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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

925 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 925
Hads: 3,425
Avg: 3.92
pDev: 21.94%
Wants: 158
Gots: 596 | 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 (161) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Mirror Pond Pale Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 925 | Hads: 3,425
Photo of creeperjones
3.96/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

So there I was last night at a local bar with my girlfriend and her Aunt. We were plugging our arteries with some fried food when I suddenly had the hankering for a really good beer. The Moose Drool I was downing just wasn't doing it for me. I wanted something from Deschutes. So we walked over to the grocery store nearby and I picked myself up a 6-pack of Mirror Pond Pale Ale. I have never actually had this offering before, but was a big fan of their Obsidian Stout and Black Butte Porter. Actually, now that I think about it more thoughtfully, the reason I went with the Pale Ale was because the others had reached their "best by" date.

Mirror Pond comes in a standard brown 12 ounce bottle with a nifty label. One of my favorites actually. The "best by" is clearly shown and has a good six weeks left. That's a rare find here in Montana. It seems like the smaller communities get off beer that didn't sell in larger areas. This is unfortunate.

Out pours a delicious looking Apricot orange color, very distinctive from other Pale Ales. There's a moderate head that sticks around for a bit but dissipates immediately upon my first couple of sips. There's no lace at all. It's a medium body with some cloud to it. Looks great.

I'm not smelling a whole lot of distinctive aromas. But I'm beginning to doubt my sense of smell. I'm a young guy and I think maybe my nose's best days are already behind it. Then again, the beer might be a bit too cold for all of its characteristics to clearly show. I'm also drinking from a frozen Guinness glass which probably deters things as well. As the beer settles and warms a bit, there is a mild fruit aroma that lets my nasal passage know that it's time to drink.

The taste is great. Truly great. The mouth isn't bombarded with hops which is a good thing sometimes. Slightly bitter with a slight citrus taste that compliment things rather well. The beer goes down smooth with a dry finish. Again, I should have let the beer settle more.

Overall this is one of my favorite Pale Ales. Another outstanding offering from Deschutes and the great state of Oregon. The Pacific Northwest has become a staple to me for great beer.

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Photo of SurlyDuff
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Last week Deschutes was offering a side-by-side Mirror Pond PA tasting. They will probably be changing the recipe, the dry-hopping process in particular. Expect a really nice aroma and a fuller body in the new MPPA.

Pours a golden yellow orange with a big white, (almost beige) head.

Cascade hops in the nose, bright grapefruit and slightly piny. The yeast and malt backbone pokes through though, and makes it enjoyably balanced.

The blend of hop to malt is smooth and complimenting. The sweetness and bitterness take turns running back and forth across the palate through the taste. Begining is a sweet pop, then a bitter kick, then a sweet finish, then a bitter aftertaste.

A bit of weird breadiness keeps this one from getting bought be my every time i'm at Deschutes. I didn't taste it so much in one of the two MP taste-samplers that I had last week, so maybe the new recipe will make this my new Deschutes favorite!

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Photo of brentk56
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
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

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Photo of rxdrewthejew
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this one on tap at Snow Summit up in Big Bear as well.

The first thing I noted is that this is a bit darker than a lot of pale's. Certainly darker than Sierra Nevada, which I guess is my comparison point for pale ales. More orange than amber. Nice crisp smell with citrus hops. The taste was basically the same as the smell, with clean malt and plenty of C hops. Plenty carbonated, but easy to drink. This is probably my new favorite West Coast APA.

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Photo of Applesauce1
3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked a six of this up in Frisco, CO, while on my trip at Breckenridge (great skiing there by the way).


Appearance: amber with a nice 1/2" off-white head on the pour
Smell: cascade hops
Taste: cascade hops and a caramel maltiness...nicely balanced
Mouthfeel: light to medium bodied
Drinkability: could do three or four in a night....a good session beer

overall, a pretty good beer....probably won't see it till i head out west again.

 450 characters

Photo of JDV
3.37/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Caramel honey colored pour with a lasting creamy head. Smell is of an almost berry like hoppiness at first, but it fades into a light hoppy, almost metallic smell as it opens up. Taste is mildish hoppiness, with a sweet finish at first, and then after a few sips a hoppy light bitterness lingers in the aftertaste. Maybe it was just my tummy today, but this seemed fairly acidic after it went down. Not a bad pale ale at all, either way. There are more I like better, but I could still have this again.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
4.4/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Very hazy copper brew with a huge head. Lots of webbed lacing down the sides of the glass.

S - Pine, spicy white pepper and moss. Very nice blend of hops. There is a hint of malt underneath.

T - An initial rush of the peppery hops that fades to allow the clean amber malt to shine through with some support from both grassy and pine hops. The aftertaste is of a balance between the malt (which has soured slightly, the peppery hops and a grassy bitterness. Awesome.

