When we first arrived in Dublin, on our way to the hotel, our tour guide, Paul, pointed out that we were passing Irelands greatest Cathedral…The Guinness cathedral! Sure enough, it was the Guinness Storehouse.
I can’t hardly think of him without laughing or hearing him proclaim ” Jesus, Joseph and Mary!” in exasperation or yelling póg mo thóin! Translated ” Kiss my arse” which was the very first thing he taught us all. Along with this we learned via printed handouts and at the absolute insistence, the words to the song Molly Malone and let me tell you there were pop quizzes a plenty!
Here he is standing atop a small rock wall on a cliff overlooking the ocean…in the rain no less! I told him I was taking this photo for his dear sweet mother, for when she wanted to know what happened to him.
When you think of Ireland, you think Guinness and you don’t dare visit Dublin without visiting the Guinness Storehouse. It’d be a travesty! The Storehouse is located at the St. James’s Gate Brewery in Dublin, this production site has been home to the Guinness Brewery since 1759.
At this 7 story visitor center, you’ll discover what goes into making this renowned beer and it’s 250 year history. And, as with all things irish, there’s plenty of “craic” to be had. Craic” (/kræk/ KRAK) or “crack” is a term for news, gossip, fun, entertainment, and enjoyable conversation
” A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle “
Now you can’t forget the Guinness Harp. The harp, which serves as the Guinness emblem, is based on a famous 14th century Irish harp known as the “O’Neill” or “Brian Boru” harp which is now preserved in the Library of Trinity College Dublin. The harp has been synonymous with Guinness since 1862 when it was used as a symbol on the first bottle label for GUINNESS.
The Harp at the Storehouse…
The actual harp at Trinity College.
The end of the tour leads you to the rooftop Gravity Bar where you’ll be treated to a free pint with extra serving of good times, especially with these guys. Plus, the views are spectacular!
As we were leaving, honest to goodness, we were treated to a drummer in a kilt! Gotta love a man in a kilt!
I know I do! I married this guy….
Can you say “Shenanigans”?
Now Guinness isn’t a pour and chug beer. Oh no, there’s an art to pouring the perfect Guinness pint and I’ve included the official technique for your pouring pleasure.
Step 1: Choose the Right Glass and Proper Angle.
Choose a clean, dry, 20-ounce, tulip-shaped pint glass. The bump in the wider neck allows nitrogen bubbles to move down the side of the glass and back up into the neck of the beer. Tilt the glass away from you at a 45-degree angle; if you don’t, the Guinness will froth, will take forever to settle and may taste bruised.
Step 2: Pull the Tap Toward You.
That way, you release the Guinness until it fills the glass to the bottom edge of the tulip’s bump. On many Irish tulip pint glasses, there’s a gold harp icon (aka the Guinness harp); for the truly perfect pour, fill it halfway up this harp. Then, don’t touch it until you see a vivid distinction between the dark ruby-red body and creamy white head. This may take a few minutes, so sit back and relax.
Step 3: Hold It Level.
Once it’s settled, put your Guinness up to the tap and hold it level. (You want a dome effect when you top it off, so skip the 45-degree angle this time.) Push the tap away from you, pouring the Guinness slower. Aim directly into the middle of the foam head until it settles half a millimeter above the lip of your pint glass. Wait. A smaller, second settling period is crucial.
Step 4: Sip It Right.
The last and perhaps the most important step is sipping your Guinness. Hold it up to the light to marvel at the ruby-red color. Then, bring it to your lips, and sip the foam until you hit the body of the beer. Swish. Swallow. Bottom’s up.
But if you can’t resist having an Irish bartender pour you a pint, remember this cardinal Guinness-drinking rule: Paws off. Don’t touch your Guinness before the bartender hands it to you. The perfect pour takes time.
(This song will be stuck in my head til the end of time!) Molly Malone