On Thursday, connoisseurs from across the country gathered in Hobart to name the nation’s best tasting tap water. After facing a discerning panel of judges, including Cricket Australia national selector George Bailey, the municipal water supply of Richmond Valley Council in the NSW Northern Rivers region has been named the nation’s most delicious.

The flavours of our faucets had already been put to the test in state knockout rounds before the winning plants went head-to-head at the national contest. State finalists were then judged on colour, odour, clarity and taste through rigorous sampling.

The 10,000 people of Casino, whose water is supplied by the Richmond River and treated at a local plant, can now lay claim to having the country’s best tasting drop on tap. Previous winners have included similar sized LGAs across the country, but the elusive title has yet to be bestowed on a plant supplying any major Australian city.

The Casino sample will now make its way to West Virginia, USA, to compete against H2O from around the world in the 32nd annual Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting contest – a review of drinking water from around the globe, judged largely by journalists equipped with “certified water taster” accreditation issued by the event.

Last year, the prestigious best municipal water award was taken out for the first time by Australia. The pipes of Tasmania’s Northern Midlands council area, which are supplied by the Rossarden treatment plant, are said to flow with the world’s tastiest tap water.

The tiny Tasmanian hamlet’s water supply was once considered unfit for consumption, but in an impressive return to form the once fetid drop snatched victory last year, in what the event’s “watermaster” Arthur von Wiesenberger says is “truly the Olympics of drinking water”.

Casino’s water sample will defend Australia’s title at the Berkeley Springs tasting competition on Friday February 25.