Tracing treasures: blue gold

Interview: ACQUA MORELLI – The blue gold

 All | Acqua Morelli | Gastronomy

Mrs. Scholl, the name ACQUA MORELLI sounds very attractive. Where is the mineral water from?

Anne Scholl: The origin of ACQUA MORELLI is in Italy. In the “Alpi Marittime”, the Italian section of the Alps in Liguria, the pure, fresh water from the Bauda spring comes to the surface 1,000 metres above sea level after its 75-year journey through the natural filter of various strata of rock. The water is bottled directly at the spring, of course, to preserve its purity.


What makes the product so special? How is it different from other mineral waters?

Anne Scholl: The characteristics of a mineral water are determined by from the minerals deposited in the water when it undergoes the natural filtration process of passing through strata of rock. What is special about ACQUA MORELLI is its unusually low mineral content. ACQUA MORELLI contains only 39.9 mg of minerals per litre, a sign of particular purity. As a result, it has an especially soft, light taste. By contrast, other mineral waters can contain up to 960 mg/l of minerals, so ACQUA MORELLI is one of the softest mineral waters available in the world!


What exactly does this low mineral content mean?

Anne Scholl: The mineral content of a mineral water is, if you like, an indicator of its purity. The higher the mineral content, the more minerals have remained in the water from its passage through the rock strata. The minerals are not visible to the naked eye, of course, but you can of course taste them: water with high sodium content leaves a salty impression on the palate, for example. Thanks to its uniquely low mineral content, ACQUA MORELLI tastes particularly soft and pure, so it is an ideal accompaniment to other culinary delicacies. By cleansing and sensitising the taste buds on the tongue, ACQUA MORELLI sharpens the palate for maximum enjoyment of the meal and accompanying drinks. What’s more, the low mineral content of the water means that not even the slightest taste or aroma nuance of food and wine will be lost or falsified.


So in principle you’re saying that ACQUA MORELLI is a culinary all-rounder?

Anne Scholl: Yes, that’s just what ACQUA MORELLI is. Whether served alongside choice wines, speciality coffee, exclusive cuisine or simply as an aperitif at the bar – ACQUA MORELLI enhances the full development of the most diverse aromas and taste reactions on the palate instead of masking or destroying them with a high mineral content. This makes ACQUA MORELLI the ideal accompaniment to a meal in a gourmet restaurant. Besides stimulating the appetite, it also cleanses the taste buds before the meal to allow full enjoyment of the taste and aroma of the food. Naturally, ACQUA MORELLI is equally beneficial taken between courses. This fresh, soft water prepares the palate to enjoy the new flavours and aromas of the next course.


The bottle design looks elegant and very exclusive. Where is ACQUA MORELLI found on the table – does the environment reflect the design characteristics?

Anne Scholl: ACQUA MORELLI is found wherever good meals are created with meticulous care from top-quality ingredients. Fine food or select wines deserve to be accompanied by the best, most exclusive mineral water there is – which is exactly what we wanted to express with the design of the bottle. That’s why we decided on a glass bottle that is fairly complex to produce and features a very striking, unique design and distinctive colour. Besides, it is important for us – but also for our customers – that ACQUA MORELLI can be served appealingly and attractively at a perfectly laid table or in a stylish bar. Visual appeal is important for food, but also for drink.


What marketing channels are used for ACQUA MORELLI?

Anne Scholl: As ACQUA MORELLI mineral water is aimed exclusively at the restaurant and catering trade, it is mainly sold in Germany by specialist beverage wholesalers. Of course, ACQUA MORELLI is also sold on an international basis and is available in Spain or the Middle East too, for example. By the way, ACQUA MORELLI is sold in two versions: sparkling “Frizzante” and non-carbonated “Naturale”. In Germany, the product is available in the returnable bottle pack sizes 24 x 0.25l and 12 x 0.75l. Obviously, suitable non-returnable bottles are also available for international trade purposes.


What communication activities are used to market the product?

Anne Scholl: We are engaged in a diverse range of communication activities. It’s early days for ACQUA MORELLI at the moment, so our first priority is to address beverage wholesalers directly. Then there will be special promotional material for the restaurant trade in conjunction with tie-in campaigns related to ACQUA MORELLI, with a view to supporting high-profile brand awareness in the trade. The first step was to introduce an elegant range of glasses made by Leonardo, consisting of shapely water glasses and stylish tabletop or floor vases.


We conducted the second part of the interview with Paolo Nan, who owns the Bauda spring in the Italian Alpi Marittime Alps:


Mr. Nan, how old is the Bauda spring?

Paolo Nan: The Bauda spring is quite literally as old as the hills – it has always been there. They say that people started coming to the spring to collect this water back in 1800. The water was first analysed in the spring of 1900.


How long has it been in use for professional water production?

Paolo Nan: Our company was founded by our grandfather and our uncle in 1961, so it has now been in the family for three generations. Our family commissioned the first feasibility studies and scientific analysis of the water in the early 1950s. Work on the piping station and the aqueduct began in 1954.


Is there anything special about how your mineral water is bottled?

Paolo Nan: Our mineral water is bottled in an unchanged state immediately after leaving the spring. Under Italian law, the characteristics of the water may not be altered in any way whatsoever, and we are only allowed to add carbon dioxide (CO2 ).


What characterises a genuine premium mineral water?

Paolo Nan: In our opinion – besides the criteria I’ve just mentioned – the location and surroundings of the spring are important. The hills where our water comes from are completely unspoilt. The area is entirely covered by beech trees, and there are no willows that could possibly damage the aquifers. The water flows in an exclusively natural environment, so its high quality is guaranteed.


What significance does the selection of a restaurant’s mineral water have for its cuisine? Does it have any effect on how patrons taste the dishes served?

Paolo Nan: The special characteristic of this water, its minimal mineralization, means that it can be drunk as an accompaniment to most dishes. It is low in mineral salts, and the small percentage it does have, is so well-balanced that no individual flavour dominates the others; in other words, the water does not alter or spoil the taste of the food. The special characteristics of Calizzano-Fonti Bauda mineral water have earned it certification as “Suitable for the preparation of infant food” by the Italian Ministry of Health. The bottle is also very popular with restaurants, so we believe that ACQUA MORELLI rightly belongs in the premium category.


Are there any current trends as far as mineral water goes? If so, what are they?

Paolo Nan: In recent years, there has been a constant increase in the trend towards drinking mineral water, except in times of crisis. Above all, we are experiencing a steady rise in the consumption of non-carbonated mineral water, and a growth in global exports of Italian mineral water. |