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Mirror Pond Pale Ale - Deschutes Brewery

Mirror Pond Pale AleMirror Pond Pale Ale

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

2,281 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2281
Reviews: 821
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 11.51%

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)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,281 | Reviews: 821 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Georgiabeer


3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours amber with a thick, rocky head that slowly collapses to a thin cap. Smells of light, earthy hops, some grassiness, and a touch of malt. The hops are a little more prevalant in the taste, but the beer is a little grainy. Citrusy hops, grain, some sweet malt, more body than the smell would suggest. In fact, perhaps just a tad too thick from the graininess and malt, but not too sweet, thankfully. Pleasant enough that I wouldn't be upset if this was the only thing on-tap somewhere worth drinking.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2009 23:15:45 | More by Georgiabeer
Photo of smakawhat


4.43/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass. Oh how I dig Mirror Pond.. it has been too long coming. Best by October 26th 2011, off we go!

A nice simple white three finger head with some decent retention, sits on a simple copper red glowing and clear body. Hints of brown amber as well in the appearance. Head falls at a slow pace.

Nose is sweet mix of sweet citrus hop, and sweet malts. I love this nose, it feels so balanced and not cloying or sticky sweet either.

Taste is light bodied malt, with a sense of small fruit in the mid palate. Finishes with an aftertaste of just bakery fresh bread. Hop profile is subtle, and not overpowering or demanding attention. It just enhances everything else going on. Texture is just light enough but not too watery. Solid, perhaps doesn't even need to be better.

Overall this might be one of my favorite Pale Ales ever made, and why I love Deschutes so much.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2011 03:50:35 | More by smakawhat
Photo of mothman

United Kingdom (Wales)

3.38/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured into Bud American Ale glass

Pours 1 and 1/2 fingers of khaki colored head. Decent retention with some really nice lace left. Color is a clear golden copper.

Aroma: Lots of bready malts here. Some caramel malt flavors as well. Don't forget the pale malts of course. Grassy floral hops. Fairly sweet. Light citrus blend.

Taste: More malt forward than I was expecting. This beer is nowhere near the hop level that I was expecting from a west coast pale ale. Caramel and bready malt flavors up front with a large amount of pale malts. Small amount of hops present compared to what I was expecting.

Mouthfeel: Bland, smooth, a bit of crispness. Medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. Ends slightly dry, relatively clean.

Overall, this beer just wasn't for me. I expected more hops. Way too much pale malt here. All of this combines for a beer that isn't too drinkable when a normal pale ale should be.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2010 01:44:58 | More by mothman
Photo of superspak


4.13/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, best by 9/5/2012. Pours hazy golden orange color with a very nice 2 finger dense off white head with fantastic retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Some nice soapy lacing clings down the glass. Aromas of orange, grapefruit, pine, herbal, floral, caramel, pineapple, biscuit, and light toast. Pretty nice and pleasant aromas with good balance; but they are a bit muted. Taste of orange, grapefruit, biscuit, pine, caramel, toast, nuttiness, floral, and herbal spiciness. Good amount of bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, pine, biscuit, caramel, and herbal spiciness on the finish for a good bit. Great hop flavor balance with malts; and a very nice robust amount of flavor for a 5% beer. Medium carbonation and body; with a fairly creamy and crisp mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with hardly any warming noticed after the finish as expected. Overall this is an excellent pale ale. Great amount of flavor; with nice hop and malt balance. Extremely drinkable and smooth. My glass was gone a bit too fast. Really enjoyed this.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2012 04:17:57 | More by superspak
Photo of wordemupg

Alberta (Canada)

3.78/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

355ml bottle poured into pint glass 10/9/12 thanks Matt for the bottle

A light copper body with decent carbonation, two finger light tan head falls too a peak leaving a few partial rings of lace followed by lots of polka dots

S floral hops and butterscotch comes out right away, quite fruity with almost a fruit loops thing going for it and it works well, some nutty caramel as it warms

