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Big Wave Golden Ale - Kona Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Big Wave Golden AleBig Wave Golden Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

234 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 234
Hads: 1,478
Avg: 3.53
pDev: 37.11%
Wants: 46
Gots: 477 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Kona Brewing Co. visit their website
Hawaii, United States

Style | ABV
American Blonde Ale |  4.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Sixpoint on 03-19-2005

Big Wave is light golden ale with a subtle fruitiness and delicate hop aroma. A smooth, easy drinking refreshing ale. The lightly roasted honey malt contributes to the golden hue of this beer and also gives a slight sweetness that is balanced out by our special blend of hops.

20 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Big Wave Golden Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 234 | Hads: 1,478
Photo of BingCrosby7
3.2/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A - This brew sort of looks like apple juice. Nothing too special going on here. Light carbonation, so the bubbles aren't anything too special. Absolutely no head retention.

S - light hops, citrus, perhaps a little bit of pineapple and apple, but mainly hoppy notes and subdued fruity undertones.

T - This is a very light beer. The hops are a bit masked by the fruitiness. I pick up mainly lemony notes and pineapple notes. Nothing too special or complex.

M - This is a very watery beer, much more so than I had anticipated. A fair amount of carbonation, though, which was a plus.

O - This beer is a little boring. I almost regret buying it. I do think it is refreshing, though.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
4.08/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Type: 12-oz. bottle
Glass: Firestone restaurant pint glass
From: Vons in Normal Heights (San Diego), Calif.
Price: $12.79 for a variety 12-pack
Purchased: June 15, 2013
Consumed: June 15, 2013
Misc.: Born on date of April 25, 2013

Poured a golden yellow clear color with two fingers of frothy white head. Pretty good foamy spiderweb foamy lacing on the sides. Very good retention all the way down on the top.

Very surprised with the smell. Was expecting a watery honey flavor, but got a mix of floral hops and citrus hops. Got grapefruit and I think tangerine as well. Got some honey as well. Very nice.

Taste wasn’t quite as good as the smell, but decent nonetheless. Got a toned down version of the floral hops and citrus hops. Watery grapefruit, sweet floral notes.

Light body. Thin texture. Average-to-soft carbonation. Abrupt watery finish. Clean, crisp and refreshing.

I can’t believe how good this beer was. A very nice pleasant surprise.

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Photo of tjsdomer2
4.05/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: Golden yellow with nice carbonation and lacing.

Smell: Fresh banana, lemon, and pine. A bit salty as well. Excellent, especially for a blonde.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Bubblegum, pine, and vanilla. I actually really like the flavor a ton. Starts a bit thin, but crisps up nice with a dry finish.

Overall Drinkability: I was extremely surprised how much I liked this, especially given my lukewarm reaction to their other light beers, Longboard and Fire Rock. Thumbs up!

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Photo of Redrover
3.65/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I had the Kona Big Wave on tap at Salt Life Grille in Jackson Beach. This is a great updated take on seafood shack. Check it out!

Served in a standard pint glass, the beer is a chill hazed gold with a skim of white foam.

There are apricots and grains in the nose. Blind folded I would have guessed Magic Hat #9.

Taste also leads with apricot. There is a nice floral undertone and some caramel malt. Everything hung together well with this beer.

Mouth is well calibrated for a hot weather beer.

Change of pace beer for sure. But I ended up drinking four over the course of a leisurely two hour eating and drinking session.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
3.48/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Kona Big Wave Golden Ale has a fairly thick, rocky, off-white head, a clear, golden appearance, lots of streaming bubbles (etched glass), some lacing, and little white specks floating throughout. The aroma is of fruit (think pineapple), faint bread, and mild sweetness. Taste is all of those, with a strong tap water note. Bitterness is mellow and pleasant, but ho-hum, to an extent. Mouthfeel is between light and medium, and Kona Big Wave Golden Ale finishes dry, crisp, refreshing, lager-like, and drinkable. Overall, this is alright, and I suppose it’s worth checking out.


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Photo of hustlesworth
3.71/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A- slightly hazed golden color with a thick whitehead. The foam shrinks down at a medium pace... Leaving some spots and swirls of lacing.

