Guinness’ 250 Years of History in Dublin, Ireland

Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland

The Guinness Storehouse is one of Ireland’s most visited tourist attractions.

The unforgettable escapade is spread over seven floors bursting with interactive experiences.

Ones that combine their long-brewing legacy with Ireland’s prolific history.

And it all begins at the bottom of the world’s largest Guinness pint glass.

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Row of beer glasses at the Guinness Storehouse

Inside Guinness Storehouse

Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland
Guinness Advertisement

Throughout the seven floors of the Guinness Storehouse, you will discover an unforgettable Irish adventure.

From walking across the floor where the 9000-year lease signed by Arthur Guinness is encased to viewing the iconic advertising dating back to 1929. Some of these advertisements are funny, and some would not be allowed with today’s advertising laws.

Watch video installed in stacks of wood casks showing how they were all made by hand – where once 250,000 casks towered over Victoria Quay.

They have also designed an area with machines where you can test your knowledge about the facts about alcohol.

Throughout the Guinness Storehouse, you will learn about the entire beer-making process. From the famous yeast to the fermentation process to standing in the 30 million bubbles in every pint of Guinness.

Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland
Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland

Not only discovering how Guinness has grown over the past two hundred fifty years next year (2019), you also have several opportunities to sample some of the iconic ‘black stuff.’ You can book your tour to include the “Tasting Experience” or book the “Guinness Academy.”

The Guinness Academy will teach you how to pour the perfect pint. It is a six-step ritual and takes 119.5 seconds to complete.

Restaurants and Bars

Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland
Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland

It is easy to spend most of the day or evening in the Guinness Storehouse. With your choice of six different restaurants and bars, there is something to suit everyone’s taste.

  • The Cooperage Café is their modern Irish café paying homage to their barrels. Here you can enjoy sandwiches, pastries, and coffee.
  • Arthur’s Bar has a traditional Irish pub style. It is the perfect place to sample Guinness and relish some breathtaking city views.
  • 1837 Bar & Brasserie is named after the famous pairing of oysters, and Guinness began. Here you can enjoy everything from small dishes and filling entrees, to platters designed for sharing.
  • Brewers’ Dining Hall is inspired by St. James’s Gate dining room in the 18th and 19th – centuries. The hall features Guinness’s iconic dishes prepared in the open kitchen.
  • Gravity Bar is the best place to enjoy a perfectly poured pint of ‘the black stuff’ with 360° views of Dublin’s impressive skyline.
  • The private Connoisseur Bar is a luxurious tasting area that brings you on a journey leading to the heart of Guinness.
man pouring beer at the Guinness Storehouse

The History of Guinness

Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland
Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland

1759 – Arthur Guinness (at the age of 34) signed a lease for the St. James’s Gate Brewery, Dublin. The lease was for 9000 years at an annual rent of £45 (50EUR / 63USD / 81CAD).

1769 – Export of the beer to England began.

1770’s – Arthur started brewing ‘porter.’

1799 – Arthur stopped brewing ale and concentrated only on the porter.

1803 – Arthur died

Author’s son took over the Brewery, Arthur Guinness II – the first of five generations to operate the business.

1820s – Shipments were being made to Barbados (Caribbean), Lisbon (Portugal), New York (USA), Sierra Leone (Africa), and South Carolina (USA).

1830’s – St. James’s Gate Brewery became the largest brewery in Ireland.

1850’s – Benjamin Lee Guinness, Arthur II’s son, took over the business.

1851 – Benjamin became Lord Mayor of Dublin and contributed £150,000 to restore St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

1862 – The first trademark label for GUINNESS stout was introduced – The word ‘Guinness,’ the Harp shape logo, and the signature of Arthur Guinness.

1868 – Benjamin died. He left the business to Edward Cecil Guinness, his son.

Under Edward, the St. James’s Gate Brewery became the largest brewery in the world.

1886 – Guinness was incorporated – the first major brewery to do so, and the Chairman position of the company was held by a Guinness family member until 1986.

19th – Century ends with 1.2 million barrels a year of Guinness stout sold. The brewery grew to span 60 acres with its own fire brigade and railway. 

Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland
The signed lease agreement for 9,000 years

1901 – The Guinness laboratory was created; utilizing science to enrich generations of brewing.

1927 – Edward died leaving Rupert Guinness, his son, as new Chairman.

1929 – The first official Guinness advertising campaign was launched.

1936 – The first overseas Guinness Brewery opened at Park Royal in London.

1951 – Guinness Exports Limited was created to market, bottle, and distribute Guinness overseas.

1959 – Guinness Draft was launched.

1962 – Benjamin Guinness, Rupert’s grandson, became Chairman – the last Chairman of the Guinness family.

Further expansion of the Guinness empire took place with breweries being built in Nigeria (1962), Malaysia (1965), Cameroun (1970), and Ghana (1971).

1988 – Guinness Draught in a can was introduced

The 20th century ended with 49 countries brewing Guinness and over 150 selling it.

2014 – Guinness opened a state-of-the-art brewery, Brewhouse 4, at St. James Gate.

Ireland’s #1 Visitor Attraction

Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland
Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland

Since opening in 2000, almost 18 million people have walked through the doors of The Guinness Storehouse. The year 2017 welcomed an average of 4,727 people per day. The famous “black stuff” has is now shipped to over 150 countries and will be celebrating its 250th birthday next year.

Wall of barrels storing beer

While you are there, make sure you stop in The Guinness retail store. It is the only place to purchase exclusive merchandise, and it also possesses the largest assortment of Guinness memorabilia in the world.

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