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Mirror Pond Pale Ale - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Mirror Pond Pale AleMirror Pond Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

2,973 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,973
Reviews: 867
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 11.54%
Wants: 120
Gots: 297 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Alc. by Vol.: 5.0%
IBUs: 40

170 calories per 12 oz serving

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-04-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Mirror Pond Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,973 | Reviews: 867 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of TheRealBigC
4.18/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

While I had previously mentioned that Sierra Nevada Pale Ale is not an everytime beer, I think Mirror Pond is. Deschutes has done a great job with this one. It's reddish body isn't typical for an APA and it's got a heavy dose of malts and a little fruitiness that work in tandem with that initial hop push to find a great balance. Even my friends that don't typically go for hops or pale ales can get into this one.

TheRealBigC, Jul 30, 2012
Photo of kindestcut
4.18/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The Deschutes Mirror Pond Pale Ale pours a pretty golden orange with a vibrant white head.

The aroma is hoppy and noticeably malty. While the smell is not powerful it is nice nonetheless.

The flavor is citrusy with a pleasant sweetness. Light bodied and refreshing, the hoppy bitterness is slight but lingers after the swallow.

This is not a hop bomb by any means so some will probably call this a weak version of a pale ale. Personally, I think it is a fine example of the style...balanced, tasty and infinitely drinkable.

kindestcut, Nov 07, 2009
Photo of abeerwiseguy
4.18/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Have been giving Deschutes' Mirror Pond a try for a few six packs now and today thought the time was right for a review.

12 oz bottle poured into a Pilsner at 46 degrees. Listed as 5% ABV on Deschutes website.

Deep orange tinged color with three fingers of a rich white head that dissipated slowly leaving heavy strings down the glass as the beer quickly disappeared down my gullet.

Aromas of malt, hops and floral notes provide a hopeful expectation that the flavors will be balanced.

The taste is very well rounded, with just the right amount of malt and hops with light floral and citrus overtones. It has a very slight bitterness on the finish.

The beer has a medium body with low carbonation that well supports the flavor profile.

This is in my opinion one of the better examples of the American Pale Ale style and one which I recommend to some of my friends who shy away from some of the hopped up IPA’s out there. (Deschutes Inversion, Stone Ruination, and Dogfish Head 90 Minute to name a few)

abeerwiseguy, Aug 25, 2012
Photo of mynie
4.18/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Smells very mellow. Maybe it's because the only beers I've had from Deschutes have been of the Big n' Bad variety, but I was unconsciously expecting this one's aroma to have a bit more oomph. As is, you got a nice, medium-hopped APA, with light nodes of grapefruit and pine against a surprisingly heavy, thick malt.

Tastewise, the malt is still heavy and thick, but not a bad or syrupy way. Things start off bready, then get piney, then there's a very nice finish of doughy yeast, citrus, and caramel. The yeast *really* brings everything together, and the chewy backend keeps things plenty interesting throughout the duration of the bomber.

mynie, Apr 17, 2012
Photo of ManWithNoName
4.16/5  rDev +6.7%

ManWithNoName, Aug 27, 2014
Photo of evanforbeer
4.16/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured a beautiful amber-orange with fluffy sudsy white head. BB date 11/06/13 on the bottle
Smell- musty tropical fruit, floral notes, bread, spice
Taste- smooth hoppy profile with citrus and some tropical fruit, and subtle floral. An interesting note of faint blueberry sweetness is somewhere in there. Savory toasted grainy malt with a dash of pepper and hop spice. Citrus and spicy hop resin linger on the palate
Feel- lightly carbonated, light-medium bodied. Drink a million of em

Hoppy, fruity, floral, spicy, malty. A wonderfully balanced and complex pale ale, great to enjoy in any season. Love me some Deschutes. Cheers

evanforbeer, Aug 01, 2013
Photo of brentk56
4.16/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours a cloudy apricot color with a modest head that leaves a dancing pattern of lace

Smell: Fruity aromatics of grapefruit and apricot with a caramel undertone

Taste: Caramel malt and then a brief apricot introduction before a pink grapefruit blast arrives; bitter hoppy flavors dominate after the swallow with some residual sweetness on the tip of the tongue

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Very nicely balanced example of a west coast-inspired pale ale

brentk56, Mar 16, 2008
Photo of PBIU
4.16/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Why oh why did I wait this long to buy a 5 gallon of Mirror Pond for the home kegerator?

Just a super balanced and flavorful pale ale.

Appearance is a nice bright honey orange. Great carb.

Smell is grassy with those Cascade hops and biscuity. It is one of those beers that just smells balanced (which I think is a rare thing.)

Taste is a tinge of hops on the front of the tongue and then the malt comes in with a biscuity finish. Then you get a nice dry finish that makes you want to come back.

Mouthfeel is creamy with this being on draft. Right where it should be with a pale ale.

