The Story of Guinness: how Ireland’s favourite stout began

No trip to Ireland is complete without sampling a creamy pint of the black stuff. If you want to know more about Ireland’s favourite stout, read more here.

The story of Guinness, Ireland’s favourite stout, is a fascinating one. The theme behind the Guinness factory tour is sharing this inspiring story with Guinness lovers from around the world.

Don’t know the story? Well, stick around because it’s a good one. Here is the story of Guinness and how Ireland’s favourite stout began.

Guinness around the world – the world’s favourite stout

Find out all about the story of Guinness.
Credit: Pixabay / nataliaaggiato

There are thousands of reasons people come to Ireland each year. One of them is to taste a pint of the famous black stuff, which is renowned for tasting extra creamy and delicious from its source.

Of course, there are also many things Ireland is famous for. Still, if you ask anyone, their first answer would probably be Guinness. Who can blame them for that, considering the global impact it has made?

Go to any pub around the world, and it doesn’t have to be specifically an Irish pub, and you’ll most likely spot a Guinness poster or reference to our beloved pint in some form or another.

It has become so famous that its image alone is used everywhere to entice people in to have a drink – and it works!

Some of the posters you might spot are the famous ‘My Goodness, My Guinness’ image or ‘Lovely day for a Guinness’.

You might even recognise the ‘Have a Guinness when you’re tired’, gracing the walls of pubs in far-flung exotic locations. Make sure to keep your eyes peeled!

Ever wondered how Guinness began and what the story of Guinness looks like? Let’s have a look.

The story of Guinness – where it all began

Arthur Guinness signed a 9000 year lease.
Credit: commons.wikimedia.org

The Guinness brand all came down to one man, Arthur Guinness.

He followed his dream to produce a unique best-selling stout, which would go on to sell in over 120 countries and be brewed in 50 countries worldwide, something even he would be astounded by today.

The story of Guinness all started in 1759 when Arthur Guinness signed a whopping 9000-year lease on what is now the St James Gate Brewery.

Still, it wouldn’t be until ten years later that he first exported the goods, a mere six and a half barrels across the pond to England. This was the start of something epic.

He had initially been brewing ale. However, when his ‘porter’ became so popular in 1799, he focused only on that, and we are very glad he did.

Over the years, Guinness recipes have changed, and different types of Guinness have evolved to suit different tastes.

Some of the most popular are Extra Superior Porter, West India Porter, Guinness Smooth, and Guinness Special Export. There is even a Guinness without alcohol.

The story of Guinness continued – to the modern-day

The story of Guinness is a fascinating one.
Credit: Pixabay / focal_leat

Throughout the generations, Guinness has grown bigger and bigger. In the 1830s, St James Gate became the largest and most successful brewery in Ireland.

It was so successful that, unlike many other breweries of its time, Guinness was being exported far and wide to places like New Zealand and the Caribbean.

The Guinness base quickly became a city within a city, with all sorts of mod cons. It had its own railway system and fancy barges to take the precious stout up and down the Liffey.

Believe it or not, the popular Irish stout was evolving under the watchful eye of scientists who were helping to perfect the craft, the first of its kind ever to do this

As the years went on, people became familiar with the Guinness trademark symbol (the harp), the unique advertisements, and even the opportunity to have a draught Guinness in a can.

Eventually, in 2000, the Guinness Storehouse opened, bringing the Guinness legacy to life. Today, it is still the most popular tourist attraction in Ireland. And what a story it is!

Guinness facts – the facts that will surprise you

Do you know the story of Guinness?
Credit: Pixabay / Engin_Akyurt

Now that we’ve filled you in on the fascinating story of Guinness, here are some facts about the famous Irish stout.

  • Ireland is actually only the third biggest consumer in the world, shockingly.
  • As early as 1827, Guinness Irish stout was already being consumed in Africa.
  • One of the biggest lovers and consumers of Guinness is actually Jamaica – they love a good dark beer.
  • Guinness Foreign Extra Stout is one of the most popular versions of the Guinness stout. It accounts for 45% of all sales.
  • The Guinness Business has been passed on from father to son for five generations and is still going strong.
  • In 1963, Nigeria became the first country outside Ireland to begin brewing Guinness. Even today, they are one of the biggest nations of Guinness drinkers, even more than the Irish.