The water quality in vodka, whiskey, gin, rum and other distilled spirits plays a huge role in the finished product. Without a proper filtration process, you could be letting unwanted minerals and bacteria alter the taste and look of your drink.
Besco Commercial Water Treatment has over 200 combined years of experience in industrial water systems. Our skilled technicians can install a customized water filtration system that will allow you to use the most optimized water for distillation.
The types of water needed for scotch whisky is different than the kind of water needed for vodka. That’s why having a professional water treatment company work with you is vital.
We know that you are the experts in your industry. We will use our knowledge of water quality to work with you and create the perfect solution.
Water affects so much of the distillation process. It plays a vital role in the mashing, cooling and reduction processes. If you overlook a water quality issue for too long, it will even have a major impact on your distilling equipment, plumbing and bottles.
Best Water for Whiskey Making
The importance of water quality for distilling whiskey cannot be overstated. It plays an important role throughout the entire process.
Water, yeast and barley are the three pillars of whiskey making. Of those three, water is considered the lifeblood of the product. It is heavily involved in the following processes:
- The steeping of green barley before it is malted.
- The mashing of malted barley grist and flour at high temperatures.
- The fermentation stage where yeast and water are added inside the washback.
- The cooling of the distilled spirit though tubs or condensers.
- Diluting the spirit.
Having contaminated water will affect every stage of that process. Unwanted minerals can change the taste, odor and color of your product.
During fermentation and mashing, an organic chemical called Oxalic Acid is produced in very small amounts. It’s a harmless substance in those small amounts and is often found in vegetables.
Many distilleries use water sourced locally, and it often contains Calcium. While Calcium is good for your body, it creates a white, clumpy substance when it is mixed with Oxalic Acid (called Calcium Oxalate).
Calcium Oxalate isn’t soluble in alcohol or water and is often called “floc”. By using a reverse osmosis water filter system to eliminate the Calcium, your master distiller will be able to use perfectly crafted water every single day.
Water Softeners for Distilleries
Distillery water usage is very unique. In most cases, you want water to have a pH between 7 and 8. If it below 6.5 pH, it is considered acidic while if it is above 8.5 pH, it is considered basic.
Most distillers will tell you that pH levels of 5.5 produce the perfect acidic environment for the fermentation process. Hard water, which is water that contains a lot of minerals, keeps the pH level high.
By installing a reverse osmosis system, the water will have calcium and other minerals removed which will make the water more acidic. By making the water more acidic, it will lower the pH into your preferred range around 5.5 pH.
More specifically, the mashing and fermentation process need low levels of pH and calcium carbonate. High levels of calcium carbonate keep the pH too high, which in turn stop the yeast from interaction with sugars in the mash. It also breeds an environment which makes it easier for bacteria to grow.
Industrial Water Treatment for Distilleries
Installing a water treatment system in your distillery is one of the best investments you can make. It will increase the quality and consistency of your product while also keeping your equipment and facility in good condition.
For more information on what water treatment system is best for your business, call us directly at (800) 964-0257. You can also fill out our online contact form and one of our water treatment specialists will reach out to you shortly after.