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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.

6,024 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,024
Reviews: 2,136
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.93%
Wants: 242
Gots: 591 | 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)
View: Beers (5) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,024 | Reviews: 2,136 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of sweemzander


4.68/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750mL corked bottle poured into a tulip glass. 02/09 printed on the cork.

(A)- Pours a dark purple to black hue with reddish highlights that produced an effervescent white to off-white bubbly & foamy head with great retention.

(S)- Dark berry fruits amidst some bananna & yeast characteristics. A twist of lemon.

(T)- Nice and velvety dark fruits with some lemon & banana thrown into the mix. Very fresh and crisp. Some yeasty clay funk that is always good yet offers and edge into the complex body.

(M)- Plenty of carbonation that almost fizzes to life on the tongue, but it fits the beer and its style well. Has a superb balance with all components yet is layered and complex within its simple yet broad flavors. Superb alcohol (9%) integration. Incredibly smooth; only gets better as it warms up a bit believe it or not.

(D)- I always look forward to drinking this fantastic beer. Also, because of that, I never manage to hang onto a bottle for very long. I look forward to the day of having an aged bottle of this. But anyway, Chimay Blue is a fantastic beer that is even better when enjoyed with a friend, I was feeling pretty good after drinking the whole bottle!

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2009 21:30:34 | More by sweemzander
Photo of beertunes


4.55/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into 10oz goblet. Poured that beautiful, deep, rich reddish brown that has come to be the standard for the style. The beer had a short tan head that dissipated quickly, leaving just wisps of lacing.

The aroma was rich and earthy, with the sweet fruit notes upfront and the solid malt foundation holding up the back. The flavors followed along but were even richer, fuller and more complex. There was a slight yeast taste mixed with the fruit flavors.

The body is full, smooth and substantial without being heavy. Drinkability is excellent, several of these went down very easy with a slice of rich chocolate cake while reading a book at one of local cafe's.

Overall, a standard of the style. A must try.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2009 20:59:17 | More by beertunes
Photo of mirish72


4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had been saving a bottle in the basement for a while and finally decided to break it out tonight.

Poured into a Chimay goblet. Pours a dark mahogeny with flecks of reddish brown, visible yeast in the bottle.

Has a sweet, fruity aroma, almost wine-like in the nose. Mild carbonation and a full, balanced and smooth taste.

Overall, a very enjoyable beer and a great representation of the syle, just wish I had the big bottle instead.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2009 03:45:49 | More by mirish72
Photo of seand


4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from an 11.2oz bottle.

A: Pours a dark, fairly opaque brown, with several fingers of foamy tan head. The head retains fairly well, but doesn't leave a great deal of lacing.

S: Earthy Belgian spices and a background of biting alcohol.

T: The Belgian spices are present, along with a mild sweetness. Finishes slightly astringent, but certainly not unpleasantly so.

M: Carbonation feels strong on the tip of the tongue, but finishes almost watery. Medium body.

D: Drinks easily enough, though watch out for the 9% ABV.

A pretty good example of the style; enjoyable, but I wouldn't call it outstanding.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2009 05:18:53 | More by seand
Photo of TLove

District of Columbia

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

(From Notes)

Without a doubt, one of the best of its kind.

Full, deep brown color with a yeast-laden 9% woosh of a smell that possesses scents of dark sugars, Norton grape, and majoram (east Indian spice). Has an uber-creamy, light brown head that settles slowly and patiently. Floral taste flows into a yeast-centric raisin and fig body with a clove punch and an incredibly round, estery mouthfeel that warms in the mouth as the malt matures.

Fruity, but in a fig sort of fruity way, with a round, peppery, malty, incredibly complex and balanced body that also possesses a certain nuttiness to it. Very smooth. Very round. The sugars and the 9% ABV hit hard even after only a few months out of the brewery.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2009 02:00:56 | More by TLove
Photo of mightymoksha


4.88/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served in oversized wine glass.

Pours a cloudy mahogany. A frothy, beige head retains well, lasting all the way down, leaving thick lacing every step of the way.

