Would you pay five dollars for a glass of water if the water came from a $6000 Italian-made system that filtrates, chills and carbonates tap water? If you're a diner at Marque restaurant in Surry Hill, Australia, you don't have much of a choice.
Chef/owner Mark Best explains that customers can drink as much water as they want, and that the water is "absolutely beautiful." By installing the filtration system, he has done away with bottled water, which was causing a negative environmental impact that he became increasingly uncomfortable with.
Best was inspired to make the switch after visiting the U.S. and dining at Blue Hill, Per Se and Coi. Over five years ago, restaurants Incanto and Del Posto led the charge on nixing bottled water. Del Posto called in a master water brewer who "tinkered with the recipe for months."
Unlike Marque, restaurants like Incanto provide the water free of charge. However, only a handful of customers have complained about Marque's water policy. For those that have, the charge is immediately removed from the bill.