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redkiosk
Senior Member
redkiosk
Joined: 13 May 2012
Posts: 208
Location: Chicago Metro Area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Illy Francis-Francis X1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso w/ Esatto...
Vac Pot: Someday, very intriguing!
Drip: Trifecta MB, Kalita Wave...
Roaster: A sure path to divorce!
Posted Tue Jun 10, 2014, 9:58am
Subject: Re: Bunn Trifecta MB Owners' Thread
 

jbviau Said:

^^^ Jim, I think that might be the first post of yours I've seen without the "take care" sign-off! ;)

Posted June 8, 2014 link

Ha ha ha! The exact same thing happened at the pizzamaking.com forum. I forget my usual "take care" sign-off and someone wonders if I'm losing it! Hopefully Michael wasn't offended that I missed HIS "take care"! Have a great day everyone and of course… take care!

Jim

 
The pathologically precise are annoying, but right!
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OverCaffeinated
Junior Member


Joined: 7 Jun 2014
Posts: 6
Location: NYC
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Jun 12, 2014, 6:45pm
Subject: Re: Bunn Trifecta MB Owners' Thread
 

Michael, very interesting read about NYC water.

So, I received my TDS reader today in the mail and unfortunately, as expected, the TDS is low:

-filtered water from my fridge (what I've always been using to brew coffee): 23ppm
-tap water from my sink: 45ppm
-Poland Spring: 37ppm

Sigh!  What do you guys do to make your water the ideal ratio?  Are you all blessed with water that is already like this?  Reading online it seems fairly easy to lower the TDS, but how do you increase it without buying an expensive machine that puts minerals back in??

Just when I think I've gone as far as I could go with coffee (grinder, then a roaster, then a good machine) I realize I still have more to go!!

Any helpful tips?  I refuse to give up - I've invested too much time into this :)
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SoundGuyAndy
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Joined: 22 Mar 2012
Posts: 10
Location: New York, NY
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Alex Duetto II
Grinder: Virtuoso+Esatto, Vario-W
Drip: Aeropress, Chemex, Norelco...
Posted Fri Jun 20, 2014, 7:07pm
Subject: Re: Bunn Trifecta MB Owners' Thread
 

Hey OC,

Fellow NYCer here (Queens), so I feel you. NYC tap is indeed quite low TDS for good tasting brews. I've had the best results using either Volvic (more common, but also more expensive) or Crystal Geyser Alpine Spring (significantly less expensive, but stocked fewer places; at least by me, I can generally find it at Met supermarkets). Both are in the 150 ppm area, and have a pretty good composition for brewed coffee. I've also used Fiji when I can't find either, and it's pretty close to Volvic, although a little heavier. I'm not sure why barkingburro recommends against it, as it's in a totally different composition range from Poland Spring.

I was a disbeliever at first, but did some tests with filtered tap vs the Volvic, and the difference was night and day. In side-by-side Clever brews with separate electric kettles to keep temps as close as possible, the tap brew was really monotone compared to the Volvic. I haven't looked back since.

This has proven to hold true for both manual brewers and my Trifecta; the chemistry of extraction doesn't change from one to the other!

Best of luck,
Andy

P.S. - Is Kaffe 1668 the neighborhood shop you mentioned?
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OverCaffeinated
Junior Member


Joined: 7 Jun 2014
Posts: 6
Location: NYC
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sat Jun 21, 2014, 12:57pm
Subject: Re: Bunn Trifecta MB Owners' Thread
 

Hi Andy,

Thanks for the reply!  I've been on the hunt for better water and, like you, my research led me to Volvic and Crystal Geyser.  Unfortunately, the Crystal Geyser composition varies signifcantly from bottled source and the one I happened to pick up is sourced from NH and actually has a very low TDS (I might have to check out Met).  Volvic, like you said, certainly produces a better brew compared to my filtered water and Poland Spring (I've actually been using for the last week).  There is something I don't like about the taste of Volvic though, so I am not 100% satisfied (for my taste buds).

I just ordered online" Global Customized Water Kit AB Formula" which apparently is a mix you add to distilled water which is supposed to create the ideal water for coffee.  I am curious to try it out - I will report back once I try it!

And yes, I live in Tribeca, so the neighborhood coffee shop I was referring to was Kaffe 1668!  I really was blown away with some of their coffee a year or so ago.
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SoundGuyAndy
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Joined: 22 Mar 2012
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Location: New York, NY
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Alex Duetto II
Grinder: Virtuoso+Esatto, Vario-W
Drip: Aeropress, Chemex, Norelco...
Posted Sat Jun 21, 2014, 1:15pm
Subject: Re: Bunn Trifecta MB Owners' Thread
 

I'll look out for how you fare with the mix, that sounds intriguing. I need to confirm which source my Crystal Geyser is, but the last time I spot checked it with one of the inexpensive TDS pens, it did come in around 150ish.

I'm actually moving to a house soon, which has a whole-house filter on the line, so I might have to just investigate options for tweaking it at that point. Although I'm not opposed to lower TDS there so I don't have to worry about scale in the plumbing…

And yeah, I figured that was Kaffe 1668, the only other place in town I knew of that ditched Clover was Grumpy, but they went to Kone pourovers :-) I've liked 1668 much better since they made the switch, and actually think I like the new in house roasts a lot better than the older brews. (I know they used Intelli, but weren't they also featuring another roaster for the Clover?)
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OverCaffeinated
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Joined: 7 Jun 2014
Posts: 6
Location: NYC
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Tue Jun 24, 2014, 2:13pm
Subject: Re: Bunn Trifecta MB Owners' Thread
 

I probably should post this in a different thread, since it really isn't quite related to the Trifecta anymore, but maybe it will help someone else that went down the same path as me.

