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Mirror Pond Pale Ale - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Mirror Pond Pale AleMirror Pond Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

3,088 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,088
Reviews: 876
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 11.54%
Wants: 129
Gots: 357 | FT: 4
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-04-2001

Alc. by Vol.: 5.0%
IBUs: 40

170 calories per 12 oz serving
View: Beers (116) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,088 | Reviews: 876 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of NefariousR
4.07/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. glass bottle into a pint glass.

A - Rich orange-amber with a foamy off-white head. Quite hazy.

S - Citrus, piny hops, with a hint of malt sweetness pervading.

T - Malt leading into hop overtones, with just a bit of sharp nuttiness in the aftertaste.

M - Slight bit of stickiness with a pleasant carbonated texture.

D - Very nice, great for a spring afternoon. Full-flavored but not even slightly overbearing.

Photo of Tucquan
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this again on 2014-03-26 in Columbia, PA from a bottle. I still like it all these years later. Had it again on 2015-01-25 from a bottle in Clarksville, IN. Really tasty. Quite pleased with the amount of caramel and light chocolate. A winner.

Had this at the Deschutes brew pub in Portland, OR on 2009-03-03

A - Slightly hazy rusted gold with a modest white head

S - Grain, citrus, floral

T - On cask this time and WOW, it really tastes great. It's darker, thicker and overall richer in the malt and the hops than on normal draft. Some fruit and excellent bitter balance from the cascade hops.

M - Creamier on cask but there was still a surprising amount of carbonation. Impressive

D - All day long. Had to raise the ratings a bit from my previous review.

Photo of jera1350
3.81/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours into a nonic a copper color with a billowy off white head that is about two fingers thick. Fair amount of lace with good head retention.

Pretty good blend of floral hops with caramel malt. Hints of pine and apple.

Kind of like a hopped up lager. This leans towards the bitter hop side, but has a subtle malt sweetness. Kind of grainy with some toastiness, with floral and bitter hops. I'm really struggling to describe the unique taste of this one. The hops linger in the aftertaste.

The carbonation is right on, medium body, mostly smooth.

Nice drinkability, but two or three would be enough. A pretty unique APA. It's good and interesting. I would have it again and at the $2.99 price point for a bomber, a good deal.

Photo of bondjedi
4.51/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I grabbed a 1/2 barrel (full keg) of this for $150.00. A tremendous bargain, as the retail value of this brew is about $30 a case.

The bottled version is tasty, though sluggish and heavy. From the tap, it becomes something closer to Nectar of the Gods. Held up to candlelight, the pint glass takes on a copper hue, the color of the grandest sunset you will ever see. The smell is the weakest point - at best I would call it unobjectionable.

The taste is honey sweet and rich. It overwhelms the front of the tongue with an ambrosia sensation, yet gives a knock-knock to the back of the tongue on its way home. This is some serious pop you're drinking, it wants to remind you.

Highly drinkable. I prepped myself for a binge with a couple glasses of water, and went to bed eight hours later for a good night's sleep. I recall walking to bed and locking the doors, and that's about it.

Photo of drabmuh
4.12/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beer is brownish and hazy. Forms a thin head of small bubbles, white, that leaves some lacing on the glass.

Beer is sweet and has a hint of cascade-esque hops to it. Smell pretty good.

Beer is sweet and medium to light in body. There is some bitterness at the back and well balanced. Some carbonation on the palate, its pretty good. Its simple and tasty. I like it.

Photo of pootz
3.8/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours and hazed orange amber with a 1 finger sticky cap...laces well....modestly carbonated.

Nose is standard for Pacific NW Pales; Grapefruity, woody, caramel malts... very pleasing.

Slick mouth feel, mellow amalgam of the grapefruit-wood-bittering-sweet malts of the Pac NW APA..nicely executed...mellow and non aggressive with full flavor and satisfying character. A standard for the style

Photo of CHSLBrew
3.46/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass. Enjoyed on one of the early, warm spring days this year.

A-Quite clear amber brew, showing lots of bubbling. Head is bright, fluffy whitish and sustaining decently, eventually dying down to a generous bubble layer.

S-Herbal hoppiness lightly atop a nutty-toasty biscuit character. A hint of sweetish caramel, with just a bit of a flowery note.

