There’s nothing quite like enjoying the perfect pint of Guinness.
And it doesn’t get any better than drinking a pint at the Gravity Bar at the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin — or does it?
The beer giant is now offering a storehouse tour that allows guests to go “behind the gates” at St. James Gate Brewery. It’s separate from the longstanding ticketed storehouse visit that is an experience more akin to visiting a beer museum. The new tour takes guests through the actual brewery.
The behind-the-scenes tour launched last month in Dublin. Those that embark will bear witness to the past, present and future of the Irish beer company in its founding location.
Padraig Fox, general manager at Open Gate Brewery in Dublin, told USA TODAY that the tour is full of hidden gems.
“It’s a real in-depth behind-the-scenes look at both our brewing process but told through the history of the site – you get to see parts of the iconic brewery that even some employees don’t have access to, so it’s really something special,” Fox said.
Fox explained that he’s worked for Guinness for 15 years both in Ireland and in the United States, and he’s always been asked what the brewery is really like behind the gates. Now, guests can see it firsthand.
This new experience, which lasts three hours, takes visitors through the brewing process itself. The tour continues through the brewery and its facilities, most of which has never been seen by the public before.
“It’s an amazing site – a 50+ acre brewery right in the heart of Dublin city, full of so much history and great stories, and of course home to the world’s best pint as well,” Fox said.
The tour will touch on the brewery’s history and Guinness’ social impact in Dublin and across the world — all covered while walking along old railway tracks.
The tour starts at Guinness’ very beginning: The moment that the lease on the brewery was signed by Arthur Guinness in 1759.
Visitors will also learn about how the process of brewing on site has changed and evolved over centuries. That means different types of beer, brewing methods, equipment used and facilities in which beer was and is brewed, including brewhouses still in operation today.
“In addition to our amazing Guinness Storehouse experience, you also get access to our Roasthouse, where we roast all our own barley in-house, our world class Brewhouse 4, our experimental Open Gate Brewery, centuries old Vat Houses and more,” Fox detailed.
Guests even get to traverse underground tunnels that lead to Brewhouse 4, which is where Guinness is currently brewed.
Coming off a deep dive into the brewery’s inner-workings, guests have a chance to explore the Guinness Open Gate Brewery, an on-site experimental brewery and taproom, where every new Guinness beer created since the 1960s has been born, according to Fox.
“It’s where our brewers get to experiment with whatever they dream up, so there’s always something really interesting pouring, from IPAs to sours to experimental stouts,” said Fox. “As part of the tour you’ll be able to taste something in the early stages of brewing, so it’ll be a sneak peak of what will be hitting the taps in a few weeks’ time – an exclusive preview you might say.”
Then, the tour culminates with a guided beer and food tasting featuring limited-edition brews at Arthur’s Bar.
“It’s a real treat for Guinness fans, stepping into the history of the brewery from Arthur’s time, but also seeing one of the most modern brewhouses in the world,” Fox said.
Tickets for the tour are $104.84 (€95) per person and also include admission to the Guinness Storehouse and a Guinness-branded gift.
‘The pint has landed’:Guinness launches US-exclusive Over the Moon Milk Stout
Ireland in Maryland:Guinness opens first US brewery in 60 years