A Guinness World Record was set in at the Alltech Craft Brews and Food Fare on the 5th of February for the largest number of people to participate in a beer tasting. It set of a series of thoughts in motion for me, which culminated in “Would the largest beer tasting have been any less large if the Guinness World Record people had said it didn’t meet their conditions, or weren’t present?” If a tree falls in forest, and there is no self-appointed sanctioning body to verify that it reached all of the conditions which previously recorded falling trees had adhered to…
Upon entering the Convention Centre, it was clear that the organisers meant business – I assumed I would be too late for the record, but I was instantly accosted and directed to the registration area, and before I knew it, I had passed two Guinness World Record officials with state of the art record measuring equipment:
After an introduction and some banter-based compering, the tasting was under way.
On offer were Alltech’s recently acquired Finn Irish Lager, and two beers from their Kentucky Branded beers – Kentucky Ale & Kentucky IPA.
The amounts were modest, but the notes offered from the stage by Gearoid Cahill were a nice touch! Stewards watched to ensure that everyone was tasting, and having a rule-abiding good time. It’s one thing to have your Guinness World Record beaten, it would be quite another to have it shamefully stripped like the Yangzhou Rice incident.
This was a really fun way to kick off the festival – in spite of my commentary on the nature of sanctioned record setting. It was a draw, and a reason for people to get in after work rather than wait for Saturday, and the event really benefitted from it. There was a lot of people around, with excitement to see what beers would get awards, which were announced later that evening.
It was a wise marketing move on behalf of the organisers – it was clear from the advanced press that they are keen for people to be aware that the Alltech Brews and Food Fair is the largest festival of its kind in Ireland. Setting a Guinness World Record for a volume of people drinking certainly helps to bolster this claim!