T-A very smooth pale ale flavor. Hoppiness floats forward, earthy-herbal-citrus in character. Nutty, dry malt characters are subtle, mixing with some light fruity esters and floral hoppiness.

M-Moderate body, driven by the hoppiness and slick malty mouthfeel. Carbonation was medium level, maybe a bit lower than desired.

D-Refreshing and quite tasty, this one is perfect for warming weather that comes with spring in Minnesota.

Photo of Turbansurfer
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Honestly I haven't had a sip of this great APA since 1998; but it was always one of the old stand by's when i lived on the West Coast. The Pale ale that i cut my teeth on.

Crystal Clear; gold color. Crisp hops with a very smooth finish. In my estimation a lighter ale but flat out refreshing- just fun to sit and drink.

Not much better than sipping a Mirror Pond next to a mountain lake in Southern Oregon.

Photo of exonthebottle
4.22/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

wow, this beer is great example of American Pale Ale in my opinion also thanks for finally distributing to Minnesota!
nice clear amber color, retains head and has nice lacing
floral hops and breadness nice aroma not overpowering but pleasant
flavor good malt and hops not complex but still good
carbonation is there but not overpowering or watered down
great drinkability enjoy

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.66/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

One of the ol' standby's. Pours a rich amber color, another dark pale oxymoron. Very clear and professional looking. Good aroma.

Taste, lately, has been a little maltier, woodier feel. Good hopping for a pale ale. The standard stuff, none of the new high alpha hops, this feels of Cascade and Chinook maybe. Never really found out what they use. But you know that classic C variety of hop feel v. the simcoes and amarillos of the world. This is old style pale ale from the West Coast.

Mouthfeel, because of the dissipation of the hop quality as you drink, I am a little disappointed. Drinkability is much better, its one of the best price/quality ratio's out there. Routinely find this for $6.99.

EDIT: This beer continues to go downhill, Deschutes either expanded too far or something, because we just don't get the same fresh awesome mirror pond as it used to be.

Photo of hardy008
3.8/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Amber color with an off-white one finger head with nice retention. The smell is grapefruit from the cascade hops and some sweet malt. The aroma is not real strong.

The flavor is also not real strong, and matches the aroma. This is not a complex beer, but is still solid. Medium bodied, with decent carbonation. I could see this being a nice session beer.

Photo of Mdog
3.56/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear gold, good head and lacing.

Smell: Not a lot, light breadiness.

Taste: Nice balanced pale ale, bread flavors with a dry pithy citrus finish.

Drinkability: Light, easy drinking. Nice price at $2.99 per 22oz.

Deschutes is in Minnesota, so I picked up a few to try. Mirror Pond is first, a little less hop forward than I was expecting and not a lot going on with the aroma. A pretty solid beer, but I'll stay local with Summit for a regular pale ale.

Photo of Bighuge
4.27/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Clear copper body. Thin and bubbly dirty white head. Lace is spotty and fairly abundant. Fresh lemon citrus hoppy aroma with a slight background of caramel malts. Quite the nice aroma. Fresh citrusy flavor too with a solid malt backbone. Again, I'd say more of a lemon citrus aspect than the expected grapefruit, but I'm not complaining. This is obviously fresh and very agreeable with my buds. Carbonation level is pretty high and this is quite quenching. Would lend itself very nicely to some spicy Thai or Vietnamese dishes.

Photo of NA1NSXR
3.99/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Dark amber color with some carbonation in the appearance. Small head.

Smell - Aroma starts a hop introduction, ends fruity, floral, and sweet. The fruitiness is not really a hard edged citrus, its more of a soft edged smell. I think this one smells great.

Taste - Quite sweet with a good moderate hop bite at the end. One of the better balanced pale ales I've had.

Mouthfeel - Medium, not watery, the right level of carbonation.

Drinkability - This is a good APA overall with slightly more rounded edges. Its got a noticeable sweetness, lacks the cut of citrus, but retains good presence of both its malt and hop flavors. I think this is solid within the context of the style, though overall I prefer less hop in my beer.

Photo of jjanega08
4.32/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A= pours a nice deep amber color with a really nice two finger sticky head on it. Awesome lacing on the glass and some decent retention. Quite the nice looking PA.

