• 2002: No 3729


    Competition No 3729

    Wine writers always go over the top. We want you to do the same for less fancy liquids.


    As the magical, sparkling liquid comes gushing and bubbling out of the tap, I remember just how recently this selfsame water has flowed forth in the same way from a warm, sinuous living body. What a cornucopia of tastes! The fruity tang of urine, the ripe, creamy full-blooded flavour of diesel, an impudent hint of Harpic and the opulent, variegated, unpredictable mixture of industrial chemicals, from which the trusty dioxin is never absent.  Here in one extraordinarily intense brew is all the flamboyant vibrancy of urban life. For those of us fortunate enough to drink water from the sun-drenched north-eastern slopes of the Thames, there are enough drug-users contributing to the supply for every mouthful to bring the heady thrill of intoxication. Happily, ‘treatment’ is still of the traditional, artisanal kind, with none of the spurious purity offered by those modern methods so deplored by the Campaign for Real Tapwater.