At some point in life I realised that Guinness is my favourite drink. I can’t remember when. My first legal Guinness was in a pub called Wolseys in Bangor, Northern Ireland. My first trip to the Guinness Brewery in Dublin was in 2003. But earlier this year I decided it was time to head to the world famous Guinness Brewery and Storehouse at St. James’s Gate once again! It hadn’t changed in the 9 intervening years. In other words, it was just as good!
Getting there is easy. It’s accessible on the LUAS tram network. Just head to the stop called James’s and follow the signs – it’s about a 7-8 minute walk from there.
Yes, there is a price for the tour and you’ll need to pay it. I was there in April 2012 and it cost me 14.4 Euros. Guinness is a world famous drink and this is not only a detailed tour of a brewery, it has an amazing 360 degree view over Dublin from the fantastic Gravity Bar. Plus you get a pint of the freshest Guinness you’ll ever get – included in the price of the entry and you can claim your beer (stout) on the top floor. I’m a budget traveller of course, BUT some things are just worth paying for and this is one of them. Besides, you can walk around the city centre of Dublin for free and see plenty of other sights such as Temple Bar, the Liffey, Molly Malone statue, O’Connell Street etc. So open your wallet and pay it.
Once inside you should try and get an understanding of the history of Guinness and the brewing process. The museum part scales a couple of floors and you can easily spend a couple of hours in there – mind you I was thirsty and I love the view from the top!!
There is also the option of pouring your own pint – if you do this you get to drink it – so another free beer! I went in and was “shown” how to pour a pint. I then turned round and said to the guy that I’d been working in pubs for over 10 years and I had poured Guinnesses in 3 different continents!! He probably gathered that by the ease at which I poured my pint.
The best part of the Guinness Storehouse is without doubt the Gravity Bar. I’d actually cite it as one of my favourite bars in the world to be honest!!
To give you an idea of my personal recommendations, then if you are in Dublin – GO to the Guinness Brewery – whether you like Guinness or not is not an option. This would be like saying you don’t want to see Machu Picchu because you don’t like architecture. It’s a touristy thing and it’s unthinkable to head to Dublin and miss it. If you have say two hours only in there – then I recommend spending your time as such:
– 45 minutes in the Gravity bar relaxing, having your Guinness and enjoying the views
– 15 minutes browsing the Guinness Store (a shop of everything branded Guinness – it’s not cheap but you can get Guinness on almost anything!!)
– 45 minutes in the museum/history section reading all about Guinness
– 15 minutes in the Genius Bar/Guinness Academy pouring your own pint
I love Guinness and it continues to be my one internationally consistent alcoholic drink. I’ve tried it in every continent except Antarctica and it always tastes great. I just love it – a pint of it on an evening and I’m a happy travelling Northern Irishman!
I did China again last month and I did it with a tin of Guinness! Here’s a few random facts about Guinness:
– Nigeria is the largest Guinness drinking nation in the world
– Guinness is not black – it’s dark red. Have a look next time you get a pint!
– Arthur Guinness signed a 9,000 year lease for the land where the brewery is at St.James’s Gate. A worthwhile investment!
Guinness Website: Get me a pint!
Happy Guinness drinking and Don’t Stop Living!
Here’s a video I made in the Gravity Bar:
Lots more videos on my YouTube Channel – I’m a travelling Northern Irishman!