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Water – does it guarantee quality?

To be sure, you cannot have coffee without water, because it represents 99% of the beverage. That’s why it deserves our full attention and that of modern coffee equipment manufacturers.

Today, water in its purest form hardly exists in nature anymore. Where it comes from determines what minerals it contains, along with its physical properties and taste.

Heating water causes minerals like calcium and magnesium to be released into it. The hardness of water, whether expressed as a degree or as a total, refers to the amount of minerals in the water. The higher this number, the harder the water.

Here is an overview that simplifies this property somewhat:

0-4 degrees German hardness grade, very soft water

4-8 degrees German hardness grade, soft water

8-12 degrees German hardness grade,
medium-hard water

12-18 degrees German hardness grade,
quite hard water

18-30 degrees German hardness grade, hard water

30+ degrees German hardness grade, very hard water

The hardness grade of the water also complements the pH value, which determines whether the water is acid or alkaline.

What’s important for our purposes:

Soft water is more acid, while hard water is more alkaline.

This fact helps us to determine what the best coffee roast would be and how it will taste in the cup. The worst mistake you can make is to choose varieties that are outstanding but won’t stand up to the properties of the water.

For example, up to 6 degrees German hardness grade, the water will react like an acid. Acid water will add to the acids already in the coffee. In terms of taste, a blend with a light roast will disappoint.

Another example: At 18 degrees German hardness grade or more, the pH value is in the alkaline range. This will neutralise the delicate fruit acids, particularly those of arabica varieties, rendering the taste insipid and bland.

The solution is water with an average pH value (7.0) with a total German hardness grade of 8 degrees, a best-case scenario, but generally not that common. However, today’s water filtering technology makes it possible (at least 95% of the time).

Our customers should also know that the water filter also protects us from calcium deposits (which affect the heating element and controls) and from very acidic water (extremely soft water, which has a low pH value). That means a longer lifespan for the equipment, and thus lower cost, but primarily very good coffee quality – and ultimately a better bottom line.

No coffee without water!