Designation for a groundwater with a special content of minerals, trace elements or other constituents, the special properties of which are legally defined according to the Mineral and Table Water Ordinance in Germany or the Mineral Water and Spring Water Ordinance in Austria. A historical designation without legal standardisation is acidulous water, which, like acidulous wells, also designates the source of such a mineral water. Mineral water suitable for sale is subject to strict guidelines that are laid down in the Mineral and Table Water Ordinance. This ordinance prescribes stricter microbiological limit values as for drinking water. It must come from underground water sources and be of original purity. This means that it has not yet participated in the general circulation of water. Mineral water is bottled directly at the place of extraction (source/well) and requires official certification.
Carbon dioxide may be added to or removed from a natural mineral water by physical processes. Other additives are not permitted. The ingredients which must be stated on the label of mineral water bottles with quantities in mg/l may only vary insignificantly. In Germany, a distinction is made between "classic" mineral waters (also called "Classic" waters) with a lot of carbonic acid (approx. 7-8 g/l), "medium" and "still" waters with reduced carbonic acid (4-5.5 g/l) and non-carbonated mineral waters (less than 1 g/l). Mineral water is used in various wine-based beverages and mixed drinks, some of which are subject to wine-law conditions. These are various punch and cocktails, as well as, among others, the drinks Spritzer, Gieß, Maiwein, Mischung, PfiffPfiffche, Sangria, Schorle and Spritzer.