Observations On Water

Distillers cannot be too particular in selecting good water for

distilling, when about to erect distilleries.

Any water will do for the use of the condensing tubs or coolers, but

there are many kinds of water that will not answer the purpose of

mashing or fermenting to advantage; among which are snow and limestone

water, either of which possess such properties, as to require one fifth

more of grain to yie
d the same quantity of liquor, that would be

produced while using river water.

Any water will answer the distillers purpose, that will dissolve soap,

or will wash well with soap, or make a good lather for shaving.

River or creek water is the best for distilling except when mixed with

snow or land water from clay or ploughed ground. If no river or creek

water can be procured, that from a pond, supplied by a spring, if the

bottom be not very muddy will do, as the exposure to the sun, will

generally have corrected those properties inimical to fermentation. Very

hard water drawn from a deep well, and thrown into a cistern, or

reservoir and exposed to the sun and air for two or three days, has been

used in mashing with success, with a small addition of chop grain or

malt. I consider rain water as next in order to that from the river, for

mashing and fermentation. Mountain, slate, gravel and running water, are

all preferable to limestone, unless impregnated with minerals--many of

which are utterly at variance with fermentation. With few exceptions, I

have found limestone, and all spring water too hard for mashing,

scalding or fermenting.