How to Pour a Guinness the Right Way

A Head for Profits teaches how to pour a Guinness the right way.

We’re getting closer to St. Patrick’s Day, which means it’s time to learn how to pour a Guinness as the makers intended. When thirsty revelers come into your bar on the famous drinking holiday, this will be a beverage that many will be craving. If your staff isn’t well-versed in the proper pouring technique for Guinness, you may end up serving pints full of froth to your customers, a nightmare for St. Paddy’s service. You’ll want to be seen as the Guinness experts on this holiday!

Fortunately, Guinness themselves don’t keep their legendary pour method a secret. Their two-part pouring method, while tricky to learn at first, can be perfected with plenty of practice. Start practicing now, and your staff will be slinging Guinness like champs come St. Patrick’s Day. Let’s get into it!

How to Pour a Guinness from Draft

The ideal pint of Guinness will have a heavy, settled mass of dark stout beer at the bottom of the pint glass. The classic creamy white head should rest just above the lip of the glass, the cherry on top for Guinness presentation. How do you achieve this famous look? With a steady hand, patience and lots of practice!

Step 1: Choose Your Glass and Perfect Your Tilt!
Start with a clean, dry, 20-ounce tulip-shaped pint glass. The strategic bump in the glass’s wider neck isn’t just for show – it lets those delightful nitrogen bubbles move down the side and back up into the beer’s neck. Tilt the glass away from you at a 45-degree angle; this move is crucial to prevent frothing and ensure a swift settling process. Don’t risk missing out on the cascading magic – get that angle right!

Step 2: Master the Tap Technique.
Take control as you pull the tap toward you, releasing the Guinness until it fills the glass to the bottom edge of the tulip’s distinctive bump. If you’re using a branded Guinness glass, aim to fill the glass until the beer is about halfway up the gold harp icon. Now, stop pouring, set the glass down and let the beer settle. Don’t continue filling up the glass until you see a clear difference between the darker body of the beer and the creamy, white head. This may take some time, but that’s the beauty of Guinness!

Dark Beer in a Glass Mug

Step 3: Achieve the Perfect Level Pour.
Once the beer has fully settled, put the tulip glass back up to the tap and hold it level. This time, ditch the 45-degree angle – push the tap away from you instead, allowing the Guinness to flow at a measured pace. Direct your aim into the heart of the foam head until it has domed a tiny bit above the glass’s lip. Don’t serve it to your customer just yet, though! Wait a little while longer for the cascading effect to calm.

Step 4: Say “Cheers” to Your Customer!
Once you’ve finished all these steps, give yourself a pat on the back – you’ve just poured a perfect Guinness! If you hold the full glass up to the light, you can see beautiful reddish-brown color hues in the beer. Serve it to your customer, say “cheers,” and get ready to serve the next St. Paddy’s enthusiast.

Now that you’ve learned how to pour a Guinness the Irish way, let’s dive into the draft system requirements for pouring this special stout.

Do I Need a Stout Faucet to Pour Guinness?

Guinness, like other stout beers, has nitrogen gas infused inside the beer itself. This nitrogen gas is what creates the beautiful cascading effect when pouring a Guinness; the nitrogen bubbles sink to the bottom of the glass and then rise back up to the neck of the tulip-shaped glass.

However, because the nitrogen is infused into the beer, it cannot flow correctly out of a regular tap faucet. Standard tap faucets are too wide for stout beers and don’t contain the necessary

A Head for Profits teaches how to pour a Guinness the right way. Beer being poured into Guinness glass.

restrictor valve to break up the nitrogen bubbles. If you pour a Guinness or any stout out of a normal tap faucet, you’ll only get a pint full of foam.

If you want to learn how to pour a Guinness the proper way, you’ll need more than just the two-part pour method. You’ll also need a stout faucet. Stout faucets are tap faucets that have a narrower opening and a restrictor valve, perfect for pouring these nitrogen-infused beers. The narrower opening creates a slower beer flow to prevent over-foaming, and the restrictor valve helps break up excess nitrogen bubbles to create a cascading effect while the beer is poured. 

If your bar needs a stout faucet to pour perfect Guinnesses this St. Patrick’s Day, A Head for Profits has you covered! We offer only the best draft beer system equipment, used and praised by brew masters and business owners like yourself. We’d love to help you find the perfect stout faucet or any other beverage equipment you may need to get ready for the St. Patrick’s Day rush. 

Now You Know How to Pour a Guinness – Go Practice!

Now that you know the techniques, try out the two-part Guinness pour method for practice. Have your staff make a few attempts as well, and pretty soon you will all be prepared to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in true Irish fashion with your customers. 

If you found this blog helpful, share it with your staff or other business owners to spread the knowledge. At A Head for Profits, our number one mission is to help bar and restaurant owners be informed and get the best draft beer equipment so their customers keep coming back again and again. If you need a stout faucet or any other beverage dispensing equipment for St. Patrick’s Day, give us a call. Our technicians and sales staff would love to hear from you and help guide you toward the right equipment for your space. 

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