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Guinness Draught | Guinness Ltd.

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BA SCORE
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2,212 Reviews
THE BROS
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Guinness DraughtGuinness Draught
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Guinness Ltd.
Ireland
guinness.com

Style: Irish Dry Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-02-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
2,212
Ratings:
7,454
Avg:
3.45
pDev:
37.68%
 
 
Wants:
146
Gots:
2,215
For Trade:
0
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Reviews: 2,212 | Ratings: 7,454
Reviews by TheIronHammer:
Photo of TheIronHammer
3.63/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle to a beer glass.

A: Pours a very dark brown, as expected. It has a decent tan head right after the pour. The head decreases quickly, but a small part of it remained through the entire sampling. It has nice lacing. Overall it has an inviting appearance.

S: It has a malty aroma, which is pleasant. The roasted influence is also there, but not a strong as I would like. There is also a slightly sweet scent, like some sort of bread, which I like. Overall, it has a nice aroma to it, but could be stronger.

T: The roasted flavors come out more in the taste. There is also a good malty character to it. The slightly sweet bread aroma translates to the taste also. It is pleasantly astringent on the finish, with a bit of the roasted flavor lingering for a minute or so. Overall, taste mirrors the scent pretty closely, and is well balanced.

Mf: The body is light for the style, and I think it does detract from the beer. The carbonation is moderate and proper for this beer.

Overall: This was a pretty good beer. The taste was my favorite part. The scent was pretty good, but needs to be a bit stronger. A heavier mouthfeel would make this beer seem bolder and more substantial. Overall though I'm happy I tried it. I'll probably buy it again. It's certainly worth a try.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of StopHatingOnClassics
4.71/5  rDev +36.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The beer people love to hate for no legitimate reason, other than the fact it is the most famous stout of all time. Don't judge a beer based on its' notoriety. This is the textbook beer that "beer snobs" loathe, because it reassures the deluded perception they have that smaller always equals better. Anyways:

Appearance- Poured on tap into a guinness glass it presents a dark coffee like color, accompanied with a thick foamy head.

Smell- Subtle tones of roasted malt.

Taste- Divine. Notes of dark chocolate and malt, with faint hints of sweet cream.

Mouthfeel- Lightly carbonated and creamy. The head of a guinness on tap in unparalleled by any beer.

"StopHatingOnClassics"

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Photo of clknowlton001
4.9/5  rDev +42%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

As anyone reading, I drink a lot of beer. However, I never review beers, mainly because good beers tend to receive their credit, plus why would anyone really care what I have to say about beer, I'm not an expert? But I was curious, so I Googled Guinness and found its BA score; it is wrong. How have "beer experts" determined that what was once the gold standard is now deserving of a 77 score (or a 70, Bros)? Because it's not brewed by a couple hipsters in a trendy neighborhood? Because it is mass produced? It's delicious. It's beautiful. It's meant to taste unique. I've had better beers, but it is completely worthy of a 5/5 rating. It's a DRY Stout, emphasis on the dry. It makes you yearn for that next sip, just like a good cocktail. It is smooth and has a burnt toffee aftertaste, pours a deep black with a rich, thick, creamy head that laces the glass perfectly. It's incredibly made and gets better with more pours, A TRUE SESSION BREW before it had a name. It offers a very slight body with a sharply toasted malt smell, that of day old bread that does not overwhelm but rather compliments the taste. Very well made, it's clear why brewers and beer drinkers alike have enjoyed and respected this beer for decades. This should not be kept out of your rotation just because your grandparents have drank it, in fact, that's partially why you should drink it.

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Photo of tomghiley
5/5  rDev +44.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

do people romanticize a pint of guinness? yes they do. but why shouldn't they? there's a beautiful history behind this beer, and i challenge anyone to find me a more beautiful looking beer. perfect head, an inredible blackish ruby color, it is flawless. smells like stale rye bread, tastes like stale rye bread, and...FUCK YOU, i love stale rye bread! wonderful texture, guinness is still king among stouts.

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Photo of Irishman_Scott
5/5  rDev +44.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Call me a bit biased because of my heritage, but I love Guinness. This is my go to beer. It is the first one that made me understand the flavors to a beer. Prior to Guinness, like many people, I mostly drank american Pilsner (Hey... we were all early 20 somethings at one time, LOL!!! I've since changed, gotten into crafts, and won't touch light Pilsner anymore). I didn't understand why it tasted like flat coffee until I read about how it was made and why. My next try at it and I was hooked. I grew to love this beer!!! It has one of the prettiest pours there is, in my opinion. Best off a nitro tap or from a can with the widget. It does create a creaminess. It is a dry stout, with virtually no fizz, and lots of coffee, along with chocolate and roasted malt. At least that is what I taste anyway. It is light compared to a number of the Stouts I've gotten into since acquiring my Stout love. Many call it legendary. Some say it stinks. To me, it is legendary, and oh so good!

