Hot Spots: Luck of the Irish

Hot Spots: Luck of the Irish

One of the world’s most iconic beers—Guinness—brewed in Dublin since 1759, is now brewing a selection of its beers right here in Baltimore.

The Guinness Open Gate Brewery & Barrel House recently opened in its new home in Halethorpe, near BWI Airport.

The expansive brewery, taproom and restaurant occupies a large brick building on the campus of the old Calvert whiskey distillery.

Outside, a wide green lawn sprawls out, complete with picnic tables and a performance space for musical acts and other programming.

Up the steps, one enters an expansive lobby lined with distilling barrels.

Off to the right is a fun retail area, where you can purchase any number of books, shirts, glasses, hats, signs and all manner of Guinness-branded merchandise.

To the left is the massive taproom with a large rectangular bar, multiple taps, high-top tables and scattered lounge areas. Large floor-to-ceiling windows open to an outdoor porch area.

A central open staircase leads downstairs to the open-view brewery, as well as a number of large displays that feature the history of Guinness and demonstrations of the brewing process.

Upstairs is the restaurant space, which will be open by mid-fall. There’s also a handsome private party room, complete with its own set of taps.

Classic Guinness is still brewed only at the home brewery back in Dublin, but the Baltimore operation brews a multitude of Guinness varieties.

That includes Guinness Blonde, my personal favorite.

Interest is high in this new operation, as evidenced by the crowds it’s been drawing.

In this age of interest in breweries, having an operation of this scale and quality is a stroke of luck indeed. {Guinness Open Gate Brewery & Barrel House, 5001 Washington Blvd, Halethorpe }

Brian Michael Lawrence

Brian Michael Lawrence is one of THE Baltimore style experts. After all, he was the longtime editor-in-chief at STYLE Magazine, which specialized in covering everything stylish around the Baltimore area. Brian also served as editorial director for the digital division at Sinclair Broadcasting, and creative director at Blue Sky Design. Currently, he oversees communications & marketing for the department of Tourism, Film & the Arts at Maryland’s Commerce Department.  In his bi-weekly column, you’ll get to see what cool hotspots are piquing the interest of this Baltimore style maven and why - whether it's the fabulous food, cool cocktails or elegant environs.