Fresh Hop Mirror Pond | Deschutes Brewery

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Fresh Hop Mirror PondFresh Hop Mirror Pond
Very Good
314 Ratings
Fresh Hop Mirror PondFresh Hop Mirror Pond

Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by ccrida on 10-24-2008

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 314 |  Reviews: 142
Photo of brotherloco
3.23/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz Bomber. Best By: 12/11/11. Served in a pint glass.

Pours a mostly clear medium-dark gold with a frothy off-white head. Lots of cascading bubbles. Medium lacing in the glass.

Aroma of light piney, citrusy hops. Orange citrus sticks out the most, bready malt sits right behind that.

Flavor is a bit waxy and dull. Doesn't really live up to the aroma. A tang of campfire smoke, pretty odd. It's hard to believe that this is a fresh hop ale. Tastes like a regular pale ale.

Medium bodied and medium-high carbonation. Drinkable, but the waxy character bogs things down a bit.

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Photo of hardy008
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clear amber with a 2 finger white foamy head with good retention and rings of lacing. The aroma has grapefruit, pine, and biscuit malt.

The taste has grapefruit, pine, biscuit malt and caramel malt. Not overly sweet or bitter, nicely balanced, with a biscuit malt aftertaste.

Nice creamy smooth feeling, with average carbonation and medium bodied. This is a well made beer, which proves that you don't have to have high abv to have a good flavor.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.59/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

another fresh hop! NICE! this one pours a light amber with perfect clarity, like a high grade maple syrup in appearance. big rising cream colored head that only dissipates a tiny bit as it sits. not much smell to speak of surprisingly, no big fresh hop nose, just an understated pale ale scent is all. tastes a little tart, with the hop feature in the back. there is a strong malt presence as well, providing a sturdy structure for the hops to lean on. nice long finish where the fresh hop vibes come through. the body is squarly medium, with less carbonation than that regular mirror pond, low abv lends to its drinkability. a splendid fall session!

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Photo of flexabull
3.83/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a bright and semi dark gold color, clear, and with a nice white head.

Aromas are of light citrus, hard candies, grapefruit, oranges, and some pine. Smells similar to normal Mirror Pond, but fresher, and slightly more floral.

Taste is soft and doughy up front, lightly creamy, with some mild caramel sweetness. Finish is crisp and dry, with some pine needles, hard candies, resin and grapefruit hoppiness. This beer certainly has good flavor, but the fresh hop flavors are a bit muted.

Mouthfeel is nice and full with crisp carbonation. The feels thicker than the normal version.

Overall a tasty pale ale that is really drinkable. But as mentioned before, the hop flavors could be pumped up a bit to really showcase those fresh hops.

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

Bottle purchased from Whole Foods in Los Altos, CA. Hopefully, the "fresh" still translates.

Pours a extremely clear copper amber colour, with a full and thick head of very, very pale yellow—ok, it's almost white, but with a slight tinge to it. Lacing is thick and sheeting, forming in solid, unbroken planes down the inside of the glass. Light and bright otherwise. Looks good.

Nose is smooth and rather sweet, both with a subtle caramel malt character, and the tropical hop aroma, which gives it notes of banana and guava. It's far sweeter and smoother than I expected, with certainly no crisp, sharp hop characters. Not bad though.

Taste is similarly subdued, but well integrated. Smooth round malt characters give a crisp, if somewhat insubstantial base. This is layered with the ever-present, but never-robust hop notes, that suggest freshness while contributing little to the flavour. Feel is very smooth, with a light sparkle of carbonation—again, this somewhat matches the hop characters.

It's a good beer that ends up being just a little too tame. It's very smooth and drinkable, and has some genuinely pleasant characters to it. But by the end, I feel like "yep... what's next?"

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.72/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Arbitrator for the bottle.

Appearance: Clear amber with a strong orange push. Head is off-white, clumpy, and fluffy. Quickly dwindles to a thin cap on the beer. Serious lacing to be had. Moderate carbonation pulls from the bottom of the glass.

Smell: Juicy citrus and a big helping of biscuit malt. Some sweet caramel malts come through as well. Floral and citrus hop aromas play over the top. Deliciously fresh and delicate. Little bit of resin and bread crust. Nice level of balance.

Taste: Grapefruit and orange flesh. Touch of something akin to mango. Malts take a bigger step forward than they did on the nose. Nice sweetness coupled with an almost straight bitterness. Pith and bread crust abound. Hops lean toward floral as the beer warms. The fresh hop nature is assertive. It loses a little balance in the long run.