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Photo of RickyS
2.54/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

The budweiser of stouts. Black water.

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Photo of NilocRellim
5/5  rDev +44.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I spent quite a bit of time in Ireland and have since became a Guinness-snob.... I will say this: The Guinness that you get in (most of) the rest of the world is not anywhere as good as it is in Ireland. Even in Ireland you can get a bad Guinness... I found that this was caused by a few things, but more often than not it was because of a bad/dirty tap or line from the keg to the tap; I have even sent a few back when I was in Ireland because of the taste.

My rating/review is for the Guinness that you get on-tap (nitro) in Ireland.:

The bartender holds the Guinness tulip glass at a 45 degree angle until the Guinness reaches 3/4 full. The Guinness then has to settle or "cook" until the nitrogen bubbles stop flowing down the glass. Once settled the bartender holds the glass under the tap at no angle and tips the tap back, allowing the Guinness to flow more slowly, creating a nice domed head. The Guinness then settles (cooks) a second time before it should be consumed. The whole process should take 119 seconds.

The proper Guinness should be incredible black, hardly letting any light through it at all. The head should be off-white, thick (as if able to hold a coin), creamy, with no large bubbles (called frog eyes). It should not have that strong of a smell to it, but the smell should be something creamy (yes, creamy), slightly spicy, and slightly roasted barley. The taste should be very smooth... VERY smooth. It should NOT be overly bitter, but there is some there. A lot of people just say that it taste like coffee and chocolate. While a Guinness should taste of these things, none should be dominant over the rest.

Guinness from the bottle or from the can are not nearly as good because they tend not to drink as smooth. Maybe it's the aging that is done or the characteristics of the can or bottle that it picks up, but you CANNOT get anything better than Guinness on tap in Ireland.

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Photo of ADM_Crunch
5/5  rDev +44.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The best beer on the planet. The only stout you will ever need. All others will try to be like it and will fail. The perfect head and body that goes perfect with its own special glass. Smooth like water with a perfect coffee flavor in the back. If I was only allowed to drink one beer for the rest of my life, I wouldn't even have to think about it. Guinness for life.

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Photo of fegiannini
4.31/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I've set Guinness as my default beer a few years ago and I still can't go wrong with it.

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Photo of DrinkGuinness
4.78/5  rDev +38.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Guinness is my go to beer. Tried hundreds of others but this is my favorite. For me it's a perfect beer. I'm tired of crap IPAs and craft beers. Stick with a winner. Drink Guinness.

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Photo of Freddie_Ray
4/5  rDev +15.9%

Smooth and toasty. Icon of mass produced dark beers. A dark beer available on most corners, and for good reason.

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Photo of BeerPour
1.67/5  rDev -51.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 1.25

Not a very full bodied beer, nor does it have a good enough ABV, you can skip and wont be sorry. The taste is too light, just pale on the palate, very light watered down stout feel.

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Photo of MrVincent48
5/5  rDev +44.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

It truly is a lovely day for a Guinness. I agree with those who love it and why. Guinness has character and I have found that most people who enjoy it have character also. There are other Stouts...now. But the progenitor comes from Dublin.

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Photo of RjLange
4.31/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 14.9oz widget can into a pint glass. Pours a lovely ruby brown color and produces a whopping 2-3 finger head. It also has that nitro can fizziness that settles into an almost jet black color. The smell is very faint. Hardly any scent. The taste....wahohoho....wow. Such an awesome flavor for a massively brewed stout. Loads of smokey charred coffee with hints of bitter chocolate. Such an initial taste. Once it settles there definitely a strong hoppy bitterness, but in a good way. I'm so blown away by how good this is. Mouthfeel is a hair thin, but very smooth and light velvety. Like a thin eggnog... I was expecting a loser, but golly this is wondeful. I recommend this to anyone looking for a beer with a nice resonate flavors. For price, taste, availability this is a winner. It's goddamn electric.

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Photo of RoyalT
3.78/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Black with the cascading foam that makes this stout famous. I had this on-top and it was filled to the top, so I didn’t get a chance to gauge the head.

Smell – The aroma is not strong, but I can pick up dark malts and chocolate and maybe even a hop balance. There’s also some light molasses sweetness to this one.

Taste – This is much drier than it smells. It has a nice sweetness with a touch of caramel malt.

Mouthfeel – I thought this was the stout’s strong point. This one is super smooth from start to finish.

Drinkability – A session stout if there ever was one. Not the hardiest one you’ll ever put down, but good nevertheless with an above-average mouthfeel.

