DUBLIN’S GUINNESS STOREHOUSE TOUR
Over 250 Years of the Perfect Pint
It's been over 250 years since Arthur Guinness signed the 9,000 year lease on the St. James's Gate brewery. On the last day of the year 1759, Guinness signed a lease to acquire the St James Brewery, then on the outskirts of the Irish capital, for a period of 9000 years. Since then, the rich dark elixir of Guinness Stout with its golden harp logo has become the ambassador of Ireland around the world. The famous brewery has 8,746 years left to attain the perfect pint.
Top on the list of many tourist visitors to Dublin is the Guinness Storehouse®. Located in a former fermentation plant which operated from 1904 until 1988, the historic building has been turned into a pure amusement attraction. Today, while the beer is brewed across the street in a modern facility, the Guinness Storehouse takes up seven floors arranged in the shape of a pint glass. If it were a real glass it would hold 14.3 million pints of Guinness Stout. Underground is the busy ticket entrance. On the next floor the self-guided tour begins with Arthur Guinness’ lease embedded in the floor (it’s a copy). Rising upward on the escalator to the 2nd level takes you into the history and process of brewing, where a friendly Guinness Master Brewer (on video) guides you through the steps of the selection and roasting of the barley, mixing of the water, filtering, yeast and fermentation. A cooperage exhibit allows you to wander through barrels and examine the ancient art of cask making. Continuing higher leads to exhibits of Guinness advertising, branding and a rather politically correct exhibit of socially responsible drinking, focusing on the effects of alcohol on the human body, notable now that drinking just one pint of Guinness puts you over the legal driving alcohol limit in Ireland.
On floors above you’ll find the history of the Guinness Storehouse building and of the brewery. In the tasting bar, you can sample different variants of Guinness brews and learn the proper way to pour a pint. On the highest level, the 7th floor is the Gravity Bar with views over the Dublin skyline, with the sights marked on the windows for identification. Your admission ticket includes a complimentary pint of Guinness poured by the attractive lassies in the Gravity Bar. A “perfect pint” is traditionally marked with a cloverleaf in the foam just to the top lip of the glass. If a single pint is not enough, Irish food with a Guinness twist is served in the Brewery Bar on the 5th level. The gift store is back at the bottom level.
The Guinness Storehouse is a little to the west of old Dublin, about 15-20 minutes walk from the tourism office or Trinity College, follow Dame Street until it turns to Cornmarket, you’ll see the old brewery tower, the storehouse in a block south. You can't miss the pungent aroma of brewing beer. The nearest tram stop is James Street. You can take bus 123 from O’Connell Street or Dame Street, or if you get one of the Hop-on Hop-off Sightseeing Bus tours, the Storehouse stop is about half-way through the route. There is a free parking lot if you drive, but remember the bit about the legal alcohol limit. © Bargain Travel Europe
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