Mouthfeel: Moderate body with a bit more carbonation than I was expecting. Smooth. Clean and clear sip.

Overall: Clean and smooth, but lacking some overall depth and balance. All said and done, it's worth drinking, but definitely loses something over the standard version.

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Photo of FightingEntropy
2.95/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Copper ale with a stark white head that leave a nice lace. Grass and grapefruit nose with a light malty base. Taste lack the hop, oddly--some bitterness--but muddled badly with a sourdough taste with watery mouthfeel. Sweet ending, but too off center to have more than one. I was surprised because I've often liked the Mirror Pond Pale Ale, but adding fresh hop just didn't pull together for me tonight.

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

Poured this one from a bomber into a standard pint glass

A - Pours a very clear golden orange color, with a foamy 2 finger tan colored head. Nice ring, and thick, clingy lacing as the head slowly dissipates.

S - Big grapefruit, and floral notes. It definately does smell fresh, and has a certain crisp note I can't put my finger on. Almost like fresh cut fruit...?

T/M - Taste matches the smell perfectly. Crisp apple-ish, grapefruit front with some nice malts on the back end. Very smooth, perfect carbonation. Medium mouthfeel.

O - This is a very good, very drinkable APA. The flavors are very well balanced. As I look at my glass now, I can still see little bubbles from the side of my glass. Almost like champagne. Another great beer from a great brewery.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle $5.49. Bright orange color, good head and lace. Smells like fresh hops, juicy, resinous, reminds me of Hop Trip. The taste is much like mirror pond, citrus, malts, but the fresh hop influence is undeniable. Well done Deschutes, looking forward to a sixer of Hop Trip.

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Photo of gatornation
3.33/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

from 22 oz bomber BB 12/11/ was hop trip last year fir deschutes fresh hop offering

A- pours a clear copper color with a beige head and fresh collar a bit of lacing cotes the glass

S- was light of floral hops,with a faint citrus and grass smell.malts and bread notes were a bit stonger

T- very light on hops and bigger on malts with a sweet and caramel aftertaste

M- medium carbonation and drinkable

O- a weak fresh hop PA..hops just did not make thier presence in this one it was alot of sweet caramel malt..this one fell short for me on taste

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Photo of Cisco619
2.17/5  rDev -44.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

22oz bottle poured into Weyerbacher Tulip. Bottle reads "Best by 12/11/11

A: Clear golden honey that paints my palm in an amber hue, with a 1 1/2 finger of soapy white head that clings to the glass as the beer arches downward when the glass is tilted. Dissipates to a bubbly film that lingers in the center of the brew.

S: Not much to speak of. A hint of citrus and a malt sweetness that reminds of marzen style beers.

T: Malty/bready with a hint of hop bitterness. Where's all the fresh hops?

M: Thin with a bit of hop oil tackiness that clings to the front of the tongue.

O: For a beer that boldly proclaims fresh hop in the title, it is decidely lacking in hop presence in all aspects of the brew.

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Photo of jera1350
3.58/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light coppery color with a one finger head of soft sandy foam. Some generous lacing to follow.

The smell is mostly of grassy hops, but some citrus can be picked out as well. Some caramel malt sweetness lies in the background. I just can't give it a higher score because the overall nose is a bit light.

For a fresh hop beer, this has underwhelming flavor. The hopping is slightly above average overall no matter the style or type of beer. A decent amount of bitterness, but not approaching IPA hopping by any means. Pine and grass notes from the hops, but again, subtle. Solid malt backbone. It's been a while since I have had a regular Mirror Pond, but from what I remember, this doesn't stray too far from the original.

Crisp and smooth feeling, light to medium body.

Just can't recommend this one. If you want a fresh hop beer, this isn't going to get it done. It's a tasty and highly drinkable beer, but this isn't enough of a difference from the regular Mirror Pond and it costs more. Save your money.

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Photo of msubulldog25
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

After LOVING this beer the last couple years from the tap (one of THE highlights of the all-too-short hop harvest season), Deschutes finally wised up and bottled this magical elixir. Here's a 22 oz. bottle, dated 'Best By: 12/11/11' - poured to a standard pint glass.

A: Amber with a golden glow, very clear complexion and surprisingly little carbonation. First pour earns a lofty dollop of ivory foam, nearly two fingers high and very sturdy. Good lacing, sticky and patchy, with an ever-present lumpy layer of splotchy head that never quite goes away.

S: Where's the aroma? Disappointingly light scent, a misting of piney hops, without any backing. What I get here is sweeter malt and a hint of orange peel. What I recall from the draft pours I've enjoyed in the past is MUCH more pronounced.

