Because We Can Be Defiantly Deluded

New Yorkers consider it axiomatic that our tap water tastes better than anyone else’s. The notion is up there with walking-and-talking speed as a point of civic pride. Here’s the catch: It appears not to be true. Recently, we assembled a panel of experts for an unscientific blind tasting of water from here and five other cities: Paris; Los Angeles; Seattle; Golden, Colorado; and Newark. According to our aficionados, not only does New York not have the best water, but we have the worst. A shock? Sure. An embarrassment? Nah. Screw the evidence. The very fact that we’re wrong only serves to prove that we’re proud.

First place: Los Angeles
“Exceptional. Like a bottled water.”
—Robert Condon, server, l’Atelier de Joël Robuchon

Second place: Paris
“The nose was bright and clear, but the taste was relatively neutral.”
—Richard Brierley, Christie’s head of north American wine sales

Third Place: Golden, Colorado
“Slightly chlorinated, but with a nice mineral taste.”

Fourth place: Newark and Seattle (tie)
Newark: “Bright and flavorful; it had a minerality I quite liked.”
Seattle: “Sharp, crisp; the proper balance of minerals.”
—Diane Drey, president, Snowbird Water-Bottling Company

Fifth place: New York
“Metallic, chlorinated flavor. Smells like a Parks Department swimming pool.”

Because We Can Be Defiantly Deluded