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Kirkland Signature Amber Ale - Kirkland Signature / Costco Wholesale Corporation

Kirkland Signature Amber AleKirkland Signature Amber Ale

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153 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 153
Reviews: 78
rAvg: 3.14
pDev: 16.56%

Brewed by:
Kirkland Signature / Costco Wholesale Corporation
Washington, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  5.70% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Troyone on 03-19-2009)
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Ratings: 153 | Reviews: 78 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of cpolking


1.98/5  rDev -36.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

This beer pours medium brown, translucent when held to the light with a bit of orange around the edges and a slight head that leaves some lacing down the glass.

The aroma is burnt caramel, cooked broccoli and a touch of manure. I hope it tastes better than it smells.

The taste is watery burnt caramel with a touch of sharp rye. This is the bum steer of the Kirkland Signature lot.

Serving type: bottle

05-13-2011 23:46:12 | More by cpolking
Photo of harrymel


2.05/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Best by: 10/27/11

A: pours amber with brilliant clarity and a single finger of creamy head which falls to a broken sheet of the same. No lacing.

S: Sweet malts. A hint of bitter hops. Really syrupy smell. A small amount of chemical astringency.

T: Sweet, malty. Really no character to this beer. Tastes like the Pale Ale, which tastes like the IPA, which tastes like the Amber.

M: Medium body with moderate carb.

O: whatever. Great to have around the house for people you don't respect (in-laws).

Serving type: bottle

07-08-2011 12:04:55 | More by harrymel
Photo of Khazadum


2.13/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Final bottle in this series of four. It started to lose steam towards the end of this flight, but lets hope it picks itself up for the finale.

Little bit greater than one finger worth of real teeth whiteness rises above the ruby red darkness of the craft beverage. It is what I would imagine thinned blood would look like. No carbonation at all can be seen from within its depths. That is probably why it died away way too fast. Left me with a moderate collar and no skin.

Enjoyable. I wish it was stronger, but you get what you pay for maybe. Caramel and apple notes come out of this one. A tad bit of lager-like malt presence blends in.

Flavor Profile
Something about this is off. There is this eruption of metals in the middle of this that make me cringe. It is almost as if I poured my beer into my coin jar and just started enjoying away without a care at all. The front is moderately sweet and flavorful, but quickly gives way to the coin purse. The finish has a finish that reminds me of sinus infections. I hack up some awful bit of phlegm that lands on my tongue. This aftertaste is almost comparable to that.

Oral Sensations
For a beer that has almost no visible carbonation, this one has an acceptable amount. There is a pleasurable amount of tingle that distracts from the let-down of a flavor collection. It has an average body for the 'style' and doesn't let itself linger anywhere but the finish on the back of my tongue.

If you burn your tongue on coffee or ruin your sense of taste for an evening this would be perfect. It is smooth enough and has what you'd want for carbonation. I would only fail to drink this free beer again for fear of the taste. Too bad that is the biggest reason to consume beverages other than water.

Serving type: bottle

09-08-2010 01:25:29 | More by Khazadum
Photo of MikeBrandman


2.33/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

A - Surprisingly deep amber. Brown through and through. Completely transparent. Very visible carbonation and no haze. 2 fingers of bright white head that forms a nice crown. No lacing.

S - Very light smell. Slight cereal grain, but not much of anything. No alcohol, which is good.

T - Thick malty taste. Slight grains and cereal. By far the lightest of the 4 in the variety pack. I really want to say more but I'm struggling. I can tell you there's no alcohol and very little hop bitterness in here.

MF - Very watery.

D - High, just because there's nothing here.

Serving type: bottle

07-03-2010 02:49:03 | More by MikeBrandman
Photo of Kemmerlin


2.42/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: amber colored with a very thin hard poured head quickly dissipating to nothing.
S: overall biscuit and sharp yeast smelling with sweet caramel barely approaching the back of the nose.
T: lacks the level of hoppiness expected in an amber tastes more like a brown to me. Biscuit maltiness is the primary character not much else. Aftertaste is non existent.
M/D: light bodied easily drinkable not very beerfreshing for the avid taster.

Serving type: bottle

09-30-2011 19:53:00 | More by Kemmerlin
Photo of HUXC

New York

2.48/5  rDev -21%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Serving Type- Served from a chilled 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance- Mild amber color with shades of copper. somewhat transparent, almost watery appearance. When poured it had almost a fingers worth of white head with a brown/tan undertone. The lacing left on the brim of the glass quickly dissipates leaving nothing but condensation in its place.

