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

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

5,926 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,926
Reviews: 2,134
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.93%
Wants: 236
Gots: 538 | FT: 10
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-22-2001)
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Ratings: 5,926 | Reviews: 2,134 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of exparte


3.68/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

75 cl bottle. 2009 vintage. Aroma of bubblegum, raisins, yeast, and alcohol. Dark caramel color and quite murky. Flavor is slightly sweet with a substantial alcohol bite. Fairly light and champagne-like on the palate. Finishes dry and somewhat bitter. Improves in the glass as it warms and oxidizes. This is a complex one but not as much so as I remembered and expected. I'd like to try it aged a bit longer as the alcohol was too prominent in this bottle. A little disappointing but still quite good.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2010 07:08:08 | More by exparte
Photo of thecarster1


4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a- 11.2oz bottle pouring into my chimay chalice, half finger of head fades quickly to a ring around the glass and spotty lacing - i should have poured harder, but was afraid of a head overflow, deep murky ruby/burgandy coloring, loads of floaties in a variety of sizes - i wonder if - snowflake style - no two floaties are the same?

s- my first sniff immediately brings to mind that pink 'bubblegum' medicine i so loathed as a kid. once i get past that i get deep complex malts, belgian yeast, some alcohol like sweetness that reminds me of whisky, i also get some dryness like doughy, yeasty stale bread. wow, that description sounds awful haha! ohh, the world of belgians..

t- some creamy banana, loads of deep dark fruits - fig, prunes, cooked down mascerated apples, some faint sweet alcoholic esters kick in on the end - alcohol gets much more pronounced as it warms.

m- medium to full in body, very creamy with lots of coating as it goes down. this is more carbonated than i thought it would be.

d- this is my first chimay blue, i wanted to drink this one fresh to compare later with a corked bottle i have in the cellar - if anyone reads this and has an opinion on how long to age this, please feel free to bm me. this wasn't what i expected it to be, but i've found that most belgians aren't, i'm enjoying it very much none the less. i definately prefer drinking it cooler before it warms. this isn't an everyday drinking beer, once in awhile is fine for me.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2010 01:23:37 | More by thecarster1
Photo of eduardolinhalis


4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle served in its own chalice.

A: Beautiful bottle art and label, first of all. Pours a nice dark amber to brown color. Cloudy and dirty with some particles floating around. Forms a big beige head. Good retention. A thin layer remains for long on the top. Lots of lacing are formed and left

S: Great nose. Sweet, bready and very fruity (raisins, mainly). Notes of wood, toffee, vanilla roasted malts and brown bread. Classic Belgium yeasts. Flowery hops. A bit of alcohol in the end

T: Sweet upfront. Very bready and fruity. Dark fruits, roasted malts, caramel malts. Notes of vanilla and wood. Nice hops profile. Moderate bitterness

M: Heavy, creamy and molasses body. Medium to low carbonation. Bittersweet aftertaste

O: Excellent drinkability. Excellent Trappist specimen. Absolutely recommended

Serving type: bottle

01-12-2010 21:34:56 | More by eduardolinhalis
Photo of wahhmaster


4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 11.2 oz bottle into a Chimay chalice.

Appearance: Pours a hazy dark brown color with reddish hues around the laces. Has a thick white head that dissipates slowly and leaves little lacing.

Smell: Smells strongly of dark fruits and sweet malts. Has that Belgian yeasty smell too.

Taste: Has a strong vinous taste. Starts bitter and vinous and finishes sweet and spicy. Has a noticeable alcohol flavor as well.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth and full-bodied with a nice carbonation bite.

Drinkability: Another great beer from Chimay. The Chimay line-up is one of the best in the world of beer. Certainly worth a try and something I will look for in the future.

Serving type: bottle

01-12-2010 20:27:32 | More by wahhmaster
Photo of drabmuh


4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a Chimay Goblet. I have to say before I get too far into it that this was my favorite of the three Chimays. I thought the red was going to be the best but this one was. I did not record the date but I'll assume it was a recent vintage.

