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Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) - Bières de Chimay S.A.

Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue)Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

5,546 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5546
Reviews: 2119
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.93%


Brewed by:
Bières de Chimay S.A. visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-22-2001)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,546 | Reviews: 2,119 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of harpus
harpus

Alabama

4.61/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured into a pilsner glass, a really nice dark brown with a touch of red to it, not much head.

S - Very full bodied, yeasty with a slight scent of fruits and flowers caught in the background.

T - An amazing taste to this beer. The scents that were in the background really come out as well as the grain/bready taste that really come together make this beer what it is.

M - For being a strong, dark beer the feel is very light and refreshing with a little bit of carbonation.

D - A pleasure to drink. I will be getting a few bottles very soon.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2014 16:38:45 | More by harpus
Photo of vegassommelier
vegassommelier

Nevada

4.31/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This beer looks great! A fantastic dark mahogany color with a full thick head.
The aromas of espresso bean, bitter cocoa and walnut hit you first, with dessicated fig, drunken cherries, pumpernickel bread and tobacco leaf. The flavors are layered and complex, with the coffee and mocha on the first impression. Dried dark fruits, Christmas cake, chocolate covered cherry, hickory smoke, pumpernickel, allspice and walnut are all mixed together in an intense blend of flavor components. Even as I type this, I am going back and slightly inching up my ratings due to its long finish and complexity.
Chimay is just awesome, and this is a jewel in the crown of a fantastic dynasty of beer production. I will always have a Chimay on every beer list I write.

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2014 07:16:48 | More by vegassommelier
Photo of smokinyodas
smokinyodas

Florida

4.8/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

“You only live once...” was the mantra I uttered as I walked out of the store feeling guilty. Perhaps the high cost reflex of paying for an unknown beer was too much for this old man. Since I was feeling intimidated by the beer purchase, I put it aside for a few weeks until the moment was right. Sure enough the stars aligned and everything was going my way. I sat down to watch a good movie with my better-half, minus the nagging. Then made the perfect sandwich with Smoked turkey breast, applewood-smoked bacon, smoked Gouda, lettuce, tomatoes and Chipotle Sauce on freshly baked Tomato Basil Sourdough Bread with sweet crumb topping, but you didn't come here for all of that.

So I slightly chuckled at the thought of pulling out a beer from the wine rack. I easily untwisted the metal cap and popped the cork. Out pours a smooth creamy tan head that filled my whole glass with extreme carbonation. After the beer settles down I’m left with a dark brown beer with garnet hues. There are familiar aromas to that of other dark ales such as the English Porter that come to mind with scents of dark fruits and yeasty fresh breads. The taste is smooth with a sweet creamy body and hints of Green Apples, Figs, Prunes, Molasses, Roasted Malts and other complex baking spice flavors.

Overall the best points are the mellow flavors, smooth body and strong 9% ABV. The only downsides would be the cost, and maybe the sediments at the very bottom. Considering the high price over other similar beers, it certainly makes my Samuel Smith Porter and Oatmeal stout buys look like a bargain. However with that said, I certainly look forward to trying their other beers.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2014 23:15:22 | More by smokinyodas
Photo of Lothore
Lothore

California

3.55/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A- Deep ruddy brown color with a massive, creamy head.

S- Yeasty, plum, cherry

T- Plum, raisin, yeast, candy sugar, slight hop bitterness.

M- Creamy, medium/full bodied.

D- Fairly drinkable. Not my favorite quad but I can see how people would love this.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2014 06:23:29 | More by Lothore
Photo of BGDrock
BGDrock

Ontario (Canada)

3.8/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: gorgeous deep amber, like maple syrup; clear; sand coloured head - fine, thick, leaving loads of lace, great retention

Aroma: mellow caramel, marshmallow, fruit mash - strawberry, grape; light touch of chocolate, alcohol; comes in huge wafts from the glass, addicting