S= All about balance here. Nice hop profile in here with s little bit of citrus smelling hops in it. Nothing overpowering at all. Really just the right amount of hops. The malts are nice and bready. Sweet sort of doughyness to it. Great balance.

T= The malts take the forfront in this one. Really sweet and bready. Nice sweetness to it! Tastes like a honey covered biscuit with a little bit of a hop bite to it. Excellent balance and just enough complexity to make it an interesting pale ale. Really enjoyable and I'm super excited for the brewery to come to MN.

M= Fits the style to point. Really no stand out point. Perfectly average all around making it pretty good for the style.

D= This beer is excellent. 2.99 a bomber in MN right now and drinking excellent. Just enough complexity to keep ya guessing and just enjoyable enough to sip on year round. Great brew and thank you for coming to MN!

Photo of happilysurly
3.41/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Finally in MN! And for $3 to boot...

Pours a clear amber with about a finger of head. Odd smell... smells metallic and a bit like a port-a-potty or a freshly cleaned bathroom. Tastes a lot like a lager to me. It has a woody bitter taste in the back of the mouth. Sweet in the beginning, even a bit fruity like fresh berries. Very crisp and light, the flavor does not linger very long. At about 150% of the cost of Summit EPA, I will stick with my Summit, though the price isn't bad.

Photo of gatornation
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a beautiful ruby color with a fresh 1 finger off white head with lots of clinging lace on side of the glass its almost perfect looking..the smell is crisp pine and crisp citrus and hops with a malt/caramel smell...the taste is very crisp its a piney citrus hit on the beer senses that follows with crisps hops/grapefruit it is balanced nicely with some caramel /malt and a bready taste ..the mouthfeel is full medium and nicely balanced this pale packs a whole lot of flavor at 5% and is oh so smooth and drinkable..my bomber went down fast..i also bought the black butte porter both @$2.99 what a buy

Photo of cvaypai
3.6/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Received in trade from womencantsail. Thanks Andrew!

Appearance - Pours a very deep orange with hints of brown around the edges. Extremely translucent and poured with a bit less than 1 finger creamy white head.

Smell - Extremely citrusy, grapefruit and orange in the nose. A bit of pine and grassy hops on the end. The malt comes through it smells like caramel and candy.

Taste - The hops come through, fairly earthy and grassy and the pine is evident, not as fruity as the nose would suggest but it is there, in the form of fruits. The end is biscuit sweetness with yet a nice hop bit falling right after. It seems a bit watered down and the alcohol is evident. Very earthy throughout.

Mouthfeel - Very thin and seems almost watery, the tastes are very rounded and are not sharp at all. The carbonation seems to be lacking a little bit, seems flat. Very light and thin.

Drinkability - I could drink a few of these but not a 6 pack, something is just a bit off for my liking.

My first from Deschutes.

Photo of maximum12
3.93/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bottle of this at a local shop, & it's everywhere in the Twin Cities right now. Deschutes just arrived this week, & happy to have them!

Pours a blushing shade of copper. Smell is typical pale ale, light malts, mild flowery hops.

Mirror Pond is a thoroughbred summer brew. Taste is all about the pale malts, with an afterglow of pine cone hop bitterness. Bready without slipping into toast or crumbs. One of the easiest drinking beers I can recall in recent memory.

Very good beer. Especially with the price point of $3/bomber around here, this might become a nice go-to beer, especially for those unexcited by beer geek chic. I can see myself having a few Mirror Ponds this summer as long as they keep coming in fresh from out West.

Photo of Mistofminn
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Finally, Deschutes has made it to Minnesota. Bomber picked up for $2.99! Not a bad price, not bad at all.

Pours a darker amber color, almost reddish mahogany. Reminds me a lot of the way Furious looks (I had one just before this) but a little lighter and definitely clearer. A fluffy and bubbly eggshell white head sits on top with great retention and leaves tons of lacing.

The nose starts out fruity, with citrus and light floral characters, but it gives way to the biscuity malt character. A good swirl releases more fruity hop notes. Good balance in this one. Simple, yet refined.

The taste is similar to the nose, starting out with light hop characters, which give way to biscuity malts, finishing with a light bitterness. Smooth, almost like a lager. Subtler than I thought it would be, but still good.

