Why A TikTok Went Viral For Comparing Costco Alcohol To 'The Real Thing'

Costco is beloved for its free samples, but complimentary fig bars alone can't take all the credit for making this members-only one-stop shop the fifth-largest retailer in the world. Costco's real draw is in its name: Cost Company. It's where you go when you need enough Humboldt Fog to fill a dozen cheese boards without giving up your last paycheck. It's there for you when you feel the need to purchase an industrial supply of Honey Nut Cheerios and Ibuprofen, and its appliances and non-food sections never fail to surprise you with bargains.

While Costco offers deals on tons of brands, you'd be hard-pressed to leave the retailer without at least one item from its shining star: Kirkland Signature. From pantry staples to pet food, shoppers gravitate toward the simple logo for the promise of both value and quality when buying in bulk. Just ask celebrity food columnist and "Salt Fat Acid Heat" author Samin Nosrat, who sang the praises of Kirkland Signature Organic Olive Oil on an episode of the podcast "Forever 35," and who cites Kirkland poultry as the inspiration behind her famous buttermilk chicken

You could also ask TikToker @yourrichbff, who posted a viral video revealing a little-known secret about Kirkland Signature alcohol that has shoppers choosing generic over designer. 

Labels aren't everything

Superimposed in front of a Costco, @yourrichbff deploys a classic TikTok formula by taking on the voices of two people. "Grab me a handle of Kirkland vodka," says the first character, whose friend replies, "Ew! We're not in college anymore — we can afford the Grey Goose." 

"It's not about 'affording,' it's about the product," the Kirkland stan retorts. "You do know that Costco's Kirkland booze is all made by famous distillers, right?" This friend claims that the people who bottle sleek-labeled Grey Goose are the same producers of Kirkland vodka, and goes on to declare similar a parallel between Kirkland bourbon and rum with Jim Beam. The friend resolves that she's "never going to overpay for a label again." 

The claim that Grey Goose and Kirkland Signature are the same product has been widely dispelled, reports Silvia Pellegrino for The Drinks Business, who also clears up the alleged equivalence of Kirkland bourbon and Jim Beam. However, Pellegrino also references a Vice piece that confirms both Kirkland Signature vodka and Grey Goose "use water from the Gensac Springs region of France." Technicalities aside, @yourrichbff's overall point rings true: While Kirkland Signature alcohol might not look as fancy as its top-shelf counterparts, it still tastes great.