Overall just a great example of the style. It does get knocked for not being too hop forward in this day and age, but keeping in mind this recipe is from 1988, Deschutes was ahead of their time.

Fill glass, drink beer, rinse glass and repeat.


PBIU, May 03, 2014
Photo of klub24
4.16/5  rDev +6.7%

klub24, Oct 28, 2014
Photo of rudedude985
4.16/5  rDev +6.7%

rudedude985, Oct 19, 2014
Photo of merlin48
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle obtained via trade with waldowin. Many Thanks! Mirror Pond pours a chill hazed, honey amber body with a petite, offwhite head. Delicate lacing is left on the glass.

Aroma is enticing. Citrusy esters, a floral note of orange blossom, honey and caramel notes, and some toastiness.

Mouthfeel is light medium in body, crisply carbonated, with a spicy hops bite.

Taste has lots of juicy, citrusy hops, pink grapefruit and tangerine bittersweetness. Bready sweet malt adds a caramel edge. The Cascades hops are up to the challenge, and all the elements come together very well, for an excellent balance.

Very well executed and highly enjoyable. One of the better APA's I've tried.This would be a regular staple in my fridge if it were available locally.

merlin48, Dec 24, 2005
Photo of hiphopipa
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle pored into a tasting glass (thanks biglobo8971 !)

This brew pours a hazy, rustic orange with a thin, but hearty, head that dissipates into a thin collar.
There is a faint bready caramel aroma with hints citrus.
Generous soft cascade hops and gently toasted malts.
Smooth and crisp mouth feel.

Overall an easy drinking pale that surely would be a staple if it was distributed here.

hiphopipa, Oct 31, 2012
Photo of russpowell
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours amber to orange with a slight haze. Thick white head holds up well, but only slight lacing

The nose has malt up front and then piney hops (cascade I assume)

Taste: Hops bitterness (grapefriut then resin) on the tounge and throat snd some malt sweetness on the edges, very crisp finish

MF: Smooth, weel blanced and excellent carbonation

Easy drinking PA that goes down great. Not as good as the draft version and the one time was luck enough have this on cask, wow! But this works if you are looking for a PA that won't blow your lips off and still excite the hophead inside you.

russpowell, Dec 26, 2005
Photo of Brewsmith
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Yardhouse in Long Beach. Aroma has some citrus/pine hops in there...cascade. Color is a golden amber with a small off-white head. Flavor is a wonderful balance between malt and hops, biscuity, toasty, a little caramel without being sweet, while still being hop forward. light to medium bodied with a dry finish. A very nice example of an APA.

Brewsmith, Jan 31, 2009
Photo of TheCondor
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Side poured vigorously from the bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance - This was the most disappointing part of the brew. Pours a nice copper/amber color, but with a pathetic little head that, while it stays around a while, leaves no lacing. No carbonation action inside the glass.

Smell - Certainly makes up for some the appearance. Nice piney hops coincide with malty backbone. Citrus, grapefruit are also present. It absolutely has the "distinct hop nose" like it says on the bottle, complex.

Taste - Even better than the smell. Starts with a beautiful snap from the hops, pine, grapefruit, and citrus, rounded off with a maltiness and sweet backbone that almost reminds me of a bit of butter and nuttiness. One of the most well-balanced brews I've had in a long time. Very complex on the palate.

Mouthfeel - Finishes smooth, almost creamy, with a little bitterness. Medium bodied. Not much carbonation.

Overall - This is an outstanding brew, one of my favorite PA's from the first time I drank it. I think this will be my go to pale ale from here on out if I want a bottle, of course 8-bit in the can. Highly recommended beer, Deschutes does it again with an outstanding, widely available beer. Excellent job.

TheCondor, Jun 27, 2012
Photo of ghostwalker
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up this beauty at the Liquor Collection in Honolulu, HI. Nice selection for an island city.

Orange-amber body with a whipped-cream finger of head.

Nose is sweet malty citrus. Balanced and juicy, very nice.

Flavor is tangy sweet with a balanced hop presence on the finish. A tasty and well crafted APA. Great on a hot day, like we have today in sunny Honolulu!

Mouthfeel is medium with light, but creamy, carbonation.

Drinkability is very good. Plenty of flavor, but it still goes down very well, leaving me wanting another.

ghostwalker, Jan 13, 2007
Photo of birddogg66
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a 16 oz nonick pint

A- Mirror Pond poured out a good reddish, but more toward a copper hue. Topped with a 1" cream color head containing small bubbles, and produced some great lacing.

S- A nice amount of citrus hops starts off on the nose followed by a light roasted caramel malt.

T- A really nice balance between the citrusy flavors of the hop, and the biscuity, caramel flavors of the roasted malt. As the beer warms a bit more of the bitterness comes out, but the light roasted malt is still present.

M- A medium bodied, well balanced pale ale.

