Kirkland German Lager

By on March 7, 2011 @ 9 PM (1 Comment)

Technically this is the Kirkland Signature German Style Lager, but we feel a little douchey saying the whole thing, so for this review we’ll call it the Kirkland German Lager.

It’s one of four beers that come in a 24 pack that you get at Costco of all places. The 24 pack includes a 6 pack each of the German lager, a hefeweizen, an amber ale and a pale ale (for more background on Costco, Kirkland and their contract brewing situation, check out our previous post on Costco entering the craft beer business).

For this review our bottles come from New Yorker Brewing. Our best before date was January 3, 2011, which was good as we actually did this review on December 2, 2010. Our 12 oz bottle of German lager has a 5.5% ABV and 22 IBUs. We used a shaker glass for our review and got a starting beer temperature of 46.4 F.

For our initial pour we got an average 1″ foamy white head that dissipated quickly. There was a medium amount of carbonation and the body was a clear sparkling amber golden color. Quite a good looking brew.

For our aromas we got a light biscuity short bread, light caramel, light cereal, light toasted malts, honey, floral, light grass, orange, light pine, light ginger and a little bit of soapiness.

For our initial flavors we got a light to moderate sweet and light bitter, followed in the finish by a very light to light sweet, a moderate bitter and a very light saltiness. For our tastes we got some more of that biscuity short bread, caramel, light cereal, light toasted malts, honey, floral, grass, orange, pine, light ginger, soap and some metallic. The taste is fairly true to the aroma, with some notes coming in a little more potent.

The finish length is average, the mouthfeel is oily and the tongue hit is in the middle. There’s no body lacing to speak of and on our patented malt to hop scale it comes in almost balanced – just a 1/2 click to the right of balanced on the hoppy side.

The bottom line notes are good – yes to drinkable, repeatable, balance, value and buy again. No to harmony, memorable and wow factor.

Overall the Kirkland German Lager is a nicely done beer. It’s well crafted and passes our 60 degree test. The sweetness edges up as it warms – what we thought was a light sweetness when it was cooler (under 50 F) we realized was really a moderate sweetness once the cold mask came off. It’s actually a very good beer to drink around 55 to 60 F. We were tasting ours around 57.7 F and it was spot on.

This may be the best example we have of value in a beer. Really – the price is ridiculous – $18.99 for a 24 pack, which comes out to 79 cents a bottle. You won’t find a better value anywhere for the quality of the beer.

Our final take: it’s a very good once-in-a-while beer, especially if your whiles aren’t too far apart. Perfect if you’re having some friends over and want to share something nice. The BeerFathers approve.

Kirkland German Lager Rating: 5 out of 10 (?)


1 Comment (Add Your Comments)

  1. Sean says:

    I just this evening tried all four of the Costco beers; the German style lager was my favorite. In my opinion, it tasted a _lot_ like Beck’s. I’m also on the west coast, so I guess it was brewed by Gordon Biersch? Interesting.

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