It is quite a small world and my meetings with the two other participants in this came together in quite a nice way.
A relationship with Roberto was struck on the basis of a phone call from me, in order to introduce some of our waters to him as a buyer for Roussillon restaurant in Pimlico. It is a great place that has held a single Michelin star for a number of years. He is also a sommelier of great repute, who finds pleasure in discovering little known but wonderful and new wines and producers.
Nicolas Angelina of Noura was first mentioned to me in another meeting with one of Aqua Amore's customers called Meejana.
This little treasure trove is both a Lebanese restaurant and by day, a boutique deli. It is in Weybridge, Surrey and Ed was one of the first people to call us with a genuine interest in water. When I heard his wife Rita talking about her favourite waters and preferences, I almost fell off my chair! Rita told me about this chap, Nicolas, who had tasted waters for the Arabic press and also for a number of UK trade publications, in addition to being closely involved in the wine tastings.
I gave Nicolas a tentative call to let him know what we did at Aqua Amore and I was very pleased to hear that his passion for waters was very strong. Soon after, we held a preliminary tasting at Noura, to which a number of people, distributors, sommeliers and other water companies were invited. I brought a number of waters along and we all tasted and chatted, to no real illumination on the subject of waters. It was on that occassion, however, upon which Nicolas tasted a few waters alongside a Funtabaliras Vermentino and noticed a difference in which his taste buds were tickled by the combination of liquids.
Hence, the idea of a wine and water tasting was born and given his knowledge on wines, he assured me that this would be a unique and revolutionary venture. I suggested asking Roberto to join us, given that we both know him and are comfortable working with him - notwithstanding the fact that his passion for wine would ensure open-mindedness on the subject.