Taste & Mouthfeel: different than expected after the aroma, lighter in flavour and body; biscotti, having the touch of sweetness; there's a bitter kick in the back of the mouth, lightly astringent and coupled with alcohol burn, makes for a dry, clean finish - if short; burnt caramel flavours, but not the rich kind, again more bitter; some banana, brandy notes; gains a candy sweetness over time

Overall: a let-down after beautiful appearance and tantalizing aroma, as the flavour, while not bad, lacks real depth

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2014 22:47:05 | More by BGDrock
Photo of dbean3
dbean3

Texas

4.89/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

As I get older, I have learned to appreciate the different subtleties of beer types. Chimay Grande Reserve was the ale that especially got me to to start learning about beers and now I even brew my own occasionally. The first time I tasted Chimay, which I received as a gift, I knew the Budweisers, Millers, and Coors type beers would never be the same. I search out the microbrews and craft beers like never before.

As you have determined, I think Chimay Grande Reserve is a world-class brew that I only drink on special occasions due to its exceptional taste. I have found that if I drink only one type of brew for a while, I tend to get "tired" of it and I never want to get tired of this one.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2014 02:06:56 | More by dbean3
Photo of Nugganooch
Nugganooch

California

4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle served in Chimay chalice glass
Notes taken on 02/28/14

A: Thick sponge-like topping of khaki suds covers over a murky looking reddish brown body. Very compact head with impressive hang time and only some minor streaks of lace left scattered across the glass. Looks quite appetizing.

S: Smells of warm bread and kitchen spices with some rum soaked raisins. There is a light mineral quality to it with some mild alcohol and yeast esters to finish out the nose. Really nice malt and yeast complexities in the aroma.

T: Tastes of bready malts with loads of dried fruit notes like raisin, plum, and figs. Has that Belgian candi sugar sweetness to it but it stays more on the dry side without cloying. Spicy but not particularly clove like phenols which is nice. More of a peppery spice with some loamy earth and banana peel there. Low to moderate bitterness with some perceptible alcohol noted. Really nice and balanced overall.

M: Very creamy and soft with a moderate filling quality. Well carbed with a high amount of spritz on the palate. Finishes lightly dry and a touch thin however this is very clean overall. Some ABV warmth noted.

D: My favorite of the Chimay trinity. A really well done BSD and world class for a reason. Worth multiple visits.

Serving type: bottle

03-10-2014 21:07:32 | More by Nugganooch
Photo of PolarBear3
PolarBear3

Australia

3.99/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark, reddish colour with off white frothy head that diminishes sligtly but holds well

S - Bready, slightly sweet malts with hints of dark cherries, some spice a hint of banana and cloves

T - Similiar to nose, bready, yeasty, dark fruits including plums, cherries and raisins. Some caramel and spice with a slightly bitter finish

M - Medium bodied howver a little over carbonated

O - A nice beer with quality complex flavours that goes down well, however I prefer the Tripel any day.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2014 11:19:03 | More by PolarBear3
Photo of notchucknorris
notchucknorris

California

4.14/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a deep chestnut color with garnet highlights. A foamy beige head wells up in the glass as soon as you start to pour. Some spotty tracks of lace down the glass.

S: Spiced apples, hearty bread, chalky Belgian yeast notes, spice cake, clove and some dates.

T: Rich dark malt and dark fruit notes mingle with baking spice, Belgian yeast, cloves, some dark bread, and just a touch of booze on a drying finish. Mouthfeel is a touch light, but still smooth and complements the flavors well. To me, this doesn't come close to being as complex as a Westy 12 or Rochefort. Still, it's a great beer that deserves its accolades.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2014 02:11:24 | More by notchucknorris
Photo of JamieDuncan
JamieDuncan

Maryland

4.79/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Picked up a bomber due to high ratings and figured worth a try. Not an outstanding looking beer, head is a little thin, dissipates quickly. Smell is outstanding, absolutely has me salivating. Amazing flavor, perfect in my book, nothing to complain about. Smooth, tasty, amazingly easy to drink for 9%, wonderful beer that I will revisit as a treat due to cost.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2014 03:08:36 | More by JamieDuncan
Photo of JimiO
JimiO

Nevada

3.35/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

From a 750ml bottle

Nice rich color... reddish dark amber... cloudy... fine bubbles

Plain on the nose... some spice... cloves and raison

Not nearly as flavorful as I was expecting... yeasty/hoppy... crispy... a bit bitter... dry... cloves and sliced green apples

Feels light to medium body in the mouth

Overall... I was a little disappointed... I think it tastes better from a tap

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2014 22:48:34 | More by JimiO
Photo of ryan1788a5
ryan1788a5

Massachusetts

4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle poured into a Chimay goblet.

