Still Waters Run Shabby Chic

If you’ve been waiting to be hip again and not feel like an uncouth Philistine Neanderthal hick when you ask for *gasp* tap water in a restaurant, your time has arrived. Fancy restaurants in the San Francisco Bay area including Chez Panisse are dumping bottled water and serving filtered tap water — still and house-carbonated. It’s free trade, shade carbonated, and naturally caffeine-free. Hopefully. They’re not doing it because they realized it was absurd to charge for bottled water that can cost 240 to 10,000 times as much as tap water, but rather to be environmentally sensitive, promote sustainability, and because they just couldn’t figure out another way to combine radicchio foam with tofu confit in a 1.5 ounce portion and call it an entree so they had to do something different.

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