T: Hmmmm. Green and spicy hops are present, grass and hay subtleties mix with bready and slightly fruity malts. Lots of 'biscuit' (with a hint of 'buttery-ness'). drier in the finish, grains show more roast. The 'fresh hop' character is subtle on its own, but is pronounced when compared to 'regular' Mirror Pond.

M: Smooth, fairly creamy. Medium body at best. Carbonation is gentle, a crisper and cleaner finish.

O: Still very likeable, if not the *wow* beer I've had from the tap. Love that this is now distributed more widely via bottles, but hate that it seems to be a shadow of its true FRESH HOP self. Not to say I won't buy it again (because I will) and definitely enjoy the 5% drinkability, but this (unfortunately) strays from the high standard it set for itself of the past several autumns.

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Photo of emerge077
3.29/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a bomber in to a stemless wine glass. Plenty of lacing, drippy and intricate all around. A steady second pour generates a fingers width of creamy white foam. Retention is strong, lasting for the duration of the glass. Saturated orange color, fully bright with high clarity.

Smells like any given pale ale, nothing hoppy, let alone "fresh hopped". Light fruity yeast, biscuity malt.

Flavor follows suit, very malt driven and not especially hoppy. Noble hops don't lend much to the mix, little to no bitterness. Fruity sweet yeast and malt elements and little else. Clean and drinkable, just a let down in the advertised "Fresh Hop" department.

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

A-Pours clear ambern with about an inch of fluffy, off white head.

S-Pleasant, light earthy hop aroma, bready maltiness. Something vegetal, like brocoli water.

T/M-Surprisingly malt forward for a fresh hop beer. First thing that comes across is biscuity malt, followed by muted Cascade hops. I expected more of a dominant hop flavor, considering how this is advertised. Very pleasant, but not much of a fresh hop IPA. Well balanced, very drinkable pale ale, just like the regular mirror pond.

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Photo of GilGarp
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber served cold into an imperial pint glass.

Fresh Hop is a golden amber color with good clarity. Head retention is fair but a little lacing is left behind.

Aroma is hoppy but not overly so. In fact I don't see a huge difference from what I remember from the regular Mirror Pond. Good NW hop character.

Flavor is really nice with fresh, almost juicy, hops. Good caramel malt backbone provides good sweetness. Hops are citrusy and piney.

Mouthfeel is medium-light bodied and nicely carbonated. Good balance for a pale ale.

Overall a really good pale ale. I guess I would like to have it side-by-side with the year-round Mirror to really see the differences.

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Photo of Philousa
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark golden, honey color in appearance with a thin head that yields decent lacing. The nose is lemon citurs with big pine aroma, some oakie notes, and I detect some sweetish malt in there somewhere as well. Light malt flavor followed by orange zest. Bitter, piney flavor, and bitterness lingers. It's all about the hops! Feels smooth, goes down easy. Could be syrupy, but feels silky due to the carbonation.

Very nice experiment. I bought it and drank it the next day to ensure freshness, and I was not disappointed. I always get a soapy mouthfeel from very hoppy beers, but the oils from the fresh hops came through easily without being too bitter or harsh on the tongue. This is super earthy too. Lots of grass and leafy goodness. Perfect brew to enjoy after a hike or grilling brats at the campsite. With the pricepoint being what it is, I hope they brew this again. Now if only they can make the hop cones mature faster so I can get one for camping season!

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Photo of scottfrie
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into Duvel tulip. Best by 12/11/11.

A: Pours a burnt amber color with a huge, dense and fluffy light tan head that took a very long time to settle into a fuzzy film leaving a ton of sticky lacing down the glass.
S: Grassy notes of very leafy green fresh smelling hops. I get a touch of mint and sweet caramel as well.
T: Big fresh biscuit malt taste mixed with clean and very leafy, grassy, hops. The finish is citrusy and doughy. This isn’t a powerfully hoppy beer, it’s a pale ale after all, but it is very fresh, clean and delicious tasting. Very balanced between biscuit dough and leafy hops.
M: Medium body with a fairly viscous and chewy mouthfeel. The carbonation is smooth and everything works very well to create an easy to drink and refreshing beer.
O: I can’t remember exactly how the original mirror pond tastes but this is one fresh and delicious tasting pale ale that I would gladly drink on a regular basis. I’m loving the balance between the malt and hops where not only are the hops super fresh tasting but the malt is light and not overly sweet or caramely. I could drink this all day.

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Photo of bsp77
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from tap into Nonic Imperial Pint. Best by 12/11/11.

Appearance: Clear amber-orange with foamy white head and some nice lacing.

