Brewed Coffee is 98% water.
Even if you're just a casual home barista, you've probably heard this trite factoid said or written somewhere at least once before.
And whether or not coffee is 98% or 51% water doesn't really matter, since I think most rational people would agree that brewed coffee is mostly made up of water, and therefore it's important.
Strangely, for whatever reason coffee snobs still don't seem to give water the credit it deserves when it comes to making delicious coffee.
I mean, on the surface, water isn't a really exciting topic if we're being honest with ourselves.
Fortunately, there are now quite a few coffee professionals who are dedicating the majority of their time into experimentation and research on water as it relates to brewing coffee.
Some of these coffee-water pioneers, like Maxwell Colonna-Dashwood and Christopher Hendon, have written entire books on the subject. And the SCAA has even created its own water standards for brewing specialty coffee.
At the end of the day though, most coffee drinkers don't want to make the time to understand the Chemistry behind water, they'd rather just have access to the best water for brewing coffee, period.
And this finally gets us to today's review, a product that was designed specifically for those who want SCA-standardized water, without having to do all of the mad scientist work to obtain it.
This is Third Wave Water.
What is Third Wave Water?
Third Wave Water is a small mix of minerals in powder-form that is meant to be added to a gallon of distilled or RO water for the “perfect” water for brewing coffee.
This mineral cocktail is essentially a mix of magnesium, calcium, and sodium, all of which help extract desirable coffee flavors according to the SCAA.
Since most people are confined to the water that comes from their local water source, filtration isn't a practical solution when there are certain minerals you want to keep in your water when brewing coffee.
Third Wave Water (TWW) was created to solve this problem.
How Do You Use Third Wave Water?
Preparing your Third Wave Water is very easy.
Add one packet of Third Wave Water to a gallon of distilled or RO water, then shake to dissolve and spread the formula.
You're now ready to add the water to your kettle or coffee maker for brewing.
Does Third Wave Water Work?
That's hard to say, since taste will always be subjective.
I will say that I did notice differences in the way my coffee tasted, though, I can't say for sure that I thought it was definitively better.
If anything, I noticed a significant change in mouthfeel. The Third-Wafe-Water-Coffee was seemingly chalkier than my usual Brita-filtered coffee, which has a cleaner mouthfeel.
At times, I also picked up an added bitterness that wasn't present in my Brita-filtered coffee. Of course, this was just an anecdotal observation instead of a super-scientific one.
How Much Does Third Wave Water cost?
At the time of this review, Third Wave Water is still in pre-production which means that the current packaging and pricing is very likely to change in the near-future. However, right now you can get a bag of 10 TWW capsules for $10, and that includes shipping.
This translates into 10 gallons of TWW for $10, or $1 per gallon.
Where Can I Buy Third Wave Water?
As far as I know, Third Wave Water is not yet available in retail stores.
What Coffeemakers Can I Use Third Wave Water With?
Any coffee maker will work with Third Wave Water. And yes, that includes Keurigs.
There are currently two different formulas available though depending on how you're planning to brew your coffee.
If you are looking to make espresso, you might want to try their Espresso Profile formula. However, if you're making drip coffee (or really using any coffee maker that isn't an espresso machine), you'll probably want to start with their Classic Profile.
While a gallon of water can get used up pretty quickly when brewing coffee, I think that $1 is a pretty good price for getting people to try out Third Wave Water for themselves.
If you already enjoy the coffee you're drinking with your current water, there is probably little point in purchasing Third Wave Water, since the differences in the water could be negligible from the onset.
However, if you live in a place with hard water that needs a lot of treatment, Third Wave Water may be an important solution to your coffee problems. Again, since coffee is mostly comprised of water.
For the price, there's really not much to lose in my opinion. But until I can prove that Third Wave Water makes definitively better coffee than my San Francisco tap water, I won't be ordering it again.
Tried Third Wave Water?
We'd love to know what you think about Third Wave Water if you've already used it to brew coffee. Leave a comment or review below to let us know what you thought!
Free Product & Affiliate Disclosure
Please also note that some of the items in this post contain affiliate links. This means that if you buy one of the items, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission on each sale. I only promote products or services that I have investigated and truly feel deliver value to you, regardless of the compensation I may receive.
Please do not spend any money on these products unless you feel you need them or they will help you make better coffee at home.