Nose is very complex, with pleasant aromas of cloves, raisins, pepper/spice, dates, green pears and fruity esters. Brown sugar, wood and alcohol aromas are also present, albeit more subdued.

Taste is heavenly. A huge dark fruit character steals the show at first taste, with fig, date and raisin notes being the most prominent. The flavor then assumes notes of plum, smooth cacao, clove, brown sugar and a very faint cinnamon. Finish is beautiful, a slightly dry, slightly spicy velvety sweetness. As the beer warms, multiply this by 5.

The carbonation and high alcohol content tingle the palate, wonderfully complimenting that velvety smoothness referenced above. Swishing some around creates a decadent treat for the tongue.

Despite the high alcohol, it is quite drinkable. The alcohol, while present, is very elusive, making the temptation for another glass even more difficult to resist.

This is beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2009 04:07:12 | More by mightymoksha
Photo of corby112


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

Pours a cloudy dark chocolate chestnut brown with dark amber edges when held to a light source and a thick frothy, pillowy light tan head. Excellent retention, only slowly settling into a lasting cap that lasts throughout, leaving chunks of soapy lacing in it's path.

Slightly spicy peppery aroma with a lot of sweet estery Belgian yeast, chocolate, candy sugar and dark fruits; plum, raisin, prune, fig, etc.

Soft carbonation up front that subdues a bit when the beer warms. Lots of sweet dark fruit character with hints of fige, prune, raisin and plum as well as some silky chocolate and caramel. Very faint sour presence with some pleasant spiciness. There's some cinnamon, brown sugar and candy sugar that provides an excellent balance and complexity to this amazing beer. The alcohol presence is there but the high ABV is very well masked making it dangerously drinkable. One of my all time favorites.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2009 08:04:38 | More by corby112
Photo of donniecuffs

New Jersey

4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Into a chalice, poured a deep dark brown, with two fingers of mocha-colored head and very good lacing. The aroma was a beautiful mix of tart cherry, plum, raisin, oak, clove, coriander, biscuit, and yeast. The flavor revealed all of the above in copious amounts, however the alcohol wasn't very well masked, and the after-burn was a little too much. Nicely smooth and surprisingly carbonated for a thick beer. Good to sip, but difficult to finish an entire 750ml in one sitting, especially because of the alcohol burn.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2009 04:32:32 | More by donniecuffs
Photo of Casey10


4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Finally got around to reviewing this one, actually had this from a 11.2 oz bottle.

A Dark Brown quick but samll head once poured into a beer chalice.

S - slight hints of sugars. clove, dark rasion/plum.

M - fizzy, carbonated, slight tingly feel as beer went down.

D - Without a doubt a great Belgian, must have. This is a must have beer!!!

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2009 06:03:32 | More by Casey10
Photo of Whiteweasel


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

Oh the anticipation...my adventures in craft beer have finally taken a giant leap with my first Belgian Trappist ale. This bottle has been sitting in my cabinet for weeks, just waiting for the right time to be enjoyed.

Poured into a wide mouthed wine glass/goblet from a bottle bought in Sept 09 with 09/08 marked on the cork. Enjoyed this momentous occasion with my roommate and fellow advocate Heissebier

Appearance: Absolutely gorgeous. Beautiful brown colour, almost opaque from all the sediment. Head was small, but this might have been from the serving temperature. It is very persistant however, and it mixes around on the surface which only whets my appetite even further.

Smell: At first the scent could only be described as "ohmygod"... However after a little thought, a very warm, sweet fruity and floral aroma, with something almost like pepper. Very estery with traditional ale banana and clove scents, only even better. There really is something almost indescribable about this scent. Transports me

Taste: Such a complex taste, this is going to be difficult...Definitely exhibits the traditional characters of the ale, a banana/clove taste, but also has something of a grape or red wine element to it that I've never really experienced before. It has a distinctive nuttiness to it probably from the yeast that Chimay uses. Fantastic finish; its so smooth and pleasant. The aftertaste is malty and wheaty and very sweet but not in an overdone sort of way. Absolutely incredible taste, and certainly the best beer I've had to this point

