Kirkland Signature Pale Ale | Kirkland Signature / Costco Wholesale Corporation

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Kirkland Signature Pale AleKirkland Signature Pale Ale

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

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Troyone on 03-19-2009

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Reviews: 77 | Ratings: 188
Photo of hackmann
2.39/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Another review of flavored water.
Why did I buy this case.

Appearance: A good looking clear pale amber color with a nice looking white head. Leaves nice lacing on the glass. Forget it after this.

Smell: uneventful. Little hop citrus and slight malty nose.

Taste: Wow, is that water! The Kirkland line of beers have a big watery style. Then, they add a little flavoring. A little dry citrus taste and a little sweet malt. Nothing that stands out but, that water is fresh!

Mouthfeel: The watery style cleans the palate fairly well from overpowering flavor of ... water. Ok, it has a little dry citrusy bit and a strange taste of sugar. I swear once in a while on the aftertaste I get a table sugar taste.

Drinkable: For me I'll pass. The german and hefe were a little more drinkable.

Save your money and go buy, at least, good beer.

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Photo of biggred1
3.08/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pale bronze with a finger of bone colored foam that leaves some decent lace on the glass. The aroma is light and fruity with not much detectable malt. Mildly bitter and earthy hop notes with an overall dry quality. I find this beer to be seriously lacking in malt flavors. Medium light bodied and effervescent. I won't seek out Kirkland pale ale again.

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Photo of RJLarse
2.78/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I bought a sampler of Kirkland Signature Beers at Costco, 4 beers 6 bottles of each. Poured in to a pint glass.

Pours a pale gold color and is clear. A small creamy head caps the beer, and hangs around for quite a while, leaving nkice little lace rings on the glass.

Smell is a faint fruity aroma, lemon and grape fruit, perhaps with a hint of pine or juniper.

Taste is dominated by fruit flavors, with very little malt presence. There a lemon and grapefruit flavor, with an aserbic vinegar-like taste.

Mouthfeel is light, perhaps a bit watery, with a dry bitter aftertaste.

Drinkable but unremarkable. I wish it wasn't quite so dry. Still at this price point it is a decent choice for a run of the mill beer.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.37/5  rDev +7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle brewed in Utica, N.Y. with an expiration date of Apr 04, 2010. Sampled on April 17, 2010. It pours a golden yellow with nice clarity with a decent fizzy white head. The aroma is balanced way. A good malty sensation as well. There is a sharpness and a bitterness to the taste with a moderately hopped finish.

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Photo of sweemzander
2.57/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint. Best before June 21, 2010.

(A)- Pours a clear amber color. Produced a good white head that left tons of web-like lacing behind.

(S)- Lots of corn husk & lemon wheat.

(T)- Very bitter pine with lemon. A grassy, almost metallic finish. More corn husk.

(M)- A good carbonation level. The hops are rather bitter; almost a peppery or burnt character.

(D)- Not a bad pale ale, but rather just off balanced with some harsh hops that could be fruitier & creamier. Not liking the metallic thing either.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
2.51/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada imperial pint. 5.4% ABV, 35 IBUs, Best before Jun 21, 2010 printed on the neck.

A - Completely clear golden amber with moderate carbonation going up to a off-white head. Three-fingers tall with solid retention and patchy lace coating most of the glass.

S - Faint aroma in general that has the majority of the nose coming from lightly citrusy and floral hops. A drop of lemon livens what's there up. A background of pale malts isn't all too supportive.

T - A protein-tannin thing seems to overshadow what little flavor is there. Lemony citrus hop and an herbal touch. Low malt presence. It gets really metallic on the finish.

M - Medium-light bodied with a really dry metallic finish that kills the good hop bitterness at the start.

D - Blah. I can finish it but the metallic flavor and feel gets worse sip by sip. Not something I'd like to have again. Giving the last half to my brother.

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Photo of jwc215
3.63/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Best before June 15 2010 stamped on neck:

Pours bright golden with a thin lasting white head. Trailing lace sticks.

The smell is bready with fruity and floral notes. Mild, but pleasant.

The taste is of sweet graininess with a bitterish floral and somewhat tea-like spicy dryness in the finish.

Ample carbonation - even a bit more than ample, though not fizzy or too harsh - thins out the body a bit. Still, it is pretty smooth and not watery.

