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History & heritage

It all started over two hundred and fifty years ago, when Arthur Guinness signed a 9000-year lease on a derelict brewery at St James’ Gate, Dublin and so began the story of Guinness. Never afraid to do things differently, Arthur Guinness soon stopped brewing ale and became the first Dubliner to focus solely on porter, a black beer from London finding favour in Ireland’s capital. By the early 1800s, while other breweries stayed close to home, Guinness struck out on its own, braving the perils of early sea travel to export its now famous ‘black stuff’ across the globe to locations as far flung as the Americas and New Zealand.

In 1959, Guinness made history as the first brewery to introduce nitrogen to its beer, resulting in the smoother, creamier finish that has come to be so synonymous with Guinness.

With that first batch of Irish stout there began a legacy of innovative brewing that's since been upheld all over the world. Over 20 different beers now bear the Guinness name, served in over 150 countries across the globe, and we're proud to have gone to unprecedented lengths to set up 18 breweries across the globe. From kick-starting the barley-farming industry in Uganda to bringing a whole new dimension to American lager, we've stopped at nothing to bridge cultures and cross continents.

And, no matter where it's brewed or served, every single pint, bottle or can of Guinness adheres to the lofty standards set at St. James's Gate in Dublin, the original birthplace of our beer. To do this, every brewer in every brewery is meticulously trained to make beer the Guinness way.

Guinness. Made of More.


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Production & Flavour

Guinness is brewed with only 4 natural ingredients: water, barley, hops and yeast. Each of these ingredients is hugely important to the flavour of our beers. We are the only brewery in the world to roast our own barley. This barley is roasted to 232C - any colder and its not good enough, any hotter and it catches fire - it's an exact science.

Interesting facts


Explore the portfolio

Guinness has always been a brewery about innovation - in fact, there has been an experimental brewery on the St James Gate brewery site fo well over 100 years. With over 20 Guinness beers avilable globally, click here to find out more.

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