Posted by: Matt Browner Hamlin | September 24, 2009

To Arthur!


Today is the 250th anniversary of the signing of the lease between Arthur Guinness and the St. James Gate brewery, where Guinness stout porter was first brewed in Dublin. Arthur Guinness leased the brewery for 9,000 years, presumably because the price break came after the 8,000 year lease term.

According to Serious Eats, there will be a global toast at 17:59 Dublin time — or 12:59pm today.

Additionally, Guinness is hosting some great bands at concerts worldwide. They have also set up the Arthur Guinness Fund, which will give money in support of community service.

I used to go to school in Dublin and have fond memories of my first tour of St. James Gate. I went back to Dublin about two years ago and did the tour again. Much had changed and it was far more high-tech, but the same great product — Irish Guinness — was waiting at the end. Guinness is by far one of my favorite beers and certainly one of the most misunderstood. I get ticked off every time someone describes Guinness as “a meal” or talks about another beer with the explanation of, “Oh, it’s not heavy like Guinness.”

In fact, Guinness has one of the lowest caloric tallies of any non-light beer. Bud Light has 110 callories. Budweiser (Bud Senior in my parlance) has 143. Corona has 148. Heineken has 166. Guinness has a measly 125 calories. Take THAT Conventional Wisdom!

I find that Guinness is always lighter and more refreshing than I think it will be. It isn’t a meal. It isn’t heavy. It has flavor and while that may scare many American beer drinkers, it is, in fact, a good thing. So go enjoy a Guinness to night and be thankful the option should be available to you for the next 8,750 years or so.



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