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Mirror Mirror - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Mirror MirrorMirror Mirror

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,153 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,153
Reviews: 460
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 10.14%
Wants: 432
Gots: 481 | FT: 72
Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
30 IBU

Bottled/kegged vintages:
2005 - Released February 2006
2009 - Released April 2009
2014 - Released April 2014

(Beer added by: waltonc on 04-29-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,153 | Reviews: 460 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cbarrett4


4.72/5  rDev +11.3%

Wow! Without sounding redundant, Deschutes continually produces some of the best beer in the world! Mirror Mirror is a limited release of their Barleywine style aged in Oregon Pinot Noir barrels. Some notes mention caramel and things, but I didn't find anything that obvious. This beer is seductive and mysterious, not obvious and overdone. It reminds me more of a fine wine than a traditional beer.

Poured into tulip, shows great mousse and brilliant copper/amber color. Nice persistent lace. Aromas are rich and expressive but not overdone. I got some berry, fig, and spice as well as a hint of banana.

Rich on the palate with impeccable balance and class. A touch sweet with some tree fruit and fig flavors persisting on the long finish. Wonderful finish and balance. The bottle went way too quickly.

02-21-2010 04:46:36 | More by cbarrett4
Photo of biancasaur


4.75/5  rDev +12%

Poured a hazy dark golden brown into a pretty snifter by a handsome gentleman named zaplt.

Fresh, clean, very sweet, malty, with loads of pineapple (!) and banana (!!!) aroma; nutty accents. The alcohol is quite noticeable, but not overwhelming.

First taste:
Made me sneeze! Sharp and clean, sweet, with a moderately thick feel. Banana-tastic (mmm ester!). Just a hint of the "soapy" resinous taste I get from hops, too.

While drinking:
I'm not sure if the banana flavor is most noticeable or just what hit me first, but it's really evident; however, it's less like an actual banana than like the banana syrup I had on my banana-white-latte this morning. (Think Laffy Taffy -- candy banana, as zaplt put it.)

Also a light syrupy malt taste, with a lovely bitter finish; definitely white-wine; plenty of honey. *Caramel (wow)! and candy sweetness; *raisins, *oak, sweet bready goodness.

This is so complex and lovely that I want to savor it, but so damn drinkable I know I'm going to miss some important elements. But wow, it's yummy!

I remember loving this beer when I first sipped it, but I couldn't have told you why (and at the time, I was mostly only able to handle very light, citrusy, summery beers). Now that I've tasted it again, I definitely LOVE this brew. It's complex and drinkable. Sweet and delicate, yet it's still a beast. Mmmm!

02-18-2010 06:51:13 | More by biancasaur
Photo of Zaplt


4.47/5  rDev +5.4%

Served into a snifter with ma belle petite amie.

Pours a very deep dark amber with tones of brown with very little tan head - not amazing retention, little lacing.

The aroma - layers of dark fruits, licorice, caramel hit first

The taste - first wave was of raisins, licorice, sweet dark fruityness (berry? plum?) and a sweet carmel malty yumminess...very syrupy and thick sweetness...molasses, layers of hopyness come through - ever so slightly resinous in the finish. and don't forget the oak...mmmm.

This is a very complex and well brewed beer. (It's amazing the difference between their year round releases and their reserve releases! Hey they can make B+ish year round beers all they like if they keep making beer of this stature!!) Good job !

02-18-2010 06:50:52 | More by Zaplt
Photo of mikesgroove

South Carolina

3.65/5  rDev -13.9%

Finally able to sit down and try this one. Decided to use it as my night cap last eveing. Poured into my six ounce snifter, this one was consumed on 02/13/2010.

The pour was pretty decent for the style. Nice dark brown color with some light highlights of orange and red around the edges. Small off white head rises up and settles quickly with only minimal lacing and a bare top is left after only a few minutes. Aroma is rich, caramel, toffee, light hops and hints of oak all coming through fairly easily. Nice balance here but not getting that overwhelming barrel aged aroma I was hoping for. Warming does not do much now either as it just seems to bring in more of the hop and hints of boozy alcohol. Light carbonation masks the medium body and leaves the flavor to work its magic now. Smooth, even malts are stealing the show. Rich caramel and earthy tones round out a lightly hot flavor. Almost a popcorn like flavor coming through for me mid palate, buttery and creamy with a boozy finish that was slightly dry and coated with grassy and earthy notes.

