#1) There really was a Guinness.
Unlike so many American beers (sorry, there is no Meister Budweiser, Mr. Pabst, or Sir Red Dog), Guinness is named for an actual man. Arthur Guinness was born in Celdridge County in Kildare, Ireland in 1725.
#2) Arthur signed a really, really long lease.
In 1759 there were already sixty breweries in Dublin, but Arthur Guinness must have known the run-down one he leased would lead to prosperity. He signed a lease for 9,000 years. Not only that, but he got quite a bargain – about $65 a year.
#3) Guinness wasn’t always Guinness.
Though the beer you’re hoisting now carries the name of Mr. Guinness, the early brew that most closely resembled today’s dark stout was called West India Porter.
#4) Waterloo could have been won with beer.
What does Waterloo have to do with stout? According to an old Guinness advertisement featuring a testimony by one of Wellington’s injured soldiers, Guinness helped speed his recovery. If only all of the soldiers had access to Guinness, history might have been altered.
#5) Dark beer is for mourning.
The popular Black Velvet cocktail, made with Guinness and champagne, was invented by a barkeeper in 1861. After the death of Prince Albert Victor, he proclaimed that even the champagne should be in mourning, and added Guinness to the patron’s glasses.
#6) Victorian drinkers were tougher than modern drinkers.
At least the makers of Guinness must think so. Modern versions of Guinness Draught and Guinness Extra Stout are brewed weaker than they were in the 1800s.
#7) You can grab a Guinness in China.
In 1997, the first Irish pub was opened in China. O’Malley’s in Shanghai naturally serves Guinness on tap.
#8) It’s not just for St. Patrick’s Day
The average consumption of Guinness is approximately 10 million pints a day, worldwide.
#9) That harp is real.
The harp logo featured on each bottle is actually the harp of Brian Boru, an Irish king from the 11th century. The actual harp itself is on display at Trinity College in Dublin.
#10) Guinness is not vegetarian.
Several beers use a process involving isinglass (a fish product) to help filter the brew. Guinness is one of them, making the beer for carnivores only.
Doesn’t knowing a little more about the history of Guinness make it taste just a wee bit better? This year, while you’re hoisting one for St. Patrick, have one for the man who made your refreshment possible. Drink a toast to Arthur Guinness. And if you’re feeling even more lucky, take advantage of our MARCH MADNESS deal this month. Get $3 OFF our Ultimate wash by scanning the barcode in the March Special. You can find this in the news section on our website.