The beverage that gets you going in the morning requires more than just great beans. Though the quality and date of roast matters a lot, it’s important to remember that coffee is, after all, 98% water. This means that brewing the best cup of joe relies on incorporating quality H2O in each extraction.
You’ve probably already experienced it before. The presence of an excess amount of minerals or dissolved solids in your water will affect the nuanced taste of your coffee, no matter how high-quality the beans you choose are. It’s important to consider the content of your water, which includes variables like calcium hardness, alkalinity, pH, total mineral and sodium content.
These measures of water quality are important, especially because the optimal mineral content and calcium hardness differs between brewed beverages. For example, hard water is preferred for coffee, while soft water is better for espresso. Water is rarely found in a pure form, as in without any dissolved substances. This is a good thing, as most machines rely on some amount of minerals to perform optimally.
Of course, the simple answer if you don’t want to invest in a titration kit to measure the quality of your water is to use bottled water or filtered water. You’ll taste the results in your coffee, but it’ll also extend the life of your machine by reducing scale build-up.