A: Ruby red on the pour with some burnt orange hues. Creamy, fine-bubbled off white head retains well at a quarter of an inch. Lacing leaves a thin mesh-like coating on the glass.

S: Bread pudding. Candy Apple coating. Hints of sweet ripe cherries. A bevy of spices coming from the yeast; cinnamon, brown sugar, and subtle clove. Nutty yeast, brown cocoa, thin drizzle of light caramel.

T: Candy shell. Sweet cherries and plums. Bread crust, brown cocoa, and runny light caramel. Nutty yeast. Complex yeast-derived spice flavors. Clove, brown sugar, hint of cinnamon and pepper. Fleeting tropical passion fruit esters. Pear and sliced apple. More cocoa and crust. Hollow hop bitterness balances and adds perhaps just a slight grassy note. Finish dries a bit but leaves a lingering bready and brown cocoa flavor.

M: There is some substance and a slight sense of weight in the feel, but it is heavily downplayed by a high attenuation and ample carbonation that gently lifts and scrubs. All of this leaves an airy, rounded and slightly firm feel. Mild warmth too.

O: One of the more widely known and easily attainable Trappist ales. Highly complex and easily drinkable for its size. I think the Rouge is still my favorite in the Chimay line, but this is a hell of a beer too. A must-try for any beer aficionado.

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2014 19:31:41 | More by ryan1788a5
Photo of chogm54
chogm54

Australia

4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Im not going to add anything new to a massively popular beer. Im a fan of chimay red and white, and its been a long time since i've had the blue. now its time to pull up the sleeves, not make any plans to drive, and get stuck in to a nice pint sized bottle (served in tulip glass)

A - dark brown (colour of golden syrup), pours a nice head (5mm) that stays and stays and stays. clear, but with a brown so dark it is only semi transparent.

S - despite its strength, there is not much of an alcohol smell. Cloves, coffee, raisin odours coming through, not overpowering

t - sweet, caramel tastes with a slight alcohol warming at the end. Reminds me of brandy.

m - smooth, almost creamy texture, lively carbonation, nicely balanced.

The only >8% beer that i can drink anytime, anyplace. Also the beer I recommend for those asking me about belgian beer. Always welcome.

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2014 11:06:17 | More by chogm54
Photo of j2beer
j2beer

Texas

4.54/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Great full flavored beer. Love the citrus undertones. Great balance of sweet and bitters. Only criticism is the carbonation is a bit high almost like a soda. And it's a bit pricey this would be good celebration beer instead of champagne cuz it cork pops the same. Cheers

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2014 09:50:34 | More by j2beer
Photo of BeerDrinker01
BeerDrinker01

United Kingdom (England)

4.74/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

750 ml bomber served in Chimay goblet. Dark Brown with a White slightly tanned two-finger head nice carbonation with heavy lacing. Aromas of Raisins, Fig, Prunes, Molasses, Spicy Pepper, Apple, Punchy Belgian yeast! Taste Fig, Prunes, Molasses, Roasted malt & spicy yeast Nice & warm at the back from the ABV! Mouthfeel Medium-full bodied well-balanced with High carbonation very crisp!

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2014 12:48:00 | More by BeerDrinker01
Photo of BarleyBeatsGrapes
BarleyBeatsGrapes

Connecticut

5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is the first review I'm going to write and it was this beer that inspired me. To me, this was the perfect beer. Mellow, smooth, and strong. I've been trying different porters, stouts, barley wines, and old ales but this one was the most approachable and balanced. It wasn't the best 'everyday' beer but that's not what I was looking for... Perfect sipper, great taste!

