A review of Kirkland Signature’s craft brews
Costco was founded by a dad, which isn’t surprising. Home to outrageously large quantities of things you don’t really need now but might need one day, it’s the ideal store for the sect of our society that considers knowing how to change a tire an essential part of a drive to the park. It’s also got great benefits, prioritizes the health and happiness of its employees, and maintains the lowest employee turnover rate in American retail — all things that America’s dads, when sitting us down to talk about jobs, seem to push for.
What Costco is not is cool. While Trader Joe’s caters to your cool aunt or mysteriously wealthy roommate with its ever-changing collection of just-because fun-time snacks, Costco understands the gravity of the situation of filling your house with food, in case of hunger or emergency. Usually housed in the sort of large-scale bunker many wholesale enthusiasts dream of building for themselves one day, the stores are fluorescently lit and arranged in what can only be described as “an honest set-up.” The entire Costco marketing scheme, it seems, is that the buyer slowly starts to say to himself, “why go anywhere else,” and that’s basically it.
This never-ending dungeon of convenience is, in my experience, most effective on dads, who love the idea of being prepared but hate the amount of stops they might have to make to pick up supplies for said preparation. With Costco, the entire apocalypse can be managed in one brief trip. Even daily life starts to look more and more efficient. My own dad, for example, discovered one day that Costco sold jeans, and later, after moving I assume just a little to the left, shirts too, and now purchases almost all of his clothes exclusively at Costco, which isn’t even an insult.
What makes the Costco brand special is its comfort. The Kirkland Signature brand, which makes everything from trail mix to roughly sixteen other types of trail mix, is unmatched in its ability to produce an exactly acceptable quality for what will eventually be, once you make it through the whole container of two dozen eggs and one gallon of soy sauce, an unbeatable price. There’s nothing particularly fancy about these products, but they do their job, and therein lies the dad-ness.
Kirkland’s Signature’s recent move into craft beers has been met with cheers from fathers across the nation who are interested in this sort of thing, sure, but aren’t driving out of the way for a chocolate stout. To better support those attempting to bond with their dads over a meeting of two generations’ most beloved inventions, I’ve matched six of Kirkland Signature’s best craft-brewed beers with the dad experience they most resemble. Please enjoy responsibly, as your dad would say, except he wouldn’t be joking when he said it, he’d be serious.
Kirkland Signature Craft Brewed Pale Ale. When your dad reads an article about an absolutely once-in-a-lifetime horrific accident that could almost never be repeated without a series of impossible circumstances falling directly into place and sends you the link in an otherwise empty email with the subject line “Be careful.”
Kirkland Signature Craft Brewed India Pale Ale. When your dad comes to visit the apartment that you’ve been living in a for a whole two years and takes a look around and then sits down on the sofa and just sort of remains there until it’s time to leave again except for a brief moment when he notices something about your kitchen cabinets that isn’t necessarily broken but could possibly function better so he sort of messes with that and maybe fixes it and then sits back down and checks the news on his phone until your mom’s done making sure you know you could have an old quilt she has at home that you never asked for, if you want it, which you don’t.
Kirkland Signature Craft Brewed Double Bock Beer. When your dad walks into the kitchen in a normal way on a normal day and starts putting together a snack so repulsive you wonder if he’s finally aged out of the part of his life where he can taste and see and smell things and then asks you if you want him to save you some even though it’s just mayonnaise and anchovies and a banana on a cracker, which should never be saved, not even once, and when he doesn’t still doesn’t register that what he’s eating is a crime in at least three different countries and one full continent starts to explain that he “came up” with this “sandwich” while your mother was out of town a few weeks ago, which was a boring weekend but ultimately worth it, because he got to invent this snack.
Kirkland Signature Craft Brewed Session IPA. When you’re out to dinner with your dad after you’ve finally turned not 21 but 22, which is the age where you start to appreciate wine, and are ready to impress him with your knowledge of saying things like “I’ll have the Pinot Noir,” but the restaurant doesn’t have a Pinot Noir, the one wine you know, so you have to wait for your dad to order his wine first and then pretend to look over the menu one more time and then say, “Actually I’ll have that too,” but it’s already too late, the waitress forgot, and you don’t know how to pronounce the word “Beaujolais” so your dad has to order it twice.
Kirkland Signature Craft Brewed Brown Ale. When your dad starts telling you a story about something he did when he was younger and you start to recognize little bits of it as parts of a story you have about something you did also, and the more he explains it the more you realize you both reacted the exact same way, except in maybe one minor detail, and that that detail is probably what separated the person your dad was before he became your dad from the person you ended up meeting, when you finally got around to being born, but you don’t really tell him any of this, you just say, “oh” and “ha” at the appropriate parts of the story.
Kirkland Signature Craft Brewed Kolsch German-style Ale. When you’re sitting in the same room as your dad and you want to listen to “Cut to the Feeling,” but feel like he probably doesn’t want to listen to “Cut to the Feeling,” so you just turn it on and say, “Here’s that song you wanted to hear,” and he waits a full forty seconds before saying “I don’t remember wanting to hear this.”
When my own dad saw me sitting with one of each of these six beers, which retail at $17.99 a case, open at once, he said “that seems like a waste” and asked no further questions.