Overall I have to admit I was a little let down by this one. I was hoping for something truly memorable but it left me kind of lacking. Maybe some time will bring it around.

02-15-2010 05:20:40 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of siradmiralnelson


4.43/5  rDev +4.5%

Poured from 22oz bottle into Tulip.

A. Poured 2 fingers of off white/yellowish head. Big head for a Barley Wine. Good retention. Nice orange brown color. Not much lacing.

S. Smell is very good. Big whiffs of piney hops amid a huge caramel malt smell. Sweet malt smell of brown sugar, molasses, some alcohol.

T. Sweet malt, some bitterness from the hops. Taste is very good. Some fruit flavor: figs, plums. Pretty swee, but well balanced.

M. Full bodied. Good carbonation. Sweet, but not full on mouth coating sugary sweetness. Alcohol is very well hidden.

D. Extremely drinkable. Very smooth. One of the best Barley wines I have had. Might be even better with some more age.

02-14-2010 18:49:17 | More by siradmiralnelson
Photo of ShogoKawada

Rhode Island

4.7/5  rDev +10.8%

2009 reserve 22oz... Thanks, augustgarage! A little setting- Snowing pretty crazy here... and no work tomorrow. Time to get down to enjoying some beers. Poured at 1:55pm EST into a White Birch flute.

A- Honey brown, nice khaki head that is pretty substantial. No lacing and head fizzes out quickly. Beer is a bit murky with amber highlights.

S- Booze, heavy sweet malt, slight caramel and coconut.

T- Sweet fruit.. berries, actually. Good caramel malts. Caramel-covered strawberries. A bit of black pepper in the finish, combines with a bit of an alcohol note. a bit boozy, mild hops, slight bitterness but really a malt-centric flavor profile. Really, I can't think of anything missing or find any off-notes... a great barleywine. May be too hot for some.

M- Smooth, a bit boozy but in line. Good times.. right in my wheelhouse. Carbonation is a bit low but no knock against the beer... very nice.

D- Pretty high. Really enjoyed this one.. can't really find any faults in it... great all the way around. Very excellent barleywine.

02-10-2010 20:01:01 | More by ShogoKawada
Photo of Chambic


4.05/5  rDev -4.5%

02.02.10 at City Beer

A: opaque amber, with almost no head

S: smells sweet, like dark ripe fruit

T: mostly raisins

M: super good, really smooth

D: highly quaffable, might get you in trouble

I forgot how good this beer was. Maybe it tastes better when you're drinking with Deschutes Larry.

02-04-2010 21:36:00 | More by Chambic
Photo of getkrunkhoe


4.08/5  rDev -3.8%

from notes... consumed 9-9-09

App-pours out to a very nice burgundy/ruby color, thick head that faded oh so quick.looks GOOD!

Ar-Dark fruit,burnt sugar,alcohol is a lingering in the nose.A bit of a citrus note as well as tropical fruit (Hops)

T-lots goping on,Hops are present (oh yeah,big time).once again Dark fruits, I get a touch of pear(I wanna say Asian Pear, but not sure).and PINEAPPLE(???)<--HOps

MF-BOOZY.on draft its much more enjoyable,"easier to drink".feels strong in the mouthfeel.

D-Harsh beer,needs time to mature and damn will that be great?!!?

02-02-2010 20:50:10 | More by getkrunkhoe
Photo of jazztoloc


5/5  rDev +17.9%

A 2009 bottle poured into a wide wine glass.

A: Dark amber. Nice medium hed with a very light brown color. The beer hangs on to the wine glass walls very nicely, leaving traces of its presence.

S: Alcohol, caramel, wood, peaches, orange skin.

T: Very sweet finish, a lot alcohol blending with the malts, peaches, oranges, prunes..very fruity.

M: The body is huge. Light carbonation.

D: High, if you are up to a wild ride.

