I wouldn’t say I’m a beer connoisseur, but during any trips away I’m always interested in the different local breweries and tours. I’ve been to the Guinness Factory in Dublin (twice) which is also Ireland’s top tourist attraction and previously Europe’s.
I also visited the Heineken Factory when in Amsterdam, and it was hard to choose the best between the two (not just for beer, but for experience also).
However, during a recent trip to Glasgow, we sampled the Tennent’s tour! An attraction I actually didn’t know existed until I was informed of it on the City Sightseeing tour bus. If you’re like me and wouldn’t usually consider Tennent’s to be your first choice of lager, you’ll still find the tour to be both entertaining and informative.
Contrary to both the Guinness and Heineken factories, The Tennent’s Tour is literally a voyage round the factory. You’re able to see exactly where the hops and barley are stored, where the beer is fermented, and eventually, where it is packaged. We attended the 6pm slot on a Saturday evening; the last slot of the day, so it was empty, but also meant it was quiet and our tour guide could be heard better.
Also, as Tennent’s isn’t quite as commercially big on a worldwide scale the way Guinness and Heineken are, this means the Tennent’s factory in Glasgow is where literally all of the Tennent’s in the world is produced. So that can of Tennent’s you saw in Australia last week? That came from this factory.
The tour costs £12.50 per person, and you can buy tickets online. For an extra £5 upon entry, you can have a taster test of some of the different bottled beers Tennent’s ship internationally (my personal favourite is the whiskey oak-soaked one).
Although Tennent’s isn’t regarded as the most upmarket lager, it is at its freshest when poured straight from the factory’s indoors bar, as this is the first time the beer has hit the air (even though it only meets air for a brief second when being distributed into cans, bottles and kegs, this makes all the difference in taste).
The only reason I was made aware of the Tennent’s tour was down to the City Sightseeing “hop on hop off” bus tour. The company itself is the world’s largest city sightseeing bus company, and if you keep your tickets from one city, that will enable you to some discounts and perks in the next city you visit.
It’s difficult to encapsulate all of Glasgow city in one review, but Tennent’s beer definitely embodies the Scottish spirit in a bottle (or more frequently, a can). For more ideas on things to see and places to go in Glasgow, click here for all you need to know!