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2014 04:19:27 | More by BarleyBeatsGrapes
Photo of BierJager89
BierJager89

California

4.01/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

A: Dark purple/red with a slightly off white head.

S: Not much of a nose, somewhat citric, a few traces of distinctively Belgian yeast esters.

T: Taste has some notes of citrus, banana, grape and other fruits, more fruity Belgian esters.

M: Fuller side of medium bodied, average, if harsh, level of carbonation.

O: Slightly edges out the other two common, year-round Chimays, but it's grossly overrated. It is a really good beer, but it is not one of the best Belgian ales out there.

Serving type: bottle

01-28-2014 05:42:04 | More by BierJager89
Photo of Andrew041180
Andrew041180

Massachusetts

3.94/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured into a Chimay goblet. I poured slowly, and about a finger's worth of light, bubbly head spring up. A little fizzy looking. The head receded pretty quickly and maintains a film. The head clings to the glass, but does not form any lacing. The beer is quite dark. Very dark brown with some nice highlights when the light strikes it right.

S - Honestly, I detect almost nothing here. Some faint semi-sweet malty tones.

T - Here is where the beer starts to pick up. Something of a dark fruit sweetness with a convincing bitter presence at mid-palate. The finish evolves significantly with a dry, almost tart flavor. Nice complexity. Just a bit of alcohol detectable on the finish.

M - Excellent. Medium-full bodied with some carbonation detectable. The dry finish is great, and leaves me wanting more. Not as a means for clearing some bizarre aftertaste, but because it really is that good.

O - Slow start, but I'm warming up to it. It doesn't knock my socks off in any significant way, but I appreciate the range of feel and flavors that you get from this beer. Nice sipper.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2014 00:44:55 | More by Andrew041180
Photo of Bernoulli
Bernoulli

South Carolina

4.23/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very nice smell of grapes and beer.

Opaque (slightly-hazy) golden-brown.

1/2" head fades relatively fast with no lacing.

The stereotypical Trappist ale taste is a bit hidden by the slight grapiness. You can feel the alcohol's warmth, but the taste of alcohol isn't overpowering. A very nice warmer!

The tragedy is that we have so much to say about mediocre and bad beers, but not much to say about the great ones.

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2014 22:28:43 | More by Bernoulli
Photo of ThisWangsChung
ThisWangsChung

Maryland

3.55/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Chimay goblet, natch.

A: Pours a murky dark brown color with great opacity. The head is about two fingers high, with an off-white shade. Typical of the style, it's very airy in texture and a bit rough-looking, and its retention is decent without being spectacular. No much lacing to speak of.

S: At first, the aroma is mostly bready and peppery, lacking in both fruit esters and even darker malts. There are also touches of earth here and there. To get the most out of this beer's nose, you really have to let it warm up - this way, it will develop some nice tones of caramel, chocolate, brown sugar, cherries, and raisins. While the aroma develops into something quite good, not once does it jump out at me; it's rather mild to a fault.

T: There is a good amount of raisin flavor as soon as this hits the palate. Past the swallow, it transitions into a sweet caramel-and-chocolate flavor to go with its earthy (but not funky) yeast. There seems to be something ever-so-slightly off about this one, especially on the back end - I want to say it's kind of metallic? Yeah, that's it. Metallic. Some stank-ass cheese flavor also pops up in spurts, but I don't consider that a flaw. The complexity here is quite good.

M: The carbonation is quite intense. This makes it light-feeling and a bit prickly, but also very drinkable. Once the fizz calms down, it still remains very dry on the back end. The feel does a good job of reminding me why I enjoy my Belgian-style ales to come from Belgium itself: the carbonation doesn't try to cover up an overly sweet finish, while still retaining a complex nature.

