Guinness Brewery, Dublin
First, why take a bus or a taxi when you can walk there?
But make sure you're drunk enough, cos a sober person would never ever decide for that.
I was there only once and am not sure if I'd go there again.
Its not that is bad, in fact I even found it to be interesting. Never been in a beer factory before. But the best thing in that brewery is the Gravity bar on the top of it. You have a fantastic view from there.
The barmens were nice. And cute. We got one round for free :-)
A local train DART will take you to the Dublin Riviera in no time. Dalkey and the adjacent Killiney Bay with its winding roads and mediterranean villas and unbelievable vistas over Irish Sea will steal your heart. Its home to Enya, Bono and the likes.....
Fondest memory: A drive along the Howth road with a friend followed by an Irish coffee in Abbey Tavern in the Howth village... Sandymount Strand on a warm July night... Lunch at Caviston's the fishmongers... watching the ferries going to Liverpool at sunset from the Lighthouse... not enough space to list everything...
In 1881, the annual production of Guinness brewed had surpassed one million barrels a year and by 1914, St. James's Gate was the world's largest brewery. It is no longer the world’s largest brewery, but is still the world’s largest Stout brewery.
Guinness is now brewed in 35 countries around the world, but all these overseas brews must contain a flavoured extract brewed only at St. James's Gate. Today there are 10 million glasses of Guinness served every day across the world. Not a bad little business.
Fondest memory: BENJAMIN LEE GUINNESS (1798—1868),
Arthur Guinness gradually handed over control to his three sons, and spent his last years at his country home in Drumcondra, a Dublin suburb. He died on 23 January 1803. His third son, Benjamin Lee Guinness (1798—1868), seems to be the real maker of the firm, turning it into the hugely successful industry we know today.
He was brought in to the industry at an early age, and in 1825 he was given sole control. Prior to his control the trade in Guinness’s porter and stout was confined only to Ireland. When Benjamin Lee Guinness took control, he established agencies in the United Kingdom, on the continent, and in my favorite part of the world, the FORMER British colonies of America.
Benjamin began exporting porter to Europe through canal exports, creating an entire network of Guinness shipping just for this purpose. He built small rail lines to transport the materials and ingredients through the brew yard and for delivery of the product to his barges and ships. The visitors center in the Brewery has a superb display of the entire process, including the brewing of the stout, barrel making, brewery rail line, shipping- both overseas and domestic- and marketing.
I found all of this a fascinating investigation of how one of the word’s most successful enterprises came about. Guinness is a remarkable story.
Guinness' competition does not stand a chance against this great giant. Other brews fall by the wayside in comparrison.
These dead soliders were found on the way out of St. James Gate, forgotten and discarded in the shadows of the conquering master!!
There is a FANTASTIC exhibit in the Vistor Center about the making of barrels. Guinness produced virtually every ingredient of the brew making process, from the malt, barley, hops, equipment, trains, tracks, ships and barges. they made everything at the brewery and employed thousands of people. Not a bad industry to foster on your grounds.
One of the most interesting, and best displayed, is the cooper's industry, barrel making. be sure to look at this exceptional exhibit while touring the facility.
GUINNESS BOOK OF WORLD RECORDS
Further advertising genius came from Sir Hugh Beaver, Managing Director of Guinness in 1951, when he wanted to know what is the fastest flying game bird in Europe. He contacted the McWhirter Research Agency to find his answer and expanded the collection of this and other interesting answers into a 1955 publication, and created the second best selling book on the planet, “The Guinness Book Of World Records”, a true stroke of marketing genius. Damn, I wish I was that smart!
Fondest memory: The attached photo, taken along the wlak to the Guinness Storehouse, illustrates a less successful competitor!!
GUINNESS IS GOOD FOR YOU
One of the essential ingredients for Guinness’ success, aside from the delicious taste, is its incredible and highly effective marketing strategy.
No matter how good your product, it can only be as profitable as the regional scale of its market. The broader you make that region, the more product you’re likely to sell. John Gilroy, and Englishman born in 1898, was the mastermind behind Guinness’ so highly successful strategy. Over a 35 year period, Gilroy created over 100 separate advertising campaigns, all of which seem to have made Guinness the huge success it has been throughout this history.
The marketing phrase “Guinness is Good For You”, came from a British line of advertising stemming from the 1920’s- a neat little piece of trivia for you. The one with the Toucan however, I simply don’t understand. What in the heck does a toucan have to do with either Guinness in particular, stout in general, or Ireland in the least? Beats me. The images are pretty, but other than that, there’s no reason on earth a toucan should be touting the stout. Seems dumb to me.
Fondest memory: In spite of the toucan however, a true pint served in a Dublin pub is better than any drink I’ve ever had. Nowhere else is it as delicious as in its native Ireland, and probably nowhere is it better than in Dublin. It just doesn’t seem to travel well, in spite of it’s global success. Even the best pint I’ve had in the DC area, “Ned Devines” in Fairfax, is nowhere the same taste and quality as that served at Grogans or the Bank Pub in Dublin, both of which served a heavenly glass.