Smell- Faint roasted malt aroma with hints of coffee and a slight notion of hops.

Taste- At first taste there isn't much flavor to speak of. After a few moments a mild roasted malt flavor comes into play followed by a coffee undertone. Leaves the mouth with a mildly bitter coffee tinge.

Mouthfeel- Not very carbonated. Watery at first followed by a very mild bitter bite.

Overall- I bought a variety pack from Costco because it looked interesting and, well, I was curious to see what kind of beer Kirkland Signature produced. Considering that it just might be the most inexpensive beer that I purchased in a long time, it led up to my expectations. Compared to most Amber Ales however, it wasn't all that impressive.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2011 20:44:12 | More by HUXC
Photo of kojevergas


2.55/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This was one bottle of 24 in a pack acquired at Costco today for $19.00. 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a Oskar Blues pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are average; this is my third Kirkland Signature beer and the two before it varied between poor and average. I certainly like the price. 5.4% ABV confirmed.

Served straight from the refrigerator. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a two finger light khaki colour head of some limited cream, decent thickness, and average retention. Body colour is a dark clear copper-auburn. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Lacing is sparse and unimpressive.

Sm: Amber malts - with some light toasted character, vague nuts, and biscuit malt. A below average strength aroma. Little sticks out.

T: Malty, yes. Limited roast, some biscuit, the usual amber sweet malts. Sure, there's some middling floral hop character. It's too sweet, all around, which seems a ploy to disguise its extract feel. Some understated nut notes are a highlight; hazelnut, maybe chestnut too. Underwhelming balance and build. A pretty simple beer, even for an amber. No alcohol or yeast comes through. I'm far from impressed.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Thickness is average. Overcarbonated. Not at all well executed or tailored to the flavour profile. Meh.

Dr: Drinkable but pedestrian. Not a bad option for the price, but there are far better Ambers for not much more than this. I wouldn't bother with this again. Hides its modest ABV well.


Serving type: bottle

12-17-2012 05:43:50 | More by kojevergas
Photo of HalfFull


2.63/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Final (of the) Four, and poured into a pint glass. This Kirkland brew from Hopfen Und Malz Brewing Co. pours a somewhat light amber gold in color. Quite clear and bright on the pour whilst topped with a thin nearly white cap which offers a somewhat brief retention.

Aroma is light and along the vein of the brewery. A background hint of hops and a remote sense of caramel malt.

Flavor is right up the same alley with a hint of caramel followed by a rather dry and biscuity finish and with a touch of almond and hazelnut. Feel is quite thin for the style and without a whole lot of character either, more along the lines of a Vienna Lager.

Interestingly the entire set of Kirkland beers offers a very thin approach to ales in general. And while each of the four seem to have the same genes, two bottles of the same style are often quite different from each other. And while none are unpalatable, they are universally mediocre at best.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2011 06:47:51 | More by HalfFull
Photo of illidurit


2.68/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Clear light amber color with an ecru head and a little lace. Aroma is toasted wheat bread with some nuttiness and diacetyl. Flavor is not much different except for vague notes of caramel, iced tea, and metal. Thin and watery mouthfeel, drinkable but not very good. Not exactly a big surprise.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2009 22:32:52 | More by illidurit
Photo of Arbitrator


2.78/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Chilled 12oz bottle into a glass. Part of my friend's curiosity over what I thought about the Kirkland Series.

A: Pours a clear, deep amber color with orange highlights in the glass. Develops a nice head that retains for barely 30 seconds, receding into a ring on the glass with flecks of lacing here and there.

S: Not pungent. Requires some agitation to bring it out, but I get nuts, grain, caramel, some chocolate. Shaping up to be a decent amber so far. Just needs more aromaticity.

T: A fairly watery flavor that lacks punch. I taste what I smell: caramel is strongest, along with nuts, grains, and possibly chocolate somewhere underneath it all. There appear to be hops in here too, manifesting as an earthy undercurrent.

M: Thin-medium bodied. Moderate carbonation. The flavor is trying to go places, but fizzles in many of the swigs.

D: One of the better bottles in the series, but I'd rather spring for something else.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2009 03:59:44 | More by Arbitrator
Photo of sweemzander


2.8/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint. Best before June 15th, 2010. Thanks to BeerFMAndy for the bottle.

