One of the perks and pleasures from owning an online retail water business is sampling new, and sometimes lessor known, classic waters from around the world. It is also a pleasant surprise when the waters turn out to be both refreshing, in the sense of branding, and appealing in taste. So it was refreshing in both respects to have samples of Acqua Frisia from Italy arrive on our doorstep recently.
Most global beer brands today have origins dating from natural spring water sources chosen for their respective qualities to produce great beers. Underlying its refreshing contemporary branding, the Frisia water source dates from 1867, at which time it was a renowned brewery famous for the Italian beer brand Birra Spluga. And the business may again produce craft beers one day.
In 1958 production of Frisia Water began at the brewing facility, a lesson many breweries and distilleries today could learn from. And in 1980 Frisia began door-to-door sales in Milan, an early precursor to today’s online ordering for home and office, and something the aquadeli business has been built on and excelling at since 2006.
Production ceased for a period from 2014, and in 2018 a group of investors, led by Italian Roger de Bellegarde, purchased the assets of the business with a vision to rejuvenating the brand. Production of Frisia recommenced in 2020 and from the same historic facility, but with new plant and sustainable environmentally friendly production processes.
There is a lot we like about Frisia. One of the business’s guiding principals is sustainable production with respect to social, economic and environmental impact, something we can relate to in terms of managed water stewardship and sustainability. And this was one pillar of the Frisia team’s relaunch of the brand in 2020.
The branding is elegant, with modest functional packaging, including recyclable glass bottles and aluminium closures, and environmentally friendly wash-off paper labels. This is something we also strive for in our own business, and look for in suppliers. There is a nod to the sixties with a labelling selection featuring couples on an Italian motor scooter, classic wooden powerboat, and downhill skier.
Did we mention taste? Frisia is a relatively low mineral (90mg/L), slightly alkaline (pH 7.2), natural artesian still water. A refreshing hydrating beverage on its own, or perfect foil for foods which need to be centre of attention (think freshly shucked oysters). Frisia would compliment any fine scotch or vodka, and its relative low mineral content makes for perfect ice.
Frisia Frizante (sparkling) has a fine bubble and bead, reminiscent of Badoit without the elevated minerality (a healthy 1200mg/L), with bubbles freely bursting on the face when raising a glass to drink, a truly refreshing experience. The taste verges on slightly sweet, a by-product of carbonation, with a satisfying cleansing mouth feel on the palate.
Frisia is available throughout Italy, and currently exported to several European markets.