The Real Reason Costco Discontinued Kirkland's Light Beer

While the mega-retailer Costco has a successful line of Kirkland-branded liquors including a variety of tequilas and vodkas, its attempt to enter the light beer market did not go over particularly well. While the company still offers a variety box of craft brewed ales — including pale, blonde, brown, and India pale — and, which on the West Coast, are brewed by Gordon Biersch, you'll no longer find a Kirkland light beer on the shelves.

Costco's Kirkland Signature Light Beer, like most of the store's offerings, was sold in bulk (via Business Insider). A 48-can pack costed a measly $22, which means that each can ran you just under 50 cents. However, according to reviewers, the emphasis was on quantity rather than quality. One drinker reported that the brew tasted like battery acid. Another reviewer said that it smelled like a "urine-soaked diaper sitting on a piping-hot radiator" (via Business Insider). Not exactly rave reviews.

The legacy of Kirkland-brand light beer

The beer in question had a low alcohol content of 4.2 percent, and ranked quite badly on Beer Advocate with a "poor" score of 63, with 122 ratings. Ouch. In 2018, Costco decided that perhaps their customers had a point that the beer wasn't exactly its most impressive product offering, and the company decided to stop selling the beer all together.

It may only be a distant memory now, but perhaps the most memorable thing about Kirkland light beer was the series of home "commercials" made by a devotee from California who estimated he drank 18 cans every day of the week (via Esquire). The commercials featured him busting through a wall of empty Kirkland light beer boxes as if he were the Kool-Aid man, and they were a huge hit online.

And so, it's safe to assume if you never had a chance to sample Kirkland's light beer, you didn't miss anything other than an opportunity to make jokes at its expense.