There has been some dispute in the past few years about pouring the perfect pint of the good stuff. That heady, dark brew that is as Irish as they come; Guinness. According to Guinness, the most vital step is to fill the glass ¾ full, let it settle for exactly 119.5 seconds (to the millisecond) before topping up the pint. Some naysayers argue that it makes no sense, and just means you must wait longer at the bar for your pint – but we think that the wait makes the pint taste just that little bit sweeter.
The theory behind the two-step draw is that during the first pour, the tap is pulled forward and the Guinness is poured with force. As it comes out and hits the glass, bubbles begin to form – if the glass is held at the recommended 45-degree angle, the larger bubbles won’t form and there will be only small bubbles that give rise to a smoother head. Once the pint is ¾ full, the glass has been slowly angled back to straight during the pouring and the Guinness is cloudy, with dancing patterns of dark and light as the beer begins to settle. Once the Guinness has settled for the allotted 119.5 seconds and the bubbles have risen to the top, the pint is filled slowly by pressing the tap backwards and presented to you – Guinness logo outwards of course. The first sip should be taken gently, horizontally, to consume the lighter head with its delicate flavours, followed by a gulp of the stout.
Once you have finished your perfect pint, count the rings left by the head on your glass. It is said that proper Irish folk will see between 5 to 7 rings – one for every sip before you finish your pint. If you don’t succeed at finishing with 7 or fewer sips … head back to the bar and try again!