Mouthfeel is extremely smooth, with little to no carbonation. Only the lightest lingering bitter aftertaste. Light to medium in body. Drinkability is probably this beers strongest point. A good humid summer afternoon beer, one I will be needing a lot of in the coming months!

Overall, not a bad Pale Ale. For $2.99, I will definitley be seeking out bombers of this again. It's a good alternative to the macro's that everyone else drinks, and not offensive enough to turn them away. I think this could be a good gateway beer.

Welcome to Minnesota, Deschutes!

Photo of Bfarr
3.98/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

For a mirror pond, this pours a cloudy pale orange-amber with a fine bubbled just off white head. A light hop aroma is faint. Creamy caramel malts starts things off with a light floral hop trying to tip the balance. An almost apple blossom crisp finish rounds things out.

A very refreshing yet complex pale ale suitable for a warm spring evening outside.

Photo of Buebie
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a fresh bomber into a pint glass. The pour produces a billowing 2 inch head of tan foam. Slow to recede, leaving veru sticky thick full coverage lace drapes. A solid cap of headd retention with great staying power. Color is a glowing amber, transparent filtered look. Minimal carbonation rise through the beer.

Aroma is hop forward with citric grapefruit and orange peels. As well as malt backing with a sweet caramel nose mixing with a bready biscuit aroma.

Taste is malty up front with hop bitters, opening midway with much more citric hops, grapefruit, orange peel and a touch of spice. Toffee in there too, sweet grain flavors. Hops bittering into the finish with a clean crisp feel.

This is a textbook pale ale, well balanced, great hop taste, fresh and easy to drink. This beer has huge drinkability.

Thank you Deschutes for coming to MN!

Photo of Parrotbeak
4.4/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Light amber with a strong orange hue. Thin, white head that quickly fades, leaving bubbly patches, most of which remain around the perimeter. Thick lacing as it goes down.
Smell is nice, floral hops over solid malts. Pineapple, apricot, and some peach aromas come in as well.
Taste is thick, spicey malts, with some slightly piney hops accompanying. Fresh fruits, including pineapple, orange, and apricot come in over a good, bready/crackery malt backbone.
Mouthfeel is clean and crisp, with a slightly dry finish. Medium-light body.
Superb on drinkability. Extremely well-rounded and quite tasty.

Photo of ShadesOfGray
4.08/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Got as an extra in a trade, thanks jh1982! Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Ommegang snifter. Pours a clear golden color, but as it fills the glass...becomes slightly hazy and ends up being closer to a pale shade of copper...with a slight hue of red/orange. About a finger size creamy with head that quickly dissapates and remains as a nice creamy surface of froth. Leaves a nice creamy...and full lacing around the glass.

Aroma is sweet. A slight fruit/grapefruit maybe. Malty aroma and smells like Belgian yaest. Not a strong aroma, but it is a pale ale afterall...so not expected to be pronounced.

Flavor is light, crisp...extremely drinkable. Heavy yeast flavor. There's a very slight 2nd wave of minimal hops, that dissapears faster than it hits. Having some issues picking out any perticular flavors. I would have to lean torwards a citrus...but that doesn't really help! Regardless, a solid pale ale.

Photo of PintOHops
4.44/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Glass - Pint

A - Copper with a small 1-finger head, retention wasn't good either. Light Co2 can be seen, and it left some spots here & there. Lacking overall, and yes my glass was clean.

S - Soft floral hop, a bit of citrus with dominant malt aroma's, biscuit, honey, toast. A bit of pineapple in there as well, very mellow aroma.

T - Big malts, biscuit, toast, soft caramel flavors unfold to a nice hop finish. I got soft fruity pineapple & citrus flavors that cut the malty palate for a second, then a long/lingering biscuit/toast combo pronounces itself again. Nice hop bitterness as well, just enough to balance.

M - Medium bodied and very smooth, Co2 bite was very low lending little crispness. I wanted a bit more crispness here.

D - This was a more malt forward APA, but still very balanced with floral hop in the smell, and citrus notes in the flavor. Very very good, extremely drinkable, I could drink a 6-pack of this brew, and I think I'd buy this one again sometime. I recommend it. Cheers!

Mirror Pond Pale Ale from Deschutes Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 3,088 ratings.