D- As with most pale ales, this is a nice medium bodied beer with great flavor. I would put this right up there with most great American Pales. I had been enjoying so many IPAs recently, that when I started tasting Pales again, I forgot how great this style is. Never again.

birddogg66, Dec 18, 2010
Photo of cmichel28
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%

cmichel28, Nov 06, 2014
Photo of peck95
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is the first time i've had this beer in about seven years what a big mistake that has been. I heard they might be changing the formula or so i wanted to try it again and also i've recently developed an appreciation for pale ales.
The color of this beer is beautiful and fairly dark for a pale ale orange/brown there is a small head but the lacing stays consistently down the glass.
the smell is a little faint but the hops are noticeable
the taste is very excellent a nice sweet citrus followed by some bitter grapefruit taste and the sweet malt finish
the mouthfeel is good a nice body with some good carbonation, a slight biscuit aftertaste
this beer is very drinkable one of my new favorites

peck95, Apr 07, 2008
Photo of DCLAguy11
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%

DCLAguy11, Sep 29, 2014
Photo of ThePaintedGrey
4.14/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle poured into standard bar pint glass. Reviewing from notes.

A: Pours a light orange-gold color with a two finger frothy head that lingers around for a few minutes, eventually fades down to an acceptable frothy cap. Leaves a nice bit of sticky looking lace down the glass.

S: Very vivid hop and grapefruit aroma. Hints of pine underneath with a slight touch of malt sweetness. I'm usually not overly keen on the scent of APAs, but this one is just so darn refreshing and uplifting. Can Yankee please give me this in candle form?

T: Grapefruit and citrus zest (kind of like an orange zest?) upfront, with a pleasant wave of hop bitterness that's by no means rough on the palette. A light touch of malt sweetness in the finish rounds this one off well.

M: Smooth with a medium body. Slightly more carbonated than I would have liked, but it's not enough to become a distraction. I forgot all about it after the second or third sip. This one tends to feel a little watery towards the end of the glass, but overall it feels solid and drinks easy.

O: A great brew that's quintessential for any fans of the style and newcomers alike. Balanced and refreshing flavors with a smooth drinkability make this one extremely sessionable, especially on warm summer days/nights.

ThePaintedGrey, Jul 14, 2013
Photo of deebo
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle with a BB date of 6/25/13 poured into a pint glass. A couple fingers of off-white large bubbled head tops a burnt orange, hazy brew. Nice lacing-beautiful beer. Aromas of cascade hops (grapefruit, flowery and spicy) with a nice grainly, bready barley aroma in the background. Taste is balanced between an upfront Cascade taste with plenty of bready, clean malt with a crisp slightly bitter finish. A very smooth mouthfeel, a well balanced APA, hoppy but restrained with plenty of malt goodness. Medium bodied and carbonated. Overall, a flavorful easy to drink APA, balance is more towards the malt than the hops compared to many APAs I come across now. Well crafted brew.

deebo, Jul 21, 2013
Photo of OddNotion
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 5/24/2011. Poured into my Sierra Nevada bulb glass.

Appearance: Very nice deep golden orange with a one finger off white head forming that seems to like to stick around. Recedes to a nice lacing.

Smell: Biscuity malts and a sweet hop flavor. Doesnt jump out at me but it is pleasant.

Taste: Very balanced and pleasant. Some floral and citrusy hops lead the way followed by a nice yet mellow malt backbone. Balance is the key here and it makes it very enjoyable.

Mouthfeel: Slick and a little full for the style with slightly lower than expected carbonation but really none of it detracts from the beer.

Overall: Exceeds my expectations and I am a big fan, now if only I could get my hands on this on a regular basis I would be one happy camper!

OddNotion, Jul 14, 2011
Photo of wspscott
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle in pint glass

A: light copper color with thin white head, leaves quite a bit of lace
S: floral hops with a honey sweetness
T: floral, sharp hop flavor, maybe a touch of honey malt, definitely a bit of light caramel malts
M: crisp, medium level of carbonation
D: highly drinkable example of APA. Nice balance, not as "obvious" as some pale ales. Great beer, definitely worth trying. I wish I could get this in KY.

wspscott, Jun 21, 2008
Photo of morimech
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear amber color with two fingers of head that had great retention before settling to a thick cap. Moderate amount of sticky lacing is left on the glass. Plenty of citrus and floral hop aroma to start things out balanced with some caramel malt. This APA is surprisingly flavored balanced coming from a West Coast brewery. Citrus hops leads the way but is quickly balanced by the sweet, caramel malt. Bitterness is moderate and seems to just right for this beer but it does linger for a little too long in the aftertaste. The body is on the lighter side of medium but is more than enough to carry the hops. Good carbonation. One of the better values to come into our market in a long time. This is a regular in my fridge.

morimech, Sep 06, 2010
Mirror Pond Pale Ale from Deschutes Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 2,973 ratings.