An easy-drinking, rather basic, though well-balanced, pale ale. A good value for the dollar.

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Photo of colts9016
3.2/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Review from notes: Poured into a pint glass at 37 degrees.

Appearance: A one finger head that has some retention. The head is frothy white. The color of the beer is medium gold color with orange hues. The clarity of the beer is clear. There is a lot effervescence bubble in the beer.

Nose: A fruity esters, floral bouquet, and pine. The malt is slightly toasted with some yeast and phenols.

Taste: A spicy grapefruit, floral bouquet and pine flavors. The malt is toasty and there are some phenols.

Overall: The mouth feel is carbonated, astringent and crisp. The body of the beer is medium and the finish. This is a pretty good beer.

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Photo of unclejimbay
3.66/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance is honey/copper in color with brillant clarity. 2 Finger head with respectable retention and lacing.
Smell is mild hop aromas for a true APA, but pleasant mellow floral citurs hop notes. Some sweet caramel malt is in the nose also.
Tastes as it smells, and seems very similiar to a lighter more mellow version of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. If you like SNPA, you may like this one, if not, you won't.
Light-medium body, medium carbonation, bitter and sweet dance on finish.
Drinkability is good for the price as a "mellow and semi balanced APA".

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Photo of psruss
3.68/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I obviously bought this at Costco as part of a $18.99 mixed case. I tried to read the case box to get some information. It is from Utica, NY, so it must be made by one of the big contract breweries. Don't know if production is regional and if it makes a difference.

I did not expect too much of a hops punch like an earlier reviewer did. It mentions 35 IBU which is fairly mild compared to IPA's or ESB's. I was pleasantly surprised about the drinkability of the pale ale. For a mild beer it was quite good and I expect it to be an all-season kind of beer. Better than average and that's meeting my expectations.

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Photo of nickd717
3.1/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle thanks to my roommate. When Costco stamps their brand on a beer, you know it's got to be a quality product. To be honest, this really isn't an awful beer.

Pours clear golden with a medium-sized white head.

Aroma is grainy and malty with some slight floral and herbal hop notes.

Flavor is pale and caramel malt, grains, and just a bit of hop bitterness, mostly herbal.

Medium-light body with average carbonation and nothing particularly exciting on the mouthfeel.

Drinkability is decent. Overall...meh, but hey, at least this beer is cheap and better than BMC.

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Photo of Billolick
3.32/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poached a few bottles from a mixed case at a super bowl party to bring home and sample/review. 12 ounce bottle, with best before dating (May 09,2010) etched onto the bottle. Pours typical amber, clear, moderate light tan head, that leaves respectable strands of lace. Light tropical fruit nose. Bland, middle of the road pale, lacks even a moderate hop punch, thin on the tongue. Not much of interest here.

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Photo of ghebel
3.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours clear, gold to amber color with one inch head. Foam dissipates quickly to a thin broken layer, leaving minimal lacing on the glass..

S - Caramel malt dominates with only background earthy hops. Aroma is not unpleasant, but is short in hop profile.

T - Sweet malt dominates with some bitterness in the end. Hop flavor is lacking for the style.

M - Thin to moderate body with carbonation bite and foamy sensation. Noticeable, yet mild, bitterness hangs around for a bit after the swallow. Warming, with mild alcohol sensation in the end.

D - Drinkable, but would not choose it first for a special occasion or when I am in the mood for a good APA.

Overall - Drinkable, but lacking in the hop department for my taste. Not too bad for an "economy" brand.

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Photo of Ek0nomik
3.23/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured In: Tulip Glass

My dad went to Costco and gave me a bottle of each of their beers. Let's see what they have to offer...

Appearance: Pours a very attractive amber and brassy color with three fingers of head. The gentle pour still produced that much head. When held up to the light you can see that the beer is quite effervescent; it's also extremely clear. It doesn't look like it was bottle conditioned as the bottom of the bottle has zero yeast resting. The amount of lace on the side of my snifter is actually quite impressive. Thick sheets are completely surrounding my glass.

Smell: The nose isn't particularly exciting. A little bit of malt sweetness in the form of caramel, but not a whole lot. There's also a little bit of citrus hop in the nose, but, again, very little.

