10 facts you (probably) didn't know about Guinness on St Patrick's Day

Synonymous with St Patrick’s Day on Saturday 17 March, Guinness is one of the world's most popular drinks, here are ten facts about the famous stout that you (probably) didn't know.

Published 16th Mar 2018
Updated 16 th Mar 2018

10 facts you (probably) didn’t know about Guinness:

1. Guinness exceptionally smooth taste can be attributed to the 300,000,000 bubbles in every pint.

2. The perfect pint of Guinness takes exactly 119.5 seconds to pour.

3. A third of all pints of beer sold in Ireland are Guinness.

4. Guinness is actually ruby-red and not black as people often assume, this is due to the roasting of the malted barley which happens at exactly 232 degrees Celsius.

Picture: widmatt/Flickr

5. It's actually the nitrogen that causes the tight white creamy head

The creamy white head found on Guinness is created from the 'initiation' and 'surging' of bubbles of nitrogen and carbon dioxide gas as the beer is poured.

6. Guinness quality experts recommend to chill Guinness to 6 degrees Celsius for optimum taste

7. The top 10 countries for Guinness by volume are: Great Britain, followed by Ireland, United States of America, Nigeria, Cameroon, Kenya, Ghana, Jamaica, Indonesia and Malaysia

8. Guinness has many fans across Africa with Guinness Extra Foreign Stout very popular, while in the UK Guinness Draught is the no.1 choice

9. More than 20 Guinness beers are currently in production including Guinness Draught, Golden Ale, Hop House 13 Lager, Guinness Rye Pale Ale and Guinness Original

Picture: Guinness

10. Guinness is brewed in 47 countries around the world and sold in over 120 countries

One of St. James’s Gate’s most experienced brewers, Barry Wylie, said: “I’m lucky enough to be following in the footsteps of generations of brewers who have proudly brewed Guinness at St. James’s Gate since 1759.


"Everybody in the brewery looks forward to St. Patrick’s Day, when millions of people around the world will enjoy the fruits of our labour and raise a toast with a glass of Guinness. We’ll be raising a toast to them too, here in Dublin.”

Charles Ireland, general manager for Diageo GB and Ireland, said: “Guinness has a long and rich heritage yet is constantly innovating to produce fantastic beers to suit a range of tastes and occasions. We are proud to continue to perfect this iconic beer and know it will be raised in toasts at St Patrick’s Day celebrations around the world.”

Available in 120 countries around the world, the connection between Guinness and St Patrick’s Day, stretches back to 1759 when Arthur Guinness took over an abandoned brewery in Dublin, Ireland, named St. James’s Gate.

He signed a 9,000-year lease for the brewery which in calendar 2017 produced 6.8 million hectolitres of beer (equivalent to 1.2 billion pints).


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Driven by a passion for all things drinks-related, Sean writes for The Scotsman extensively on the subject. He can also sometimes be found behind the bar at the world famous Potstill bar in Glasgow where he continues to enhance his whisky knowledge built up over 10 years advising customers from all over the world on the wonders of our national drink. Recently, his first book was published. Dubbed Gin Galore, it explores Scotland's best gins and the stories behind those that make them.
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