This is a very complex beer, and the complexity is in it's aroma and taste. I guess the fact that 35% of it, it's aged in oak barrels, contributes to its richness. A wild trip to the palate, but the end of the road is rewarding and revealing.

...and the walls stand straight up and down and beer is all there is. (Charles Bukowski).

02-02-2010 07:34:08 | More by jazztoloc
Photo of bum732


4.47/5  rDev +5.4%

Pours a cloudy reddish brown, nice creamy head with decent retention. Smells of strong caramel malt, dark fruits, some oak, touch of chocolate, some brown sugar, touch of vanilla. Tastes of sweet caramel and toffee like malt, sweet dates and figs on the backbone. Hints of rum, chocolate and oak. Moderate bitterness leads to more oak and caramel sweetness. Nice bold slick mouthfeel, alcohol barely noticable.

A really great barleywine, not too cloying with a lot of great flavors melded together. I was hoping for some more hops, but this may have been an older bottle. I'm very curious as to how this will age, but i think its terrific already. I still havn't had a beer from Deschutes i didn't like.

02-01-2010 03:57:42 | More by bum732
Photo of BDJake


4.38/5  rDev +3.3%

A- clear brown, with chunky finger of beige head that laces well and keeps you company throughout the entire drink

S- a lot of white grape somehow, with a slight hoppy tinge and some sweet malt

T- not as promising as the aroma would lead, fairly balanced with citrus and grape undertones

M- medium surprisingly, given it's high abv, which is well hidden

D- went down easier than any barleywine i've ever tasted (old guarduan, bigfoot, old crustacean, etc.)

01-29-2010 11:22:44 | More by BDJake
Photo of chcfan


3.58/5  rDev -15.6%

2009 vintage into snifter.

Dark amber in color with a quickly dissipating head.

Smells of American hops (possibly some Cascade) and you can tell from it's aroma that it's a beer with a strong malt backbone.

Taste is a balance between hop bitterness and malt. Reminds me of an old ale. There's a little bit of alcohol warmth in the taste, which is perfectly understandable, given it's 11$ abv.

Pretty good beer, but not my favorite barleywine. If it was available where I live, I would grab another bottle and cellar it, but it's not worth seeking again because it would have to be by trade or online store, though the one I got this from announced it was closing today!

01-28-2010 02:06:29 | More by chcfan
Photo of DaveJanssen


4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

2009 split 22 two ways. Poured into snifters. Reviewed 6/25/2009.

Ar: Sweet pineapple, caramel, tart citrus, alcohol (mellow), sweet, fruity, dark hints (plum, grape), floral perfume (not like belgian powdery floral), intense fruit with fruit sugar and candy sweetness, perfume with pineapple tartness, smooth earth (wood), lightly solventy alcohol

Ap: Clear deep red, dense light head, tan/yellow, good retention, fine rocky dusting left

F:malt centric, heavy syrup, initial light citrus followed by complex floral, caramel and earth end, light bubblegum floral, heavy and smooth sweetness, not at all cloying, toffee, chocolate fruit (raising, cherries, blueberries), slight tartness to fruit, malt and fruity like alaskan, great sweetness, strong and present but not too thick and heavy, very complex, light solventy alcohol with warmth, could use more hop, relatively dry for style

M: heavy syrup, excellent sipper, smooth warming alcohol, low/mid carbonation, alcohol is perfumy, heavy but not too heavy, warming/slight alcohol burn in throat

o: smooth and balanced (but not a typical balance, unique and refined), alcohol roughens as it warms, generally slightly worse at room temp, initial impression better than final, hops are mild, alc is young and rough, balance lost with warmth, alaskan and bigfoot are better, maybe a bit young

01-27-2010 02:50:53 | More by DaveJanssen
Photo of slasher007


4.43/5  rDev +4.5%

The beer poured a deep, slightly hazey reddish amber with creamy tan head. Rich aroma of citrus, sweet malt, fragrant fruity hops, notes of oak, caramel, and dark fruits. The taste is intense with dark fruitiness, hints of chocolate, caramelized malts in the background and alcohol up front. After-taste is a mix of sweetness and hops bitterness. Mouthfeel is velvety smooth and crisp with medium body and medium carbonation. Great brew from Deschutes Brewery. Very tasty and easy to drink.