M - A little harsh, thin, very, very refreshing.

D - Excellent. This is a gem among APAs. I've had before, I'll have again. It stands alongside SNPA as the best APA available, at least in my mind.

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Photo of hopsleeroy
3.6/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Overall a pretty solid American pale ale and would be a quality session beer. Amber in color, decent white head that stuck around for a while, Piney Northwest hop flavor dominated the smell, light malty flavor on the taste with a little fruitness that is excentuated by the dominant hops but it's not near the hop level of an IPA or Sierra Nevada, a touch of biscuit flavor as well. Finishes fairly clean without any bad aftertaste. Nothing to write home about but better than your average fair. Although I bet this one goes down fast and gets rated higher on a hot summer day.

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Photo of OStrungT
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer pours a slightly cloudy, golden yellow color, with a thin off white head. The head fades quickly, leaving no lace.

This beer has a subtle caramel like malty aroma. It has a slight floral hop aroma also. I think the aroma is lacking. It is boring. I have had many pale ales that were more aggressive and complex in the aroma area, and that is what I want in an APA.

This beer tastes exactly like it smelled. As with the aroma, I want more taste in my beer.

This beer is refreshing. It goes down smooth, leaving a very slight caramel aftertaste. Carbonation is good for the style.

This beer would probably make an excelent session beer. Low alcohol, and non aggressive flavor.

Overall: I didnt expect much, so I wasnt let down. I just moved to a beer wasteland, but I can find this everywhere. I assume I will have this on hand a lot since there is not much else. Give me a few years, and I assume I will grow to love it.

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Photo of Hollenbeck2
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

an all time classic pale ale, next to maybe only the sierra nevada, but this pale is stronger and can stand alone as an adventure a little more, deschutes does a good job of keeping their beer developing, where some of the other large micros start to remain the same, stagnant in their creations, deschutes pale mirror tastes a little different every time.

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Photo of SargeC
3.25/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Slightly hazy, amber-gold beer with a frothy, golden white head.

Smell: Decent hop aroma with sweet malt accents.

Taste: Light citrus flavor with minimal malt character.

Mouthfeel: Light body. The finish on this brew leaves me hanging.

Drinkablity: Decent brew, a bit tamer than I expected.

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Photo of mattster
4.23/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Opened 12 oz bottle with BB date of 03/04/08.

Developed 1" head, subsided rather quickly. Lacy haze across top of glass. Color is nice Amber brew with haze.

Smell is just what I like in a Pale Ale: Nice a nice hoppy smell, with citrus tones. A little pineapple, a little bit of Oregon Forest.

Taste is even better than the smell. A citrus fruit, but not overly fruity with good hoppy bitterness, but not crazy bitter. Good finish with light aftertaste.

This beer was my first introduction to Deschutes over a year ago; I had it on tap then, but it has always tasted as it did that day. I'm a great Deschutes fan, and this one is classic.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.07/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Acquired via trade from Solomon420, so a big “Thank you” goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a bright amber color, with a thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of floral hops, fruity citrus and caramelized malt.

T: The taste is nicely balanced with flavors of caramel and citrus sweetness and good amount of grassy hops bitterness. The malt character is hearty but not too heavy. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and very crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean and dry.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, very good representation of style, this is a very nice beer to drink several of over the course of an evening.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.87/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I enjoyed this beer on New Years Eve in a big 20 ounce glass at The Arizona Room, a restaurant located inside the Grand Canyon National Park. On to the beer:

When it arrived at the table, the beer had little head on top and a hazy amber/tawny body. There are two things you need to know about this beer: caramel and piney citrus. The first half is a wave of malt, and the second half closes out on a pleasant hop note. It leaves a bready and sweet aftertaste on the palate. A little heavy for a pale ale, but it cleaned my palate of the extreme spiciness from the dinner I had.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour light amber with a decent head that quickly disappears leaving just a little lace. Moderate bready malt with slightly perfumey hops smell and a hint of sourness. The sourness isn't exactly unpleasant, but it doesn't really add positively either. The flavor is good with a nicely balanced malt base and moderate hop bitterness, leading into an acidic and bitter finish that is relatively long lived. The aftertaste also picks up a hint of sourness as it warms up. The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with nice dry texture, lively carbonation, and a slightly astringent finish. Overall this is a nice, clean pale ale that goes well with a variety of foods, especially grilled meats. It isn't too overhwelming, and the flavors are generally good but not overly complex.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear gold/orange with some head that leaves a good bit of lacing. Nose is hoppy and sweet. Taste is heavy with hops with a firm citric/sweet edge to it. Almost like a cross between a lemon and an orange. Feel is what you'd expect - has a little carbonation to it, and it feels good on the tongue. Extremely drinkable.

