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Guinness Connoisseur Experience Dublin, Ireland. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

With so many things to see and do in Dublin, Ireland, a must do is the Guinness Storehouse tour. You can make advance reservations on line or show up at the Dublin location. Personally, I like a sure thing, so I always recommend purchasing tickets in advance. A specialty offering is the Guinness Connoisseur Experience; highly recommend. For the non beer drinkers in the group (that would be me) there is plenty to enjoy, including food made with Guinness! More about that later.

 

World’s largest pint glass
The beer factory tour begins on the ground floor, at the bottom of the world’s largest pint glass, winding up 7 floors, and ending at the world famous Gravity Bar. Here, you’ll be rewarded with a fantastic view of Dublin and a complimentary pint of Guinness or they will happily provide you with a glass of water – fresh from the Wicklow Mountains. Now let’s dive into the Guinness Connoisseurs Experience in Dublin.

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Behind the scenes at Guinness Academy. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

 

“I must say Guinness Connoisseur Experience  was one of the highlights of our trip in Dublin, and worth every penny! The amount of beer consumed in the experience alone, paid for itself. While the regular tour was interesting, we learned so much more history and facts from our knowledgeable and lively “bartender/tour guide” during the experience.” Kate Stewart of Aldie, Virginia.
 

I spoke with Kate on the Dublin Bus when we were heading into downtown Dublin from the airport. She loved the Guinness Connoisseur experience because it was a small group ( her group had about 14 people in it.) They were taken to the hidden bar. Once inside, they were able to learn about the different beers Guinness produces, as well as  sample ( and by sample she means a good half pint full of each) four different Guinness beers. They also learned how to pour the perfect pint of Guinness and earned a certificate to prove it!  Kate would definitely recommend  the Connoisseur Experience to anyone going to visit the Guinness Storehouse. “You won’t be disappointed! It definitely left me with a newfound love for Guinness.” That’s saying a lot, as Kate was never be a big Guinness fan before this behind the scenes beer tour.

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Arthur’s Yeast in Guinness vault. Photo © 2015 Nancy D. Brown

Guinness key ingredients
While Arthur Guinness was often referred to as the 5th ingredient in Guinness beer, remember that there are four ingredients in creating the perfect Guinness; barley, hops, yeast and 96% water from St. James Well – the water is fed from the Wicklow Mountains. The yeast “Arthur’s Yeast” is only grown at St. James Gate. The yeast is said to be so special that a reserve supply is kept in a safe. I liken Arthur’s Yeast to the importance of the yeast in the mother dough from our famous original San Francisco sourdough bread.

Arthur Guinness and his employees were masters in not only creating a unique beer, like foam from the tap, their advertisements would rise to the top in print and television campaigns, and later digital advertising. In fact, the entire Guinness Storehouse is one giant advertisement. People line up and pay for the experience to drink the Kool-Aid, beer, so to speak. The visuals really are quite good.

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An entire floor devoted to Guinness advertisements. Photo © Nancy D. Brown

Another tour Kate would recommend to anyone visiting Dublin and wanting to get out of the city for the day and not have to drive is to do the Wild Rover Tours. Kate and her partner chose the Kilkenny, Wiklow, and Glendoluagh tour, as well as a visit to a working sheep dog farm.  It was a ten-hour tour day,  that consisted of 4 stops. At each stop they were able to have a couple hours to explore the area, as well as the option to do a walking tour with their great tour bus guide. It was a great day, and exceeded all her expectations. She said that she definitely walked away pleased with some beautiful pictures and became a lot more knowledgeable about Ireland’s history to boot. The best part? The tour was only thirty- three euro! The company also offers other day trips too, one being the Cliffs of Moher. Kate said that if they were in Dublin longer they definitely would have done that tour, too.

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Need to know:
The Guinness Storehouse is open 7 days a week 9:30 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. with the last admission at 5:00 p.m. The Guinness Storehouse is wheelchair accessible. The Hop on Hop Off bus stops near St. James Gate for easy transportation. Needless to say, you DO NOT want to drink and drive.

Insider tip:

For those not over the age of 18, or people who opt not to drink beer, do try the chocolate mousse made with Guinness or the Guinness chocolate brownies. These desserts, as well as other foods, are available for purchase in the Brewers’ Dining Hall. There are several cafes, restaurants and bars in the Guinness Storehouse, as well as a retail store. For additional insider tips follow luxury travel writer @Nancydbrown on Twitter or Instagram @Nancydbrown and @Guinnessstorehouse on Twitter and Instagram.

If You Go:

Guinness Storehouse https://www.guinness-storehouse.com

St. James’s Gate

Dublin 8, Ireland

Guinness Connoisseur Experience review, YouTube video and all photography by travel writer Nancy D. Brown. I was a guest of Guinness Storehouse while researching articles in Dublin, Ireland.