Everyone knows that drinking water is important to their health; however, many people find that flavored waters or carbonated waters are far more palatable than the water that comes out of the faucet. That being said, if you’ve ever been traveling and realized that the water tastes different (for better or worse) in the location you’re visiting, you’re not alone. Due to the fact that the mouth mostly tastes the impurities and imperfections in water, it’s only reasonable to expect water to taste different based on where in the world you’re drinking it. Here are five of the most common reasons why water tastes different everywhere you go.
1. Not all water is filtered.
One of the biggest factors in taste when it comes to drinking water has to do with whether the water is filtered or not. To put it simply, the mineral content and other compounds found in common tap water can play a significant role in affecting how certain water tastes.
This is why the distilled water you put in your humidifier has basically no taste but the water out of your tap may have quite a strong taste depending on if you’re using city water or well water. Water filtration installations can help purify and filter out some of the minerals and compounds in your water, ultimately affecting the taste. However, not every business, restaurant, or home has a filtration system in place.
2. Different minerals impact the taste of water.
As was just explained, minerals are what make water taste a specific way. However, different types of minerals may make water taste different based on the concentration levels. For example, water may have a certain chalk-like taste if it came from a location with an abundance of limestone. To put it another way, the minerals present in the environment the water is taken from can make a difference in how the water itself tastes.
3. Where the water is sourced from does make a difference.
Just as minerals affect the taste of water, so, too, can the region that the water is sourced from. Glacier water or water that is taken from the mountains may have a fresher, purer taste, while water sourced from lakes and rivers may have more trace minerals in it. While you might think of water from tropical areas having a particularly nice taste, in actuality the increase in sulfur near beaches can make it so that this water has a sulfurous odor and taste.
4. Restaurants may have imported water.
Even if a restaurant doesn’t filter its water, it may have water imported from a different supplier. Whether that means you’re getting bottles of Perrier delivered to your table or drinking Voss, the fact that different establishments may choose to differentiate themselves from the competition by offering a variety of waters means that you could go into two side-by-side restaurants and get a different flavor of the water. The next time you’re having fun on a blind date, you can put this theory to the test by ordering water at a restaurant and the bar you head to later. Even if both places are nearby, the water may be much different.
5. Ice could compromise the flavor of your water.
One final note to keep in mind when it comes to the taste of water involves ice. Many times, ice is made from tap water, even in restaurants. This means that as it melts, it can dilute or negatively affect the flavor of your water. If you’ve just ordered purified water specifically for the taste, make sure to pass on their ice.
As you can see, there are numerous factors that impact the taste of your water. While filtration is one of the most important aspects of making your water taste a certain way, the geographic region your water is sourced from can play just as pivotal a role in how your water tastes. By thinking through the above factors and how they play a role in changing the taste of the water you’re drinking, you could be on your way to having tastier water in your home and when you travel.