(A)- Pours a chestnut brown color that produced a fluffy eggshell colored head. Has some decent retention.

(S)- An almond nuttiness with sweet corn meal.

(T)- Same as the smell, only has a touch of vanilla in there.

(M)- A good carbonation level & balance. A decent maltiness & creaminess. A tad overly sweet though; almost sugary.

(D)- A decent amber with good malts. Its more like a brown ale in most respects, but not bad.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2010 00:07:31 | More by sweemzander
Photo of iSip


2.8/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer pours with a brown body, and thin off-white head. The aroma is faint but pleasant.

There is some good malt flavor and a bit of bitter comes through, but the finish is weak.

Overall an OK beer. Great price considering what a six from a craft brewer will cost.

Try the Hefewiesen, Costco does a good job with that one.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2011 22:33:39 | More by iSip
Photo of kbutler1


2.8/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle. Pours a clear amber mahagony reddish color with a 1 finger light tan head that settles to collar around the glass. Malty, biscuit, and slight dark fruit notes in the nose. Maybe a silght touch of banana or bubblegum in the nose as well. Sweet, slightly roasty, orange, with a slight bitterness in the end. Medium mouthfeel. Overall, not bad, not outstanding but drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2011 20:46:16 | More by kbutler1
Photo of JackieTH


2.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured as per the namesake, a brownish amber, smallish head that faded quickly leaving minimal lacing. Smell was so mild as to be nearly undetectable. Trace caramels and malt but absolutely watery. Taste was just ho hum. Somewhere east or west of Newcastle Brown, light caramel malt and an ever so faint nuttiness, and a flare-up of hops for balance.

Being almost totally average in every respect doesn't make an offensive or bad beer, but quite the contrary, at the price point Kirkland sets, it's a fair offering.

Serving type: bottle

09-30-2011 03:19:43 | More by JackieTH
Photo of colts9016


2.98/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass at 37 Degrees.

Appearance: A healthy 2 finger foamy, creamy, white head, that has some retention to it. The color of the beer is solid amber with orange, copper orange highlights. The clarity of the beer is clear to brilliant and there is some carbonation.

Nose: Is a mild toasted malt with some caramel, floral, and pine notes.

Taste: Is a moderate hoppy flavor with grapefruit, floral, and pine flavors. The malt is light toasty and slightly yeasty.

Mouth feel: Is crisp and clean.

Overall: The body of the beer is medium light and the finish is medium. This is an ok amber ale except for the malt and the hoppiness are out of balance. It is easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

04-15-2010 05:30:56 | More by colts9016
Photo of SmokinSmyth


3/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a light brown/amber with a small head, although the bottle foamed over upon opening. Head doesn't last long, and no real lacing.

Slight smell of malt, but not a strong sense of anything in particular.

Taste is of a slightly roasted malt, with a slightly nutty finish. A very mild amber.

Feels OK in the mouth, a little weak, especially for an amber. Easy drinking, though. A mild amber beer, good for a warm summer day when you don't want something too light.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2011 19:19:50 | More by SmokinSmyth
Photo of hmk22

New York

3/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Maybe the least interesting of the Costco / Kirkland offerings -- way too malty and too few hops. So it seems out of place in their mix-and-match case, which has a Belgian White, in IPA, and a pale ale. I guess that happens a lot with multi-packs -- they sneak a loss-leader in with the better stuff to move it. That acknowledged, this feels like a heavy, uninspired filler product.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2011 02:21:22 | More by hmk22
Photo of vfgccp

New York

3.03/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - nice head, moderate lace. Color is a little less intense than i like from an amber, i wish the color was a little more red/cranbury color to make it a true amber color.

S - a nutty maltyness. Not much sweetness, and a touch of a wattery light finish.

T - light with a touch of bitterness. Not very sweet, and little matyness.

M - smooth and bright. Finishes slightly wattery and light.

O - In a blind taste i would not think this is an amber, however it is drinkable and pretty refreshing and the added touch of bitterness is not unwelcome.

---Rated via Beer's Advocate for iPhone

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2011 01:32:46 | More by vfgccp
Photo of spencerw


3.05/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: This beer poured a copper red brew with a 1 inch head that disappeared very quickly. Little to no lacing was present.