Mouthfeel: You can certainly feel the alcoholic content in this beer, and it leaves you a mild boozy warmth in your mouth and down your throat. Very nice level of carbonation which tingles in your mouth and compliments the booziness

Drinkability: I would drink this every day if I could. Hell, I would take a vow of silence and become a trappist monk if I could drink this every day. It's just that good. However the only thing that I hold against this beer is that it is 9% abv, and unless you have a friend with you, the bottle practically begs to be drank all at once, leaving you potentially giddy from something else besides the deliciousness of the Chimay.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2009 20:26:08 | More by Whiteweasel
Photo of heissebier


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

This beer has been sitting in my roommate's fridge since early September. After much admiration and anticipation, it's finally time to try this world class beer!

Appearance- Rich hazy color with a caramel colored head.
Smell- Incredibly complex. Lots of sweet floral scents with hints of pepper and malt.

Taste- The only way to truly appreciate the taste of this world class beer is to try it for yourself. Good carbonation with a melody of flavors and a sweet, fruity finish. As the beer warms up the flavor really comes out.

Mouthfeel- Orgasmic. Rich and complex without being overbearing.

Drinkability- A beer to savor, a little bit goes a long way. This beer has incredible staying power and the flavor continues to develop long after each sip. That being said, I could drink it all day every day. Leaves a warm feeling inside of you!

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2009 20:26:07 | More by heissebier
Photo of OlRasputin989


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

Served in Chimay chalice

A: an off white bubbly head atop a very hazy brown brew. fades quickly to a thin layer of remaining bubbles in the middle of the glass (thanks to the etching in the glass)

S: chocolate covered raisin, belgian candy sugar, a slight smell of belgian yeast, and a smell of wood

T: sweet plum, belgian sugars, hint of alcochol, and wood flavor that finishes with plum, raisin bread, peppery notes and more candy sugar sweetness.

M: A medium-full body brew with a fizzy carbonation that fades to a slightly off-dry

Overall, This beer is a great classic. It's an easy drinker that is also complex and sophisticated. The abv is hidden well, or else covered up by rich flavor. The flavors become more pronounced as it warms, but this beer is best right out of the fridge in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2009 04:32:55 | More by OlRasputin989
Photo of zoso493

North Carolina

4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 330 ml bottle into my Chimay chalice

Appearance: Pours a deep mahogany color with a fluffy one-finger head.

Smell: Smells of yeast and malts with some dark fruit mixed in there. Maybe some dates, raisins and apple. Also just a touch of toffee and brown sugar.

Taste: The dark fruit again come out with a big malty presence up front. Finishes with a wonderful sharp, dry burst of Belgian yeast. This is pretty tasty.

Mouthfeel: Almost perfect, for me. Full-bodied and just a pleasure to drink.

Drinkability: You'd never guess this was 9% ABV. Pretty drinkable for what it is, though.

Overall, this is a tasy, complex brew, as you would expect from a beer bearing the Chimay name. Signature of the style, it only gets more complex and interesting as it warms up.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2009 21:50:23 | More by zoso493
Photo of david18

New York

3.85/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I'm not sure I understand the difference between a belgian dark strong ale and a quadruple, but anyway this is pretty good for either category. There are a few american brands actually that I prefer but this is a very solid version of this style. Good dark fruit, great dark color with some cloudiness, good aroma and good carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2009 21:19:45 | More by david18
Photo of tang3nt


4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was poured into a trappist glass brown with a light brown head. It had a dark cherry and chocolate nose to it. The start was slightly bitter with a strong roasted malt finish. Quite a full complex body. This is definitely a beer I let sit out for a bit beforehand though. All in all, this is great stuff - an old faithful when I'm out of town and cannot find a decent liquor store.

Serving type: bottle

10-09-2009 07:46:12 | More by tang3nt
Photo of Wisconsinality


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

Poured from an 11.2 oz bottle into a Chimay chalice.

