Fine Dining Water WTAF

If I was ever to meet the person who shelled out $60,000 for a bottle of the world’s most expensive water, I would like to think I would take great pleasure in throwing it in their face. Maybe use it for brushing my teeth. Or perhaps do the washing up in it?

That is correct. A bottle of Acqua di Cristallo Tributo Modigliani will set you back $60,000. Not for a massive lake of it, but for a 1.25mL bottle. This water is a mix sourced from Fiji and France, with a dash of Icelandic Glacier chucked in for good measure.

Do you ever stop and think “I wonder who came up with that idea?” I do all the time. Who came up with Chicken Salt? Why do they call them Pizza Shapes when, although delicious, they taste nothing like a Pizza? And what is Equal Sweetener actually made of?

My constant ponderings keep my mind active and means that I do not have to do Sudoku like my mum. And when I saw a fridge at my local shops that had a big sign on it, my mind went into overdrive!


I had to read it twice. It took a while to connect to be honest, and then the penny dropped. Water was not just something one drinks to stave off dehydration. It is now a fashion statement. And me? I think it is a crock of shite.

I recall when bottled water started appearing in shops years ago. Who would buy water when it was free from the tap? It seems that many of us would, with half a billion dollars spent in Australia alone on the stuff. I am one of those who on occasion drink bottled water. I cannot tell a lie. But when I think about it, I have to ask myself why? Do you know why you buy water?

At last check there were well over 3,600 different brands of bottled water available and Australian catering suppliers Source Direct have upped the ante when it comes to flogging fancy water.

 We recognise the need to supply an ever-growing range of “table” waters to meet the needs of discerning consumers of premium bottled waters. We are also privy to the growing number of restaurants who are moving away from the traditional 1 water offer to a “water list” in a similar and complimentary style to the wine list.

This is particularly puzzling to me. I understand the concept of “Sparkling or Still?” and even “Tap or Bottled?” but I am not sure how I would react to a Water List. As in “Would you care to see our Water List?” I am going to hazard a guess I would ask him to repeat himself, clutch my stomach and fall to the floor in hysterics.

Water purists insist that there is a huge factor that makes different waters so, well… different. Like wine, water can be tasted and judged on balance, virginality, minerality, orientation, hardness and vintage. They also insist that the optimum temperature to drink still water is 12C but if it is bubbly, 13C is a far better option.

Because that, my friends, would make all the difference.

Another thing water snobs tend to do is to fill up their ice-cube trays with their preferred bottled water. Why would you add ice made from the tap into your expensive water? I mean that would be just plain stupid.

I am a little over tosspots and their vitamin water, smart water and other special gimmicky versions of H2O. If we are going to get clever when marketing water, what about Hormone Balancing Water, Wine flavored Water and Chocolate Water? Water that actually might be of interest to me?

If that cannot happen, I will take mine straight up from the tap. After all, it is just water. They may not all be created equally, but as author Toni Morrison once wrote, “All water has a perfect memory and is forever trying to get back to where it was. 

Which makes Acqua di Cristallo Tributo Modigliani nothing but one expensive wee.

When it comes to water, what is your H2O of choice?