01-25-2010 23:19:48 | More by slasher007
Photo of dougofthefuture


4.28/5  rDev +0.9%

Bottle from CA trip made it home with me, but not all the way to the cellar. Best after 4/20/10. That did not happen. Poured into tulip.

A - Dark amber/red with minimal head. Cloudy bordering on opaque.

S - Lots of fruity goodness here. Apricot? Spicy too.

T & M - Fruity, spicy, complex, and delicious! Low carbonation, but a heavy body that feels just about perfect. The ABV is a little more forward than I expected. I am looking forward to aging one of these to see if that helps.

D - This is rich and meant to be consumed slowly, but I'd love to have this one around instead of just once or twice a year.

01-22-2010 03:46:02 | More by dougofthefuture
Photo of grub

Ontario (Canada)

4.22/5  rDev -0.5%

Viggo brought this one over. thanks eric!

22oz bottle topped with black wax. 2009 vintage. sampled jan 17/2010.

pours hazy deep orange, not quite red, with a big dense cream coloured head. the head drops very slow and leaves tons of lace behind.

aroma is great. rich dark caramel and toffee. pine and grapefruit. light alcohol. cracker, white bread, and biscuit. vanilla and raw oak.

taste is good. lightly sweet caramel and toffee. orange, tangerine, and a bit of grapefruit. touch of pine. light alcohol, nowhere near the posted 11%. white bread, cracker, and light biscuit. medium-low bitterness level, far lower than i expected from an american barleywine, especially one that's fairly young.

mouthfeel is gread. fairly big body. silky smooth medium-low carbonation level.

drinkability is good. it's very well balanced and hides its alcohol incredibly well. quite tasty, but didn't have quite as much depth as i expected. i'll have to keep my eye out for an earlier vintage or one i can stash away in the cellar for a while to see how it changes.

01-17-2010 23:36:16 | More by grub
Photo of Viggo

Ontario (Canada)

4.15/5  rDev -2.1%

22 oz bottle, picked up at Belmont Station in Portland, 2009 Reserve.

Pours a cloudy reddish orange, pretty rich colour, big thick off white head forms, settles down to a thick ring around the glass and tons of lace chunks stick, looks pretty good.

Smell is nice, tons of citrus for a barleywine, grapefruit and orange peel, kind of spicy, herbal character, pretty good fruit presence, strawberries and berries, big rich malt, lots of caramel and biscuit, some alcohol, a bit of wood, vanilla, really neat character, not your standard American barleywine.

Taste is nice, very intense sweetness, lots of caramel, tons of fruit character, berries, lots of wood character, some vanilla, sherry, some spicy and herbal hoppiness, brown sugar, pretty intense stuff, some alcohol but its well hidden.

Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with low carbonation, some warmth going down, but pretty damn smooth considering the ABV. Nice stuff, glad I have another bottle.

01-17-2010 23:08:29 | More by Viggo
Photo of brewandbbq

New Hampshire

4.33/5  rDev +2.1%

22oz vintage 2009 bottle from the cellar.

Pours mahogany with a slight haze and an inch-plus head of tight biege froth.
Lacing aplenty throughout the glass with a mix of ripped sheets and torn ropes.

Aromatics lead off with rich malt, figs, toffee, caramel, and a kiss of citrus. Warming alcohol warms the nose and raisins with a hint of leather, vanilla, and butterscotch follow through.

On the fuller side of medium bodied with a chewy, tacky mouthfeel. Slickish and slightly oily.

Plump, ripe malt and drizzeled caramel start the palate. Chipped toffee, bourbon-soaked raisins, and booze-rubbed leather follow through. A firm, citrusy bitterness lays low.

Finishes with lingering sweet malt, hints of bourbon and vanilla, and Wherthers candies.

A very balanced Barleywine. I'd prefer a blend which favored a larger barrel percentage, but there's plenty of subtle comlexities here. I can't really see this one improving much in the cellar though. Some of traces of the barrel aging will probably fade as will the hops.

