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

Not Rated.
Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue)Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,240 Reviews

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Reviews: 2,240
Hads: 7,190
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 5.14%
Wants: 408
Gots: 1,408 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Bières de Chimay S.A. visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-22-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (6) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,240 | Hads: 7,190
Photo of TPSReports
3.88/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 22oz bottle served at 48 degrees from my cellar. The is no date on the bottle but a marking of LAM-465, whatever that means.

Pours handsomely into my chalice with a nice finger and half brown head -- mix of small and medium bubbles. The head dissipates over the course of a minute unti is a slight coating on the surface.

This is a fairly dark beer -- not black but seemlingly eggplant dark. (I'm colorblind so not telling what it really looks like to everyone else.)

This a delightful beer that is overpowering the screaming of my 2 year old upstairs. Well, almost. This There is a slight hint of alcohol is in the taste, but not overpowering or unenjoyable. Up front, a doughy malt flavor combined with the yeast. Not as much fruit as I expected to linger on the palate.

This is a smooth drinking brew with just the right tingle of carbonation and hops in the finish. I'm glad that I have this whole bottle to myself for my first experience with Chimay. I will buy this Reserve again, but will look for it in smaller bottles. (1,041 characters)

Photo of necoadam
4.33/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured out a deep shade of copper with some good ruby highlights. Big head as well with this one which had to settle down. Smell consisted of yeast at first, but some big dark fruit aromas surge forth. Some underlyinng of malts and roasted aromas. Taste was good. Complex flavors which included dark fruits, yeast, nuts, malts, slight hops, chocolate and roasted flavors. Finished dry which was good to see. Mouthfeel was medium-full boded with good carbonation. The best out of the Chimay lineup for sure. No problems with this beer whatsoever. Recommended. (558 characters)

Photo of JohnfromDublin
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tasted bottle on 6th June 2005, best by date "before end 2009" batch number LAM-377 (2003).
Poured into Chimay chalice a pleasent dark brown (touch red) with cloud from the contained yeast sediment. A wonderful creamy head formed, a little reminiscent of draught Guinness. This head was quite unlike the other two Chimay Trappists. Appearence reminded me of a large Irish Coffee!

The smell was surprisingly faint, hard to know what it reminded me of; not unpleasent though.

The taste was fairly complex, with roasted malt, slightly burnt blackcurrant with a nice aftertaste lingering. Not too alcoholic despite the 9% present.

The mouthfeel was quite the smoothest I have tasted.

Overall this is one of the best crafted beers I have sampled. In that I mean the full gamut from taking the glass to one's lips, through taste, mouthfeel, swallow and aftertaste are a seemless flow. Excellent.
Hey! My glass is empty!

NOTE: tasted 2004 batch on 31st Oct 2005. All of the above notes apply except for an improved smell. Very nice beer; DO NOT OVERCHILL! (1,066 characters)

Photo of alexgash
4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 oz. bottle sampled at a small little cafe in Florence. Pours a dark, raisiny murky cola brown with a cobweb-lace-inducing light brown head. Muy nice looking. Nose is dark fruits: plums, raisins, vinous grapes. Some chocolate and roasted notes come through. Light, but crescendo-ing bitterness leads to a yeasty, sherry-ish finish that's drier than you'd think. Full bodied and rich with a nice, creamy feel that never gets cloying. Not my favorite Trappist, but plenty good and you have to appreciate the availability. (523 characters)

Photo of theozag
3.88/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

start to finish, this brew looks exactly the same. it'd be a good pint to hide behind, in fact, because it is totally opaque. its color is a slightly-dark brown and it sports a beige-to-tan head that remains a few minutes after pouring.

aroma of this beer is not particularly noticable, but it does have a very pleasant dark chocolate note.

chimay blue starts outstandingly sharp with its roasted malt flavors immediately obvious. it hits your tongue with a distinct bite and from the first sip your tastebuds are "off to the races." settles on your tongue with a distinctly full body and all the richenss you might expect from a high-end after-dinner chocolate. flavors of this brew include carmel, whipping cream, cinnamon, coffee - all over a chocolate-like foundation. finishes much sharper than it starts or settles, as it rolls from the tongue with a strong hop bite and leaves behind a creamy but markedly long-lasting aftertaste (which thankfully isn't too oppressive).

in a single sentence, the best way i can explain this beer is: "like drinking a coffee-dipped chocolate bar that finishes stronger than it starts."

pour and enjoy! (1,154 characters)

Photo of Brian700
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one pours a dark brown with a tan head that sticks around for a long time. Excellent aroma. It smells of dark fruit, alcohol, and a little spice. The taste is also a little spicey with flavors of some of the darker variety fruits such as dates, plum, and raisins. The mouthfeel is good. Perfect amount of carbonation for this brew. I would say this is a very drinkable beer considering the Alcohol content. I would definately recommend this beer to anyone who likes great beer. (482 characters)

Photo of Andreji
4.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've finally managed to age a beer for further than 6 months.

