Santa Ana tap water named World’s Best with third gold medal at Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting

Posted on March 26, 2024

An logo of three gold medals under a water illustration with three gold stars and the words "world's best tasting tap water" and "triple medalist"

The City of Santa Ana has once again demonstrated its commitment to providing high-quality tap water, securing its third gold medal in the municipal water category at the prestigious Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting competition. Judges from around the world evaluated waters sourced from 16 states and 18 foreign countries, ultimately awarding top honors to Santa Ana for having the world’s best-tasting, highest-quality tap water.

“Winning the gold in our category three times is truly phenomenal,” said Cesar Barrera, Deputy Director of Public Works and Water Resources Manager for the City of Santa Ana. “It speaks volumes about the high standards we uphold for our tap water and the dedication of our certified specialists who are committed to serving our customers.”

Barrera noted that Santa Ana’s success extends beyond this latest victory, with the City having earned a total of eight awards at the competition. These include gold medals in 2014 and 2018, silver medals in 2012 and 2021, a bronze medal in 2011, and fourth-place finishes in 2016 and 2020.

Year after year, Santa Ana ensures it meets or surpasses stringent federal and state drinking water regulations that protect public health. Santa Ana’s Water Resources Division tests water for more than 120 different contaminants and performs thousands of water quality tests throughout its water distribution system annually.

These regulations and test results are outlined in Santa Ana’s annual Water Quality Consumer Confidence Report. The 2023 report will be available in July. Residents can access the report online at or can request a printed copy by calling 714-647-3380 or emailing

Santa Ana’s award-winning water is drawn primarily from the vast groundwater basin under northern and central Orange County, one of the largest in Southern California. The aquifers comprising this underground basin extend over 2,000 feet deep and naturally filter groundwater as it flows through porous layers of soil, purifying the water and removing sediment. The groundwater is pumped to the surface through City-owned wells, and tested and treated before it is distributed throughout Santa Ana’s water system.

The City of Santa Ana works closely with the Orange County Water District (OCWD), which manages the groundwater basin, to ensure water is not only high in quality but a reliable and plentiful source.

For more information about Santa Ana’s tap water and the City’s efforts to maintain water quality, visit For details about the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting competition and a list of this year’s winners, visit

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