For some, water is water and drinking bottled wate
r is for dandies and posers. But water isn’t always water because sometimes water can be dirty, polluted and drinking it can send you to the porcelain throne for way too long and too often. At home, my wife S and I have been drinking tap waters for years. We did so quite proudly because S’s father works for our country’s national water agency and likes to joke that he “tests every drop of water in the country.” Recently however, he’s advised us that while the country’s tap water is fine for drinking, because the building we live in uses large water tanks, there’s no guarantee that by the time the water comes out of our taps it’s still as pure as it should be.
Bottled water isn’t all the same either. The more you drink of it, the more you realize that different brands of bottled water actually taste different — which considering water isn’t supposed to have any taste is kind of an interesting revelation. Of course, all tastes are subjective. And what I think might be right you might think is off the mark. Personally, I can’t stand Evian because I think it has a strange tinny taste. Vittel is kind of blah and while I think Fiji is nice and refreshing, I hate the packaging. To me, it looks cheesy and cheap. I enjoy San Pelligrino but it can sometimes be almost too carbonated; which means I can only drink so much of it at any one time.
Recently, S and I discovered Antipodes water. I’ll admit, the first thing that grabbed my interest was the packaging, which I think is fantastic. Antipodes is served in gorgeous, old-fashioned yet still contemporary, glass bottles. The labels are clear, with white text for still water and black for the sparkling. They’re simple, functional and brilliant. Of course, no amount of good packaging would make a difference if the water wasn’t worth drinking. The water, I’m happy to say, is excellent. Bottled at source, Antipodes’ water is drawn from deep strata of water-bearing rock — which is an aquifer — in New Zealand’s Bay of Plenty. The volcanic nature of this aquifer means that the water is naturally filtered and low in dissolved solids. Which, in layman’s terms, means it has a really clean and soft taste. It’s also one of the purest bottled waters on the market.
Antipodes’ still water tastes pure as well. It’s something I can only describe (again and again — sorry, I need to buy a thesaurus) as “clean”. Served chilled, it’s fantastically refreshing. It doesn’t have the odd aftertaste that some other bottled waters have. The sparkling, which was rated as the world’s best sparkling water by The Berkeley Springs Winter Festival of Waters, is equally refreshing. It has a nice fine bead and is very easy to drink. Antipodes also has an interesting sales strategy. Because this young New Zealand brand is trying to position itself as a premium water — and in order to differentiate itself from competitors — you won’t be seeing its bottles on supermarket shelves anytime soon. Distribution is only at specially selected F&B outlets (i.e. cool restaurants and cafes) or via home (or office) delivery in selected territories. (Here in Singapore, Antipodes is distributed by and available to drink at The Cellar Door; they have not started the home delivery service as yet, but I hope they will soon.) I hope more and more restaurateurs consider serving Antipodes. Because it is so clean and soft, it works very well with food. Plus it looks just so damn sexy when it’s served or when it’s displayed on the table. Cheers!