The Village of Zeballos has bragging rights to the best drinking water in B.C.
The tiny North Island community of roughly 120 people, located on the northwest coast of Vancouver Island, was bestowed the honour of having the best tap water in the province at this week’s Best of the Best Tap Water Taste Test.
Zeballos Mayor Donnie Cox said the village is thrilled to have come out on top.
“Zeballos is very proud of our best in the west water bragging rights and it truly does taste both pure and refreshing,” Cox said. “From the sky to the river to the well to the tap, it’s just that simple and simply the best.”
The fourth annual event, which was held in Victoria this year, is a fun event held during the BC Water and Waste Association’s annual conference.
Zeballos beat out nine other competitors – including the Capital Regional District and last year’s winner, the District of Hope – that were vying for the esteemed designation of top tap offering.
A panel of three judges evaluated the water samples based on: appearance/clarity, aroma, taste, mouth feel, after taste and overall impression which ranged from a one (wouldn’t let my dog drink it) to five (the champagne of water).
Kristen Learned, spokesperson for the event, said the judges were really looking for water that had “no taste at all.”
“Zeballos’ water tasted pure, fresh and clear, with some of the scoring sheet commentary noted as exceptional,” Learned said.
Zeballos certainly fared better than the City of Campbell River did when it entered the same competition last year.
The District of Hope, which gets its water from an aquifer, was the clear winner in 2016 with runner up nods going to Squamish and Port Alberni. Results beyond that were not tracked.
However, Jennifer Peters, the city’s utilities manager, said following last year’s competition that Campbell River had nothing to hang its head about.
“We have great water here,” she said. “We don’t treat it or filter it because it’s fabulous at the source.”
Campbell River’s drinking water comes from John Hart Lake. It then passes through the BC Hydro penstocks (scheduled to be removed by next year) at the generating station before going through the city’s ultra violet disinfection facility and then travelling through the water pipes and ending up in our taps.
Mayor Cox said Zeballos gets its drinking water from “a deep water well adjacent to the Zeballos River, all within our municipal boundaries.”
Zeballos is located at the end of Zeballos Inlet and is 190 kilometres west of Campbell River. The village is accessed by a 44-kilometre gravel road off of Highway 19.