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RATINGS: 701   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.82/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 330   ABV: 11%
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, barrel-aged barley wine layered with intriguing nuances. Explore this latest incarnation and enjoy its delicious complexity in every sip.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Bockyhorsey (2626) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - JUL 14, 2009
Mix of aromas with the oak barrel wood the stongest. Also some sweet yeast and grain. Red amber body with beige head and some mild lace. Sweet candy flavor along with some beats and barley grain. A sticky candy flavor lings on the palate. Good brew.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
hallinghansen (2608) - Odense SV, DENMARK - JUL 13, 2009
Bottle with black wax. Clear amber body, with a small long lasting offwhite head. Aroma is hops, dark fruit, alcohol, berries and oak. Flavor is hops, prunes, dark fruit and oak. Complex and lovoly brew.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
daknole (10785) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - JUL 13, 2009
Bottle. Reddish brown pour. Aroma is loaded with caramel, honey, vanilla and brown sugar. Flavor, although a bit hot, is very nice and smooth. sweet with lots dried fruit, honey, vanilla and loads of caramel. very nice.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
IndianaRed (3430) - Boise, Idaho, USA - JUL 13, 2009
Bottle pours a clear deep mahogany with a small fleeting tan head and coarse sheets of lacing. Aroma is quite fumey of alcohol and with lots of warm spicy notes of caramel, and dark fruits. Flavor is a slightly sweet woodiness vanilla and brown sugar. Substantial burn on the ABV as it goes down. I let this warm up a bit first with high hopes. It didn’t quite meet them. Still, a nice sipper.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
notalush (5626) - Denver, Colorado, USA - JUL 12, 2009
I was really not expecting this beer to be as restrained as it is - but this is a good thing, since so many american barleywines are just booze bombs - pours a lightly hazy red, with a soapy, lasting lace - the aroma starts things off on a less than promising note, with some solvent-like alcohol burning the nose, but once you "sniff through" that, there are some estery notes, toffee, light oak and vanilla that try hard to salvage it - very low carbonation, with a lightly creamy mouthfeel - quite bright and fruity up front, with notes of dried cherries and figs - this is followed by some toffee and treacle-like sweetness, but it never becomes all that sticky - some oak arrives late, as well as light bitterness and spicy character - a little alcohol heat on the back reminds you that this should be a sipper - nothing outstanding, especially for the price, but it’s decent.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Taverner (1100) - San Ramon, California, USA - JUL 12, 2009
Pretty damn good! Pours a hard copper color, with solid caramel notes in it. Sweet with notes of tanin and oak, as well as leather. Dried apricot also makes an appearance.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
gracefullypunk (667) - Portland, Oregon, USA - JUL 11, 2009
Taster at Seattle International Beer Festival. Best barleywine I’ve had to date. Amber color with no head. Smells of malts, caramel, slight pepperiness. Tastes more of the same, finishing with a pleasant caramel taste.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Ramenen (466) - San Salvador, EL SALVADOR - JUL 11, 2009
Bought at Whole Foods in Sacramento. Pours a dark brown with tan head. Full bodied, more like a dessert wine. Sweet of the malts, but also oaky and slightly bitter from the hops. However, maltiness and oak is most prevalent. Warm feeling and satisfying.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
OldMrCrow (2305) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JUL 10, 2009
UPDATED: OCT 9, 2014 Fresh on draft July 2009

Tap at Naked City. Deep amber-brown pour with a lovely head but relatively little aroma (to be fair: this followed a pint of Pliny the Elder). Very nice, very smooth and mellow flavor of sweet toffee and vanilla, whispers of wood. Extremely drinkable and only very modest head. Nice job by Deschutes. I look forward to the ’05 and ’09 bottles in my cellar.

9 years old 2005 bottle shared with Chris 10/2014. This has aged nicely. It pours absolutely beautifully, a lovely deep brown toffee with red highlights and an abundant yellow-tan head that foams like a milkshake as I swirl the glass. A rare 5 for appearance.

The aroma is pretty much the epitome of an aged American barleywine, for better or for worse. None of the sour notes from some of the British relatives at this age, just the aged hops and toffee. The flavor is quite nice: caramel and a faint hint of chocolate through the middle, enough hop presence to make a mark toward the end.

All of the individual elements are impressive here, and the beer has aged extremely well -- yet something is lacking. There’s neither the deep complexity one might hope for nor the magical spark of everything coming together beyond the sum of the parts. I guess I can let the previous rating stand.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
fredandboboflo (1570) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 8, 2009
Bottle at ACBF. Aroma of overripe fruit, toffee, earth. Flavor big and sweet with lots of toffee and not much else aside from standard barley wine sweet malt and general fruitiness. It tasted good to be sure, but there was also very little to grab onto.

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