20 Things You Didn't Know About Guinness

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20 Things You Didn't Know About Guinness
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20 Things You Didn't Know About Guinness

With the beginning of March comes everyone's favorite excuse to toss back a few — Saint Patrick's Day. And while some may think that green-colored beer is the only way to enjoy a cold one this March, we'd rather share a Guinness or two.

Credit: Flickr/ Live4Science (L4S)

1. The color of Guinness is not brown or black; its official color is deep ruby red.

Credit: Flickr/ [pumaelia]

2. Would you believe it: 10 million glasses of Guinness are sold every day around the world.

Credit: Flickr/ timsackton

3. Guinness was one of the first trademark-protected products ever. According to the brewery, the company came up with a trademark label in the 19th century to "protect the Guinness name" overseas. That includes the harp on the label and the signature of Arthur Guinness (the original brewer).

Credit: Flickr/ aesedepece

4. The harp on the label is based on a on a famous 14th-century Irish harp known as the "O'Neill" or "Brian Boru" harp, which is now preserved in the Library of Trinity College Dublin.

Credit: Flickr/ Live4Science (L4S)

5. The harp is also the official national emblem of the Republic of Ireland and can be found on the Republic's coinage.

Credit: Flickr/ DavidDennisPhotos.com

6. Its a stout kind of day for everyone: Guinness is sold in more than 150 countries.

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7. In case Saint Patrick’s Day (and every day) wasn't enough reason to drink a Guinness, the brewery found one more day to celebrate. Arthur Guinness Day, a made-up holiday to celebrate Arthur Guinness, is now another day to listen to live music, party, and drink a Guinness of course.

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8. The porter you love today originally began as an ale. According to Guinness, Arthur Guinness originally brewed ale and only started making porter in the 1770s due to some competition from other brewers.

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9. It’s a fact that everyone loves to share: The St. James’ Gate Brewery, in Dublin was leased for 9,000 years by the Guinness family. The flat rate? An annual fee of about £45 (about $67), and an initial price of £100 (or $150).

Credit: Flickr/ Phelan Reissen

10. The brewery is also behind the Guinness Book of World Records. In 1954, the head of Guinness, Hugh Beaver, got into an indignant fight with someone and decided to commission an official reference guide to solve all disputes. It was originally a promotional item Guinness gave to bars who stocked the Guinness brew (because you never know when an official reference guide could settle a bar fight).

Credit: Flickr/ jmawok

11. Guinness bubbles are a special kind of breed. The head of Guinness is unlike any other, because the beer is dispensed using a mix of nitrogen and carbon dioxide. That gives the beer a thick head, very little carbonation, and a smooth taste.

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12. When poured at an angle of 45 degrees, it takes 119.5 seconds for the perfect pint of Guinness to settle. So relax, and settle in a little!

Credit: Flickr/ Irish Philadelphia Photo Essays

13. The first overseas Guinness brewery was opened in London in 1936; and the next locations of Guinness breweries may surprise you: in Nigeria, Malaysia, Cameroon, and Ghana.

Credit: Flickr/ gbaku

14. Today, 40 percent of all Guinness sold is in Africa.

Credit: Flickr/ James Cridland

15.Guinness is known for being a bit old-school. The brewery stuck with wooden kegs until 1963 (which you can still see at the brewery in Dublin today).

Credit: Flickr/ K Mick

16. There is in fact a science to the art of drinking a Guinness. One study from the Brisbane Initiative found that Guinness is really only enjoyed best from the tap in Ireland, taking into consideration "pub ambiance," drinking buddies, and other external factors. "This study is the first to provide scientific evidence that Guinness does not travel well and that the enjoyment of Guinness (for our group of nonexpert tasters) was higher when in Ireland," reads the abstract to the study. All the more reason to head to Ireland for a pint.

Credit: Flickr/ IntangibleArts

17. Guinness can literally be cooked into anything. Might we suggest the pot roast brisket? Or the triple chocolate cookies with Guinness and sea salt?

Credit: Ashley Skidder

18. There are a lot of animals that come with a Guinness and we dont just mean the braised oxtail cooked with Guinness. Legendary artist John Gilroy was the first to create advertisements in the 1930s using zoo animals a toucan, ostrich, crocodile, and more.

Credit: Mark Damon Puckett

19. Gilroy was also the man behind the "Guinness is good for you" advertising campaign from the 1930s. And right he was a 2003 study from the University of Wisconsin found that Guinness has high antioxidant properties, as well as a high iron content.

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20. There is a deep-sea Guinness bar. Enough said.

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With the beginning of March comes everyone's favorite excuse to toss back a few — Saint Patrick's Day. And while some may think that green-colored beer is the only way to enjoy a cold one this March, we'd rather share a Guinness or two.

Click here to see 20 Facts You Didn't Know About Guinness Slideshow

The best-known of Irish beers, Guinness has taken the world by storm since its inception in the 1770s. It is now brewed in 49 countries and sold in more than 150, and it's hard to go anywhere without seeing your beloved Guinness on tap (even in Africa, where 40 percent of Guinness is consumed today). And it's all due to Arthur Guinness, whose porter recipe took off.

We were surprised by what we learned about Guinness. There's a science to the perfection of a perfect pour, the Guinness bubbles (really — physicists have taken it upon themselves to figure those little suckers out), and how to properly enjoy a pint. (Though the answer shouldn't surprise you; the best way is to drink a pint in a pub in Ireland, obviously). But Guinness has a long storied history that makes it so popular worldwide.

Click here to find fun facts about your Guinness pint — and find 20 reasons to toast one to Arthur Guinness. Good thing he's got that lease on the St. James Gate brewery for a few more thousand years.

Take a look at the slideshow above to learn all about your go-to beer for St. Patrick's Day.


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