might be worth checking out.
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Rickpatbrown
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Tue May 05, 2020 5:30 pm

vuanguyen wrote:
Sat Apr 04, 2020 10:12 am
I just want to share with people my sources of water for brewing tea. There are many natural spring water than can be collected for free. These water are filtered through the earth and they are safe to consume (we boil the water anyway). It's way better than any tap water or bottled water I have in the Bay Area. Moreover, it's fun collecting the water as it adds to the whole experience of drinking tea. The one I use right now is "Red Rock Beach Cold Spring" in Stinson Beach, California. However there are many other springs. You can use the link below to locate the springs:

https://findaspring.com/locations/north ... -beach-ca/
https://findaspring.com/category/locations/view-all/

Enjoy
Not sure to post in this epic thread, or in the newer one you started. Seems to apply to both.

I drove the 2hr round trip up into Pennsylvania today to try the Leone Family Spring.https://findaspring.com/locations/north ... n-rock-pa/

I took 4, 5gallon glass jugs and filled them up. I used a TDS meter at home and it showed 19 ppm. I had worried it would be this low.
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I tested the water on some 2018 spring Hehuan shan oolong that I have been drinking massive quantities for the last 2 years, so I know it well. The tea was pretty much the same as it's been with Poland springs (measured at 40 ppm). Maybe it was a tiny bit better. I'll have to do a side by side test to confirm.

I cant believe how pure this spring water is. 19 ppm seems really low for for something coming out of the ground. I'd be curious to know the geology and what type of rock the water comes from. As drinking water, it is delicious. Very crisp and wet tasting.

I'm a little disappointed, since I still have not my found my nectar of the Gods water source, but I'm also kind of happy I dont have to drive 2hrs every month.
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