Blind Taste Test: Costco Generic Beer About As Good As Brand Name

Our friends at Consumer Reports were curious about Costco’s generic (sorry, “Kirkland Signature”) beer sampler, which includes German Style Lager, Pale Ale, Amber Ale, and Hefeweizen. In the name of science, they got a bunch of people and some comparable brand name beers… then duct-taped the bottles so nobody could tell what they were drinking.

It turns out that on average, regular, untrained people enjoy Costco generic beer about as much as they like brand name beers such as Samuel Adams Boston Lager, Samuel Adams Boston Ale, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, and Paulaner Hefe-Weizen. Some preferred the brand name, some preferred the Kirkland, etc.

Trained beer experts said “although the brand-name beers were more flavorful, clean-tasting, and complex, the Costco beers were quite quaffable and, to use the consultants’ technical term, “party-worthy,” according to CR.

Sounds good to us, the only drawback seems to be that you have to buy the sampler and can’t get cases of just the style you like. Boo.

Bargain beer from Costco [Consumer Reports]