Taste: The palate isn't too far off from the nose. Some malt sweetness leads the tasting off, and then the bittering hops and flavor hops kick in. A little bit of pine and orange peel contribute to the hop character. I'd actually say this beer isn't too far off from being a decent pale ale, except that in the middle of the tasting I found the beer to be rather watery. It just needs a little more malt in the background to throw away some of that watery flavor. Personally, I'd also bump up the hops if I was adding more malt. However, I think they could get away with a well rounded pale ale by just adding more malt so long as the taster had a fresh bottle.

Mouthfeel: This has a rather thin body. I think this needs a little more malt backbone to up the body a bit. I also think upping the body would hopefully get rid of that slightly watery characteristic on the palate. Average carbonation for a pale ale.

Drinkability: Not a bad beer to be honest, although it won't end up in my crate again in the future. I have no idea how much this cost since it was given to me, but if the price for one of these large 12/24 tasting packs isn't too high I could see this being a session beer for some people.

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Photo of bc2208
3.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a thick head with a bright golden color. My sense of smell is weak and I will usually pick up strong scents; this beer doesn't cut through. Mouthfeel is watery, moderate carbonation. The hop taste is there at first but is quickly shot down by malt which dominates this beer. Finish is slightly bitter hops but also slightly metallic. Lacing is average to good. Overall I like this beer for the value. It is very drinkable, has a decent taste for the price of a regular macro. I didn't like the amber, so the other two would dictate whether I buy this again. Good choice for a party if you can't bear to serve the cheap stuff.

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Photo of mooseisloose
3.6/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Leave to the ingenious people at Costco to get their "own" beer. Can't beat that, or the price, $17 an assorted case! We'll the price is right, let's give it a whirl to see how it pans out. Bottle smell is citrusy and zesty. Pours to a golden bronze with off white head. Taste is nice and hoppy up front, not overly bitter, transitions to a sweeter malty middle then the hops finish out with a zesty bitterness. Mouthfeel is spot on to spark up the flavor but not mask it. For the style it hits the mark. This is a tasty brew for $4 a sixer to boot. Kudos to Costco for getting the customer what they like!

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Photo of BeerBelcher
2.27/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I love all things Kirkland and am also a big fan of Costco, but this beer was a genuine let-down. As a craft beer fan, I love hops that really punch you in the face, but as a realistic beer consumer, I also know that a lot of people who drink beer DON'T like this, and as a result there are quite a few more mild mannered beers out there, which is fine. I guess what is disappointing to me about this beer is that the name "pale ale" sort of implies to me that at least some discernible hop presence is contained within the bottle, and I did not find that to be the case here. Much like Bud American Ale, which promised hops and taste and delivered a disappointing blandness, I feel as though this beer is not what it implies.

It pours an attractive brassy color, with a pretty nice amount of head. Aroma is biscuity and malty, and not really at all hoppy. Flavor is very mildly hoppy - these beers are relatively new and the one I tried I thought was fresh, but the flavor within reminded me of hops gone bad - like when a super hoppy beer gets old and loses both its hop punch and its balance, becoming a big malt-ball. Mouthfeel was unremarkable.

I love Costco, and I am a big fan of their store brand (Kirkland), but that respect does not extend to their beer. I cannot in good faith recommend this to anyone.

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Photo of Bookseeb
3.33/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance has a nice amber color to it with a thin head, but fair lace. Smell is light in caramel, grainy malt and mild hops. Taste has a fair amount of malt thats ligthly sweet with a grapefruit bitterness. Mouthfeel has good body and carbonation. Overall not bad of a brew, although it needs to be a bit more balanced.

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Photo of bonkers
3.45/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A friend gave me this to try. I poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a standard pint glass. It pours a pale yellow with a moderate 2 finger head. The aroma is strong on pine and a bit sweet. The taste is a let down. There is a bit of citrus and a slight bitterness to it, but IMO it is a bit too thin. It is not a terrible beer, especially at 18 bucks a case, but it is not a case I would pick up.

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Photo of dbmcrorie
3.62/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz brown long neck bottle poured into a drinking glass. No freshness date. Part of the 24 mix pack from Costco.

Poured a bit watery into a copper/amber orange body with an off-white head. Big bubbles that popped and dissipated rather quickly into average lacing.

Definitely more malt than hops in this brew. Lots of caramel, slight candy/buttery diacetyl, and smooth - no graininess. Citrus and herbal notes from the hops that seem to highlight the malt, but don't make themselves known.

