Yo – do you remember that lager I brewed with homegrown Magnum hops? Well, if you do remember, I brewed that beer using water right out of my tap. Mike wanted to try something. He said we could doctor the beer with brewing salts to see if we could learn something about their effects on the flavor of the finished beer. Watch this video to learn more about this experiment and what we learned.

The Experiment

Mike made up special suspensions/solutions using specific measurements of Calcium Sulfate and Calcium Chloride so we can add them to different samples of the beer I brewed. We had one as the control and added 100 PPM of CaCl2 to one sample and 100 PPM of CaSO4 to the other.

The Results

The sample that we put in Calcium Chloride in didn’t seem that much different. I guess you could say it was a bit more malty but because it was a SMaSH beer, there wasn’t much to manipulate. The Sulfate-affected beer sample was more noticeable. The bitterness became sharper and lingered longer in the aftertaste.

I think the results of this experiment made it clear that adding Calcium Sulfate ( CaSO4 or Gypsum) to my brewing water is a needed step to brew quality lagers.