Mirror Mirror
Deschutes Brewery

Mirror MirrorMirror Mirror
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Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States
English Barleywine
4.25 | pDev: 9.41%
Oct 20, 2022
Apr 29, 2009
Bottled/kegged vintages:
2005 - Released February 2006
2009 - Released April 2009
2014 - Released April 2014

The Reserve Series romance all began with our first release of this limited-edition brew. Mirror Mirror, born of a double batch of Mirror Pond Pale Ale, is an inspired barley wine ale layered with intriguing nuances. Explore this latest incarnation and enjoy its delicious complexity in every sip.

30 IBU
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Photo of rodbeermunch
Reviewed by rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.84/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Surprised to see I've never reviewed this despite having them numerous times. I've had a 2009 and 2014 this year (2022), so let's just throw those together for a review shall we?

Pours a deep amber color leaning into light brown. What is Mahogany? Cream light tan head still amassed despite the age, shows almost no loss of carbonation. Aroma of toffee, caramel, dustiness, still a light C hop bitter end.

Taste follows the nose as the nerds say. Its a sweet spot of unsweetened caramel toffee waves without the heft. Definitely makes a high abv beer pretty easy to drink. Its relatively smooth, seems to straddle between American and English barleywine. Kind of weird to think of a double batch of American pale ale = English barleywine. But hey, its BA, nuff said.

These aged wonderfully and were quite affordable. Nice to still crack a non barreled barleywine every once in awhile.
Oct 20, 2022
Rated: 5 by 1971bernat from Virginia

Sep 12, 2021
Rated: 4.04 by Chuckdiesel24 from Illinois

Sep 08, 2021
Rated: 4.25 by TylerJ from Iowa

Jun 21, 2021
Photo of micada
Reviewed by micada from New York

4.43/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
2014 bomber poured cellar temp to a tulip glass. Color is still clear dark caramel, with lively carbonation. Nose gives you a fair amount of wine and wood. First sips are prominent sweet malt base, heavily influenced by the wine barrel aging, with a sneak of caramel sweetness poking at the end. Mouthfeel is thin to medium, but it works for the profile. Alcohol has no bite, but brings some warming, and a very quick cognitive effect. After a glass, it drinks bigger than the 11% ABV. Temperature warming brings out more raisin and stone fruit flavors. Fresh would have been interesting to try, but it’s still a nice beverage with time on it.
May 01, 2021
Photo of Fordcoyote15
Reviewed by Fordcoyote15 from Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
2014 seven year old vintage. Long time want. Overall stellar other than obsurdely thin. Still, im going back to buy the rest the bombers for they have.
Mar 19, 2021
Photo of ghostfacekilla69
Reviewed by ghostfacekilla69 from Virginia

3.88/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.75
2014 bottle -- good beer, but the overly aggressive tiny bubbles in the carb detract from what is an overall mellow buttery and malty beer experience.
Aug 04, 2020
Photo of BKotch
Reviewed by BKotch from Texas

4.43/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
2014 vintage. Along with Not the Stoic, an amazingly well-ageing beer. Balanced, smooth, great mouthfeel. Barleywines aren't among my favorite styles, but this is outstanding.
May 15, 2020
Photo of jmdrpi
Reviewed by jmdrpi from Pennsylvania

4.23/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
2014 vintage, 22 oz bottle, waxed cap

Pours a muddy brown color, but thick layer of tan colored head. Aroma is rich caramel malt, a touch fruity. Taste is similar, but I don't really pick up any red wine flavor. Either way, good de pool th of flavor, not just a one-note sweetness. Medium bodied,very smooth feel.
May 03, 2020
Rated: 4.11 by dubnation from Kansas

Apr 19, 2020
Photo of Hopheadjeffery
Reviewed by Hopheadjeffery from Illinois

4.27/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
2014 Reserve tasted in a Rastal Teku from a 1 pint 6 fluid ounces bottle on March 23, 2019. Best after 2/24/15. ABV 11.2%. Barley wine ale with 50% aged in wine barrels. Very good.
Mar 23, 2020
Photo of Sabtos
Reviewed by Sabtos from Ohio

3.03/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3
Burnt reddish-brown with a short, fuzzy khaki blanket settling to a speed bump collar.