T hops have faded a little and there's some earthy notes I didn't smell, still very nice but nearing its BB date I can imagine it had more kick a few months ago but now there's a nice balance

m enters silky and fluffs up quickly, slightly sweet and just a little sticky, earthy finish

O pretty solid pale ale even the week before its BB date, easy too drink for sure

I'd drink this again, and I might get the chance as I've seen it in kegs in Alberta and 6er's in BC already but they weren't cheap if I remember correctly

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2012 02:07:45 | More by wordemupg
Photo of ccrida


4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Shared a pitcher of this, severed in mason jars...poured a burnt golden with a tall white head.
The aroma was bright cascade hops and a bit of sweet malt.
The taste was nice, a clean, refreshing pale ale, mainly floral cascade, a bit fruity and bready malt, with a crisp, clean finish.
The mouthfeel was average, medium light body, some carbonation.
This is a highly drinkable pale ale. It had a fairly robust taste of cascade hops and just sweet enough to taste the way I prefer my pale ales, it was refreshing and easy drinking.

Serving type: on-tap

02-26-2007 18:09:45 | More by ccrida
Photo of dirtylou


4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on tap at lunch after a 10 mile beach hike at Cannon Beach, Oregon

appearance: clear amber body, moderate beige froth with sticky lacing - fairly standard for the style

smell: nice pungent hop presence on the nose, noticeably pacific northwest and an appropriate post-hike brew

taste: lightly toasted malts and grain, green resinous hops that proves to be quite refreshing - solid example of a pretty basic style

mouthfeel: light, crisp and refreshing

drinkability: good

Serving type: on-tap

09-23-2007 19:43:32 | More by dirtylou
Photo of beertunes


4.47/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Served in a pint glass at Cap Hansens bar in Bellingham, WA. Poured a beautiful, clear, light amber color with an inch of white head.

A solid, but not sweet, malt scent reaches the nose carrying the the subtle and solid floral hop aromas. The flavors follow the scent, as expected. An extremely well balanced beer, this does not fall into the trap of trying to be an IPA-Lite. Enjoyably smooth and tasty, this beer is a reliable companion for most situations.

Worth seeking out, this should be considered a solid go-to beer, suitable for quenching thirst after yard work or introducing someone to the world of craft beer.

Serving type: on-tap

04-12-2009 02:42:10 | More by beertunes
Photo of Tone


4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour a clear, copper color. 5/4 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and decent lacing. Smells of floral hops, hint of pine, sweet malt, hint of citrus hops, and a hint of pale malt. Fits the style of an American Pale Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with a low carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, slight pale malt, floral hops, slight citrus hops, hint of yeast, and slight citrus (pear?). Overall, good appearance, aroma, feel, and body.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2011 20:47:32 | More by Tone
Photo of tavernjef


3.93/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Chill hazen dark yellow with a slight bronzed tone to its body, thin dense white foamy top reached a finger high before fading quickly down to whispy fringe and thin collar, lacing in spots and tiny strings. Aroma is of Cascade hops moslty, grassy and floral, yet sweet with some fruity notions of malts inbetween. Taste intially hoppy with slight citrus and grass, fades off to a sweet middle of bready thick malts then dries out to a lingering bittersweet hoppiness that keeps a touch of zing on the tongue. Good finish with lingering hop spice and resin oils sticking well but light and nonabrasive. Feel is close to a medium body, albiet somewhat on the lighter side, still has some creamy, slick and quiet carbonation, and a dry, slightly spicey hop finish. Very drinkable, very soothing, a bit on the malty side, but the hops partake a good balance in its finish to make up for it.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2004 00:26:57 | More by tavernjef
Photo of Cyberkedi


4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark coppery amber with a decent off-white head. Aroma is malty and fruity and has a surprising hoppy, evergreen overtone. Malty, hoppy flavor is somewhat fruity with a touch of fruit sweetness and just a hint of caramel. Fizzy, sassy texture leaves behind a nice tingle.

