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Truth Serum 1.2

Truth Serum 1.2

Designed by Arby Avanesian - Questions? Use the LIVE CHAT.

Water is king.

After all, it's the lens through which we appreciate specialty coffee & tea. Why not choose a lens that brings it all beautifully into focus?

With Truth Serum, expect clarity, sweetness, and aromatics like you've never experienced.


  • FLAVOR NOTES - Taste the notes, clear as day.
  • SWEETNESS - In copious amounts.
  • MOUTHFEEL - Satin smooth and syrupy.
  • AROMATICS - Room-filling.

Suitable for espresso machines. Just add to zero TDS water: distilled, deionized, or reverse osmosis.


Don't love it? Get a refund, no questions asked.

Sizes Explained

Sample - 2 cups of 5x concentrate. Enough to brew 10 cups.

Standard - 2 gallons of 5x concentrate. 1 extra dropper bottle of buffer concentrate is also included for those who prefer lower intensity. Enough to brew 150 cups.

Reformulation - 2 gallons of hardness concentrate, and 2 bottles of buffer concentrate. To prepare the Reformulation, the user will need a scale with 0.1 gram resolution to precisely measure the dropper concentrate, only one of which will be used for the default version of the recipe. The other dropper bottle of buffer concentrate is extra, for those prefer lower intensity. Enough to brew 300 cups.

The mineral composition is the same for all, optional extra buffer aside.



1) To prepare the 1x brewing water, mix the following by weight or volume:

  1. 1 part 5x concentrate
  2. 4 parts Zero TDS water

For example, mix together 200mL 5x concentrate and 800mL zero TDS water to produce 1 liter of 1x brewing water.


1) To prepare 1 gallon of 5x concentrate, mix the following in a 1 gallon container, in the listed order:

  1. 1894.5 grams Zero TDS water
  2.       8.3 grams Dropper concentrate
  3. 1883.9 grams Bag concentrate

Please use the included dropper to help carefully weigh out the dropper concentrate. Measure it in a separate cup before adding it to the mix to ensure you get the amount right.

2) To prepare the 1x brewing water, mix the following by weight or volume:

  1. 1 part 5x concentrate
  2. 4 parts Zero TDS water

For example, mix together 200mL 5x concentrate and 800mL zero TDS water to produce 1 liter of 1x brewing water.

Release Notes

July 19, 2023 - Truth Serum 1.2

- All harshness significantly reduced.

- Purity and directness of flavor given a boost.

- Extraction speed slightly reduced.

- Based on the performance, this is expected to be the last major update of the year.

May 30, 2023 - Truth Serum 1.1

- Rebalanced to improve clarity, sweetness, versatility and neutrality. Improved performance with all styles of tea and coffee.

- Bassy flavors reduced, top notes increased.

- All harshness (bitterness/astringency) reduced, without sacrificing depth. Extract your coffee & tea harder than ever for complex, potent, concentrated brews.

- Concentration increased from 4x to 5x. The Standard version now brews 10 gallons, while the Reformulation brews 20.

April 22, 2023 - Truth Serum 1.0

- Concentrate the desirable flavors more than ever without running into harshness.

- Now suitable for use in espresso boilers, with a Langelier Saturation Index of close to zero. This means it will neither corrode nor form scale deposits in espresso boilers.

- Top notes have taken a step back in the mix, and will be given a boost in the next iteration.

- Slight boost in mouthfeel.

January 28, 2023 - Truth Serum

- After evolving steadily over the last 5-6 years, the recipe has been named after its grandfather recipe, Truth Serum (Legacy).

August 7, 2022 - Untitled

- After many iterations under various names dating all the way back to 2018, the recipe has been made available for purchase.


 1) What is zero TDS water?

TDS stands for Total Dissolved Solids. Zero TDS water is water that contains no dissolved solids, especially in the form of minerals. Using zero TDS water to dilute the Truth Serum concentrate is the only way to ensure the correct mineral composition of the resulting brew water.

2) What types of zero TDS water are there?

  • Distilled - Zero TDS, but with altered gas composition. Lots of variation between brands, so try many. Find at most grocery stores.
  • Deionized (DI) - Zero TDS, with natural gases left intact. Ideal. A low barrier to entry option for DI water is a deionization pitcher like Zero Water.
  • Reverse osmosis (RO) - Technically low TDS, with gas composition depending on the source water and whether the RO system includes a degasser unit. It is advised to avoid RO systems which degas the water, since this will negatively impact the brewing. If degassed water is used, then the final brew water should be aerated through some form agitation before brewing. For example, pouring from a height into the kettle before brewing, shaking it in a bottle, etc. A high amount of aeration is not needed, but some can help. It is highly recommended to put any RO water through a Zero Water filter or other means of deionization to achieve absolute zero TDS for use with this water recipe. Please check all RO sources with any cheap TDS meter to ensure it reads 0 ppm before using it to dilute Truth Serum.

3) Which type of zero TDS water should I use?

Try every source available to you. Not all sources of a given type of zero TDS water are created equal, and the source is make-or-break for the experience. The recommended long-term solution for zero TDS water is an under-sink reverse osmosis -> deionization setup, using your tap water as the source.

4) How should the concentrates be stored?

Refrigerate all concentrates to preserve freshness.

5) Why not concentrate the recipe higher than 5x?

Truth Serum cannot be concentrated higher than 5x without significant degradation to the quality and consistency of the recipe in the days following its production, as a result of mineral precipitation.

6) What makes Truth Serum different from mineral packet brands?

Truth Serum's liquid form factor allows for ratios of ions not possible with dry mineral packets, which must omit certain minerals in order to dissolve properly.

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Customer Reviews

Based on 6 reviews
Istvan Erdelyi
Best water on the market for coffee

Water is more important for bringing out coffee's flavor characteristics than any other variable (more than grinders and brewers), and Truth Serum by far outperforms any of the other popular brands on the market. So much greater complexity and intensity, with bag notes clearly presented to the forefront.

Tom Zheng
Absolute must have for good tea!

I thought I was being a bit ridiculous buying special water for tea but my god it's 100% worth it. Completely changes the experience - if you have high quality tea it's a must have. Absolutely night and day difference.

Evan Evan Patamia
Excellent for any kind of tea

I have tasted most of the revisions, from untitled to Truth serum 1.2, while I cannot say my pallete is fine tuned enough to describe the difference between them, the impact on tea is clearly apparent between Truth serum and my unfortunately lacking filtered tap water. Consumer beware! Drinking daily with Truth Serum may result in the realization that the water you were using was actually not that good in the first place! Truly an awesome product, and I advise any serious tea head try this formulation!

Thomas Williams
Easy Peasy

I love this product. I use the Reformulation, to save cost, and mix up my 5x concentrate. I use a large pitcher 1 part concentrate 4 parts Zero water, literally takes 1 minute to have brew water for the day across all my devices. Why not?!!

Better price, quality, and sustainability than any bottled water I've tried

As someone who has gone deep down the tea rabbit hole recently, water has definitely made the biggest quality difference out of everything I've experimented with. I've tried different filtered and bottled waters, and this water is by far the best I've tried. Good teas become sweeter, richer, and more complex, and even lower quality teas have many of their undesirable traits dampened. Cheaper and better for the environment than buying plastic gallon bottles each week—win/win.