How to choose the right type of water to brew tea

tea-brewingIf you like drinking tea, you may know the best water for brewing tea. In China ancient times, there was a tea scholar called Lu Yu who wrote a tea scripture and in his book, he said the water from the center of a swiftly moving mountain stream is the best water for brewing tea. However, it is really difficult to have access to fresh, clean mountain water for brewing tea. Therefore, we have to find ways to solve this problem. We list several types of water we can get and also list the advantages & disadvantages. And you can choose the right type to brew tea.

Well Water

Well water is from ground water and many minerals dissolve in it, making it have a ph above 7. Therefore, it is highly recommended to filter out these minerals before brewing, or these extra minerals may make well water smell and taste bad.

You can test your water know the exact ph of it. If the ph is over 8.5, it will make your tea taste bitter. Therefore, before brewing, filtering or softening well water is a good solution. However, if you found you can smell minerals after boiling the filtered water, this means it is still too hard to brew tea. And you need to soften it further more. Some reverse osmosis system will add back healthy minerals after filtering water, making the PH rise. When you buy one, pay attention to this advanced feature.

Bottled water

You also can choose bottled water to substitute for low quality tap water. However, not all bottled waters are ideal for cooking tea. For example, distilled water and mineral water are not good to brew tea. The former one is too soft and will cause flat-tasting teal, while the latter one is too hard and will leave harsh or metallic taste in your tea.

Bottled spring water is a good choice and some of them are much better than others. There are some rules you can follow:

  • The PH is about 7.
  • Water is in flavor.
  • The TDS content is less than 30 PPM.

If you found the quality of your filtered water is nearly as the same as bottled spring water, it is best to choose filtered tap water, considering the impact on the environment and the cost. If the filtered water is low quality, you also can upgrade your water filter. For example, you can install a more than 4-stage of water filtration system to get high quality filtered water.

Tap Water

If the tap water is high quality, you don’t need to filter it before brewing. Generally, you need to install an under sink water filter (mostly a reverse osmosis system) to get good RO water that nearly has the same quality as spring water. If your undersink water filter is not good enough, you may need to upgrade it into a new one with more filtration stages.

In some areas, the tap water is so hard. Therefore, you need a water softener system to make it soft first and then use a RO system to get filtered water. Hard water will make your tea taste bad, full of metallic taste. If you don’t want to upgrade your home water filtration system, buying bottled water is also an alternative.

Personal, I bought a Pur water filter pitcher to filter my water, because my tap water is relatively good. If the situation is the same, you can buy one like me. Here is a list of best water filter pitchers, including main brands like, Brita, Pur, Culligan, etc. However, if your tap water is terrible, you really need a reverse osmosis systems to remove contaminants in your water. You can choose some great brands, like Home Master, Ispring, Watts, etc. It is highly recommended to choose a more than 4 stages of filtration systems. We also compiled a list of best reverse osmosis systems for you.

If you insist on using soft water, like distilled water, you can add certain types of rocks in the water kettle or tea kettle to add some minerals, so that water is not so soft. Or tea you brew may taste flat.

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