Serving type: on-tap

07-10-2011 01:10:40 | More by Cyberkedi
Photo of Bitterbill


3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle a clear reddish gold with a large head of foam that settles down to about a 1" layer and hangs around for the entire session.

The smell is hoppy and grassy but in a delicate sort of way.

The taste is intially quite hoppy with a bit of grapefruit and grass but the malt moves in quickly giving it a nice balance and a fairly sweetish finish. Over all, this is one of the smoothest and easy to drink APAs I've had.

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2006 17:34:22 | More by Bitterbill
Photo of largadeer


4.28/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

My first Mirror Pond in quite a while, couldn't resist a fresh 12 pack at $12.99. ABV listed as 5.0%.

Appearance: Golden-amber, brilliantly clear with a soapy, sticky off-white head. Retention is great.

Smell: 50/50 between hops and malt. Hops are citrusy, bright and fresh, supported by a dry, biscuity malt foundation. Solid and appetizing.

Taste & mouthfeel: Juicy citrus hop flavor up front, bringing to mind grapefruit and lemon peel; signature cascade flavor. Malt balances but doesn't add much in the way of complexity beyond a light toasty sweetness. Mouthfeel is medium-light, crisp and ultimately drying. Bitterness is just about perfect for the style, and the finish is toasty and clean.

Drinkability: Remarkably easy to drink without tasting dumbed-down or simple; in short, a great session beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2009 02:59:31 | More by largadeer
Photo of twiggamortis420


4.53/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a slightly hazy light honey color with a rapidly dissipating 1 finger cream colored head. Good lacing and a nice collar.

Oh man, does this smell nice. Freshly cut hay, grapefruit, mowed grass, honey, lime peel and clover...it does not get much better. A bit of a subdued nose is the only knock against it.

An amazingly drinkable Pale. Bitterness is there and does have a bite, but it is not tongue-scraping or unpleasant in any way. More of a grassy hop flavor rather than extreme bitterness. Malts are there only to provide a short burst of sweet grainy balance. This would be a dangerous beer to have on tap as the beer is not sipped, it's gulped. One hell of a beer that everyone needs to try.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2009 05:51:46 | More by twiggamortis420
Photo of BeerFMAndy


3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle poured into an imperial pint.
Best By 4/15/14

A - Deep golden in color, the hazed beer almost has an amber hue to it. The tall head of off white foam slowly descends to a clumpy pile below the thick lace it leaves on the beer clean pint.

S - Gentle waves of citrus hops lap the shores of the nostrils with a breeze of grainy malt and hints of caramel close behind but even though it's within the date range, it smells somewhat old.

T - Fresher flavor explores the depths of the hops, wading from shallow citrus and slightly fruity notes to deeper earthy complexities, which works well with the subdued caramel sweetness and toasted bread crust finish.

M - More crisp and refreshing than the aroma lets on, Mirror Pond is as smooth as glass with a very nice level of hop bitterness along the finish.

O - The bottle might be encroaching on the final days of it's "best by" date but it's still got a little life in it. Deschutes' Mirror Pond is a smooth and easy drinking pale ale with hoppy notes but at the lower end of the spectrum, making it a nice-to-pair belly up to the bar beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2014 22:25:42 | More by BeerFMAndy
Photo of RoyalT


3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – The body here was solid brown in color with a decent head from a very careful pour by the bartender.

Smell – The citrus and soft pine hops gave way to a stiff malt balance. The toasted malts were unsweetened and, I thought, a bit heavy-handed.

Taste – The hops from the nose find their way into the taste, but it’s the malt flavor that dominates. It is a rather darkish malt not unlike raw molasses. I would have liked to have seen a bit more balance to this one.

Mouthfeel – This one is medium-bodied, lightly carbonated, and has just a bit of a dry finish at the very end.

Drinkability – This went down well enough.