Smell: Some sweet citrus and grapefruit, grainy toasted malts and a touch of spiciness. Smells like regular Mirror Pond, but a little stronger.

Taste: Bright citrus, semi-sweet grainy malts, with some spicy bitterness at the end, and a hint of sourness. Fresh taste.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, medium-light body, nice dry finish.

Drinkability: Very good, but really hardly any different than standard Mirror Pond, which is only an average Pale Ale for me. I actually copied over most of notes from Mirror Pond, since it is pretty much the same. However, it is a little more aromatic, a little fresher and a little drier, and that makes all the difference.

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Photo of HopHead84
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


Bottle shared with Carlos.

A: Luminous dark orange with an inch of white foam. Lacing is scattered.

S: Orange blends with peach and tangerine. Nice citrus profile. Malt rounds things out with its bready redolence. Floral notes are pronounced and there's some pine, lots of pine.

T: This is very malty, with notes of bread and biscuit. Orange flesh suffuses my palate. There's a light bitterness. Malt dominates here, giving the impression of an English style Pale Ale.

M: Medium body with moderate carbonation.

Overall: Good stuff. It's Mirror Pond but slightly more aromatic. Carlos says it tastes like homebrew.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.77/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bomber,

A: Pours amber with a creamy frothy white head as a lot of wet hop beers tend to have. Good retention, limited lace.

S: Classic Cascade. Pine trees, resiny, wood notes. Foresty.

T: Sweet caramel malt balanced well with grassiness and pine from the hops. Interesting cotton candy play in the finish. It's a pale ale, the hops are not going over the top. Everything is in balance. Bit too much carbonic acid in the end though.

M: Medium-bodied, very light carbonation and frothy. A cask like feel which can be fun and it works in beers like this.

O: Not the striking beauty that Hop Trip is, but I like the wet hop flavour and it makes for a better beer than the regular Mirror Pond which is a Western classic, but can be bland at times.

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Photo of loren01
3.25/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Got a big mason jar of this beer from NW Liquid Gold in Vancouver along with a mason jar of the Ninkasi Fresh Hop beer to compare the two.
A: Pours a nice orange color, not too much head on this one but it is poured from a growler thats been unopened in my fridge for a day so I'm sure its lots some carbonation
S: Piney, some citrus as well as bready malt
T: Much the same as the smell, light bready malt sweetness up front with a citrusy aftertaste
M: Light to medium bodied, drinks really easy
O: Pretty good fresh hop beer, I find it a lot like regular Mirror Pond, not much different at all really. I think I like the Ninkasi fresh hop better.

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Photo of dirtylou
3.58/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber, ballard mkt

appearance: cool label - served in tyranena nonic pint, bright orange-copper body, filmy white head with light retention

smell: fresh citrus, cut grass, light bready notes

taste: The wet/fresh hop idea is cool and all but the results always seem to be somewhat disappointing - The deschutes version comes off a bit sweet and doughy. The hopping really gets lost here - no defining citrus flavor.

mouthfeel: oily medium body

overall: just ok

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Photo of harrymel
2.75/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Best by: 11DEC11

A: pours s golden amber ale with a little over a finger of tan-white foam head which slowly falls to a quilt of the same. Excellent clarity and cobweb lacing.

S: Smells like cascade hops: spicy, citric, resin. Some sweet and tea like malts.

T: Sweet. This beer is sweet. Not much hop presence in this one for me. Latter hints of bitterness and some floral tones. Overall, not happy with this one. A bit tannic.

M: A bit thin, and lower carb than I had anticipated. Dry finish.

O: This is a miss for me. Too sweet, too tannic and dry.

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Photo of litheum94
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best by 12/11/11.

Bright amber body with a slow forming head. Oranges tinged and frothy, it settles to a faint cover, leaving rings on the side of the glass. Hop oils evident on the surface.

Great big whiffs of pine and citrus. Some spice as well. Pine resin mixes with the biscuit malts, giving a woody smell. Tropical fruit sweetness as well.

Oily and slick mouthfeel, with a juicy citrus bite. Pine bitterness backed by a grainy maltiness. Nice pine resin flavors on the finish build a bitter but balanced flavor. Flavors are not as in your face as the aromas...

...which I was a little disappointed by. The nose is amazing and just about everything I want from a wet hop ale, and the flavors don't quite follow through. This is a great beer, don't get me wrong. I just wanted a more bold hop flavor from a fresh hop ale.

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Fresh Hop Mirror Pond from Deschutes Brewery
Beer rating: 3.91 out of 5 with 314 ratings