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The Luxurious Olympics of Awarded Bottled Waters Brands from around the World

The Luxurious Olympics of Awarded Bottled Waters Brands from around the World

When you think about the Olympics, Berkley Springs, West Virginia, doesn’t normally come to mind. Now in its 30th year, the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting Competition is a well known event for Water Sommeliers, Bottled Water Brands and Bottled Water enthusiasts from around the globe.

Often referred to as “The Olympics of Bottled Water”, the competition draws in over 100 brands from around the world to compete for medals in five major categories.

  1. Best Municipal Water
  2. Best Non-Carbonated Bottled Water
  3. Best Purified Drinking Water
  4. Best Carbonated Bottled Water
  5. Best Package Design

The first four categories are judged by a panel of eleven media judges based on taste.

Each judge rates the waters competing for attributes including appearance, aroma, taste, mouth feel, and aftertaste.

Here is what the judges are looking for in each attribute:

  • Appearance: Should be clear, or slightly opaque for glacial waters
  • Aroma: There should be none
  • Taste: should be clean
  • Mouth Feel: it should feel light
  • Aftertaste: it should leave you thirsty for more

The fifth category is based solely on the best package design and is voted on by the attendees of the competition, which is why it is called the People’s Choice Award.

Click here to view all the winners from the competition since 1991.

Here are the results from the 2021 Competition.

Best Municipal Water 2021
Best in the World – Rossarden, Tasmania, Australia
Best in the US – Metropolitan Water District of Southern CA
2nd – Santa Ana, CA
3rd – Southwest Water Authority, Dickinson, ND
4th — Fort Wayne, IN

Best Bottled Water 2021
1st – Ulunom, Shizuoka, Japan
2nd – Eldorado Natural Spring Water, Eldorado Springs, CO
3rd – Jasa Spring Water, Gorham, ON, Canada
4th – Samaria Natural Spring Water, Crete, Greece
5th – Grand Springs Spring Water, Alton, VA

Best Sparkling – 2021
1st – Fleck Sparkling Mineral Water, Gibbston, New Zealand
2nd – Samaria Sparkling Water, Chania, Crete, Greece
3rd – Mount Pure Sparkling Water, St. George’s, Grenada, West Indies
4th – Tesanjski Kiseljak, Tesanj, Bosnia & Herzegowina
5th tie – Mountain Valley Sparkling Spring Water, Hot Springs, AR
5th tie – Castle Rock Sparkling Glacial Water, Shasta Springs, CA

Best Purified Drinking Water – 2021
1st – Ophora Hyper-Oxygenated Water, Santa Barbara, CA
2nd – Waterfy Me – Gaithersburg, MD
3rd – Lesage Natural, Lesage, WV

People’s Choice– 2021–Best Packaging
1st – Kariba Premium Spring Water, Milton, ON, Canada
2nd – Svalbaroi Polar Iceberg Water, Longyearbyen, Norway
3rd – Hawaiian Springs Natural Artesian Water, Kea’au, HI
4th – Fleck Sparkling Mineral Water, Gibbston, New Zealand
5th – Vibrant WTR, Hamilton, OH

At Beverage Universe we conducted our own water tasting competition and the judges included My wife Allyson, My sister Barri, My sister Charlee, and myself. I picked 28 bottled waters that we sell on Beverage Universe and we each did a taste test for each attribute used by the judges in the Berkley Springs Water Tasting competition.

appearance, aroma, taste, mouth feel, and aftertaste.

We gave a score of 1, 2 or 3 for each attribute and the waters with the 3 highest scores for each attribute won the category.

1 = Water did not meet attribute description.

2 = Water met attribute description

We then added up the scores and we gave Gold, Silver and Bronze Medals to the waters with the highest scores.

Here are the categories and the Brands we tasted.

Category: Best Still Water

Brands: Acqua Panna, Antipodes, Aur’a Natural Gold Water, Driftless Fine Water, Evamor, Evian, Fiji, Fiuggi, Font D’Or, Hildon, Iceland Spring, Icelandic Glacial, LLanllyr Source, Lurisia, Mondariz, Mountain Valley, Saratoga, Smeraldina, Vellamo, Volvic, Voss.

Category: Best Sparkling Water

Brands: Antipodes, Aur’a Natural Gold Water, Ferrelle, Fiuggi, Font D’Or, Gerolsteiner, Hildon, Icelandic Glacial, LLanllyr Source, Lurisia, Mondariz, Mountain Valley, Perrier, Saint Geron, San Pellegrino, Saratoga, Smeraldina, Topo Chico, Vellamo, Vichy Catalan, and Voss

Category: Best Bottle Design:

All 28 Brands were used to determine our favorite bottle design and we voted for our top 3 favorites.

Here are the results:

Category: Best Still Water

Gold: Aur’a Natural Gold Water

Silver: Driftless Fine Water

Bronze: Fiji Water

Category: Best Sparkling Water

Gold: Hildon

Silver: LLanllyr Source

Bronze: Vichy Catalan

Category: Best Bottle Design:

Gold: Antipodes

Silver: Vellamo

Bronze: Aur’a Natural Gold Water

The results were very close, and we did like all of the waters, and these were based on our personal opinions.

The lowest score was a 7 and the highest score was a 10.

This was a lot of fun and I suggest you try this at home with your family and friends. I plan to hopefully do this competition again in the future with some of my friends to find out what they think. If you enjoyed this blog post, please comment and let us know and don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter for more great articles.

Source: BWW. “BIG WINS AT 31st WATER TASTING IN BERKELEY SPRINGS.” Bottled Water - The Definitive Bottled Water Site, 5 June 2021, www.bottledwaterweb.com/newsdetail.do?k=580.

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