So it turns out why all my coffee tasted "flat" to me (even after using good, freshly roasted beans, and a great coffee machine) was indeed attributed to the water.

The past week I literally tried everything I could think of related to water.  I tried tap, filtered, filtered with adding in minerals to get it up to 150 ppm, bottled water (poland springs, arrowhead, crystal geyser, volvic), but they all still didn't make the coffee become as lively as I wanted (I think arrowhead and volvic got it the closest).  I finally tried today the "Global Customized Water Kit AB Formula" and wow what a difference it makes!  I really was shocked how much better the coffee was - I finally got the acidity that I was trying to achieve and replicate from coffee shops.  I even make the same coffee and went back to Arrowhead (which has approx. 150ppm) just to compare and ensure it was the water.  It really was - Arrowhead was incredibly more dull and not as tasty.

I really do recommend the water kit to others.  Actually, I'd be curious to hear other people's opinions on it.  I researched the internet and there really isn't much chatter about this product (there is some, and they do seem all positive).  

Anyway, I'm off to enjoy some more Guatemela Gesha ...mmmm....

p.s. Andy, I'm not sure what other roaster Kaffee uses.  I actually enjoyed their Intelli stuff the best :(  I was a little disappointed when they started roasting their own.......
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espressonewb1
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Joined: 11 Mar 2012
Posts: 51
Location: NY metro
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Mini Vivaldi
Grinder: Nuova Simonelli Mdx
Drip: Technivorm Mocca Master
Posted Tue Jun 24, 2014, 3:51pm
Subject: Re: Bunn Trifecta MB Owners' Thread
 

Could you tell us  where you purchased the Global Customized Water AB Formula? Looks like Seattle Coffee Gear carries it but wondering if you could order from the manufacturer directly. At $13 + shipping for 5 gallons it's cheaper than volvic (I make my own ro/di water but di water costs about $1 a gallon so you are looking at $(2.60 ($12.99/5) + $1=$3.60 + for a gallon for water).

Thanks in advance.

I'm using volvic for espresso. Have pulled some nice shots but looking for a cheaper alternative.

Also did you add it to RO or distilled?
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barkingburro
Senior Member
barkingburro
Joined: 23 Nov 2011
Posts: 181
Location: Irvine, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Vac Pot: Trifecta MB, CafeSolo,...
Posted Tue Jun 24, 2014, 5:00pm
Subject: Re: Bunn Trifecta MB Owners' Thread
 

Hey Howie, thanks for reporting back on Global Customized Water. I've been dragging my feet on ordering it but your comparison with bottled waters was the most definitive report I've heard! So I just ordered mine from Seattle Coffee Gear.

I'll be sure to report back how it compares with my filtered water (similar to RO). I think my case is very different from yours, because I get lots of acidity from my Trifecta and filtered water. And I have tried Crystal Geyser, Arrowhead, and Fiji water without noticing a significant improvement (no A/B comparisons, these samples were days apart).

By the way, for convenience, I plan on mixing a 200% concentrated solution using a half gallon container, instead of a gallon container. Then I'll just dilute with my filtered water 50/50 when I use it.

 
- Michael
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redkiosk
Senior Member
redkiosk
Joined: 13 May 2012
Posts: 208
Location: Chicago Metro Area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Illy Francis-Francis X1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso w/ Esatto...
Vac Pot: Someday, very intriguing!
Drip: Trifecta MB, Kalita Wave...
Roaster: A sure path to divorce!
Posted Tue Jun 24, 2014, 6:56pm
Subject: Re: Bunn Trifecta MB Owners' Thread
 

After all this discussion about water TDS, I started wondering about MY water. I've been running our Evanston, IL tap water through a Franke Triflow under cabinet filter to a dedicated faucet for the past 15 years. The water has always been excellent tasting (as good as any bottled that I have purchased) and we usually store a couple of those quart-size stainless steel Klean Kanteens with it in the refrigerator. My brewed coffee, whether it be with the Trifecta or the Kalita Waves has always tasted great. BUT, after this recent discussion, I just HAD to know what imy TDS actually was, so I purchased a TDS meter from Amazon. Today's initial TDS readings taken throughout the day… 150, 153, 162, 157, 151. OH yeah! Much better than I had ever hoped for. Just had to brew another Trifecta cup to celebrate. Take care!

Jim

 
The pathologically precise are annoying, but right!
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OverCaffeinated
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Joined: 7 Jun 2014
Posts: 6
Location: NYC
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Wed Jun 25, 2014, 2:53pm
Subject: Re: Bunn Trifecta MB Owners' Thread
 

espressonewb1 Said:

Could you tell us  where you purchased the Global Customized Water AB Formula? Looks like Seattle Coffee Gear carries it but wondering if you could order from the manufacturer directly. At $13 + shipping for 5 gallons it's cheaper than volvic (I make my own ro/di water but di water costs about $1 a gallon so you are looking at $(2.60 ($12.99/5) + $1=$3.60 + for a gallon for water).

Thanks in advance.

I'm using volvic for espresso. Have pulled some nice shots but looking for a cheaper alternative.

Also did you add it to RO or distilled?

Posted June 24, 2014 link

I added it to a gallon of distilled water.  I tested it right after and it was spot on 150 TDS.  Pretty cool.  I also think the idea is not only that it achieves TDS ideal, but it has the correct minerals in it to optimize extraction (knowing that some bottled water/filter water achieve the correct TDS, the minerals that it contains is high or low in certain categories).

I did buy it from Seattle Coffee Gear as it was the only place I saw selling it - now that I like the product I am going to try to call the manufacturer directly (they seem to sell the mixture in bigger bulk, which I would prefer to buy, but unavailable through Seattle Coffee).

I am sure the readers on this forum have a much more discerning taste than I do, so burro, i'd be curious to see what you think of it.
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