A- Pours a nice deep brown that is a little cloudy(I am one who likes the sediment in the glass) and about a finger and a half of head that recedes somewhat quick but leaves a good lacing.
S- A nice whiff gets me some malt along with some dates and raisins. Also maybe a little bit of the yeast and just a hint of the alcohol.
T- The Grande Reserve is like many of the style, the taste really comes through when it warms up a little bit. Raisins, dates, some brown sugar. The yeast is barely noticeable along with the alcohol.
M- This is a medium bodied beer but I would have preferred it to be a little heavier. It has the right amount of carbonation that makes this one smooth beer.
D- This one goes down very smooth and and could have a couple in a sitting if not for the higher abv. I would recommend this one to anyone, another great one from Chimay.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2009 02:48:38 | More by Wisconsinality
Photo of projectflam86


4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a hazy brown/orange color with a huge white foam head that leaves some sticky lacing.

S- Nice nose full of spice and Belgian yeast scents. Easiest to pick out are aromas of clove, dark fruits, oak, and toffee.

T- Full dark malt flavor with waves of clove, currants, figs, sour apples, caramel, and a sweet Belgian yeast finish. The alcohol creates a very slight warming effect on the way down.

M- Medium/full bodied loaded with carbonation. Spritzy and clean.

D- Really nice full flavor. Highly drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2009 02:50:00 | More by projectflam86
Photo of DefenCorps


4.05/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Two years back when my friend bought me a Chimay gift-pack for passing my PhD qualifiers, I stashed the blue away until today. Why? I don't know.

Decanted into my Chimay chalice, this beer is quite the looker. Deep crimson, sanguine almost, with a dense off-white head that recedes to a disk quickly. Great clarity, and plenty of carbonation is present.

The nose is great, with a lot of dark fruit complexity - figs, plums and dates- as well as brown sugar and a little molasses. Bready with the smell of fresh-baked raisin bread as well as some yeast. A touch of oxidation has crept in, lending a little cardboard to the nose. Spicy alcohol is noticeable as it warms up. All told, very very good

Opens big and fruity with plums, raisins and figs as well as a deep and rich bready character, with a mild caramel sweetness. There's a combination of caramel and nougat in here, as well as a rum-like sweetness. Quite deep in flavor. Medium in body with a fabulous, lush carbonation, this is a treat on the palate. A touch sweeter on the finish than I'd like, this beer doesn't really have a long lasting finish like I prefer. Alcohol appears, adding a spicy note. Thoroughly drinkable and enjoyable, this bottle is going down, no problems

**Edit 02 Jan 2013**
750ml bottle, 2007 vintage.

No oxidation, no noticeable alcohol, refined, integrated palate and nose. The mouthfeel is also better - soft and supple, with a medium-high carbonation that doesn't distract. The flavor and nose is driven by fruity notes up front, with a mild spice character, reserved yeast, buckwheat honey, some brown sugar. Age has really integrated alcohol into the flavor profile, it's wonderfully hidden. Excellent stuff, one of my best cellaring experiences I've had.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2009 02:21:20 | More by DefenCorps
Photo of Anthony1


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

Apearance: Christens my Chimay goblet with a huge frothy tan head, about 2" after an aggresive pour. Head fades rockilly and unevenly. Body is hazy and dark maroon, with lots of carbonation rising from the shield emblem etched into the bottom of the glass.

Smell: Sweet toffee and dark fruit, belgian yeast funk. Bubblegum and strawberries. Smells good.

Taste: Sharp and tangy, orange and grapefruit are immediately present, somewhat sour and funky. Alcohol provides a sharpness. Slightly drier, vinous flavors finish. Somewhat raw, could be laid down to mellow for, oh, a decade.

Mouthfeel: Alcohol is strong and provides a warming sensation. Full and goes down slick.