Beer is brown with an offwhite / yellowish head made up of small bubbles that are collapsing slowly into one another into a medium and larger bubbles. Head has some good retention power, fueled by steady carbonation of small to medium bubbles that rise through the beer. Beer is ultimately hazy and the head leaves lacing on the sides of the glass.

Beer's aroma is sweet and bready. Good yeast character to it. I intentionally served the beer with some of the sediment, it didn't affect the clarity but I like a little yeast with my Belgians. Smells wonderful.

Beer is medium to full bodied. Sweet fruit flavors and some alcohol light up the front of the palate, beer is smooth leaving no aftertaste or anything. Second taste I pick up more yeasty character and a good breadiness. Mouthfeel is amazing, the carbonation is providing good connectivity and drinkability is really high. I absolutely slay this beer before I know it. I'm glad this is one of the more accessible Trappists, its a wonderful beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-12-2010 16:51:34 | More by drabmuh
Photo of Boneheadmx


4.6/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours out to a dark dark dark murky brown with hints of red. Head is tan colored and subsides slowly.

Smell is great! Fruity and slightly floral, with not much in the way of hops. Reminds me a bit of apples and prunes.

The taste was surprisingly fruity, with a rather nice malty finish. Surprisingly easy to drink, and not as malty as I would have thought from the look of the beer. From the taste, this is something that a non-beer-drinker could enjoy, due to it's mildness. I didn't really taste the alcohol as much, but felt it in my belly after a few sips.

Mouthfeel is fairly even and understated for a beer of this type. Not too thick, high carbonation mellows out after the pour.

Drinkability is high with this one. This beer is an example of "don't judge a book by its cover." The huge bottle and impressively dark colors seemed to promise something a bit harder to handle, not as sweet, not as subtle as this, but the smells and taste will surprise you.

Now that I know where they sell this, I will definitely get this again, quite possibly in the near future.

Serving type: bottle

01-11-2010 06:38:59 | More by Boneheadmx
Photo of Chronofied

North Dakota

4.7/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank slightly chilled, about 50 degrees, from a goblet.

Appearance - Rather murky, with a distinctly darker center, mahogany in color. The edges are a dusty amber. Very royal thick, frothy head.

Smell - Quite malty, but peppery rather than sweet. A rough, rich, toasty aroma of yeast.

Taste - A snappy, unexpected dark fruit taste right away, sweeter than the smell. The after taste is much less sweet and has a bit of alcohol heat. The heat leaves warmth in its wake rather than reducing the drinkability. Flavor only improved in richness and complexity as the beer opened up and got a bit warmer.

Mouthfeel - Slightly thicker, syrupy, decent carbonation. Sticks to the inside of you mouth.

Drinkability - Pretty drinkable, pretty recognizable. The thickness makes it quite filling, so drinking a lot might get uncomfortable. It is definitely very easy going down, and quite
gratifying when it does. A 750ml bottle might be the perfect serving amount.

Serving type: bottle

01-10-2010 05:05:47 | More by Chronofied
Photo of SLeffler27

New York

4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Properly presented in a Chimay chalice, Blue Label puts up a modest, frothy tan head that starts once the cap is removed from the bottle. This lacing accentuates the dark, ruby-brown ale with no highlights, but does put up a thin film.

The aroma is alluring immediately upon opening of the bottle with rich, fruity plum and a punch of musty yeast followed by clove, vanilla, molasses, oak and various nuances on multiple layers. This strong, dark ale delivers with each step as it continuously unfolds.

As with the nose, there is tremendous complexity ranging from raisins to plums. This is less sweet than anticipated, and woody notes come forward in the finish with a hint of hop bitterness. As it warms, the true subtlety of this elixir can be appreciated.

A dry, full-bodied ale with a quick bite of alcohol and ever present prickly carbonation.

This is an excellent sipping beer. Let it warm by your side with a book or as lubricant for conversation.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2010 12:42:28 | More by SLeffler27
Photo of jeffthecheff


4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 33 cl bottle into the Chimay Goblet. L09-493 seems to be some the date code. I couldn't find any information on it but I'm guessing this is the 49th week of 2009, (12/3/09) so its very fresh.