Poured from a year old 75cl cork-top bottle.

As always, the appearance is as stunning, a creamy tan top, with a good retention, the remaining foam stuck to the sides of my glass, no internal fizzyness, quite a still head.

The smell is fantastic. alcoholey, yes, but with a scent of rum...red fruits, just a slight astringency that is nonetheless discarded, i dunno how to say this, but I'm definetly taken to my mother's christmas dark cake....

The taste...I wish I was more eloquent in my english. the bitterness comes ahead rather than at the end, but blends with a beautiful fruity sweetness, a bit cola-ish, a bit citrusy at times...even a bit floury.

The mouthfeel is just right for the style. the alcohol shows off undiscrete, around a fizzy, yet medium to heavy mouthfeel...

The drinkability, well, as always. i've said it- the alcohol is there, no one's hiding it. but god, don't I crave for another? (990 characters)

Photo of rousee
4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 750 ml brown bottle that I have had in my fridge for a while.

Purple-brown cola like color forms a 3-5 mm head of active foam which is of a violet tint. Settles quickly.

Berry-currant mixture on the nose with some mustiness. Smell is milder than most Belgians of this style.

Fairly smooth floral taste with some grassiness present also. There isnt a real dominant maltiness or hoppiness with this beer. It does finish slightly sweet but not sticky. Pretty tasty actually. Mouthfeel is better than average for this style. It doesn't blow you away with excessive carbonation but it does have some prickly feeling on the back of the throat. No 9% abv heat either. Pretty well done.

Its a tad better than average on drinkability for this style. A little too strong abv-wise for me to really consider it very drinkable. (833 characters)

Photo of misterscooter
4.46/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

It is odd. As I was tasting this beer for the first time, I wasn't sure if it lived up to the expectations but as I look at my ratings for the five categories, it really was a great beer.

This is a great looking beer, especially poured into the right kind of glass. Big, healthy head with a dark chocolate color on the beer. I expected it to look lighter but this one poured dark. The smell is lightly sweet and malty. Nothing too much but simple and pure, with perhaps a bit of flower fragrance.

This beer feels great in your mouth. You notice the carbonation but only because it is there, not because it gets in the way. The bubbles are very fine, like champagne, and add to the feeling. It is smooth and chocolatey, a great malt flavor when it first hits your tongue. As it moves back and you swallow it, the light, dry hops add some bite. This is the reverse to a lot of beers I've had where the dryness leads and the malt finishes. The alcohol content wasn't noticeable, either. It blends in well. And since it is a beer you want to slow down and savor, it shouldn't be a problem as you enjoy it. (1,107 characters)

Photo of FLAbeergutinMASS
4.82/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had been on the fence about this beer because of all the Trappist beers, this seems to be the one I see the most. I guess that's a good thing considering the quality of the beer.

A truly beautiful appearance, creamy head that took a minute of so to setting. Gave off wonderful aromas- peach, clove and that unmistakable Trappist trademark of alcohol esters. Tremendous lacing.

Phenomenal taste. I find myself inhaling the vapors before every sip. Each sip starts robustly and ends smoothly, tickly on the mouth. Warming me on a miserable late spring New England afternoon. (580 characters)

Photo of DrainBamage
4.64/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark reddish copper with a about an inch of head. Half of the head fades away. It's highly carbonated and there is lots of yeast floating in it. The smell is awesome, quite strong and you can instantly smell malt and fruit. The taste is very smooth and strong with hints of fruit. Mouthfeel is smooth and nicely carbonation.At first I didn't really care for this ale, but after just a few more sips it grew on me rather quick. The only thing that might turn some people off is the amount of yeast in the beer. I've never seen so much yeast before, but I definately still enjoyed this one. (596 characters)

