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RATINGS: 1466   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.45   EST. CALORIES: 150   ABV: 5%
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This is base camp, where any craft brew exploration begins. A distinct hop nose and hop-forward flavor make Mirror Pond the quintessential Pale Ale. It is aromatically complex, multi-layered, and unmistakably ďright.Ē

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 14/20
Miksu (5027) - Jyvšskylš, FINLAND - JAN 5, 2007
UPDATED: FEB 1, 2009 Bottled. Golden to amber color with small creamy head. Sweet, juicy, flowery, citrusy and parfumy aroma, pleasant. Balanced and malty aroma with flowery and orangey notes. Quality pale ale.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
GarrettB (1206) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 4, 2007
UPDATED: OCT 14, 2007 Deschutesí Inversion IPA is high on my list of the most approachable pale ales. It doesnít have all five shining stars of glory that my imaginative rating system permits as the maximum award, but itís enough that Iíd be happy to drink it again without fear that the hops would tear the first layer of skin from the roof of my mouth. It instilled in me a callow optimism that I had not felt since I first attempted to ride a bike. The ensuing collisions knocked that optimism (and a few critical organs) out of me, until now. Alas, I have come to another pale ale offering from Deschutes, and with eagerness I take a sip. With dread I swallow. It is another face in a sea of ashen gray faces. It is another drone in a cacophony of dull humming. It has but one remarkable feature. Detergent. I mentioned in my review of Deschutesí Twilight Ale that it tasted a great deal like public sanitation vis-ŗ-vis mildly fragrant soaps. This tastes like a hoppy version of that. Iím beginning to suspect that somebody is watching their very well lathered hands in the vat, leaving the beer bubbly and extra clean. Call me finicky, but I donít want my beer the same way I want clean epidermis. Letís look at Mirror Pondís other qualities: within a bronze-honey colored hue a great column of bubbles wobbles to and fro like a swarm of bees. The head above is off white like day old snow, and leaves scattered but adhesive lacing. A strong punch of grapefruit greets the nose first, followed by white grapes and a bland bitterness that wrinkles the nostrils. The taste begins with strong push of grapefruit, then hits the soap stage, then abandons both to land effortlessly on a generic bread/yeast note. All the way through it is flat, watery and boring. Not to mention the, you know, soap lingering there. I think any beer that two-prongs the taste with detergent and grapefruit is lacking something in complexity. More than that, itís lacking something appealing. No, Iíll be sticking to the Inversion IPA, thank you. Or was it that I just had a batch made before Mr. Bubble received gainful employment at Deschutes Brewery?

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
sliffy (2040) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - JAN 4, 2007
Bottle shared by nolankowal: Clear orange/copper in color with a white head. Aroma, some citrus notes, pale malts, caramel, some floral notes as well. Flavor, light malts, some subtle spicing, and a lot of very floral hops. Pretty unique I thought. Quite good for a pale.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 9/20
ClarkVV (4164) - Allston, Massachusetts, USA - DEC 26, 2006
2006 bottle from KenB, drunk on 11/8/06
Off-white head is expansive, rocky and shows moderate retention, sticky lacing. Brass-gold body is mostly clear. Light bubbles rise in distinct streams.
Sourdough/toasty malt is twangy/sharp in the nose, what youíd expect from a sweet-and-sour flavor with some astringency. Hops are highly bitter, mostly white grapefruit and light pine. Strong nose, but itís very monotonous, and no lively fruitiness, tropical or otherwise comes forth. Not that Iím expecting some deeply aromatic DIPA nose out of this, but it just seems very heavy on the IBUS and not so much on the pure aromatics. Some light metallic notes are notable as well, on the finish, with doughty, lightly aspirin-like yeast. Light vanilla cream base malts eventually pass the crystal/medium malts, but both of these, in consequence, take away from the hop presence (though in this case thatís a good thing, I think).
Staunchly bitter, somewhat soggy, stale hop notes crowd the palate immediately, adding acids and overwhelming the palate. Sourdough/bready yeastiness further harries the palate and the finish is just a mess of bitterness and astringency. Very dry orange marmalade, lemons, white grapefruits. Things that only the hophead who cares little for balance, is going to appreciate. Moderate carbonation, slightly loose, with touches of wateriness. Some pale malt sweetness lingers on the finish, almost syrupy-like. Taken with the heavy hop bitterness, itís most unpleasant to me. That said, at least they overdo the beer instead of underdoing it (they are at least giving you more for your money....).

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
shigadeyo (3246) - Harrison, Ohio, USA - DEC 20, 2006
Sampled on 12/20/2006... 12 oz bottle (Best by 12/20/06 1739M, 5.0% ABV) from bitbucket. Thanks Bob! -- Deschutes Mirror Pond Pale Ale pours a vibrant orange copper color with a thin white crown. The aroma is just like that of Goldenrod honey. It also tastes a lot like Goldenrod honey with some Cascade hops. I know this for sure because I recently made some mead using Goldenrod honey, Cascade hops, peaches, and cinnamon and could recognize the honey and hops blindfolded now! It has a slight honey sweetness at first and then the finish has a mild signature Cascade hop bitterness to it that lingers nicely. Palate: Medium body, mild to moderate carbonation, and smooth. Overall this is a really good pale ale and different than most available because of itís unique honey-like flavors than remind me of mead. I really enjoyed this brew and hope to have more in the future. This would make an excellent session beer...

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
DocLock (8500) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 13, 2006
Thanks to Jake for this one. Pours hazy orangy coppery with medium off-white head. Aroma of Cascade hops, some fruit, caramel malt, citrus. Tastes complex and medium bodied, with a nice hop presence coupled with slight fruit and slight finishing resiny character.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
redlem (1306) - Ohio, USA - DEC 12, 2006
A nice APA. Lots of citrus in aroma and taste. Decent head some lacing. An almost smoky taste, nice.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
grant (842) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - DEC 1, 2006
UPDATED: DEC 13, 2006 How have I not rated this? This has been my go-to beer for a while, as itís perpetually on sale for $12 or so at my local grocery. Iíve always liked it a lot though. Letís see, hazy light copper. Aroma is pumped full of delicious, cookie/fresh bread malts and a generous dousing of floral grapefruit hops (although with the added malt component it comes through differently than SNPA). Tons more grapefruit coming through in the flavor, although with a slight caramel/crystal sweetness. Perfect bitterness level. Finish balances mouthfeel and sweetness/dryness perfectly. Really the quintessential west coast pale ale.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
muteant (9) - USA - NOV 20, 2006 does not count
O.K., from ze tap this is a fabulous beer, just a perfect pitch of citrus and sharpness and drinkability. From a bottle it tends to become too overbearingly grapefruit-y. Recommended regardless.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
dirtymike (2016) - Manchester, New Hampshire, USA - NOV 19, 2006
Amber in color with a small white head. Aroma is sweet,fruity and of citrus hops. Flavor is of sweet malt,fruity with the body a bit thin.

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