A former Foster’s brewer and beer-judging colleague of mine, Dermot O’Donnell, recently defended locally brewed Guinness. James Davidson wrote in Australian Brews News two days before St Patrick’s Day, “the money you spend on such a pint [Australian brewed Guinness] and the beverage you subsequently consume may actually be more distant to Ireland than the foam shamrock hat on your head that you purchased from a two dollar shop”.
O’Donnell’s response traced the modern history of Guinness, including the development in Ireland of a vital flavouring component, called Guinness flavour extract. “This is the X factor in Guinness which gives it is unique character”, he wrote – adding that Guinness therefore has the unique taste of Ireland no matter where it’s brewed in the world.
O’Donnell called for a fair go for Guinness and “us Irish who love the black stuff on Paddy’s Day”.
Copyright © Chris Shanahan 2013
First published 3 April 2013 in The Canberra Times