The pour into the Chimay goblet is beautiful. It has a murky, dark brown color with red highlights when held to the light. The Trappist logo etched on to the bottom of the glass produces a rapid stream of bubbles. The head is a very light tan color and is one of the fluffiest I've ever seen. It coats the glass, and even with the wide surface area, you can never see through the head if your looking from the top.

The aroma is fruity, but not very dark despite it's appearance. It smells like orange peel and cloves, but with enough strength to suggest this yeast worked on a big beer.

There is a lot going on in the taste of this beer. I picked up figs, green tea leaves, cola, a bit of orange, and burnt brown sugar. Finish a new flavor that is sweet and lingering. The mouthfeel on this beer is very interesting. It's creamy and robust at first, because every sip starts with the fluffy head. In the middle part of the sip, it's bubbly, dry, and light. The finish is also light but it carries the strong lingering sweetness anyway.

This beer drinks very well. I was looking at the bottom of the goblet a lot quicker than expected. Even though this is a strong beer, it's not very rich and it's not a slow sipper. It still has a high impact on the palate because of the strong flavors and sweetness, but it doesn't leave me full at all. I thought this beer was more like a quad and would be too much to pair with ordinary foods, but I think it might do well with a steak or some other meal of similar impact. I'm looking forward to trying the other Chimay ales, and using the cool goblet again.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2010 14:54:37 | More by jeffthecheff
Photo of AdmiralDiaz


4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pores from 12oz bottle. A nut brown body with a huge off white head with amazing retention. Smells of sweet malts, nuts, spice. Taste is on with. the smell - sweet malts with nuts spice and alcohol. Mouthfeel is perfect, my ideal Belgian. Medium body with good crbonation. Pretty drinkable for the alcohol.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2010 04:41:42 | More by AdmiralDiaz
Photo of jacobseyb


4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a small goblet. Pours a dark brown with a slightly red tint and some cloudiness. Golden tan head that dissipates quick and leaves little to no lacing. Spiciness is the first aroma noticed followed immediatley by the alcohol and the sweetness of the malts. Great flavors with the sweet malts and spicy tastes combined with the alcohol warming and tickling. Feel in the mouth is great with an abundance of carbonation and a clean slightly dry, though medium to full-bodied feel. A very drinkable beer but the ABV limits

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2010 02:40:50 | More by jacobseyb
Photo of Hanger


4.97/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

330 mL bottle poured into an oversized wine glass

A - Opaque red-brown with 10-15 mm of creamy head that dropped to 1-2 mm in a short time

S - Complex - dark fruits & spices along malts, some alcohol

T - similar to smell - spicy dark fruits and sweet malts. overall sweet with noticeable alcohol

M - creamy and full bodied, alcoholic aftertaste, became smoother

D - amazing - really complex and enjoyable aromas and tastes. could easily have one more, will definately drink again. quite possibly the best beer I have ever tasted

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2009 11:32:17 | More by Hanger
Photo of MrDanno96


3.93/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Chimay Goblet. Let sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes after taking it out of the fridge.

A: Pours a muddy red-brown color that lets very little light through. A nice foamy head disippated after about 10 minutes, leaving about 1/2 a finger of head primarily around the rim of the brew. Almost no lacing.

S: Roasty malts and dark fruits like raisins and plums. Hints of molasses and alcohol are also evident.

T: Follows nose pretty closely. Lots of sweet dark fruits and sweet malts. Alcohol is also pretty apparent to the point that it detracts from the flavor just a little. Overall, however, a tasty Belgian Dark.

M: A pretty full body with just a hint of dryness in the finish. There are definite warming effects from the alcohol as it goes down.

D: A solid Strong Dark Ale overall, but I like Maudite just a little more I think. I wish the alcohol presence was just a little more subtle.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2009 05:20:05 | More by MrDanno96
Photo of bob3701

New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Part of a gift pack poured into the Chimay chalice provided. Nice bubblly head that quickly disapates into a ring with no real lacing. Heavey aroma of fruit and spice plus a scent of alcohol. Taste is the same with dark fruit flavors mixed with a heavy addition of spices and you can taste the high alcohol in this brew. This is not a beer you can drink a lot of in one sitting, needs to be sipped to enjoy.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2009 15:12:54 | More by bob3701
Photo of animalchin

North Carolina

4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This is my first review. My old man bought me the Chimay variety pack that comes with an 11.2 fluid ounce bottle of Premiere, Tripel and Grande Reserve for my twenty-first birthday. Damn good gift.

