What Is Guinness Made Of?

Also known as a ‘meal in a glass’ or ‘liquid bread’ some people joke that Guinness is one of the major food groups in Ireland. But at only 198 calories per pint the joke is on them as it’s actually lighter than most other beers with slightly less calories per 100ml than orange juice or semi-skimmed milk. Though we’re not suggesting that you use it as part of a calorie-controlled diet – that’s up to you.

Local folklore has always held that the water used in Guinness comes from the River Liffey, which is just beside the brewery in Dublin city. We think we’re all relieved to hear that the water used is actually exclusively sourced from Lady’s well (supplied by natural spring water) in the Wicklow Mountains.

Known popularly as the 'black stuff' many people are surprised when they hear that Guinness is not actually black at all but more a ruby red color. This is because of the method used to prepare the ingredients. The barley is roasted in much the same way as coffee beans are roasted and this is what gives it that unique hue. So the next time you have a pint of the black stuff in front of you take another look.

We’re all familiar with the famous creamy white head that comes with each pint of Guinness. This smooth creaminess is achieved by the tiny bubbles created by nitrogen as the beer surges from the tap. The shamrock is courtesy of the bartender not the nitrogen!

In some Irish pubs you may find yourself being convinced by the natives that there is a healthy amount of vitamin G in your pint – recommended daily allowance three pints. We think this could be a bit of old Irish blarney but we’ll leave you make up your own mind on that one.

Guinness also tell us that one of their key ingredients is inspiration and we’re willing to believe that!

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About The Author, Mairead Foley
For more Irish food & drink articles check out GoIreland.comMairead Foley writes for Ireland travel website GoIreland.com