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What's drinking water like in Rome restaurants?

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What's drinking water like in Rome restaurants?

Old Jun 25th, 2010, 06:56 AM
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What's drinking water like in Rome restaurants?

At home, we've never felt the need to get bottled water in restaurants. I'm wondering if same will be true in Rome as well. Thanks.
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 07:01 AM
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How good is your Italian?

One reason you never feel the need to do that at home is because a server rushes up with a pitcher of water the minute you sit down and keeps refilling your glass all through the meal.

If you at all believe in Rome one does as the Romans do, you will order a bottle of water with your meal, either still or sparkling.

If you speak Italian, you can ask the waiter for tap water. They usually have it. You can ask for ice, but they usually don't have that.
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 07:04 AM
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If you are SMART you will ask, in English, for tap water And yes, you CAN get ice, too in many places. The Romans do a lot of things you wouldn't DREAM of doing, believe me...
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 07:10 AM
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It isn't any smarter to drink tap water than it is to drink bottled water, unless you specify "no plastic bottle.". It is extremely unusual for Romans to ask for tap water in restaurants. They usually drink bottled water, and they are not stupid.

You might get ice if you ask for it. You might not. If you go to the tourists places where your waiter speaks English, your chances of getting ice improve.

You shouldn't assume your waiter will speak English unless you are visibly in a tourist restaurant in Rome.
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 07:16 AM
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"What's drinking water like in Rome restaurants? "

Not nearly as much fun as drinking wine.
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 07:29 AM
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It is the custom to order bottled water in Roman restaurants. To ask for tap water is like asking for a doggie bag; it simply isn't done.

But, if you insist on tap water because you are trying to save money, the tap water in Rome is perfectly safe.

There are public drinking fountains all over Rome. You can drink from these fountains and not have to worry about getting sick.

Thin
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 08:01 AM
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Hi poss

Tap water (l'acqua del rubinetto ) is perfectly safe, and usually good.

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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 08:23 AM
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Poss - On Sunday I returned from a week in Rome and dined out for every single meal,including in many restaurants that were filled with locals. Like zeppole noted, you aren't greeted with waiters carrying water pitchers, and yet the first question you're invariably asked is if you want still or sparkling water. I never saw anyone order tap water, but I'm sure you could. I drank tap water in the hotel and from the public fountains all around the city with no ill effects (if you're worried about safety). In fact, it's great to tote a bottle along, and fill it up as you're out and about. Especially this time of year!

If cost is your concern, it's understandable. But the bottles of water you get at the table are easily enough for two if not four people to drink from without going thirsty.

Enjoy your trip!
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 08:44 AM
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I think that water and soft drinks at restaurants in Italy are outrageously expensive. BTW no such thing as refills even if on the rare occasion you find a place that has a soda fountain. I just returned from Italy and mostly drank tap water. I spent my money on wine, far more satisfying. I didn't get sick at all. There were only a couple of times when I couldn't get tap water. Not all bottled waters taste good either. I never encountered a problem getting ice. Just my opinion and experience.
On another note you do not necessarily get bread as you do here unless you ask and there may be a charge per bread basket.
Have fun!
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 09:29 AM
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I am from New York and we always stop the waiter in his/her tracks before giving us that gross tap water. I never ever worry about the drinking water in Italy. I can taste the difference, it is clean water. Where my in-laws live, we literally take empty bottles and go to a water fountain connected to a mountain and fill up.

I always have tap water in Italy, here at home....NEVER.

Enjoy!
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 10:30 AM
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Water in Italian restaurants is outrageously expensive?

I disagree with that statement, although obviously not everyone has the same definition of "expensive."

I don't recall paying more than 2-3 euro of so for a bottle of water in a restaurant and I know that we usually pay under a Euro for large (maybe 2 liter) bottle in a supermarket. --is my memory failing me?
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 11:13 AM
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We always get bottled water - even in the US - since tap water varies so much. In a lot of places it is "hard" or has an "earthy" taste - when we are used to very soft water that is essentially tasteless.

If you really want to save money you can get tap water - but it likely won;t be very cold (esp in the summer) and you're not going to get it with a lot of ice (rarely available in europe - esp in a free drink). Bottled water will be cold since it's kept in the fridge.

Frankly I don;t mind paying a couple of dollars for a drink that is nice and cold.

Also - do NOT drink water from the ornamental fountains - yes, I have seen people refilling their water bottles there. God only knows what's in that fountain.
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 11:18 AM
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wow! What a curious array of responses. We'll play it by ear, I guess, but I appreciate hearing this interesting variety of feedback.
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 11:43 AM
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We always order sparkling water when in Italy and find it to be very reasonable, far more so than in a restaurant in the states.
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 12:17 PM
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I drank wine most of the time but had no problem getting what is called "municipal water" when I wanted it.
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 12:35 PM
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Tap water in Rome is fine and available in restaurants if you ask. If I see water on other tables in plastic bottles, I ask for tap. Generally speaking, I prefer tap water to bottled, but that's a matter of preference, as is the taste of purified water kept in plastic bottles.
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 12:41 PM
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Maybe George Carlin had it right (bless his memory):

He was convinced that the craze for bottled water in America has given birth to a supplemental industry... enterprising folks filling their bathtubs and in turn filling up plastic used bottles which they label and sell to the local grocery and liquor stores.

He was also for turning all of the golf courses in the country into public housing properties...thought golf was a dull game and to spice it up it should consider allowing blocked shots!

stu
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 12:53 PM
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Just don't let anybody forget that bottled water costs 400 times more than perfectly acceptable tap water -- and that is the supermarket price. In a restaurant, it might be 2000 times more.
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 01:19 PM
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>>Also - do NOT drink water from the ornamental fountains - yes, I have seen people refilling their water bottles there. God only knows what's in that fountain.
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Old Jun 25th, 2010, 01:33 PM
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Tonight, we were at an Italian pub served by an Aussie waitress. I ordered tap water along with my main drink; my husband ordered bottle water *as* his main drink. She didn't bat an eye at either.(My daughter ordered strawberry juice.)
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