A - Poured into a Snifter glass provided by the pack. Appears a burnt red that turns slightly orange towards the bottom.

S - The fruits are most prevalent - plum being the primary. Also a brief sense of clove.

T - May be the most complex experience my taste buds have ever taken on. A multitude of sweet fruits and spices - once again the clove and dark fruits being most prevalent. The alcohol doesn't make an appearance until a little after.

M - Extremely creamy and heavy that is assisted by a modest amount of carbonation. Very pleasing and not overbearing at all.

D - Definitely fills up fast - for me at least. I would have another in an instant if I could.

The Grande Reserve is simply incredible. I'm still working on the beer as this is being written, and I am not looking forward to the last sip.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2009 01:55:29 | More by animalchin
Photo of Yoonisaykul

Quebec (Canada)

4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml caged and corked brown bottle with blue label. Best before 2014. Very nice cork comes out with a satisfying pop and let's out some nice ''beer smoke'' and kind of tootsie roll like smell. Poured into Jacobsen snifter. Was going to use my Brassin D'Hiver tulip but the back label shows a chalice and so I thought my snifter is a closer match.

L-Very active light-beige head with bubbles of different sizes settles into a 2mm creamy foam. The brew is a very dark brown similar to filter coffee. Almost opaque. When poured looked syrupy but it really isn't that viscous.

S-Dried fruit maybe figs, Yeast, A little tootsie roll, A little salt. Miniscule bit of vinegar but don't let that put you off. Strangely I smell a bit of a fresh vegetable. Tiny bit of alcohol.

T- Starts sweet, Taste follows the smell except for the vegetable part. Cloves. Finishes a little metallic. As it warms, you taste more and more alcohol.

M-Great from the very first sip. Full mouth feel. Foams up a bit as you are about to swallow it. Warming feeling though alcohol taste isn't that strong. Although I wouldn't mind there being more, I think this beer might have a perfect level of carbonation.

D-Great drinkablity... once you taste take the first sip. I don't always feel like drinking one of these but once I start... terrific. I remember the first time I had one. I went to sleep still thinking about it, licking my lips (kind of) trying to remember the tastes and mouth feel.

A great experience. This may very well change, but this is one of my favorite beers, and I am more of a IPA/hops kind of guy.
Taste this beer. Just make sure you don't need to be sober after. For some reason after having one of these I feel tipsier than when I drink some higher ABV's .

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2009 23:54:53 | More by Yoonisaykul
Photo of deapokid


4.83/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Enjoyed in my Chimay goblet:

Boasts a thin white head with a dark black tea-esque coloration. Liquid is red when held to a lamp, but it's much murkier and imposing when moved out of direct light. The look of this Belgian classic is immediately recognizable and oft imitated.

First smells to hit your nose are a warm waft of alcohol, cherries, dates and other dark, bold fruits. Possesses a sweet, candied aroma that is certainly enchanting.

Flavors are complex; cherry, chamomile and nutmeg are the most prevalent. These tastes are accompanied by a strong alcoholic backbone and profound floral overtones. Conclusion packs a roasted quality as well, which adds a nice muskiness to the total package. A total mindblower!

Liquid coats the tongue like cognac or a smooth, sipping whiskey. It possesses a zippy tingle at the end, which adds pronunciation to the dry notes.

This strong ale is almost too drinkable. My glass was gone before I knew it and I couldn't help but yearn for another taste of this delicious and exemplary Belgian. Definitely an all-time favorite!

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2009 16:52:29 | More by deapokid
Photo of Richardberg

New York

4.03/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - poured into a goblet. Big thick foam, opaque brown body with violet fringes.

S - lots of grape, apple.