Photo of pentathlete
3.83/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark purply brown. Foamy head, light carbonation. Not much in the nose. Smells like a sugary Belgian. Taste is citrusy, plum and alcohol. Mouthfeel is medium, I expect more fullness from a strong dark. Despite the alcohol bite, this is a smooth beer. I prefer the red over this, but I wouldn't pass one up if offered. (325 characters)

Photo of hefevice
4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. Poured a slightly hazy (as far as I could tell) dark chocolate amber with a good creamy head and plenty of lacing. Aroma was much more subtle than expected, with very little hint of the high alcohol content. Subtle sweet caramel malty notes. This extends through to the taste which starts sweet and malty and finishes with a slightly dry alcoholic bite. Mouth is quite creamy, I think the carbonation is about right. This is a very smooth, subtle strong dark which seems to improve with each sip. (504 characters)

Photo of beercollector
4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tonight was my Belgiam night. This was teh second and probalby should have been the finisher rather than the Triple.

This pours into a Chimay glass with a big frothy light brown head. The head is long lasting and has good lacing. This pours with a light cloudyness.

It has a mild aroma of malt and some alcohol.

Thhis is a malty full bodies beer with a creamy mouthfeel and soft carbonation. It has an average flavor duration with a moderate to heavy sweetness. Light acidity and bitterness offset by the sweet malt that has a caramel flavor that lasts as a nice aftertaste. (584 characters)

Photo of gotbeer
4.64/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 bottle with a 10/03 date aged one and a half year.

This was the first Trappist ale that I ever tasted, and it is still a solid choice. It may not have the mystique of Westy 12, or the incredible complexity of Rochefort 10, but it's flavor may be overlooked due to it's availability. It has a lot of flavors and complexity. It has great fruit flavors, and nice complexity. It's a great beer all around.

It's easy to find bottles on the shelf that have been aged for a year or two, and they are great with a couple years under their belt. (546 characters)

Photo of mynie
4.53/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have aged this bad fucker for a whole year, and I was told by the somewhat trustworthy man at the store that it was a year old when I bought it. And now it's time to consume.

Pours like a nice BSDA, if that's even a proper abbreviate acronym. Dark amber, like maple syrup, only all hue-y, like it's lighter at the bottom of the glass than it is at the top and it's not just a trick of light because I've gone all over the place with this glass and it keeps doing the same the thing.

Smells like malt, fruit, and flowers. Grape and daisies. There's no smell of alcohol, which is great.

Tastes wonderful! Grapes upfront, plums in the middle moving into grain and a fantastic fruity zip at the end. This is so smooth I cannot believe that it's 9 percent ABV. Complex and fantastic.

Truly a beer that lives up to its hype. (834 characters)

Photo of orbitalr0x
3.85/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours into my Chimay chalice a deep brown with hints of red shining through from the light. A head of tightly grouped bubblies sits on top. Aromas are floral and spicy with hints of candi sugar, raisins, fresh bread and fruits. A bit mellow, yet intriguing at the same time.

First sip brings a floral and spicy onslaught with hints of cinammon and cloves. There's a nice candy sugar sweetness with some fruitiness and a tasty yeast profile. Almost champagne like with the carbonation and body. A tasty brew..but I was expecting a bit more.

Mouthfeel is fairly light with a hefty amount of carbonation. I'd like to see the bubbles cut down a bit as it's a bit much. For a 9% brew this is very drinkable...I'm only drinking the 11.2oz bottle..however a 750 would be no problem. (781 characters)

Photo of ypsifly
3.68/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a stubby 11.2oz into a chalice. No dates.

Dark ruby with a tan head of a couple inches that falls to a thin, ringed veil with decent lacing.

I found the smell to be a disappointment. There's some bread made with dark fruits back there, but you really gotta reach/sniff for it.

Tastes much bolder than it smells. Fruity with a decent malt backbone, quick notes of sugar and spices with a mellow hop finish. No alcohol detected.

Has a mouthfeel that is perfect for what I prefer in this style: Full but not sticky like an Impy Stout. The abv and price (I paid $7+ for an 11.2oz!!) hurt this one on drinkability.

This is a great brew, but for the money Uni's Terrible, Trois Pistoles or Maudite is a better choice (738 characters)

Photo of Pingotas
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Long pour of red-rock, earth-toned and slighly less aromatic brew than others in the class.

Coarser fizzling to the tongue. There is a remote suggestion of aged, smoked canadian bacon (honest) that curiously enhances the flavor of the fruit ester medley. It works, but the lingering taste of some phenolic residue limited my drinkability score.

