Wine tasting is a common experience often enjoyed on dates or for some, enjoyed as a leisurely activity.
However, pub owner Doran Binder has now opened a water bar that sells bottled water for people to enjoy and taste test.
After purchasing a quiet pub in the hills around Macclesfield, Doran did not expect to be on top of a booming tourist hot spot.
The owner of the boozer found that an aquifer ran 27 meters below the pub.
Which means 700,000 litres of some of the world’s purest water flows through underneath and is enough to fill more than a million bottles of per day.
After CheshireLive reported on the story a month ago, Doran revealed he has been getting an influx of what he names “water tourists".
Now, Doran has opened the UK’s first and only water bar that boasts high quality H2O from around the globe – and of course, his own fine water Crag Spring Water.
Wanting to test out the “water tasting” the bar also offers, Doran invited along reporter Jonny Blackburn from CheshireLive to see what the experience was like.
Describing the location, Jonny said: "The old Buxton Road winds higher and higher into the hills. Open expanses roll on for miles, cut and cut again by stone walls and brooks, copses and streams. Typical Peak District.
“It’s the last hot day of the year I should think, and the yellow stones of the pub reflect brilliantly in the midday October sun.
“Deep beneath my feet lies an aquifer – nearly a million litres of water flowing everyday off the hill high to my left.”
Doran told Jonny: “If you could go down and see it, it would look like water seeping through a stone wall, like that one behind you there.”
Jonny described the bottles as "neat, equidistant (and) each with their own fresh gin glass".
And, the reasoning behind this was explained by Doran: “You’d be cross-contaminating the water otherwise".
Receiving a lot of exposure from the first article published about Doran’s aquifer find, Jonny found himself now meeting the pub landlord who is somewhat of a celebrity.
Jonny said: “Since I last met Doran I’ve seen his bearded face in Japanese, Colombian and Cambodian newspapers, all of which picked up on the story of this little country pub in Macclesfield.”
Speaking of his new found popularity, Doran told Jonny: “This is all your fault. We’ve been inundated. We get people coming here everyday to find out about the water".
At first, Jonny questioned the interest in the seemingly “dull” experience.
But he soon got into the swing of it!
Explaining how Doran prepared the activity, Jonny shared: “He has arranged the bottles in order of their 'T.D.S value'- that’s ‘total dissolved solids’ – starting with the lowest value (Lurisia Bolle, TDS: 35) and ending with the highest".
The punter was told that he will be trying the water together with Doran.
Jonny was advised “leave the water” in his mouth for a few seconds.
After starting on a water with low ‘total dissolved solids’, Jonny quickly made his way up the scale.
He started to review the different water he received in the tasting experience: “TDS 1800: The most popular water in Poland. It’s odd, tastes like milk, people use it as a tonic.
“TDS 1900: Chateaudun from France. And I’m convinced. Water that comes out of the ground sparkling, carbonated by pressure underground, and it’s incredible.”
Jonny noted that he was not the only punter present in the pub: “A couple of holiday makers from Milton Keynes have been present the whole time, watching these strange men gawking over water in a pub in the middle of nowhere.”
"Si, an ex-estate agent who now works with Doran at Crag Spring Water has joined us, as we reach the very top of the scale.”
Next on the list was the TDS: 3,900, Georgia.
Which was described as “tequila” by Si.
Not impressed by this bottle of water, Jonny claimed that it tastes like “soluble aspirin and blood.”
Next, Jonny moved on to sparkling waters from “effervescence.”
He added: “Bubbles so small you can hardly feel them, to huge, ferocious bubbles that bite at your lips when you take a sip.”
“The sensations become strange, tingling down the neck and in the chest now, as well as noticing the different tastes. "
"I doubt it was the water completely, but rather how much we were concentrating on it, how invested we had all become, however inadvertently on my part, in the experience.
“But I no longer had any doubt that the waters had their own unique and worthwhile flavours about them.”
Jonny finally got to the final bottle of the water tasting experience.
He was joined at the bar by a couple from Milton Keynes who had bought a £6.67 bottle of water from Doran as a souvenir.
Doran said the final bottle will “blow your head off".
The water named the “Vichy Catalan”, that is allegedly “Spain’s most popular water”, was the last tipple for Jonny.
Ending his rather unusual experience, he concluded: “The final taste… and all of us around the bar start laughing, properly laughing at each other drinking this water, and I'm not certain why…”
However, Doran had the final word and said “that’s like a trip isn’t it".
So would you give water tasting a go? Let us know in the comments below.
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