S- nicely hoppy and almost pilsner-like, but with more of an American west coast hop attitude. Very floral and brightly citrusy with notes of lemon, lilies, pineapple and cut grass. Pale malt background is barely crackerish and the overall aroma is mild with hops in the forefront.

T- interesting balance here.. Bitterness is low but hop flavor is high, seemingly due to the timid subtlety of the malt used. It provides almost no flavor, maybe some bready cracker or cooked flour, but for such a light beer I guess it works. Citrusy and almost tart hop flavor catches the big wave with what could be perceived as a tropical character. Lemon, pineapple and grass, apple skin and white grape. Maybe some star fruit and unripe guava idk. Finishes super dry with lingering tart fruitiness.

MF- light bodied and refreshing. Insanely dry and clean enhanced by zippy, well rounded carbonation.

D- not so bad, if you're a fan of the style. This one really falls somewhere in between a pils and a kolsch as it totally has traits of both. Malt seems to provide nothing but structure which is odd, but the hops are nice enough so yeah like hang ten bro.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
2.74/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.75

12 ounce bottle - $1.39 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Bottling Date: MAR 13 13.

Appearance: Pours out a clear, pale yellow body with a smallish, thin layer of white suds.

Smell: Grainy-scented nose edged with waterlogged biscuits and the faintest, far-off hint of honey. A little flower petal, a little sweaty citrus rind.

Taste: Washed out biscuit-toned malts with a thin, thin honeyed veneer to it. Some husky, grainy astringency noted. Modest floral, faintly citrusy hops with a bit of bitterness aided by the graininess and crisp carbonation. Dry, bitterish, crisp finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Medium carbonation.

Overall: What the hell is going on here?

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.5/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

not a bad golden ale, if a bit bland and generic, its plenty easy drinking. pours perfectly clear golden in color with gently rising bubbles and an inch of white foam that is gone in a few minutes but can be riled back up consistently. the nose is peachy, not sure if its intentional or an off essence, but I personally like it, pale malt profile and a bready ale yeast. the flavor hints of some mild hops up front, but its washed out quick by a big wave (pun intended) of neutral malt flavors that are just on the verge of sweet. finish isn't as clean as the longboard lager, but still pretty quick. not too exciting, but certainly not offensive at all. my dad would love this as a Molson drinker. carbonation is a little light for the style, and the body is super light. its an all day beer with the super low abv and general pleasantness. not something ill seek out again, but a beer that id be more than happy to quaff on the Hawaiian shores.

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Photo of StJamesGate
3.29/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Honey blonde with loose silvery white froth like sparkling wine.
Clean fresh cut grain with hints of white sugar, waxy rind and flowers.
Honey and melon, some husky grain in the middle, and faint floral hops. Lemon peel as it warms.
Grassy finish and sour linger.
Thin, flaccid, tinny, some stick.

Neither the malty depth of an English blonde nor the hop bit of an American. Throws lager shapes, but even ice cold it's hard to picture this one as a quencher.

Actively unpleasant.

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Photo of Nugganooch
3.59/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle from the Kona Brewing variety pack - served in an Imperial nonic glass
Dated 19-FEB-13

A: Pours a golden straw body with magnificent clarity. Effervescent with micro bubbles that form a thick finger of sudsy white stuff. Decent hang time and some rungs of dripping lace decorate the glass.

S: Smells piney with some grapefruit zest and tangerines. I am getting a light yeast spice and a bit of tropical mangoes. No real malt sweetness coming through. Delicate aromas yet relatively fresh with American hops. Surprisingly nice.

T: Taste is very light, fruity, and tropical with a firm grassy hay note. I get some tangerine citrus, mango, and pines with a moderate amount of bitterness on the palate. There is a light sourdough bread malt base that is not really sweet at all. Alcohol not even mentionable. This almost drinks like a West Coast APA/IPA. Really not bad at all especially on a hot summer day.

M: Clean light and crisp with a nice drying quality. Finish is slightly wetter but very light and dry overall.

D: At just 4.4% this is a really nice session beer. Much hoppier than I was anticipating. It drinks more like a hoppy Pale Ale. Light crisp and refreshing warm weather brew. Not your typical Blonde and I would say my favorite of the pack.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.43/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A - Bright golden yellow hue in color (obviously) with a 1/4 inch of white head.
S - Smells of mild hops, pilsner malts, and some bready yeasts.
T - Simple yet not offensive it's far from tasty. Mild hops and bready malts with a touch of fruity yeasts.
M - Not very watery which was surprising for 4%. Drank with a light to medium body though.

