A British Professor Says We’ve All Been Pouring Guinness Wrong

And he's got the giant martini glass to prove it

May 30, 2018 9:00 am

The jig is up, tulip glass.

A British professor at the University of Huddersfield just went full Serial on Guinness’s famed perfect pint in a video from Tech Insider, coming to the “Wait, what” conclusion that the dark stout is best enjoyed … in an oversized martini glass.

The professor, William Lee, initially set out to understand why Guinness bubbles sink, and accordingly, why it takes longer for a Guinness head to “settle.” A basic chemical difference can account for the former: while most beer bubbles are carbonated with carbon dioxide, Guinness achieves its frothy goodness with nitrogen. But the bigger discovery? Those bubbles struggle to swim downstream when they meet the slightly caved-in walls of a traditional tulip glass. The beer gets denser, the bubbles bog down on each other, and the whole show takes longer.

Swap in a martini glass, et voila, problem solved.

Now, Guinness has got to be aware of this. But that might be the point. Pouring the perfect pint, at the perfect angle, and then waiting for the perfect amount of time has become proper pub religion at this point. Throwing back a few from a martini glass? Not so much.

That said, the martini thing makes one helluva party trick (or wager). Your marching orders: bet your friend five bucks you can make a Guinness settle faster than he can, whip out your goofy glass, cite the science to the lads and then collect your winnings.


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