Having noticed how quickly the Irish polish off their weekend kegs (52 I counted against one Dublin pub alone, and there are one thousand pubs like it in Dublin) my guess is that the remaining pubs across the globe take to long to finish a keg, the stout gets a bit acidy, and the taste suffers. Guinness has to be fresh, and the freshest location for a perfect pint is nowhere to be found four hours from the Liffey.
TROUBLES WITH THE SHERIFF
It wasn’t a completely easy start for Arthur however when he had major trouble with the Dublin Corporation in 1775. The Corporation decided that Guinness was drawing more free water from the Liffey than his lease permitted and sent a sheriff to stop production. Arthur personally defended his property with a pickaxe, and eventually reached a peaceful solution with the Corporation.
Fondest memory: ‘ALE-ING’ START
Guinness started his company producing ale. In 1778 though, he began to brew porter – a darker beer containing roasted barley popular with London’s porters and stevedores along Covent Garden and Billingsgate in London. I don’t personally know these places, but imagine they were working class and therefore the drink appealed to the majority of London’s population. It was a great drink and became extremely popular both in England and Ireland.
The porter tripled his previous sales threefold during the Napoleonic Wars, and in time St James's Gate became the largest porter and stout brewery in the world. The stronger porter took on the name 'extra stout porter' later shortened to become known by what we call it today; STOUT.
ARTHUR GUINESS (1725 – 1803)
Arthur Guinness, father of this great corporation, was born in Celbridge, Co Kildare, in 1725.
His father, a land steward and brewer, worked for the archbishop of Cashel, Dr Arthur Price. He had and brewed beer for workers on the estate and passed on his talent to Arthur. When Price died in 1752, he left £200 to the Guinnesses.
Arthur took his portion and in 1756, leased a brewery in Leixlip, Co Kildare for three years, then took over the an old, dilapidated brewery at St James' Gate in Dublin. The old brewery, ‘Mark Rainsford's Ale Brewery’, had sat dormant for ten years prior to Guinness’ lease. There were already seventy breweries in Dublin at the time, and no one thought Guinness would be able to successfully compete in such a saturated market. They were, it seems, wrong.
Fondest memory: ST. JAMES GATE BREWERY
On December 1759, he leased a small piece of land along Dublin's James's Street…. for 45 Pounds per year for 9000 years! The lease ends in 10,759 A.D. Wow. What a lease!! Wish I had done that! He was 34 years old at the time. The land held an old, dilapidated, ill-equipped brewery, where he began brewing his ale. Within eight years he was master of the Dublin Corporation of Brewers.
He married well too, marrying in 1761 a relative of Henry Grattan, Olivia Whitmore. They had twenty-one children of all things. That’s bound to be a large family by anyone’s count. It seems that only ten of the children lived to establish the dynasty though.
There's no easy transition with my photographs from the Liberties to the Brewery, which was my next stop during the day's exploration, so I'm just going to take a heavy handed approach and insert the Brewery here.
St. Patrick's is closer to the Liberties than the Brewery, but there's no easy way to take you to the Brewery from here in my tour, so take a break and I'll transport us across a short space and time from the Liberties to......St. James gate brewery and astory of Arthur Guinness.
Fondest memory: The Brewery is a short walk from Christ Church down High Street, to Cornmarket Street, then Thomas Street West.
If you do walk this route, one note to help navigate is that all of these streets are essentially on the same thoroughfare, but keeping to the Dubliner penchant for dual, triplicate, quadruple and quintuple nomenclature, this little eight block stroll leads you down the same street with three different name changes.
The only place I recall where I needed to take a bearing though, was the intersection of Cornmarket, Bridge Street and High Street. There is a broad intersection here, so pull out your map if walking. Head west.
Favorite thing: When I made it to the top of the Guinness Storehouse to the Gravity Bar and looked out onto Dublin, I realized that it's not as impressive as looking out at the many domes of Rome or the spires of Prague. But if you look around, you'll see distant, vibrant green hills that could only be Irish. If you walk the streets, you'll see pubs that the whole world tries to copy. And if you venture into one of those pubs and talk with some locals, you'll experience hospitality unmatched.
Now people, pay close attention. An important thing to note about Dublin is that it is the stronghold for the beautiful Black nectar of the goddesses that is Guinness .
So what I'm saying is that, when you go to Dublin, be sure to sample the superstout.
Go and visit the Guinness brewery, home of Irelands most famous export! If you're lucky you'll even get to sample a free pint or two yourself!
Fondest memory: The people. Some of the friendliest people I have ever met live in this marvelous city
Favorite thing: see the Guinness Storehouse - Set inside a converted 18th century fermentation building, it comprises of six floors linked by a giant atrium in the shape of a pint glass. Although the actual brewery is not open to the public, the storehouse's new exhibition space outlines the 200-year history of the company and reveals many brewing secrets. The models and displays of the exhibition are followed by a short film and a glass of the famous brew.
Guinness Hop Store - Beer museum
Crane St. Opposite the Guinness Brewery, tours of their exhibition centre culminate in a taste of Dublin's finest. Contemporary art upstairs and good city views. (Mon-Fri 10am-4pm. IR£2.)
Fondest memory: The Guinness Beer, Lovely!