Water Menu gets a dry run in LA LA Land
By Don Ferguson on Saturday, August 10, 2013
Get out your diaries and mark the 12 August 2013 as the day that hype won and the restaurant industry finally disappeared up its own arse.
Coincidentally, it’s also the day that LA based eatery ‘Ray’s & Stark Bar’ launches the much anticipated, and oxymoronic, ‘Tasting Water Menu’.
Capitalising on the fashionable ‘Emperor’s New Clothes’ approach to catering, diners can quaff, slurp or gently sip over twenty varieties of H2O; expertly sourced from the four corners of the watery world. Created by Ray’s & Stark Bar’s general manager and certified Water Sommelier (no, really!) Martin Riese, the 45 page handpicked compendium has been designed to be enjoyed in partnership with Executive Chef Kris Morningstar’s take on seasonal Mediterranean cuisine.
Complete with helpful tasting notes, bottle-shots and price -diners can enjoy everything from a full bodied French Evian (for a conservative £5) all the way up to a cheeky £12 bottle of Canadian Berg.
What’s more, for the indecisive diners among us the Beverly Hills establishment also offer each water as part of the £8 tasting menu, giving foodies the full spectrum of flavour whilst learning how ‘Terroir’ dictates the complex profile of each.
Now this is the point that many would expect a Prestige like reveal in the form of a well-crafted punch line, but that is simply not the case as the restaurant continues to staunchly support their latest creation without a hint of irony. But maybe that’s the point.
To my mind, as I imagine is the case for many, this is pure PR gimmickry and the concept of a headline grabbing creation is clearly nothing new; however what is impressive is the conviction to which it is being backed. With celebrity chefs, critics and drinks experts evangelising about ideals of transparency, provenance and simplicity across the board, it’s refreshing to see someone buck the trend and do something irreverently left-field – generating debate as a result.
So whether you love it, think its attention grabbing bollocks or the work of a couple of unreserved loons, it is getting people talking and business through the door.
All in all, not bad for something that comes straight out the tap.