O: Almost great, but that metallic strangeness kind of hurts. This and the mellow aroma keep it out of the fabled 4 range, sadly. I imagine this would go great with a stank-ass cheese (preferably from Chimay themselves), and this is certainly worth having again to find out. Still, my favorite (non-quad) BSDA remains Gouden Carolus Classic.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2014 22:23:14 | More by ThisWangsChung
Photo of LVituri
LVituri

Brazil

4.71/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A Chimay é outra grande cervejaria trapista belga, e essa cerveja parece ser o carro chefe do selo. Elas são mais leves e equilibradas que as outras trapistas. Menos complexas e mais versáteis. A blue é escura e forte na medida. As versões em rolha são realmente surpreendentes.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2014 13:03:20 | More by LVituri
Photo of papat444
papat444

Quebec (Canada)

4.09/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 330 ml bottle, best before 2018.

Body is chestnut colored, lots of foam, some even oozing out of the bottle. Average retention with minimal lacing, expected more. The rest is great though. Inviting aroma including spices, flavor is rich with dark plums, candied fruits, fruit cake and a bit of sugar. Overall, a great ale, just needs work on the appearance.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2014 01:42:20 | More by papat444
Photo of BeerDocT
BeerDocT

Georgia

3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ah, Chimay. Dusty, expensive bottles lining the shelves of beer stores across the globe. What's inside? What could it be? Will cost prove to be predicate to excellence?

Poured into a chilled La Trappe goblet.

Appearance 4.0: Poured out a dark amber with a nice head...well over half an inch. Good lacing.

Smell 3.75: Bouquet is subdued and very strange for this style. I smell Belgian yeast, but phenols from different styles: banana, cloves. Also, there is a nice hint of earthiness.

Taste 4.0: Front is slightly sweet, but in a warming way. Middle is silky smooth and just delightful with hints of treacly malt and some light noble hops. Finish is smooth with a big wave of malt and some interesting tastes of adjuncts, specifically corn. Aftertaste is long and silky, but sticks to the basics: malt and...well, malt.

Mouthfeel 4.0: Smooth, well-balanced and lovely on the palate.

Overall 4.0: Outstanding Belgian Dark, but not the best I have ever had. The bouquet is a bit off and the taste is somewhat one-dimensional, but -nonetheless-- this is an excellent brew. So, my advice is to save up your sheckles and buy a bottle of this to try. Then once you have done so, save up some more money (less than Chimay, BTW) and buy a bottle of St. Feuillien Speciale instead. Or, go to your local Trader Joe's and buy 750ML of a comparable beer for $5.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2014 05:35:27 | More by BeerDocT
Photo of MattBeer
MattBeer

California

3.96/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

I get why people are crazy for this beer. And don't get me wrong, I finished the whole (big, corked and basketed) bottle. But I don't think it's a world-beater.

It's beautiful, for sure. You want a strong dark ale, and you couldn't photoshop one much better.

The smell is full of dark fruit and not-overpowering sweetness. It's really inviting.

The taste is complex and delic--wait. What's that? Am I just not in love with the yeast, or maybe the esters or something? It's tough to pin down what holds this back from being amazing, which is a testament to the number and variety of flavors in it. But there's one too many cooks in the kitchen, and he's a dick.

The mouthfeel unfortunately accentuates whatever's going on in the taste that, admit it, you don't love either. I mean you may love the overALL taste, but you know something's holding it back. The prickly supercarbonation pushes whatever that thing is right into your taste buds.

When they write movie reviews and talk about flawed masterpieces, they're probably drinking this beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-12-2014 22:54:35 | More by MattBeer
Photo of dirtydisk
dirtydisk

Michigan

4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Served from a 750 ml bomber.

Appearance: murky brown - May have been overly chilled, but still looks representative of Belgian strong dark ale

Smell: liquor, Belgian yeast, and sweetness

Taste: like drinking a fine red wine. One of the most complex sips I've had. No hint of alcohol. Fruit, spice, roast malt, Belgian yeast, raisins, clove, and more

Mouthfeel: creamy, fully bodied. Traditional Belgian carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

01-10-2014 03:58:51 | More by dirtydisk
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Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
96 out of 100 based on 5,546 ratings.