Soft water is a key component of many popular beers, but a new bakery chain in the USA is proving that it’s a vital part of making tasty dough treats as well.The Original Brooklyn Water Bagel Co, which recently opened a new outlet in Los Angeles, aims to provide the authentic New York bagel experience – even if you’re halfway across the country. And an important part of that is getting the water just right, as part-owner and talk show host Larry King recently told LA Biz.
New York’s municipal tap water is very soft, and it’s thought that this quality is what makes the bagels better in the Big Apple. Rather than importing its water all the way from New York, the company has a secret “Brooklynising” process that involves stripping LA’s hard tap water of its mineral content, then treating it until only sodium is left before the dough is boiled in it. This way, they achieve a bagel just the way it should be: crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside.
It may seem like an arduous process for a bread product, but bagels are serious business in the USA. The water used in their creation even earned its own description in the Los Angeles Times: “Think tough, hip vegan water that loves Justin Beiber but acts like it hates him.”
Bagels aren’t the only thing to benefit from “Brooklynised” water – last year, the Original Brooklyn Water Bottling Company started bottling and selling their product to homesick New Yorkers around the USA. In a taste test, 12 out of 18 adults could tell the difference between ordinary tap water and the bottled stuff, with participants saying the tap water had “more minerals” or tasted “bitter”.