Thursday 14 May 2009

Icons #9 Guinness

I came late to Guinness.  It wasn't until my early 30's that I developed a taste for it.  For years it was always that odd thing that old people drank, with the strangely cool ad campaigns.  

Then about five years ago my best friend started drinking it and I got tempted to try a pint.  Every pint of Guinness is the same.  That first mouthful neither refreshes nor warms you.  You wonder for  a second whether a pint of larger would have been the better choice.  By the second mouthful you know you chose right.  

Drinking a pint of Guinness is a wholly different experience from any other beverage.  Whilst the artistic pouring leaves me cold, (who wants a four leaf clover on their pint?) I do like the wait.  That moment when the pint sits, waiting for the final third to join the rest in the pint glass.  Then the few minutes of waiting for it to settle once you have the drink in your hands.  I like a bit of ritualistic nonsense, and Guinness provides that in spades.  Have I drunk a pint in Ireland?  Yes.  Was it better?  I don't think so.

Guinness where ever you drink it is like having a meal.  You feel full on it, and I swear that it's a different kind of drunk.  It's a bit like being moderately stoned, minus the munchies.   

But enough of such talk.  Guinness is Iconic because no one should like it, but so many people love it.  It's the marmite of the drinking world.

It has a weird density to it.  (I guess that's the yeast?)  You just can't see through it.  It looks like something vaguely old and out of place.  It even tastes sort of old.  Indeed it's been around since 1759 in one form or another so no wonder.

The black and gold in a pint glass, makes my mouth water now.  Even just typing this I'm craving a pint of the 'black stuff'.  It's even supposed to be good for you.  Aces.

It's also as Irish as Irish things come.  Brewed in the heart of Dublin (at least for now) at the St James' Gate plant, it truly does belong to Ireland.  The brewery is fascinating, with so much history for a place that is, lets be honest, all about a drink.  You can't really imagine the Fosters museum being a great visit.

For me it is also the coolest looking drink in a pint glass.  Get drunk on Guinness, I highly recommend it.  You'll feel like you've had a three course meal too.

Here's to the Black Stuff.

This post is dedicated to @twosoups.

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