Want to know a secret? Even with my Irish heritage, I’ve never tried a Guinness. I have nothing against it, it’s all beers that I do not care for, I can’t stand the smell. But as an adventurous person, I’ve decided that I will not let my aversion to the smell of beer, stop me from trying one. I owe it to my ancestors.
Guinness is an Irish staple. As the best-selling beer in Ireland, most have tried one. With over 10 million glasses sold a day and 1.8 billion pints sold a year, they have to be doing something right.
I had to find out what I was missing. But for a truly Irish experience, I knew I would have to head to an authentic Irish Pub in the states.
Where To Get It
Sprawling out into the suburbs of the Twin Cities is a Public House called Jake O’Connor’s. Here you will find all kinds of good old fashion Irish delicacies with a little bit of a modern twist. My favorite part of any good Irish pub is the décor and Jake O’Connors didn’t disappoint me.
Things like traditional ‘Irish Breakfast’ and Shepherds Pie, along with Corn Beef Sandwiches are found on their menu. They have the Irish flair down.
Located in the heart of Excelsior, they are the place where all the locals are hanging out. It seemed like the perfect place to try my first Guinness.
The Perfect Pour
We ordered a couple of drinks and appetizers we sat and waited anxiously for our first sip of Guinness. My husband kept teasing me about it because I never drink beer.
They took a while to arrive because Guinness requires special attention. The bartenders have to fill the glass 2/3 of the way full at a 45-degree angle. After filling it, they must leave it to settle and come back and pour the remaining beer.
Even then it must settle again until you have a proper separation of foam and malt beverage at the bottom. This is why you should always go to a pub to drink it. You can purchase Guinness in bottles and cans but it’s not going to be the same experience.
Once it arrived, I was taken aback by just how pretty it looked. This is not something you drink from a Solo cup. The foam at the top is bubbles from nitrogen and carbon dioxide gas that is expelled as the beer is poured.
For me, it was my safety net. It reminded me of the layer of whip cream you top a coffee with. It was trapped in all the Guinness and any smells that might have swayed me to not drink.
My first drink was surprisingly good. It didn’t have the aftertaste and smell I associated with beer in the past. It had a rich creaminess too. It was filling. When you have your first drink, embrace the foam mustache you get.
The next time I’m in a pub, I will order another. I’m not sure why it took this long for me to get over my fear. I let my sense of smell keep me away from this delight.
I will not let that stop me in the future. So what about you? Do you have any weird fears that hold you back from trying something new?
* Updated Jake O’Conners in Excelsiors has closed.