Enjoy the beer that you deserve.
What it does :
The Brussels water profile has a high temporary hardness. It is also known for containing moderately low levels of sulfates. The ratio of sulfates to chloride is 5.6 which, if not adjusted for brewing, will contribute to a beer that may be extra bitter for a given hopping rate. The estimated range of beer color that you can brew with this water profile is from deep amber to brown. Representative ion levels for the Brussels water profile are shown below.
What it is:
The city of Brussels is located in the European country of Belgium. The water supply for the City of Brussels is provided by a combination of the Maas River, ground water, and springs. Let's take a closer look at the characteristics of water from the Brussels area to understand its suitability for brewing beer.
How it works:
For brewing purposes, knowing the ion profile of your water is important for four main reasons:
Treating your source water supply is largely needed only for all-grain brewing, since malt extract manufacturers account for the necessary water chemistry in making the extract for you. However, if you use a large percentage of specialty grains in an extract brew, that may make water treatment necessary.
Use our Water Treatment calculator to compute the types and amounts of additives needed to modify your base water to mimic the Brussels brewing water profile. Knowing the starting ion levels present in your source water supply is important so that you do not overcompensate with additives. You should be able to get this data for your source water from your local water company.
To imitate the Brussels water profile, we recommend that you begin with distilled water. Then, consider selecting from additives like gypsum, Epsom salts, non-iodized canning salt, baking soda, calcium chloride, and chalk. First determine which of these additives, and how much of each, that you need to modify your local water to meet the target Brussels water profile. Then, put these additives in the mash, not the plain base water, or some may not dissolve. Monitor the pH of the mash during these additions to ensure that it remains between 5 to 5.5, which is optimal for desired enzyme activity.
Because of water losses that occur throughout the brewing process, you will need more water than your intended batch size. Use our Water Required calculator to determine how much brewing water you'll need from start to finish of your next batch of beer.
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