A blind water taste test to end all debate of the best bottled water

A blind water taste test to end all debate of the best bottled water

Photo Credits: MELINDA CHEN / AGGIE

Finding the undisputed best water

We’ve all been there — coming home after a hot summer day, reaching into the fridge, grabbing a cold bottle of D tier Fiji water and thinking, “Man, is this really the best water?” The quest to answer the illustrious question of which water is best has been attempted by many. With the help of Maurice Kennedy, a first-year history major who has an extensive knowledge of all things water, The California Aggie conducted a blind water taste test to find out which water deserves to be among the greats. To rank our selections, we used the common ranking system of F-tier to S-tier.

F Tier: Arrowhead, Nestle Pure Life

These waters unfortunately fall flat in numerous departments. The spring water of Arrowhead tastes less like it came straight from the freshest mountain streams and more like the water you drink when all hope is lost — the water that increases your thirst rather than quenches it. While Nestle Pure Life may not taste bad initially, its aftertaste assaults your taste buds and simply ruins the drinking experience. Save yourself the trouble and skip out on this one.

D Tier: Fiji water

Considering the hype that surrounds it, Fiji water is a bit of a disappointment. While it doesn’t deserve the F tier ranking, it nonetheless lacks in taste and falls short. The natural filtering of Fiji water may be impressive but does little overall to deliver on the promise of a smooth taste. It’s a decent bottled water experience, but it does not demand to be the premium water experience.

C Tier: LIFEWTR, Crystal Geyser, tap water

LIFEWTR is a crisp water with good taste, but when compared to the other waters — which we’ll discuss soon — it’s only good enough to be in the middle of the pack. It’s not a bad choice of water, but rather than inspiring thirst with creativity, you’ll probably be inspired to choose something more if you can. Crystal Geyser is along the same lines. A good choice that is passable, but not a go-to water. Tap water surprisingly finds its way into the middle tier with an average taste that isn’t quite flat but also not outstandingly crisp.  While you probably won’t rush to the nearest sink for a satisfying drink, it’s at least a lot better than any of the previous waters.

B Tier: Dasani, Aquafina, Evian

Dasani initially had promise, but unless you’re a fan of an overpowering water flavor, it proved to be too much to warrant any ranking higher than B. Still an enjoyable water to drink briskly, but nothing brilliant. As far as Aquafina is concerned, the flavor is nice and clean. An above-average water that gets the job done when you’re in need of something refreshing. Evian provides a nice flavor beaming with natural electrolytes. It has a certain clarity to it that the other waters lacked, but its overall flavor is what holds it back from that coveted A ranking.

A Tier: Essentia

Essentia is water you want to have at the ready. Its subtle flavor is enough to keep you hydrated and satisfied no matter the occasion. In just a few sips you’ll start to feel the abundance of electrolytes re-energizing you which will take you from trudging along to putting more pep in your step. Whether you’re coming fresh off a workout or simply want to experience water that rewards your taste buds with an invigorating feeling, this is high-quality, essential water.

S Tier: Smartwater

The superior water that stands tall above all the rest. This water has everything you need: hydrating qualities, sophisticated taste and a pure aftertaste. Just like Essentia, you feel the effects of Smartwater right away, but what makes it so special is that its flavor is truly unique. It is the culmination of all the strong qualities of the A and B tier waters without the lackluster hindrances of the rest of the bunch. Once you’ve tasted Smartwater, there’s no going back.

Written by: Vincent Sanchez — features@theaggie.org