Monday, March 16, 2009
I'm a Guinness Girl, in a Molson World
This year marks the 250th anniversary of Guinness and I think it should be celebrated. I love Guinness, always have. Back in the Dark Ages when I was a single girl working crazy hours, I sometimes drank a dark stout in lieu of eating dinner. Some say it is a complete meal, in and of itself, and I would have to agree. But I've often had to defend my choice of libation. Some people (the misinformed or dipsophobics of the world) think it's too dark, too heavy, too bold, too strong, too.....manly. Phht. I say give it a chance, people. Just taste it. Guinness is the real deal - pure, full-bodied yum.
And Guinness is good for you, people. You heard me. It's actually healthy. Don't believe me?
Researchers have found that antioxidants from the moderate use of stout might reduce the incidence of cataracts by as much as 50%. It is lower in alcohol, calories and carbohydrates than regular major brand beers. It even has fewer calories and carbohydrates than low-fat milk and orange juice. It also has higher levels of Vitamin B, which helps keep arteries unclogged. Hah! And a recent study has shown that Guinness is packed with vitamins, flavonoids and antioxidants, just like the ones found in dark-coloured fruits and vegetables, and they are what keep the bad form of cholesterol (LDL) away. Hands up, who would rather drink a pint than eat a plate of brussel sprouts? Thought so. And if that's not enough to convince you, clogged arteries contribute to erectile dysfunction. (Think about it, gentlemen, and I think you'll come to the conclusion that it's a pretty clear choice. Remember, it don't mean a thing if it ain't got that schwing.) Don't you want to grow up big and strong and healthy?
Take a gander at its distinguished history:
In 1759, Arthur Guinness signed a 9,000 year lease on an abandoned brewery in Dublin. Besides inheriting the malt houses, mill, horses and acreage he needed to brew beer, the lease also included water rights and twenty cases of pretzels. (Kidding about the pretzels. It was peanuts.) Just as water is crucial in the making of a decent whisky (my other true love) the purity and softness of the water is pivotal to the quality of Guinness. The brewers use the 'liquor', as they like to call the water, flowing from springs called the St. James's Wells which course all the way through the Wicklow Mountains. Thanks to the fruits of dear Arthur's labour, about 10 million glasses are chugged every day in 150 countries. Go Artie, go!
And thanks to the invention of the widget, we can now enjoy Guinness at home.
I love that velvet creaminess, the smooth caramel/coffee/bitter chocolate taste that has a hint of a metallic twang and mostly, the lightness and purity of the drink. To me, it's still a meal in a glass. And I love looking at it as much as I enjoy drinking it; it's mesmerizing. If you hold it to the light, you'll see it's not black but a deep, rich ruby colour, with creamy waves roiling to the top of the glass. You'll know you're taking a proper swig when you "break the seal" and end up with a foam mustache. Lick it off, or wipe it on your sleeve - it doesn't matter. You've now entered the sacred world of Guinness.
I'll leave you with this:
There's a big conference of beer producers.
At the end of the day, all of the presidents of all the beer companies decide to have a drink in a bar.
The president of 'Budweiser' orders a Bud, the president of 'Miller' orders a Miller Lite, Adolph Coors orders a Coors, and the list goes on.
Then the waitress asks Arthur Guinness what he wants to drink, and much to everybody's amazement, Mr. Guinness orders a Coke!
"Why don't you order a Guinness?" his colleagues ask.
"Naah. If you guys won't drink beer, than neither will I."