Water Review #3 – Lofoten

This will be a challenging review – this water is so light! However, there’s plenty here to taste and notice. Hope you’ve been enjoying the reviews! Expect some more tea water recipes in the next couple months too. By the way, when tasting water, always use a clean glass, cleaned with hot soap and water and air-dried.

Today’s water is:


Origin: Lofoten, Norway

Bottle: 888 ml Glass

Mineral Content:

SulfateNot reported
SilicaNot reported
Ion concentrations in mg/L from Water Quality Report
Hardness8.35 mg/L as CaCO3
Alkalinity5.98 mg/L as CaCO3
Hardness to Alkalinity Ratio1.4
TDS 30 ppm
Electrical Conductivity at 25ºCNot reported
Cations charge.5079
Anions charge.4864
Water quality report error4.4%
Other statistics
Electrical Conductivity at 25ºC66 μS/cm
Drinking Temperature55ºF (12.5ºC)
Measurements (mine)

I paid $10 for this bottle of water at Salacious Drinks, so I expected a premium experience. Spoiler: it’s premium for sure. The bottle is incredible, with its enormous sloped cap and airline-like graphic design/font choice. The water itself seems to be from a freshwater reservoir. The inhabitants of Lofoten get this water out of their tap, it seems… lucky them! Thanks to the Lofoten water crew, we can get it too, well-bottled and presented.

At 30 TDS, this water is all about purity and subtlety. No smell. Taste is initially neutral-sweet. It is light and seems to hold together well in the mouth. I can taste some dissolved gases, like oxygen. There’s a slight salinity in the mid-aftertaste that’s really pleasant. It comes off as ultra-crisp, smooth and light with a very slight bitterness. Dominance of chloride with little/no sulfate causes it to taste smooth and clear. The taste is really flawless – the glass bottle imparts no off taste, and nothing went wrong during bottling. Quite often, water in a glass bottle can have a plastic or metallic taste because of a variety of factors: a plastic cap liner that underwent heating, plastic pipes on the bottling line, etc. Lofoten has really excellent quality control and tastes completely clear. I always feel good whenever I drink it – it’s somehow energizing. If you want a flawless, light water, this is a perfect choice.

For tea, this water would make extremely pure and refreshing sencha.

91 points

Water Review #2 – Saint-Geron

For such a big market, I’m astounded at the lack of water reviews available online. Why is hardly anybody talking about mineral water compared to wine, beer, whisky and other spirits? I’d like to really dive into the water. So, let’s continue with this series of water tasting!

Today’s water is:


Origin: Saint-Géron gallo romain source in Auvergne, France

Bottle: 750 ml Glass

Mineral Content:

Ion concentrations in mg/L from Water Quality Report
Hardness418 mg/L as CaCO3
Alkalinity925.3 mg/L as CaCO3
Hardness to Alkalinity Ratio0.45
TDS 1158 ppm
Electrical Conductivity at 25ºCNot reported
Cations charge18.64
Anions charge20.17
Water quality report error8.2%
Other statistics
Electrical Conductivity at 25ºC 1423 μS/cm
pH(forgot to measure)
Drinking Temperature60ºF (16ºC)
Measurements (mine)

I love the tall, squarish, elegant glass bottle. With its non-twist bottle cap (you need a bottle opener for this water), you’d better be quite thirsty or have company, because you’re not going to be able to re-cap it. I’ve never had this water before, and am excited to try it. I ordered it from Salacious Drinks, the colorfully-titled US water importer and distributor.

Upon opening, a few bubbles rush up to the surface, but not many. I actually notice a few tiny crystals of calcium and/or magnesium carbonate in the glass! The smell is quite fresh and mineral, the faint smell of petrichor. The smell is also slightly sweet. Initial taste: I was worried the bubbles would be too light from what I read, but there’s just enough natural carbonation here to give a tickling effervescence. It’s actually wonderful to have a carbonation level like this, as it doesn’t overpower the water itself and doesn’t hurt/fatigue the tongue. The body is very expansive, and the taste is rather sweet with a sodium bicarbonate salty softness in the back. The high TDS of 1158 doesn’t present itself as heavy here – it’s rich yet clean. It’s crisp even at 60º – very impressive. Low sulfate and chloride (and near-zero nitrate) give it a clean and clear taste, and high magnesium brings quite appreciated sweetness and presence. The 28 mg/L silica seems to help hold the water together nicely, as the texture is cohesive.

As the water is held in the mouth, the bubbles fade, leaving a very silky texture with a sweet-saltiness. There’s little to no milkiness in this water. There’s also a pleasant dry/crispness, possibly from potassium. It’s good that this water is carbonated, as without the bright, light carbonation it would likely come across as too dull and salty. I’m amazed at the sweetness and brightness under that huge bed of bicarbonate.

What other complexities can I find here… well, it’s not really that complex! The bubbles/magnesium can come across as a bit fruity in the front, as the bubbles are acidic. There is a “rock” taste here, very generally. Not limestone, but more a gray-colored rock… shale? Need to learn geology and taste some rocks I guess (semi-kidding)! Overall, drinking this water was very pleasant and satisfying. Did it blow me away? No. Was it well-composed and “executed”? Yes. It’s well-bottled, well-presented and there’s no wonder people have been drinking it since 1884.

For tea, this is not something to make tea with in any capacity. But maybe before or after it would cleanse the palate well and prepare it for something slightly earthy or mineral.

85 points