This is the first post in the series of “My favourite things”; I have wanted to do this for some time, but for one reason or another never got around to it until now.
Be prepared for all kinds of different items, from food and drink to trinkets and gadgets.
Item number one is my favourite drink, aside from coffee of course – sparkling mineral water. Not any kind though, oh no, it has to be S. Pellegrino or nothing. In a lot of restaurants they offer me Perrier instead, which quite frankly I just don’t like, so the server usually gets an emphatic “No thank you” from me and a revised drinks order to go with it.
My love of mineral water started in my early years. In the summer my Dad always had (and still has) a bottle of mineral water next to him whilst sitting out enjoying the nice warm weather, so my siblings and I copied him. Since then I have loved mineral water. Admittedly my taste has changed over the years; in my childhood we drank the local water from a place not too far away from my home in Germany, but since having first tasted S. Pellegrino many years ago in a restaurant I have tried to stick with this. There were times when we couldn’t afford this particular brand and so I had to get used to other brands for a while.
This mineral water is bottled at the San Pellegrino Terme near Bergamo, north-east of Milan in Italy. The composition of this water has not changed since it was first analysed in 1748. Legend has it that in 1509 Leonardo da Vinci, who lived in Milan at that time, visited the San Pellegrino area whilst studying the properties of spring waters from the local terme. He apparently drew a detailed map of the whole area (I guess we will never know if this is true, unless said map turns up in some long forgotten Italian loft). The company itself was not founded until 1899 and produced over 35,000 bottles in its first year, with nearly 6,000 of those bottles being shipped overseas. Eventually a spa facility was opened in the early 1900’s, as was fashionable in those days, and the aristocracy of Europe loved it. In 2010 1 billion bottles of mineral water and their ever popular sparkling fruit beverages were sold all across the world.
Although I drink a lot of coffee during my working day, I always drink water in the evenings at home. My green glass bottle accompanies me all around the house and garden; I even put it on my bedside table when I go to sleep (after all, I might need a drink during the night!). I don’t use a glass, I drink straight out of the bottle, as I usually finish one bottle an evening during the working week and countless more on weekends. By keeping the water in the bottle it stays fizzy, and unlike a lot of people, I don’t take ice in my mineral water. After all, why water it down with non-mineral water??? I do however, like a slice of lemon or lime in the summer, and yes, it gets sliced thinly so that it can go straight into the bottle. In the summer I have been known to swap a bottle that has warmed up for one that is cooling in the fridge.
This green bottle has now also found favour with our teenage daughter who has developed a taste for it over the past year. So now we go through double the amount of bottles in a week – thank god they sell boxes of 12 x 750ml bottles at our local Costco! Keeping the mineral water industry alive, one bottle at a time!