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Photo of ExtraStout
2.62/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

One of the best style of beer to look at is the Irish Dry Stout. Cascading nitro style waiting period. Dark brown to black, sticky, fully coated lacing. Carbonation is almost non-existent after the pour completes itself.

Some charred barley, but like most from this style it is on the easy drinking, creamy, laid back. Watered down, tart taste, milky mouthfeel, and the drinkability is average just because I can't see myself looking forward to this or pursuing it any time soon. Once again another brew I'd prefer to try on tap, without the nitro blasting ball, but for this review in a can its simply uneventfull.

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Photo of Todd
3.2/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Presentation: 14.9fl oz can with a built in widget (they call theirs the "Guinness Floating Draft System") for that "draught-like" quality. No freshness date.

Appearance: Absolutely pitch black with an amazing cascading effect. As the nitro-injection settles it forms a perfect finger width, creamy, foamy, tight off-white head. It's sticks to the glass and the head consistency remains all the way to the bottom of the glass.

Smell: Very pleasant aroma of sweet and roasted malts. Faint caramel note with a finishing of smoked malt.

Taste: Silky smooth mouthfeel, tremendously creamy -- so much so that I always find it difficult to not simply chug the beer in one swallow. Malt is nicely roasted with little astringency. The roasted malts give off coffee, slight chocolate and mild smoked flavors. Things dry up after this, then follows a watery-like floral hop flavor. There's a slight bite, for a brief second, that combines with a touch of roasted malt astringency. The unique roasted flavor carries through as a foundation from beginning to end. Body is medium. Finishes with a delicate roasted and dryness.

Notes: What can I say? It's not the most remarkable Stout that I've ever had. It's not very exciting compared to its siblings (yes, even on tap in Ireland). Apart from "Guinness" (the tap version) this is Guinness' top selling beer, and the most consistent as it's all too easy these days to get an inconsistent poured pint of Guinness. Personally I enjoy and appreciate the Extra Stout and Foreign Extra Stout 10 times more, but you'll find me slumming it on occasion. A mediocre beer.

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Photo of wisebier
4.46/5  rDev +29.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm surprised the bros rated it so low. It's a classic and a favorite for a lot of people. Personally I love it. It looks like a dark stout but it really has a light feel to it and its low in calories (it's a light beer to me). It's my go to on Sunday's when watching football.
Pours great. Nice head
Smells of malty goodness
Tastes of malt coffee and chocolate . Has a milky cream finish
It's a good starter into the stout world. Men's health says if you're gonna drink a beer drink a Guinness!

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Photo of larryarms847
3.83/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured well, this beer is extremely enticing. Black as night and a creamy finger of sturdy white foam that lasts the duration.

Milk chocolate, roasted malt, and some sweet cream/vanilla notes. All rather subtle.

Dark roast coffee, some subtle chocolate malt notes, and overall nice and roasty in character.

Medium-heavy bodied, medium carbonation, creamy smooth, subtle sweetness, dry finish.

Overall, when poured correctly this looks as good as any high quality brew and has a silky smooth mouthfeel, but overall it lacks a rich aroma and flavor. An easy drinking stout for sure.

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Photo of angrybabboon
3.81/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review based on notes taken 9/19/15
Note 1: This is my 1000th full beer review.
I saved Guinness Draught for #1000 because it has a strong significance in my personal beer history. It was one of the first beers I ever tried, and it was the first beer I had on my 21st birthday. This beer has popped up at various points in my life, and I will mention those in the course of this review, prefaced with asterisks***.
Note 2: On-tap, nitro (of course)

A: Seemingly jet black from a distance, but it is really more of a dark, deep brown upon inspection - comes off the nitro with a medium-large, dense, solid, light tan head, with the characteristic cascade - small bubbles occasionally break the soft surface of the head that can only really exist thanks to nitrogen - the head does slowly fade to a small, but solid cap, but that does stick around indefinitely - leaves a wall of lacing - if nothing else, Guinness Draught on nitro is pretty to look at
***In middle school, I heard from a friend that bubbles in Guinness sink to the bottom of the glass instead of float to the top, and that this phenomenon could not be explained by science. I never bothered to look this up, as dial-up internet was too slow for anything.

S: Markedly unexciting, but charming for what it is - a straight-up whiff of nitro carbonation, which should not actually be an aroma, but I smell it every time I have anything on nitro - more stout-like aromas underneath the haze of gas, but it is very mild - dry, roasty malts - chocolate malts and roasted grains - a general graininess - dark chocolate and some hints of Tootsie rolls - lightly burnt, perhaps a touch smoky - light sweetness, with some light caramel
***In high school, I heard from a friend about how brewers at Guinness, many years ago, were cleaning out the tanks and found a dead rat. They cleaned the tank thoroughly, but then they could not get the next few batches to taste right. So since then, a rat is included in each batch for a consistent flavor. I never believed this one... I also have never detected rodent in Guinness Draught.

