Why Guinness is suddenly super popular

George Metcalf on 14 April 2023
Clock with "Guinness tasting time" around the edge

Why is Guinness so popular these days? We’ve got a couple of theories…

Before we get into this a small disclaimer; drinking and getting drunk isn’t cool. Yeah it can be fun and it’s obviously a big part of the uni experience, but alcohol does not and can not make someone cool. 

That being said, for one reason or another a particular drink will occasionally take centre stage in pop culture. 

Negroni sbagliato and its chokehold on TikTok over this last summer, Strongbow Dark Fruits and it’s accompanying banter brigade on Twitter, cans of Red Stripe in like 2013/2014 that gave the perfect I don’t fucking care vibe at Indie Sleeze nights. 

All of these were directly linked to music, culture, fashion or a mix of the three. Which is what makes Guinness’ rise to popularity so interesting, much like the taste, it’s been pretty subtle. 

My ah-ha moment came last weekend when I looked around the pub and realised that everyone was drinking Guinness. Not just my mates, not just the rugby crowd or people still partying from St Patrick's Day, everyone in this ‘trendy’ bar in a ‘trendy’ city in the south of England.


How do people drink this?!

♬ Love You So - The King Khan & BBQ Show

Where has this sudden appreciation for Guinness come from? Maybe we’ve all just clocked that it’s tasty and refreshing and not as heavy as beer. Or maybe there’s a little more to it than that… 

Appreciating the craft

Anyone who’s ordered a Guinness knows that not all Guinness’ are poured equally. Instagram accounts like @shitlondonguiness work to document subpar pints around the capital, naming and shaming pubs that don’t get it right. 

Few drinks have such a high benchmark, and even fewer inspire such devotion on social media. Check your socials on any given weekend and you’ll see plenty of people flexing their perfect Guinness' and their ability to split the g. 

As consumers, we’re conditioned to equate craftsmanship with value. Why would we drop our hard-earned student loan on an uninspired pint of Carling when we could get something artisan for around the same price? 

The ‘healthy’ option 

Okay, another small disclaimer; no form of alcohol is healthy. But thanks to some clever marketing back in the day, Guinness has a kind of botanical reputation to it. And there’s kind of a loose truth to that. 

Guinness contains 3 mg of iron per pint, with adults needing between 9-18mg of iron a day to function. Now, definitely, definitely don’t try and get all your daily iron through drinking Guinness, but using it as a little top-up every now and again won’t hurt. 

It’s also vegan and lighter than the average beer, which is very on-brand these days.  

Counter culture icon

This one’s a bit of a stretch but stay with us. Guinness has always been a symbol of national pride in countries that have a, how shall we say less-than-favourable view of the English establishment. For good reason obviously. 

But with this sudden boom of popularity among English youth, just as more and more young people become disillusioned and disaffected by everything, Guinness could quite easily become a counter culture icon, one sip at a time. 

What’s your drink of choice on a night out? Join the Student Hut Community and let us know. 

George  Metcalf
George Metcalf on 14 April 2023