T - as above well blended with sweet caramel malt, alky quite present

M - medium body, not much carbonation within, but remaining foam makes things very smooth

D - fairly noticeable 9% but still drinkable thanks to classic, well integrated flavors

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2009 03:50:01 | More by Richardberg
Photo of whtguitarguy


4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

I was impressed by the flavor because alcohol content is rather high. Pours to a golden reddish brown color with a medium sized foamy head, that laced the glass. It has a sweet alcoholic aroma with hints of apple, cranberry, maybe a little a little raspberry. There is a definite apple character in the taste which makes this amazing. The sweetness covers up the alcohol flavor well. Mouth is heavy, coating to the inside of the mouth, and the aftertaste is quite pleasant. It is smooth, and not too carbonated.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2009 00:37:21 | More by whtguitarguy
Photo of cosmicevan

New York

4.72/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 11.2oz short bottle into Chimay goblet.

A - Poured a deep thick reddish brown with thin head that hung around. Nice even carbonation bubbling from all throughout the glass.

S - Grape, apple, cranberry, fruit medley. Really strong and really sweet in a good way.

T - Fantastic. Thick and rich fruit medley of grape, cherry, apple, and plum.

M - Vibrant and alive. Good aftertaste. Very even feeling.

D - Very drinkable and delicious. Somewhat thick and filling though so I couldn't see drinking a lot of this in an evening.

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2009 23:23:44 | More by cosmicevan
Photo of jorg2619


4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Christmas is here and I thought I would crack a Chimay Blue label. This beer pours very dark opaque brownish red. The head is generous at first and forms a thin solid line of foam after. The smell of belgium yeast and malt is a preview for the taste spicy clove and sweet maltiness. The mouth feel is good, smooth but by no means thin. the qualm I can find with this beer is that I found the alcohol burn to be a little pronounced, but after a glass or so I stopped noticing it.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2009 23:22:35 | More by jorg2619
Photo of bigfnjoe


4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a ~12 ounce short bottle into a Chimay glass. Pours a dark brown with a 2 finger light caramel head. Strong aroma, though I can't put my finger on it. Taste is sweet, but the alcohol comes through as well. While heavy, it goes down very smooth and feels very light in the mouth. Definitely more of a sipper, but absolutely delicious.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2009 20:59:05 | More by bigfnjoe
Photo of Pleepleus

New York

4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this baby sitting in my fridge for a while (03/07), my buddy said he liked Belgians so I finally decided tonight's the night. Poured from Bomber to Chimay (and Duvel) glass a thick deep brown with an inch of cream colored head that slowly reduced to sketchy lacing. Smell is heavy spices cloves and cinnamon. Taste is better than I remembered. Fruit, spice and Belgiam yeast meld into a fantastic blend of flavors, with a hint of booziness. I will be replacing this one next time I hit the store. This is a treat that should be in everyones stash.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2009 03:27:17 | More by Pleepleus
Photo of Shadman

Alberta (Canada)

4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark Cola brown. Shows some reddish brown highlites when held directly in front of the light. Lot's of head production, typical Belgian.

Dried candied date aroma along with some good old fashioned yeastiness. Some alcholic vapor noted as well.

A very tasty sweet malt bomb. Sweet malts, some dry apple, and then the booze warms up the palate along with some nice dark toffee flavours. Finishs dry due to the high abv level with a slight spiciness, clove I believe..

Nice, moderate to full mouthfeel. Not to sticky sweet.

A fine example of the style.


Serving type: bottle

12-21-2009 03:32:53 | More by Shadman
Photo of timrosenblatt


4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Mmm. Delicious. It's a strong drink, but doesn't knock me over. This is some ninja alcohol. I could definitely drink this often.

It's not crazy carbonated like St Bernardus. The cork didn't try to blow my head off, and the head settled low quickly. Still left a great smell in the glass (using a wine glass since the bottle suggests a goblet instead of a pint glass).

I think I'd like to drink this with some sushi, it reminds me of a JB roll. Belgian sushi...why not?

Serving type: bottle

12-21-2009 01:49:45 | More by timrosenblatt
Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
96 out of 100 based on 5,926 ratings.