Again, more malt than hops, but that's not entirely a bad thing. Lots of mandarin orange flavors, followed by citrusy hops, pale and caramel malts, with a slight toasty bread finish. Watery mouthfeel and medium bodied. Surprisingly no signature PA bitterness. Rather, a smooth bready finish and a slight hoppy aftertaste.

Not bad at all. Definitely the best of the four in the KS mix pack, and a decent Pale Ale for the price - highly drinkable at that. I would thoroughly enjoy this again and wish I could find a six pack of it by itself (the other 3 six-packs aren't worth the price).
Would do well against mild chili, savory meats (especially game), crusty bread loafs, and nutty cheeses.


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Photo of hmk22
3.94/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My first review! I got all geeked out thinking I would be the first to review this beer to pop my Ba review cherry, and in a way I am -- I got mine at a Costco in New York, where it's contract brewed by New Yorker Brewing Company in Utica, NY.

Anyway. All I would add to the previous reviews is that this is an awesome value for the money -- in terms of taste and aroma there is nothing that can touch this for a similar price ($18.99 for a mixed case of all 4 styles). Great pale ale taste -- prominent hops but not off the charts. It does not have the complexity or the body of (say) Sierra Nevada or Victory products but I'd be interested in how this would stack up in a blind taste test because its appearance, color, etc., while not remarkable, are right up there. I wonder how the CA version would compare because having lived in both states I find that many NY State beers suffer owing to (in my opinion) the water up there (but that's for another review). I give Costco a lot of credit for this because their beer offerings (at least in my area) are polarized between the (formerly) US macros and Beck's on one hand and variety cases on the other. Definitely something to check out at a low risk.

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The last of the Kirkland beers that my friend brought to my place.

A: Pours a pleasantly clear straw-colored body in the glass. No retention on the head, no lacing.

S: Smells a lot like the amber ale, but without caramel: grain, nuts, bread, and some hops (earthy). Not very pungent here either, but it's all right.

T: Follows the taste very well. The initial taste is malty (bread) with nuts and grain coming in gradually. Earthy hops flesh out the flavor during the swig, and carry into the aftertaste.

M: A modest and understated flavor; it has a presence, but doesn't shock the palate. Would be a decent session beer if it weren't 5+%.

D: The best out of the four Kirkland varieties. I'd probably navigate to this one if I were offered a choice.

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Photo of josiahschlender
3.75/5  rDev +19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This mixed case from a Portland Costco for $18 is quite the deal for craft brew.

Pours golden straw into a pint glass. Lighter than many pales, but darker than say, most American lagers. A white cap quickly fades, leaving no lacing.

Grainy, nutty, bready malts on the nose, with some herbal hops. Maybe even some grassy, Noble hops? Less hoppy than I typically expect from a West-Coast pale, but I'm liking the balance on this one. Not the most intensity, but not bad.

Modest grain and hop flavors, as well. Good balance, maybe could have used more hops, I'm beginning to think even more that it might have some Noble hops, I'm reminded of a pils I had recently. Bittering is moderate, enough to notice, but not too much. Medium body and medium finish is good.

Overall, not unimpressed, certainly for the price, but it's no Mirror Pond or Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. I might be getting the case from Costco again, but it probably won't be on the strength of this pale. The easy drinking nature of this beer, with the low price point and versatile food pairing makes this high on my drinkability scale.

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Photo of jeffjeff1
3/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This was average for a pale ale.

Appearance- gold color, transparent

Smell- malty aroma

Taste- grainy malt

Mouthfeel- light bodied

Drinkability- pretty drinkable, ok, great for the price, great deal on these at Costco, got a case of 24 beers for 15 bucks

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Photo of originalsin
3.07/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Inexpensive pack of beers from costco here. Certainly no complaints w/r/t value.

This is a relatively simple pale ale, as could be expected.
A light golden beer with about an 1/8 inch of head that settles quickly...Smells like a pretty typical west coast pale- it's somewhat more balanced though, with sweet malt and citrus hops on the nose. The beer has some hop bitterness but is mostly balanced, but not exactly the most drinkable brew. As it warmed up, I found myself struggling more and more with the mediocre medium-body and bland taste.

Not a complete miss, and not completely unexpected.

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Kirkland Signature Pale Ale from Kirkland Signature / Costco Wholesale Corporation
3.15 out of 5 based on 188 ratings.
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