I can't believe I've never had this before, but as per their own written description, it's basically just a "big" (and stale) IPA.

First, it definitely shows its American bent with hoppy, dank, and sticky characteristics, but it just comes across like an over-powered IPA ala Dogfish Head.

The medium body is syrupy, with sharply woody and resinous pine that's unable to suppress notes of toffee and a cat pissy heat.
Feb 18, 2020
Rated: 4 by beaulabauve from Louisiana

Feb 06, 2020
Rated: 4.32 by nodnaut

Jan 25, 2020
Photo of LiquidAmber
Reviewed by LiquidAmber from Washington

4.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Poured into a Fremont small snifter. A long overdue two year comparison of vintages. I should have done a fresh 2014 vs. 2009, but forgot the bottles in the cellar and then decided to wait until the newest presumed version (2019). But it looks like that is not going to happen, with Black Mirror showing up instead (it was quite nice). So here is a side-by-side of a slightly overdue 2014 bottle and a long overdue 2009 bottle.
2009: Pours a slightly hazy, medium to dark reddish orange with a fine, three finger light khaki head with good retention and lacing. Aroma of caramel malt, fresh and dried plume, dates and a little white wine. Flavor is caramel malt, apple cider, plums, raisins, oak and oaky vanilla; finishes a bit boozy with fortified white wine notes and residual oak with a slight astringency. This not longer has much of an English barleywine character any more, but is interesting.
2014: Pours a medium to dark reddish orange, light head dissipating to a thin filme and light lacing. Aroma of dry caramel malt, plums, dates, raisins and oaky vanilla. Flavor is dray caramel malt, dates, raisins, dried plums, a little citrus, oak and mild wine tannin. Finishes a bit brighter with oak, light plum and apple juice, lingering wood and tannin; a suggestion of oxidation. Medium bodied with light to moderate creaminess. Very nice. This tastes great and has aged well. I'm guessing this is approaching its age limit, but it tastes fine right now. I'm grateful that the wine barrel character is mild; it does add some interest, but I'm not a fan of strong red wine tannins in beer and this flies under the radar.
Well, the 2009 is over its aging time. It has lost its deep dark fruit character and oddly has assumed vinous notes even though this version was apparently not in wine barrels. It actually has the brighter light fruit notes of an American barleywine, but I don't know if that was the case while fresh.
The 2014 is excellent and aged gracefully. It has some oxidation, but retains the dark fruit character of the style enhanced by a very mild vinous character that was well handled. I look forward to slowly opening the last bottles of this over the next few years. I've always been a fan of Deschutes and this is a worthy barleywine from a fine brewery. I regret I did not try this fresh. If they brew it again, I will not miss that opportunity. But when it comes to waiting too long, this turned out quite nicely.
My review score is for the 2014 bottle; it's not fair to make any assumptions about the 10 year old one.
Sep 27, 2019
Rated: 4.5 by bigred89 from Maryland

Sep 07, 2019
Rated: 4.41 by spark3148857 from Ohio

Aug 19, 2019
Rated: 3.97 by Duncian from Pennsylvania

Aug 15, 2019
Photo of GuyFawkes
Reviewed by GuyFawkes from Illinois

4.34/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
"Best after 2/24/15"; drank 3/30/15 @ the Yarchives. (2014 vintage.)

Muddy plum appearance.

A rough pour yielded a nice tan head; decent lace.

Raisin, brandy & a sweet booziness in the nose.

Smooth, medium thick mouthfeel.

Smooth caramel & rich raisin flavors up front; a warming booze heat & slight carbonation on the finish. Oak notes emerged as this warmed.

A complex beast of a barleywine; substantial & very enjoyable.
May 17, 2019
Rated: 4.13 by JohnBiale from California

Mar 22, 2019
Mirror Mirror from Deschutes Brewery
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 1852 ratings