01-15-2010 00:36:12 | More by brewandbbq
Photo of DrDogbeer


4.4/5  rDev +3.8%

2009 bomber poured into a Portsmouth Tulip. Pours a rich brownish red color with a thin off white head. Smells very sweet, candied yams, brown sugar etc. Taste is not as sweet- the beer has some teeth, but malty sugar dominates. But is is not cloying sweet. The sweetness helps the beer become much more drinkable. Just a silky smooth mouthfeel with a bit of alcohol touch to warm me up. A wonderfully put together barleywine- probably the easiest drinking one I have ever had.

01-12-2010 21:23:22 | More by DrDogbeer
Photo of Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

3.95/5  rDev -6.8%

Bottle: Poured a deep amber color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and minimal lacing. Aroma of sweet malt with deep caramel malt notes and some hoppy grassy notes as well. Taste is also dominated by loads of sweet malt with a nice caramel touch and some hoppy notes with light citrus notes and a grassy feels. Body is above average with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Very well done though a bit more hoppy then what I usually like in my barley wine.

01-11-2010 04:08:43 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of SkinnyElvis


4.33/5  rDev +2.1%

2009 vintage. Pours with a one cm head which fades quickly. Smells fairly sweet. Dark amber in color. Taste is a nice mix of sweet, malt, and hops. Still a little boozy which should settle with tme. Reminds me of a less sweet Old Guardian. I have another two bottles which I will age & I am curious how this will settle in time.

01-09-2010 01:19:17 | More by SkinnyElvis
Photo of homebrewhawk


4.1/5  rDev -3.3%

22oz. wax sealed bottle. 2009 vintage. Bottle conditioned. Served in a snifter. Pours a deep amber with a thin off white head. Piney hop aroma with some carmelized sugar and dark fruit as it warms. Full bodied and warming. Definitely on the malty side. Fair amount of malt sweetness, but the hops provide some balance. Hop bitterness comes out as it warms. Very drinkable for the ABV.

01-07-2010 02:26:30 | More by homebrewhawk
Photo of mikereaser


4.2/5  rDev -0.9%

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle on 11/6/09 courtesy of Hophead101
2009 vintage

A - Pours a deep reddish orange with a 1/4 inch of foam

S - burnt malts and dark fruits, some vanilla too

T - sweet caramel malts, vanilla, dark fruit

M/D - very smooth & creamy, by far the easiest drinking barleywine i've had. all around a great tasting beer

01-06-2010 20:53:57 | More by mikereaser
Photo of alleykatking


4.33/5  rDev +2.1%

There have been many people who sent me a bottle of this in trades. Can't remember who this bottle is from. Poured from 22oz bottle.

A- Pours a clear deep amber color. Good 1 finger tannish head that comes and goes fast. Light lacing left on the glass.

S- Hops have faded nicely in this beer not making it a American hopbomb BW. Light alcohol aroma in the tail end of this along with some oaky notes. Brown sugar, molasses, and some roasted/burnt malt in the front of this beer. Some darker fruits (plum and raisin) is also apparent.

T- Nice sweetness to this without being overly sweet. Hops have faded bringing in more of the oaky tones to this one. Darker fruits make a bigger impression on everything on the palate. There is a light sweetness throughout that seems like a vanilla and brown sugar mix.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation was good with the beer. Left a nice sweetness on the palate and in the aftertaste. Full feeling in the mouth. Very clean tasting.

D- Very drinkable for the style. Have a couple more sitting in the cellar for later dates. Everything came together vary nicely in this BW. Would recommend to anyone.

01-04-2010 20:06:34 | More by alleykatking
Photo of Mora2000


4.35/5  rDev +2.6%

Thanks to slasher007 for this bottle.

2009 vintage. Pours dark amber with a white head. Aroma is caramel, dark fruit, alcohol and some oak character. The flavor is strong caramel malt with some alcohol. A very sweet tasting beer. You get some hop bitterness but not enough to cut the sweetness. Very smooth drinking with a medium mouthfeel.

12-31-2009 05:30:43 | More by Mora2000
Mirror Mirror from Deschutes Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 1,153 ratings.