Overall this is just a filler review since I got a bottle best by August 2012 yet it wasn't offensive or skunked. I bet fresh this beer would be... something.

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Photo of tdm168
3.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

A - bright, clear, gold with a soft, thin, white head

S - herbal hop aroma and some faint cereal grains

T - cereal grains, herbal hop character

M - light to medium bodied, well carbonated

This is a rather refreshing, light, very easy to drink, session beer. This would be great on a hot day.

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Photo of TexasRedskinFan
5/5  rDev +41.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I enjoyed this beer on a recent trip to Honolulu Hawaii... Had it at a company event with an open bar.. Very very tasty. I chose this because it being an open bar selections were limited. Normally I drink regular American Budweiser as my staple beer. But as the Bud Light version was only available I figured "when in Rome"...
I have never seen this beer or any of the Kona Brewery offerings here in Texas so I was interested in what I had in store for me.

This beer is AWESOME.... It is supremely Island fare.. Lightly bodied, very flavourful, easy to drink. It is very "typical golden". Fruity malty notes all over it.. So refreshing when ice cold. And it gets more pronounced as it warms..
Overall this beer is a top selection for any occasion. I'm not sure if its available in Houston because I have yet to see it anywhere.
I can guarantee you that if I find this locally I will be enjoying it on a regular basis.. Might have to put on flip flops though, just so it feels right.

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Photo of MShirokov
4.5/5  rDev +27.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

The "notes" above describe this beer well.
I tried it yesterday among several other beers, and this one was my favorite.
It's very "refreshing," not heavy at all, yet has a great smell and flavor. My girlfriend was the one who ordered this one and I kept reaching for her glass, smelling it and taking a sip.
A very "fun" beer, not "in your face" at all, just fruity, bubbly and fresh.

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Photo of sam_bliss
2.61/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

Bottle into mug

This one pours crystal-freaking clear, the color of coors banquet--maybe a little darker, but not much. A nice little white bubbly head tops it off. Smells of grassy and citrusy hops, but not strongly enough: I leaned in further to get a better whiff and my nose got wet. I inhaled some foam but detected no more powerful aromatics. I guess Big Wave is just a super clean, weak-smelling brew. An adjunct corny flavor comes through in the taste. I could almost mistake this ale for Bud Light Platinum... It is a bit bready but very lightly malted with a thin consistency. The mouthfeel leaves something to be desired.

I suppose this is Kona's attempt at an ale that is sessionable and easy-drinking. The fact that I could drink this all night without getting drunk merits a 2.75 overall score, since it's much better than most 4.4% beers such as Keystone Light..

The pilsner-style malts, though very weak, make this one taste almost like a lager. Overall, it is just watery.

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Photo of mactrail
3.33/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Bright yellow beer in the Duvel tulip. A modest head that subsides fairly rapidly. Slight tanginess, but the taste is more of club soda carbonation.

A subtle, but tantalizing, aroma of hops. Not much malt in the flavor, or much hops either, but it's a standard, clean beery taste. This could be recommended as an inoffensive quaff, but it is pretty well devoid of interest, even for the Blonde category.

From the 12 oz bottle bought at Ralph's Supermarket in San Clemente.

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Photo of Vixie
3.27/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a straw yellow color with a small white head.

Smell is mainly malt and yeast.

A lot of malt up front, as well as yeast. Has a bit of floral hops at the finish to keep things balanced.

Ok feel, a touch watery, has a lot of carbonation.

A decent beer, but nothing really stands out. Easy to drink, would be nice on a hot day. I am hoping to try more from Kona, now that they are available in my area.

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Photo of hosehead83
4.34/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a standard pint glass.
Light copper/gold in color,with a decent cap of white foam.
Aroma-Subtle citus hops, tropical fruit notes
Taste-Fruity citrus hops, soft pineapple note, underlying citrus rind. Well-balanced, smooth, fresh and tasty. Fish tacos would fit the bill nicely.