Nonetheless, an impressive contender in the line-up. (403 characters)

Photo of santoslhalper
3.75/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearence: Pours a glowing ruby red with a thin collar of head that is a creamy beige.

Smell: The smell is of sticky sweet malts and loads of candi sugar.

Taste and Mouthfeel: It's very fruity, the predominate fruit being grape, with a suprising amount of fizziness that I feel is uncalled for. The alcohol is incredibly well hidden, and the beer is balanced very well. The mouthfeel is way too thin, and isn't satisfying.

Drinkability and Overall: A classic ale that may be a bit overrated. It's a very good beer, but not as good as it could be. A tad dissapointing, but enjoyable none-the-less. (606 characters)

Photo of goodbyeohio
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

every once in a while you're at the packey, and you start thinking about all of the thomas hooker, lagunitas, westvleteren, etc. in your closet. a few years ago, i'd be drinking chimay as my 'special' beer.. now it's a liquor store staple that defines any place with an import section. instead of passing and dismissing, i thought i'd indulge myself in a little 'christmas past'.. picked up a blue stubby.

served at cellar temp in proper chimay glassware.
dark ruby color, practically solid. little light gets through. head all over the place leaving a wispy yet resilient lacing on the chalice.
odor is very doughy, dissipating along with the head. notes of banana and lots of spice back up the bread nose. cinnamon and clove are most prevalent here.
tastes as i remember it.. smooth and yeasty with a slight metallic tinge and the subtlest hints of dark fruits. not overwhelming in any way, but still mighty flavorful. this beer floats around the middle of the way for trappists.

tastes the most like unibroue's dark ales.. more than almost any belgian except for the unibrew (?) lucifer, et al.

next step is to try more of this aged. a solid brew for sure. the king of beers for the uninitiated holds up to nostalgia.. somewhat. (1,244 characters)

Photo of Wonka
4.01/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

1 PT. 9.4 FL. OZ.

Appearance – slightly opaque red/brown body with misty particulates floating; massive, frothy, almost cream-colored head early that holds strong; bubbles constantly rising to feed the head; lace is a winner

Smell – yeast with a bit of astringent; dark fruit, grains and candy sweets work in the back

Taste –really nice balance; yeasty; almost-medicinal alcohol close is a bit too strong along with a bit of tartness and some grains

Mouthfeel – rising early from a rather full point; enjoyable (and its fullest) in the middle where an army of tiny bubbles fill the void between the tongue and the roof of the mouth; alcohol cleans the palate to close, but occasionally the fullness can barge right through the end of the feel

Drinkability – relatively smooth but I imagine it could be better with time; the feel can be great but the close is a bit overpowering at the moment; it’s the time between the sip that sticks with me here

This one tastes ripe. I’d like to come back to Chimay Bleu 09/04 at 2 6-month intervals. (1,092 characters)

Photo of BobLuvBeer
4.67/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Amber brown color, with a nice creamy mocha chocolate colored head. Mixtures of alcohol malt and spice in the nose. Taste starts lite, with roasted malt on the tongue. Finishes with a strong dose of alcohol bite, which leaves a tingle on the taste buds as it fades away ever so slowly. Outstanding! (298 characters)

Photo of kmpitz2
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured a dirty brown colot with a 2 finger head that stuck around rather well. The nose was light, with a slight raisin and slight spiceyness. The flavor was nice, with a raisiney and spicey quality with a touch of alcohol to accentuate the spice. The feel was moderate with a decent carbonation. I would like a touch more body on it. Overall, everything seemd a bit thin for me. I enjoyed it though. (409 characters)

Photo of ommegangpbr
3.5/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From an 11.2 ounce bottle poured into a chalice/goblet.
I was expecting a lot more from this beer, particularly for the price I paid for it. A bit more bitter and a a lot less complex than I was expecting as well; much less sweet than other trappist ales I've had, which can be good or bad depending on your mood.the lack of cloying sweetness is appreciated. Perhaps burned or almost burned caramel is a fair comparison as far as flavor goes.
The alcohol is too noticeable in my opinion and the mouthfeel is pretty flat.
Pours a lovely deep, dark brown and is a lovely amber when held up to light.
Didn't get too much of a bouquet from it. What I was able to smell was relatively pleasant.
In my mind, certainly an above average brew but far from superior. (761 characters)

Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
95 out of 100 based on 2,240 ratings.