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Baltimore’s Guinness brewery exceeds visitor expectations

The Maryland facility is the first active Guinness brewery in the U.S. since 1954 and is expected to produce over a million cases annually when it's complete/ (WTOP/Jack Pointer)

WASHINGTON — Barely three months after Guinness opened its Guinness Open Gate Brewery in Baltimore County, more than 100,000 people have visited it, well ahead of expectations.

When Guinness opened the brewery, taproom and visitor center in Relay, Maryland, in August, it said it expected to attract 300,000 visitors in its first year.

The $50 million facility brews Guinness Blonde, not its iconic stout. It has also created more than 40 experimental beers so far that it serves in its taproom.

“We love to see the reaction visitors have to these new beers when they experience firsthand that Guinness is more than just classic stouts and that we’re combining the brand’s 259 years of brewing experience with American beer creativity,” stated Michael Donilon, general manager of Guinness Open Gate Brewery.

“We will continue to explore how we can get some of these exceptional beers to the public through the three tier system, sharing the experience with even more beer-lovers, our distributor partners and retail customers,” he said.

Guinness Stouts are brewed at St. Jame’s Gate in Dublin.

The Baltimore facility opened in time to mark the 200th anniversary of the first Guinness imported to the U.S.

Relay is at the intersection of Interstate 95 and Interstate 195, just north of BWI/Marshall Airport.

The brewery is on the site of the historic Calvert distillery, originally called the Maryland Distilling Company, that opened after Prohibition in 1933.

A one-hour tour of the Baltimore brewery is $15, though no ticket is required to visit, drink or eat.


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