John Zhu is a pioneer in the niche industry of water tasting. professionally they are called ‘water sommeliers’ and their job is to taste water. John is one of just a handful of water sommeliers in China who has made a profession out of tasting water and offering his expertise to hotels and restaurants across Asia.
He samples naturally carbonated water imported from Slovenia.
Although water might seem like a nondescript beverage, Zhu says different minerals give each variation its own unique characteristics.
“Water is just like wine, the sources and minerals determine the taste. If the water has a lot of calcium, it tastes sweet and chalky. If it’s rich in magnesium, it tastes metallic. If it contains sodium, it tastes salty” he says.
John hopes to educate aspiring water sommeliers. He founded Purelogica Academy last year, and now has 70 students training with him. The majority are hotel frontline staff typically in restaurant or bar service who were previously unaware of common water blunders.
Credit: Linda Ikeji