S: Not a whole lot going on here. Subtle smell of ester hops, piney and perhaps again- a subtle hint of perhaps some toasty malt.

T: Not a bad brew. Nutty, toasty and a little hop finish. Nothing to get real excited about. Clean and crisp.

M: Thin body. Not much going on here at all.

D: You could get down with these as a good session beer. It's very clean, crisp and does carry a good balance.

Overall- $17.00 for a case; what more could you ask for. Not to bad.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2009 03:56:53 | More by spencerw
Photo of FosterJM


3.05/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

44th review on BA
Bottle to Pint

I reviewed the Hefe then the pale ale after my father in law happened to get me a 24 pack on his most recent jaunt to Costco. Here try these he says. Thanks! It took me a while to get the nerve for round 2,3,4 but here goes.

App- This by far had the best color and head of the four. I was pleasantly suprised. Nice lacing as well.

Smell- Very light to the nose. Not much there.

Taste- I had high hopes for this one but it was not meant to be. Something just got lost in translation from bottle to mouth. It was a decent effort with sub par results.

Mouth- Watery and a bit of a let down

Drink- Since I only have some REALLY special things at the house. Pretty hight at the moment.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2010 04:23:11 | More by FosterJM
Photo of scottbrew4u


3.05/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured into pint glass, a clear amber color with a light tan head tmhat sticks around and provides good lacing as it goes down.

S: Caramel, toffee, roasted grains, some metallic, copper penny aroma. Faint citrus and herbal hop aromas add to the bitter nose.

T: Roasted and nutty flavors mix with sweet caramel, toffee, and vanilla. Some citrus hops add bitter to balance but finish is more sweet.

M: Medium body with sharp, bubbly carbonation.

D: A decent beer with no big flaws or big standout notes. It goes down pretty easy and has no bad aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2011 04:06:32 | More by scottbrew4u
Photo of wingman14


3.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown with a small off white head that fades quickly. The smell has a strong malt presence with some sweet notes. The taste was a bit underwhelming for the nice malty smell that this one gives off. The flavor starts malty, moves into a weird flavor, then finishes with a sweet malt that lingers. The mouthfeel is somewhat of a detractor, harsh on the tongue with some bitter notes that probably shouldn't be there. This one is an ok drinker, an average beer with some high and low notes.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2010 23:03:06 | More by wingman14
Photo of dgilks


3.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Clear mahogany amber colour with a small, tan head. Poor head retention.

Slightly nutty, sweet malt. Simple with some bread notes. Inoffensive but lacking.

Medium malt character with a dry finish. Slight breadiness and a touch of fruit. Nothing special.

Medium body with moderate carbonation.

This is an okay, easy drinking beer. It isn't going to win any prizes but it isn't bad by any means.

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2011 07:30:06 | More by dgilks
Photo of GRPunk


3.1/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottle (best by April 04, 2010) poured into an imperial pint glass.

A- 1-finger, off-white head that drops to about 1/2-finger and leaves really good, sticky rings. The body is a clean, copper color with medium carbonation.

S- Initial caramel malts and soft, floral hops. Not bad, not overly remarkable either. Aroma becomes more pronounced and iviting as the beer warms slightly.

T- Well balanced flavor. More of the caramel malts mentioned in the aroma, with citrus-like hops. It has a bit of a "bite" that seems out of place. I expected things to be a bit more on the "mellow" side.

M- A little too fizzy for my tastes. Carbonation and hopping provide a bit of a bite to an otherwise clean feel.

D- Slightly harsh flavor and mouthfeel make it less enjoyable than I'd expect, especially for a style I consider very drinkable. All in all, not a bad beer. It's something I might pick up in a party situation, but not something I'd seek out or fit into my regular rotation.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2009 01:47:01 | More by GRPunk
Photo of Billolick

New York

3.1/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle, with "Best Before" dating etched onto the bottle. Pours clear lighter brownish amber, the head is fairly typical, medium knaki, moderate height and retention, then a low collar, some light sheeting and bits of lace. The nose is where things start to go downhill, with a hint of vegatal off flavors beginning to become noticable. Malty brew, with the same mild but still off putting bit of vegitation present. Caramel, bread, light cabbadge...oh my..pass this one by...

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2010 22:20:17 | More by Billolick
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Kirkland Signature Amber Ale from Kirkland Signature / Costco Wholesale Corporation
73 out of 100 based on 153 ratings.