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Photo of zeff80
3.94/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a clear, golden color with a one-finger, white head of bubbly foam. It left thin sheets of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled sweet with tropical fruit aromas.

T - It tasted of sweet caramel with a touch of spice and some tropical fruit flavors.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A light to medium bodied ale with a dry finish.

O - This is a very tasty golden ale. Bright and refreshing.

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Photo of matjack85
3.03/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

12oz brown bottle with a freshness date stamped on it right on the bottom of the front label. The only thing I don't know is whether that's a born on date or an expiration date.

The beer poured a clear champaign color, sort of like gingerale gold. The half finger of white head dissipated quickly and there wasn't much lacing.

The beer has both a pleasantr hoppy smell as well as an unpleasant barnyard smell.

Well, well,well - what do we have here? A hop dominated blonde ale. Slightly bitter grapefriut/lemon flavor tempered with a kiss of sweet honey.

Light bodied with medium high carbonation.

It's alright, but I like my blonde ales to be fruitier and maltier.

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Photo of GregBlatz
3.74/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A - Golden, small white head. Clear but with a tiny bit of haze.

S - Sweet grain and lemon.

T - Big hop taste. Dragonfruit or mango. Interesting hop flavor that I can't put my finger on. It is a welcome hop aggressiveness that I was not expecting.

M - Somewhat thin as expected for the stye. Medium carbonation.

O - Wow, now this could be very refreshing on a hot day but you still get some hop flavor. I would like to buy this in 6 packs if available in OH.

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Photo of ZAP
3.87/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

A-Mostly clear but a slight haze to a light golden colored ale. Nice creamy white head...

S-Very citrus forward...sweet citrus....oranges...tangerines....apricots....peaches...yes a lot of peaches the more I smell...

T-Not full flavored but has a nice citrus component....peaches and oranges....lighter than on the aroma...could use a little more malt backing.

M-I know this was meant to be a session ale but it is too light in the shorts for me. The very watery body takes away from the flavor some actually as your attention is drawn to that instead.

O-I really like the aroma and the flavor to a lesser regard...the body is very light...I guess in the heat and sun a low ABV tasty ale like this would drink nicely but I wonder how much better this could be with a little more malt at say a still sessionable 5%?

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Photo of Murrhey
2.88/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tumbler in high elevation Libby, Mont. Paired with pretzels and reviewed live.

A- Half a finger white head. Large bubbles. Low retention. No real lacing to speak of. Golden color. High clarity and nice carbonation.

S- Golden malts, light hops. Some wheat.

T- Wheat. Not great.

M- Light and watery.

O- Below average golden ale. Nothing special about this beer.

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Photo of secondtooth
3.94/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Golden yellow when poured into my pint glass. Superb fine white head of foam. Lace is small, but loopy and somehow appropriate for the "surf" theme.

Nose brings some curious tropical fruit aromas -- I get pineapple and mango. Very appealing!

Taste also echoes some of these tropical fruits, especially citrus, alongside the rich malty backbone. I get a bit of citrus hoppiness at the finish, too, making this a very enjoyable and easy to drink session ale. Perhaps my favorite of Kona's mainland bottled brews, so far.

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Photo of MattyG85
3.78/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams "Perfect Pint" glass. Label bottling date of Nov 15, 2012.

Appearance: Pours a pale yellowish golden orange with a lot of rising bubbles. Solid three fingers of white head with good retention. Leaves a decent amount of lacing around the glass.

Smell: A laid back aroma of citrus fruit and soft malt. Soft pale malts with hints of wheat, grain, cracker, and biscuit. Decent hints of citrus orange, lemon, and a little mango. Hop scents are very faint. A very light smell but the citrus hint is nice.

Taste: Like the smell hints, a pretty light taste with citrus being the dominate flavor coming out. Pale malts with some notes of wheat, cracker, grains, and biscuit. A nice taste of citrus orange, lemon, mango, and pineapple. Light earthy hops and grass towards the finish. A decent taste for the style.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Crisp, clean, and somewhat juicy. Goes down very easy.

Overall: A decent version of the Blonde ale style. Light and crisp with a nice citrus fruit taste.

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Big Wave Golden Ale from Kona Brewing Co.
80 out of 100 based on 234 ratings.