T: A decade ago, I thought this was rather complex, but now I realize that it is a rather simple brew - mild chocolate malts and roasted malts - lightly roasted grains, hint of medium to dark roast coffee - dark chocolate, baker's chocolate, semisweet chocolate, hints of Tootsie rolls - light touches of caramel - lightly grainy, with some straight-up un-malted barley - light astringency and touch of acidity - some minerality - very light hint of English hops with a touch of grass - low to medium bitterness - clean finish, extremely dry as the style should be
***In college, I learned in a class (a food science course about beer) that Guinness Draught should be slightly sour. A lot of homebrew clone recipes include some souring technique or acidulated malt. Personally, I have never really noticed it other than a light acidity.

M: Light but very creamy - the bizarre result of nitro, which leads many novice drinkers to describe this as anything heavier than "light" - high carbonation, finishes clean
***In grad school, I drank a lot of beer. (I don't have a Guinness-related anecdote.)

O: Always a lovely day for a Guinness

Guinness Draught is the quinntessential example of an Irish Dry Stout. It's not exciting, but it really isn't supposed to be. I have definitely had more complex and objectively superior examples of the style, but this is really the template. Definitely mild, but classic nonetheless.

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Photo of JohnnyChicago
2.62/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

As an Irish traditional musician, I don't think I have to say that I have had this beer many, MANY times. This particular review is from nitro-tap.

A: Here's that 'perfect pour'. Say what you will about Guinness; it's a damn sexy looking stout. However, bartenders, don't fuck it up with that shamrock crap. That plastic paddy shit is annoying as hell.

S: Looks are where Guinness shines and everything after that is weak. Almost no smell: weak roast and even weaker hop bitterness.

T: Again...weak. The dark chocolate flavour of a stout is there, but it is so subtle that you actually have to look for it when you drink.

D: Mouthfeel is perhaps my least favorite part about Guinness. The nitro initially feels good and then goes flat in your mouth. Drinkability is good in a 'no flavour-easy drinking' sense.

Overall: You've got to respect it for being better than the garbage that is usually available, but Guinness is no great stout. Its just weak and lazy. I did an experiment with Guinness a while ago and that can be seen here: http://beeradvocate.com/forum/read/3601215. Otherwise, Guinness is, for now, most of our 'only other option beer'. It is what it is.

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Photo of The_Atom
4.05/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

You either love it or hate it. I personally have always been a fan of this Guinness - some experiences being better than others. Overall, I just really enjoy a well poured Guinness. Rich, creamy, and smooth with a roasty malt hint to it. That's my extremely amateur review.

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Photo of DTAHoek
5/5  rDev +44.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Guinness Draught is without a doubt my favorite beer of all time. I have tried other draughts and none have been able to achieve the high level of Guinness for me. The color, smell, taste, smoothness, head, everything is perfect. This is the kind of beer I like to enjoy while relaxing at home. A+ all around.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.18/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First time in a long time. Trying this brew on draught is one of the most classic and endearing moments in beer. The look of the nitro-carbonation sheading the beer and floating to the top is something special. The head retention is basically a milk shake for stout lovers. Slight aromas of roasted grains, chalkiness, and mild souring. Flavors and moderate and firm, ranging from charcoal, roasted grains, mild lactose, and and underlying sweet maltiness. The feel of this beer is always supurb. Full and creamy, then thinning into a powdery, soft finish. Quite dry and fleeting in the aftertaste. It's the taste that defined the style. How can it be anything but great?

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Photo of fscottkey
2.61/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: [5.00] Guinness is kind of the gold standard visually. The beer forms a distinct off white head with impossibly dense bubbles. The contrast between the black brew and the head is fantastic. Watching the sides churn and boil as it settles is also great. Finally the head lasts forever. It also clings to the glass like crazy. The Guinness can lists the ABV (4.2%) and a date code that says this was born (07/21/15).

S: [2.75] Sweet toasted malts. Like if you started roasting sugary breakfast cereal.

T: [2.25] Mild hints of A1 steak sauce. Wisps of a molasses element.

M: [2.50] Thin and watery and a little chalky feeling.

O: [2.50] Guinness was my first foray out of macro lagers. I loved it years ago because it was an option and it was unique. After years of drinking craft brews and all of their wonderful flavors and complexities Guinness falls flat. The nose, taste and body are all sub-standard for a stout. Visually it is still something to behold. Given a choice between Guinness and Bud I am not sure which way I'd go now. Sorry Guinness.

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Guinness Draught from Guinness Ltd.
3.45 out of 5 based on 7,454 ratings.
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