Serving type: on-tap

07-21-2004 00:39:23 | More by RoyalT
Photo of DrDemento456


4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I guess I can thank the House of 1,000 beers for this one. Sure it's not in my distribution area but I gladly paid the 4 dollars just to get a taste.

A - A nice clear orange amber body (a touch dark for a pale) but a nice 1/2 inch of head.

S - Smell is balanced with mild citrus hops, a nutty body, and a decent amount of sweet pale malts.

T - I believe this might be the most balanced pale ale I ever got my hands on. It's hoppy but it never loses track of what it is... a pale ale which biscuit like malts and pale ale yeasts leave a clean crisp taste on the palate. Amazing.

M - Light to medium really a great beer.

Overall a great take on one of my favorite styles. If distribution ever gets picked up around here I will be sure to secure a case every month.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2012 02:50:43 | More by DrDemento456
Photo of ZAP


3.63/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Heavily hopped...noticable on the nose and the buds...good fruity hop notes...citrucy...bittering units are much higher on this one than their other pale ale I would assume. Nice frothy creamy head that settles nicely...cloudy gold in color....tastes like it was dry-hopped....a spicy, fruity ale without enough malt backbone..decent and more adventurous and flavorfull than their other pale ale (Cascade Ale), but not as balanced. I prefer the other one (Cascade Ale) even though it lacks this flavor because I see this as a little unbalanced...

Serving type: bottle

04-06-2002 16:49:58 | More by ZAP
Photo of gford217


3.63/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle courtesy of ArrogantB poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours bright hazy amber with a very thin bubbly head that dissipated almost immediately leaving absolutely no head or lacing.

S: Smell of light, sweet malts with some citrus and floral hops.

T: Tastes of subtle citrus hops, orange and some pine resin, with a sweet caramel malt flavor. Fairly crisp, sweet finish with little bitterness present at all.

M: Mouthfeel is fairly light but smooth.

D: This one certainly isn't the most complex or daring APA, but I have to admit that I wouldn't mind throwing a few of these back on this warm spring night. Very sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2008 00:45:49 | More by gford217
Photo of flagmantho


3.8/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: slightly opaque, sligtly orange gold color with a two-finger foamy head. Quite pleasing.

Smell: plenty of earthy hop character in the nose, backed my a little bit of malt. Pretty appetizing, but a little one-dimensional.

Taste: malt is subdued and relatively sweet, but provides a nice backing for the hops, which continue to be earthy but add a slight metallic character. Not bad.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a nice level of carbonation. Pretty good!

Drinkability: quite quaffable.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2009 00:59:10 | More by flagmantho
Photo of TheLongBeachBum


4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 ounce brown glass bottle which has hop-embossed shoulders and a milk chocolate colored crown cap with the Deschutes logo in white. Cream colored neck and main label with the artwork as shown in the BA avatar. Best By 08/15/06. Listed on the label at 5.0% (not the 5.5% I note listed on BA).

Appearance: Lightly hazed marmalade amber golden orange torso sealed with a beige colored ¼” thick tight creamy head. Everlasting crown cap rolls down neatly with the volume and last until the final drop. Curtain lacing with a Bruges texture. Damn good looks I have to say.

Nose: Soft grapefruits and aged tangerines meld into a citrus hop middle with a gentle fruity floral back end. Attractive refreshing profile.

Taste: Biscuit malt background is pummeled by citric hops, floral fruits and a sweet mango thread throughout. The conditioning supports the flavors perfectly and the overall balance is well poised. Bitterness in the finish rasps with a Cascade hop citric element.

Mouthfeel: Does what it needs to, no more, no less. Crisp clean and very quaffable, the Mouthfeel is right where it should be, fulfilling but not overbearing.

Drinkability: I snaffled a whole six-pack and already I have just finished my second bottle and I’m cracking my third - this turns out to be quite the sessionable Pale Ale. Nothing outstanding, but this is very refreshing and a great partner for the night.

