I took the Guinness tour yesterday (which I believe is legally required before you can leave Ireland.) At the end of it, you get a pint of Dublin’s finest. Here’s my tip on the tour. You could go up to the Gravity Bar on the top floor, have it poured for you, and after fighting your way through the crowds, check out the beautiful panoramic view of Dublin. It’s certainly a viable option. But there is an even better alternative (at no additional charge). On the floor below, in a much more relaxed lounge, a bar is set up where helpful members of the Guinness staff will instruct you in the the fine art of the pour, explaining each of the six steps in detail. Then you get to pour your own pint. At the end, you receive an official-ish certificate on fine paper stock, suitable for framing, and you get to savor the fruit of your labors. It was definitely the best part of the tour for me. Of course, after finishing your pint, you can still go up to the Gravity Bar to check out the view and elbow a few tourists, if that is what you are into (I am).
The photo at the top was taken during the “surge and settle” step, where you let the pint sit for 2 minutes while the nitrogen is released, before topping it off. Mine is on the far left.
And this is my pint. Not too bad, for a novice. And it tasted even better than it looked.
As a side note, while I was doing this, I met a guy and his wife from Clearwater, FL who were here on vacation. We had a very nice conversation and it turned out that the guy and I had more than a few things in common. We had both moved down to Florida from up north, he was also in the Navy, nuclear-trained, on submarines in the 80’s, and also switched careers from nuclear power to the computing field when he left the service. Spooky, huh? I chalk it up to the magic that is Guinness.