Here are some reasons why Guinness, one of Ireland's oldest beers and among the most internationally recognized brands, is highly underrated!
Guinness Brewery was established at St James’ Gate in Dublin by Arthur Guinness in 1759. Since then it has transformed itself from humble beginnings at a run-down brewery into a global success being available in over 100 countries. It is one of Ireland’s oldest beers and is easily recognized worldwide through its iconic logo.
Guinness comes under the umbrella of a stout which is a dark beer, as it is known for its dark color with a smooth and creamy taste. A lot of people see Guinness as just a regular beer but it is ‘Made of More’. So why is Guinness so underrated? Here are some reasons to help change your mind.
Research has shown that a pint of Guinness can actually be beneficial to your health. It is full of iron and also antioxidants which slow down the deposit of harmful cholesterol in the heart’s arteries.
A 20 oz glass of Guinness Draught contains 210 calories compared to an equivalent 20 oz glass of whole milk which has about 240 calories. This is also true for most beers, wines, sodas and even orange juice. Even celebrity Gwyneth Paltrow, known to be very health-conscious, has attested to drinking Guinness for it’s low calories and calming effects before a big ceremony. Now I don’t think we will walk into too many pubs and see someone drinking a few pints of milk and watching a game but it is still interesting nonetheless.
Guinness has been in production for over a quarter of a millennium since being established in 1759. Arthur Guinness was from a family of brewers. He moved from his home in Leixlip, County Kildare to Ireland’s capital where he took over an abandoned brewery at St James’ Gate, and the rest as they say is history. To this day it is still the most popular beer in Ireland and is the world’s largest stout brewer. With a 9,000-year lease at St James’ Gate not running out anytime soon, the gang at Guinness brewery have plenty of time left to create more wonders.
That smooth and creamy finish
Guinness was the first brewery to hire scientists to perfect their beer. This began in the late 1800s when Guinness acquired the services of two Oxford-educated scientists, Thomas Bennett Case and Alexander Forbes Watson. Then in 1959, Guinness hired the man who would change their beer into what we see today. Michael Ash, a mathematician and brewer, invented Guinness Draught and in doing so the world’s first nitro beer. The infusion of nitrogen and carbon dioxide is what gives Guinness Draught its ‘surge and settle’ effect, resulting in its smooth and creamy finish. Not your average beer.
The perfect pint
Guinness isn’t just like any regular beer. It takes time to pour the perfect pint of Guinness, 119.5 seconds to be exact. This is like no other beer in the world. A normal pint of beer can be dished out in a matter of seconds but Guinness needs time. This technique is known as ‘the double pour’.
The power of advertising can not be underrated and Guinness has become a master at it. Since publishing their first ad in a newspaper in 1794, Guinness has become a global leader when it comes to marketing themselves. Over the years they have had many iconic ads which are still easily recognizable today. From the ‘Guinness is good for you’ ad campaign to the current campaign ‘Made of More’, Guinness have set themselves high targets and keeps reaching new heights. Guinness offers more than just great taste, it offers great entertainment.
Guinness is an incredibly versatile beer as it can be used in cooking to great effect. Want to make the perfect homemade bread? Instead of reaching for that yeast in the cupboard, try reaching for a cool can of Guinness. It contains natural yeast and acts as a powerful raising agent. This eliminates the trouble of excessive kneading and waiting around for the dough to rise with regular yeast. It will add a fantastic toasted flavor and rich color. It also goes great in beef stews and braised short ribs as it tenderizes the meat and adds terrific flavor. You can even use it in chocolate cakes. All wholesome and hearty meals.
Clean up those pots and pans
If by chance you have left some Guinness at the bottom of the can and don’t want to waste it, fear not. The acid left over from flat beer is a fantastic cleaning agent for cleaning up all of those copper pots and pans. It will take off the leftovers and leave a great shine. The lesson here is never to waste a perfectly good Guinness.
This was invented by the folks at Guinness in the 1970s. It allows you to recreate the same pint of Guinness Draught that is poured in a pub but from a can or bottle. This unique feature helps to create the surge effect once the bottle or can is opened. A can of Guinness Draught accommodates a hollow spherical plastic ball containing a small amount of nitrogen and beer. Once the can is opened the ball shoots up from the bottom of the can releasing the beer and nitrogen from the ball through a small hole, thus creating the surge effect. The same system is used in Guinness Draught bottles, only they use a plastic rocket-shaped widget. It allows you to have an authentic Guinness pour away from the pub.
*Originally published in 2016. Last updated in June 2022.