Overall: Somehow my late night trip to Vons to pick up some Light bulbs had me pondering the limited beer range for something new and this one just leapt out at me. The six-pack was a little more money than the other regular boring selection, but I think it a creditable purchase and one that I did not regret….maybe I’ll crack a fourth bottle.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2006 05:14:39 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of champ103


4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a hazy orange color. At first a large white head forms, but recedes in an instant. Some light sticky lace is left behind.
S: Citrus and grassy hops. Some bready and caramel malt for balance. Simple, but pleasant.
T: Light citrus, piney, and grassy hops that leaves a good hop presence. Though it is not overly bitter for bitters sake. Some grainy and caramel malt for a nice balance.
M/D: A medium body and crisp carbonation. It seems a bit watery though. Very easy to drink. An easy choice for a good session beer.

Simple, but very enjoyable. Something that is going to be in my fridge more often. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2009 23:36:24 | More by champ103
Photo of blackie


3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a: standard pint, produces a full eggshell colored head atop a copper colored ale, retention and lacing are high

s: bready pale malt body with some rustic grain aromas, delicate cascade hop aromas suggest dried lemon peel and earthy pine bark in an English way, just a little peppery, pretty nice

m: carbonation around light-moderate in level but seems a little dead on the tongue - like half flat soda, lighter bodied but not quite thin

t: basically a "mirror" image of the aroma - standard pale malt with some husky grains, residual sugars are low - reducing complexity - but some light caramels come through, the hops give some pleasant citrus peel and bark tea flavors, adequate bitterness and pepper in the finish, while this beer is certainly balanced none of the flavor components make much of an impression, could perhaps be better billed as a bitter of sorts

d: pretty easy, but not something to which I'd keep going back (had I regular access to it in the first place)

sixer from the Liquor Depot, Rock Springs, WY...best by 10/29/09

Serving type: bottle

10-12-2009 04:02:35 | More by blackie
Photo of woosterbill


3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, best by 7/30/10 (my fault for not checking the label before I put it my mixed 6 this afternoon), into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear, well-carbonated medium amber body with two fingers of lusciously creamy off-white head. Excellent, rocky retention and plenty of lace. I can't imagine a better looking APA. Seriously.

S: Fairly light, delicate aromas of floral hops and toasty caramel malt. Still quite fresh smelling for a beer just past its expiration date, but indicative of a fairly simplistic beer at any age. Clearly confirms the label's promise of pure Cascade hops, but is this classic or clichéd? I'm not entirely sure.

T: Opens with hops, then shows off a far deeper and more varied malt profile than the aroma promised before going back to the hops for a cleanly bitter finish. The malts are among the best I've seen in an APA, with the usual sweet caramel well balanced with toasted pale malts and even what strikes me as biscuity pilsner malt. Very nice flavor.

M: Clean, fairly light body with lots of carbonation. Pleasant.

D: Great malt/hop balance combined with a fairly low ABV makes this quite drinkable.

Notes: Reminds me a lot of New Glarus Moon Man in its amazing malt complexity, but lacks that beer's dankness of hop aroma. Since Moon Man is my all time favorite APA, though, any comparison to it is high praise. I'd love to try Mirror Pond at peak freshness, as I bet a more assertive aroma would help its one relatively weak point.


Serving type: bottle

08-05-2010 02:22:45 | More by woosterbill
Photo of johnnnniee

New Hampshire

3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Received in trade from depechemode1983, thanks for the opportunity.
Pours a deep golden copper color with a tightly bubbled white head that falls quickly. Smells of apricot and grapefruit with a bready toasty malt backbone. Taste is toasty malt with grapefruity hops. Its been so long since I've had a pale ale I keep expecting the lupulin to remove some enamel from my teeth but it never does. Medium body and carbonation. Nice sessionable pale ale. Not something I have been drinking lately, but really
nicely done.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2010 00:47:46 | More by johnnnniee
Mirror Pond Pale Ale from Deschutes Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 2,281 ratings.