The Great Debate UK

At 250 Guinness seems like an old friend


Melissa Cole- Melissa Cole is a leading beer writer, blogger and international beer judge in the UK; she also co-owns lovebeer@borough, a beer-tasting business in London’s Borough Market. The opinions expressed are her own. -

It takes a far-sighted man to sign a 9,000 year lease on a ramshackle brewery, but this week fans of the black stuff will be celebrating Arthur Guinness’s decision to do just that 250 years ago.

Drinkers all over the world will be raising a glass to Arthur and his decision to take a recipe for the London beer style porter, increase its strength and call it stout porter – which has latterly been shortened to stout.

There’s just something about the Guinness brand that has an enduring appeal to people – in my opinion it is by no means the finest-tasting stout in the world and, personally, I much prefer the original bottled version to the nitrogenated draught, but I find myself returning to it every so often, mostly at sporting events, and welcoming it like an old friend.