Drinkability: Lots of interesting stuff going on here, I would like to try this in a caouple years.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2009 14:51:15 | More by Anthony1
Photo of tronester


4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark reddish-brown with a medium tan head. Smells strongly of ripe fruit and a hint of alcohol. Taste is molasses and spicy yeast up front, a smooth malt middle, and a hint of bitterness in the finish. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, good carbonation levels. A very good beer, a classic among beer geeks, this is a great beer to have every once in awhile. It is not my favorite BSDA, but very enjoyable nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2009 00:32:26 | More by tronester
Photo of mdwalsh


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

200eight bottle

A: reddish brown and hazy, very little light gets through it. There's a one finger beige head that slips away leaving just a little lace. There's a little active carbonation, not much. It looks sort of dull, I wish it were somehow sharper.

S: It initially filled the air with its Belgiany Beery goodness when I popped the cork, but now I find it rather weak. I get some light fruityness, malt and a little bready yeast. No hops. There is a lot going on there in small quantities and it gives the Grand Reserve a sort of unique smell. Some mouth breathing and retro-olfactory sensing gives me a pretty solid vanillin smell.

T: Much stronger. Very fruity with hints of cherry, cranberry, maybe some mellon and banana and more darker, cooked fruits. There is also something I would call a nuttiness, but not a dry, roasted nuttiness more of a raw, fresh nut taste. Again, no hops, and there's really no bitterness at all, nor is the alcohol at all detectable. It's very smooth and wine-like. Almost cola-like even with the carbonation. There's some vanilla/vanillin in there as well that becomes more pronounced as the beer warms.

M: Smooth, though the carbonation is a little high for something of this strength to me. Finishes clean and leaves the tongue completely, instead of lingering as a film like some beers do.

D: Very drinkable. A great beer to convert wine drinkers. It's big, so it must be drank slowly, but I think a bottle could last a person a night of good drinking, two or more people for a more casual event.

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2009 19:26:15 | More by mdwalsh
Photo of PartyBear

United Kingdom (England)

4.63/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a fresh (2009, same year as tasting) slightly chilled 330ml bottle into a Chimay chalice.

Appearance: Dark oak brown, verging on black, with a small foamy tan head. Appears to be heavily carbonated.

Aroma: Rich sweet bready malts, yeasty notes, and lots of caramel and toffee notes. Fruity scent of banana, and apple. There is a clear grainy aroma from the malts.

Taste: The malts are abundant at the front, providing sweet toffees and a bready graininess. Definite banana flavours mixed in with a subtle caramel base. The aftertaste is has a sticky bitter quality.

Mouthfeel: The texture is oily, and smooth, with a nice substantial body.

Drinkability: One of my favourite trappist ales. Really well brewed ale, the mix of flavours is almost perfect, and the feel beautifully heavy and smooth for a trappist. A very well known beer that clearly deserves the reputation it has.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2009 18:59:29 | More by PartyBear
Photo of smallbatchbrewer

North Carolina

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

I have been drinking this stuff for ages. These monks have been making this stuff for as long as history has been written. I have been told the secret is in the yeast and the slow process. Others say it's the rock filtered waters in their wells. I dunno what it is, but these monks know how to brew and I never want to see the day this stuff isn't on the shelf.

To me, the sweetness and the hint of bitterness in this beer mix just right to create its own unique flavor, even among other great Abby ales. My palate summons grapes, dates and spiced apple.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2009 07:47:56 | More by smallbatchbrewer
Photo of carwreCk


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

33cl bottle poured into Chimay glass.

Pours brown with a 2 finger head. Held to the light it looks like tea still in the pot. Smells of yeast, malt and fruit like plums and raisins.

The taste is apple, then dark fruit and a bit sweet. The mouthfeel is smooth and well carbonated. I can drink a 4-pack of this in a night, so the drinkability is good.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2009 05:39:56 | More by carwreCk
Photo of Mavajo


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

Phenomenal beer. The appearance is fantastic, with a deep dark color and two-finger thick head that lasts. Nice smell - but my unsophisticated palate can't elaborate much more than that.

As for the taste - what a wonderful taste. I fell in love at first sip. Wonderful elegant taste with so much going on. Noticeable carbonation, but it works so well in this brew. It's just phenomenal - for such a dark, high ABV beer, this thing goes down exceedingly easily.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2009 00:51:19 | More by Mavajo
Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
96 out of 100 based on 6,024 ratings.