Why Guinness Is the Right Way to Start Drinking

Because the quiet numb of a frothy Irish pint represents the beginning of a great night

By: Chris Jones

Because the quiet numb of a frothy Irish pint represents the beginning of a great night

I’ll always open a barroom run with a Guinness, because I believe that it lines my stomach in a way that both facilitates my eventual drunkenness and reduces my odds of a hangover, but also because after a long day of whatever I’ve spent my day doing, that first creamy sip has become a kind of signal to my brain, semaphorelike. It’s like starting the car before a long drive: This is how it opens, and I am buoyed by the idea of what’s to follow. For me, Guinness has come to represent the seemingly contrary combination of relief and anticipation, that moment when the bad ends and the good begins.

Because of that, I usually can’t get it into me fast enough. There will be only three or four foam lines around my glass. I’ll wait for it to soak in, and then I’ll follow it with bourbon, feel the warmth rising in me. My cheeks will go a little slack, and my tongue a little fuzzy, and I’ll tune in to the nice heavy sweetness in my belly. I’ll smile more easily, and I’ll talk more freely, but I won’t be sloppy. I’ll just be a better version of myself. There, that’s the buzz. Then I’ll switch back to beer, something light and easy. And I’ll skate through the rest of the night with long, slow strides, because then it will be about maintenance, not architecture. I want to stay numb; I don’t need to be paralyzed.

That’s why I start with a Guinness: not because I want to pretend to be Irish — because then I’d just go home along — and not because I think it’s manly, even if it is. (Except when some prat bartender draws a shamrock on the top of it, which is like having a chef doodle in your gravy.) I start with a Guinness because at this juncture in my drinking life, it allows me to feel without feeling. I can close my eyes and know exactly where I am and exactly where I’ll be.


Find this article at: http://www.esquire.com/features/drinking/guinness-pint-0609

I like this article. It is short but does make a very good point about the drinking process. The practice of drinking in US is too simplified and is great to encourage maximum consumption of whatever found to drink but there is plenty more to drinking properly. A glass of olive oil can be an excellent way to slow down the absorption of alcohol into the system. Food traditionally is the best way to slow down the alcohol input into the blood stream. It is not always customary to have food or find a shot of olive oil before imbibing and this little Guinness trick here can do many a good deal of good.


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