Saturday, February 19, 2011

John Jameson and Arthur Guinness

Friday - St. James Gate, Dublin

See the harp, the Guinness logo?  When the country of Ireland adopted it for their money, it had already been trademarked by Guinness!  So the harp on Irish money is inverted.  That's some sway when your country adapts its iconography around you!

The #1 tourist attraction in Ireland with over a million visitors annually. 
The Storehouse was the original fermentation house for the massive brewery which takes up 1600 acres on the south side of Dublin.  Today the old fermentation house is 7 floors of interpretation, history, advertising and business center. 
Want to host the least productive event in your company's history?  You can book the conference center and meeting rooms here!  I think it's time for a UK/Ireland AMP Conference in Dublin.

Below is the 9000 year lease that Arthur Guinness signed on Dec. 31, 1759 for the princely sum of £45 per year (£100 up front please).


Guinness is made from roasted and unroasted, malted and unmalted barley.  (My Cicerone Mabel told me that the display has to be changed frequently to prevent outbreaks of fleas!).

Water from a mountain source that's naturally soft (lacking in disolved minerals).

Hops (Humulus lupus).

And yeast.  Guinness (and all other breweries that use a proprietary strain) keep a source stock under lock and key.  Akin to the Coke recipe being protected by nuclear submarine-like double keys....  Heavy air of espionage...

For €7 you can take the connoisseur tour; an hour long one on one with a Guinness cicerone in the 4th floor bar.  Sample all of Guinness's products and learn the art of the perfect 2-part pour. 
Handle all the way back, aim at the harp, don't dip the nozzle, tilt the glass upright as you come to 3/4 full, stop the first pour as the top of the head reaches the harp.

Let the pour "go dark", then hold the glass upright, push the handle forward (no gas) and stop when the head is just proud of the glass.  Gently set the glass on the bar, no spillage allowed!

I think we can all agree that I nailed it. 
"Around here we don't do shamrocks an crap like that with our beer"
What do you mean, like cappacinno?
"Yeah, that's strictly for tourists."
I hate fucking tourists....

One of the coolest parts of the tour was the vintage tv and print ads.  You forget how "artful" and prolific their campaigns have been.

The original 1940 RAF ad from Illustrator John Gilroy. 

1953 Gilroy Toucan poem.

Up on the 7th floor you redeem your ticket for a free pint of draught and a free view of the city.  After taking this hours long tour, most people get up here, take a sip and decide that they don't like Guinness!  There were full glasses all over the place. 

Crap day for landscapes but in the right horizon you can just make out the Dublin Spire.  I'll try to take a picture of it today.  Technically called the "Spire Of Light", more often called the "stiffey by the liffey".

Here's an unexpected suprise on the walk to Jameson's.  Some one wasn't really paying attention.  The trains creep along the pace of a brisk walk. 
I must have come along just after it happened because within a few seconds people started asking me what happened including an Guarda (police) officer. 
"Well, there was a baby in the road.  I saw the car coming one way and the train coming from the other way so I had to kick the car into the train to save the baby.  Yeah her mom took her away already."

The interwed connection at this hotel sucks, taking an hour to upload these few pictures.  John Jameson and some additional Guinness pics will have to wait until later.

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