水的硬度與茶湯品質的關聯

水硬度|茶水部 |LittoTea|澄萃茶藝
水硬度|茶水部 |LittoTea|澄萃茶藝

水的硬度其實會影響茶的風味?

水質的特性對茶湯品質有很大的影響。一般而言,依照水中鈣與鎂的含量,有軟水硬水之分,軟水含有的鈣離子與鎂離子較少,每公升的含量低於10毫克,而超過10毫克則爲硬水,含有較多的鈣離子與鎂離子。以泡茶用水來說,選擇軟水較佳,例如蒸餾水或經過滲透過濾的水,尤其是注重香氣的茶葉,因為軟水較不會影響茶葉的色香味,沖泡出來的茶湯味香濃醇,若是使用硬水,例如地下水及山泉水,來沖泡注重香氣的茶葉,反而會使香氣無法充分散發出來,硬水較適合用來沖泡注重喉韻與口感的茶葉。對初步接觸茶葉的人而言,可以先從軟水沖泡入手[1-2]。

1.天然的水之中,泉水水質最好,因為經過多層砂岩質的滲透過濾,雜質少,較為清透,水質較軟,沖泡出來的茶色鮮亮,色香味俱佳,不過品質因水源與流程不同而異,其中的硬度礦物質含量也有所不同[2-4]。

2.自來水是生活中較常見的水源,使用自來水泡茶時,最好先使用濾水器過濾、靜置一段時間或將水煮沸後再來沖泡,透過煮沸可以將水中的碳酸氫鎂與碳酸氫鈣分解沉澱,使水質變軟,同時也可以消除自來水中的氯氣,減少影響茶湯滋味的可能性[2-4]。

3.隨手可得的礦泉水也可以用來泡茶,不過首先要了解其中礦物質的含量,含量低較適合沖泡注重香氣的茶,反之含量多則較適合沖泡注重喉韻的茶[2-4]。

泡茶的水含有充分的氧氣,才能使茶葉成分充分地溶解出來,因此過度沸騰的熱水、放置在熱水瓶很久或已經放置一段時間的水均缺少氧氣,因此較不適合拿來泡茶,也因為水中的二氧化碳消失,造成水質變老,沖泡出來的茶湯色澤黯淡,也缺少香味與活性,而再次沸騰的水冷卻後容易變質,也使得茶葉成分充分溶解的能力下降。水的硬度不只影響酸鹼值(PH值)、影響茶湯色澤,也會影響茶葉中成分的溶解度,軟水本身含有的溶質少,因此茶葉成分的溶解度高,而茶葉成分在硬水中的溶解度較低,同時硬水會促使茶多酚氧化,使得茶湯顏色較為深暗,也失去茶葉原有的清香與滋味。根據實驗顯示,PH值小於7或軟水沖泡出來的茶湯兒茶素溶解度較高,香氣亦較好,而硬水沖泡的茶湯顏色則偏暗且較帶有澀味[2-5]。

要泡出一杯好的茶,除了要有好的茶葉,還要有適合的沖泡用水做搭配。不同的水質呈現出不同的茶湯風貌,也許下次你可以依照當下的心情,配合水質來選擇做出不一樣的茶湯變化,不過澄翠茶藝仍提醒並不是每一種水都適合拿來泡茶哦!

部長茶舖裡的每一種茶葉都相當適合拿來製作不同口感的茶湯變化: http://www.littotea.com/shop/

-Research team @ 茶水部 LittoTea, 澄萃茶藝.

 

Water hardness plays an important role on the taste of tea.

Water plays a critical role on the taste of tea. The quantity of calcium and magnesium determines the type of the water, soft water and hard water. Soft water contains little calcium and magnesium, about less than 10 mg per liter, while hard water contains more, over 10 mg per liter. It is recommended to brew tea with distilled water, reverse osmosis or filtered water, especially for tea featuring the scent. Soft water influences quality of tea less and makes tea more scented. On the contrary, the tea aroma may not release completely in hard water. Hard water is more suitable to brew tea featuring the aftertaste. It is better to start with soft water for tea beginners [1-2].

  1. Spring water ranks the best of all natural water. It becomes pure and soft after filtered through many rock stratums, which makes tea look bright and taste fresh. However, the quality and the amount of minerals in spring water differs from origins and routes[2-4].
  1. Running water is more common in our daily life. It is better to filer water, put water aside for a while or boil water first before brewing tea. Magnesium bicarbonate and calcium bicarbonate would be decomposed through the boil, and water becomes softer. Meanwhile, boil helps eliminate chlorine which may damage the quality of tea[2-4].
  1. Mineral water can be used to brew tea with the difference of minerals in water. Water containing fewer minerals is suitable for tea featuring the scent, while water containing more minerals is recommended for tea featuring the aftertaste[2-4].

Water for brewing should contain sufficient oxygen to make ingredients in tea dissolve entirely. Therefore, long-boiled water, water in thermos for a long time or water put aside for a while should not be used to brew tea due to the lack of oxygen. Meanwhile, the lack of carbon dioxide in water makes water stale, which may make tea look darker and taste tasteless. Repeated boiled water deteriorates easily, and reduces ingredients in tea to release. Hardness of water influences not only hydrogen ion concentration (PH value) which is related to the color of tea but the amount of ingredients in tea release. Ingredients in tea dissolve more in soft water containing fewer solutes compared to the lower release in hard water. Furthermore, polyphenols would be oxidized in hard water, which makes tea darker and distasteful. Research shows that catechin releases more in PH value below 7 or soft water. The scent is better as well. However, tea brewed with hard water looks darker and tastes astringent[2-5].

A favorable cup of tea collocates good quality of tea with water corresponded. Diverse taste of tea is determined by different kind of water. Maybe you can choose the taste you want with either soft water or hard water depends on your mood. Still, LittoTea reminds that not all kinds of water are suitable to brew tea!

Try diverse tastes of all tea in our shop, and definitely you would be addicted to it: http://www.littotea.com/shop/

-Research team @ 茶水部 LittoTea, 澄萃茶藝.

 

Reference

[1]http://health.morningstar.com.tw/healthqa/sick_ans.asp?tb=3&id=581

[2]http://www.vegtrends.com/common-sense-wisdom-tips/health-knowledge/item/293-%E6%B3%A1%E8%8C%B6%E6%96%B9%E6%B3%95.html

[3]http://adeline889.pixnet.net/blog/post/24410401-%E6%B3%A1%E8%8C%B6%E7%94%A8%E6%B0%B4%E7%9A%84%E9%81%B8%E6%93%87

[4]http://forum.pchome.com.tw/content/87/20977

[5]漫談泡茶用水

http://www.tres.gov.tw/htmlarea_file/web_articles/teais/1372/0213-27.pdf

Lynn Chiang

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