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Good Beer Hunting

Feb 16, 2019

Welcome to a special edition of the Good Beer Hunting podcast—a series of episodes made in partnership with Guinness devoted to one of the world’s most iconic brands from Dublin to the United States, to Nigeria and the Caribbean. 

Guinness became an underwriter of Good Beer Hunting 18 months ago, helping us bring you a series of stories called Coming to America, exploring the relationship between imports and the U.S. beer drinker in the age of local craft. And more recently, they helped us start up a new series called Mother of Invention, where we explore the technical innovations, past and present, that have transformed the beer in your glass in surprising ways.

And now we’re taking the opportunity to explore the story of Guinness itself in a unique way for GBH. Guinness made it possible for us to visit historic St. James Gate in Dublin, and their new brewery in Baltimore County in the U.S., and gave us free rein to pull at the strings of the stories we’ve so often heard in the form of legend, but rarely had the first-hand experience to dive in to. We wanted to turn legends into learning.

They also gave us free rein of their brewing sites, both in Baltimore, home to their new brewery and taproom, called the Open Gate Brewery, which shares a name with the public-facing innovation brewing taproom located in Dublin, and historic St James Gate—which, to be honest, took some real doing. It’s not a place open to tourists, at least beyond the visitor center. And much of the more historical aspects are either in disrepair or preserved, and gaining access to those people and places isn’t easy for a film and audio crew. So for all the rigamarole we caused with our persistence, we’re thankful and grateful we were able to get past the gates, and into some of the more fascinating aspects of the various Guinness operations.

And it was all in pursuit of understanding one thing: What makes Guinness Guinness? And how has that changed over the years?