Braving blizzard conditions, heaped snow drifts and frigid temperatures, hundreds of rural water supporters waited in tense silence for the winner of the National Rural Water Assn.’s Great American Water Taste Test. They erupted in cheers as the water from Sioux Rural Water System (RWS) in South Dakota was named “Best Tasting in America.”
“This award wouldn’t be possible without the good work of our employees,” said Doug Anderson, manager of Sioux RWS. “They are always conscientious about what they’re doing and they make sure they do it right. It’s a job and we enjoy doing it.”
Sioux RWS, which serves portions of Codington, Clark, Deuel and Hamlin Counties, was one of five finalists selected from entries across the country. Morgan County Quality Water District of Fort Morgan, Colo., was awarded the silver medal with Thurston Public Utility District - Lazy Acres of Olympia, Wash. The winners of the 11th annual taste test were selected by a panel of three judges who rated the water samples based on clarity, bouquet and taste.
Entries were selected at the taste tests of state rural water associations, narrowing the 26,696 systems affiliated with the NRWA into around 50 entries. The five finalists were selected from those entries by three judges during the first round of tasting.
The NRWA holds the Great American Taste Test annually and as part of the Rural Water Rally in Washington, D.C.