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Photo of pheggeseth
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: slightly cloudy amber in color, rocky white 1 inch head with decent lacing

S: buttery caramel, resiny hops, great floral aroma

T: citrusy hops with a caramel malt back, more lively than the smell

M: slightly watery, but good

D: its understated, but its great flavor adds to its drinkability

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.37/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

As far as I am concerned this is the staple of deschuttes brewery. Black butte is good stuff but this is quite possibly the most floral Pale on the american market. This beer pours like a normal pale, light amber in color with decent head. The nose smells like a florists shop. Fresh grass and flowers come out in the strong cascade hop flavor. Very smooth and not bitter at all. A very unique pale. great brew.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz picked up at the Boise Coop for about $1.45... poured into by red wine glass... listening to the "RIS Beer Party Mix" on the iPod... U2 and Keith Richards "Paint it Black".

Good head... nice lacing that lasts the entire glass... chill hazed dark orange..

Citrus and floral hops decidedly win the fight with toasted and caramel malts... Yeasty fruitiness.

Everything about Mirror Pond says, "Drink Me!" Very balanced... pale/victory/crystal malt sweetness blends perfectly into the bitterness... then more fruitiness... and finishes with an expected finish of floral and citrus hops.... malts evaporate to a dry lingering hoppy finish.

This brew is a staple in my home.... You can get in nearly anywhere for good reason. Non offensive to nearly everyone and any "good" beer drinker this could easily qualify as a session and frequently does for me. Deschutes is a world class brewing company.. and gets a significant portion of my beer budget.

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Photo of goschool
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: The pour is a deep-golden orange. Its fluffy white head faded, but settled as a small layer.

Smell: The nose has discernible citrus and floral hops in front of soft bready malts. Hops definitely are the major player in the aroma, but they don't pack as much of a punch as I hope for in pale ales.

Taste: As the nose would indicate, a respectable dose of Cascade hops, leads the way. In addition to the standard issue citrus flavors, there are zesty tangerine notes. Aside from the zesty hops flavors, pale malts bring a wee bit of bread to the background.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is on the light edge of medium-bodied and a bit aqueous with soft carbonation.

Drinkability: Mirror Pond is a well made beer by a great brewery, but I'm never going to fall in love with a hop-forward pale ale that isn't very hoppy.

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Photo of cswhitehorse
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mirror Pond is a classic American Pale. It pours a nice amber color with a nice foam head that leaves some nice lacing. The smell is fruity. The taste is malty up front in a biscuit sort of a way. Then it is fruity and finishes with a dryness on tongue like a dry white wine. I highly recommend this to anyone.

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Photo of tpd975
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another in a wonderful shipment from younger35.

A: Pours a nice golden yellow color with a fluffy white cap for a head. There was some lacing left near the top as the head built but as the head died so went the lacing.

S: Cascade hops are present in the nose. Nice light citrus flavor with earthy floral undertones.

T: Nice little APA. If you want a hop punch this is not the one for you. It has a nice gentle hop approach with the cascades noted right up front. There is a gentle biscuit quality as the beer finishes dry.

M: Nice, Light and smooth.

D: A real easy drinker.

Overall: I like my beers a little more aggressive when it comes to hops, but this one was still nice. There is a nice gentle mix of malt and hops which would make it a perfect gateway beer.

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Photo of cjhofelt
3.97/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pillowy, tan head on top of an orangish copper colored beer. Sticky lace.

Nice hoppy smell.

Very good tasting. Nice hoppy flavor without being overly bitter. Some malt in there right before a dry finish.

Mouthfeel's about average for a pale ale. Not a hot weather thirst quencher. Pairs up well with just about any meal. I like this beer a lot.

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Photo of gwood
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice burnt orange with tight carbonation immediately hanging on the sides of my pint glass. Slightly off white head has decent retention. A very floral nose gives way to citrus and slips off with some malt notes, a very clean and crisp smelling brew.

Clean crisp citrus hops followed by good malt backing for the style that really adds to a wonderful mouthfeel on this beer. Good carbonation, overall a highly drinkable west coast pale.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.48/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle from the Deschutes Brewery, one of my faves,

A: Pours a slightly cloudy orange, with a nice, thick, off-white head, with very good retention, and a fair bit of lacing left on the glass.

S: Cascade hops predominately, very piney, with some bready, biscuity malts.

T: A good mix of malt and hops, well-balanced, but still, just a standard pale, pine predominately, some grapefruit, but not as good as Sierra Nevada in my opinion, my standard for this style.

M: A little lighter than usual for American pales, a little bit of resin, light to medium-bodied.

D: A good beer, not great, drinkable, but I've had better pales, though not a bad beer for any means, certainly a good try for those hop fans on the West Coast.

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Mirror Pond Pale Ale from Deschutes Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 925 ratings.