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

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

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6,207 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,207
Reviews: 2,142
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.93%
Wants: 262
Gots: 688 | FT: 11
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,207 | Reviews: 2,142 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ckeegan04


4.22/5  rDev -1.9%

A - Deep brown with a nice orange hue around the edges where the light filters in. Nice two finger head lumpy head which quickly fades into a thin foam layer. Very light lacing.

S - Nice spicy smell. Cloves I think. Dominates any other aromas from the beer. Picked up a faint hint of the alcohol and a little sweetness.

T - Nice rich sweetness to it. Not sugary sweet but more of a mellow fruit sweetness. Alcohol is a little strong in the taste. The spice aroma is not carried over near as strongly into the taste.

M/D - Highly carbonated which dominates the mouthfeel. A very nice Belgian Strong Ale. Not my favorite Chimay offering, but still a very good beer.

04-03-2008 00:06:34 | More by ckeegan04
Photo of dhd1491


4.78/5  rDev +11.2%

This is my first review. Honestly, there are other reviewers on this site that do a much better job describing the specific attributes of this beer, so I won't try to get too fancy.

My chance meeting with Chimay Grande Reserve is why I signed up for BA membership a few days ago. I was on a Cub Scout trip with my 8-year-old to Raccoon Mountain, just outside Chattanooga. The place has some of the greatest caves in the US.

Anyway, we're out of the cave after 2 hours of crawling on our hands and knees and we're muddy and wet and hungry and thirsty. We find this place nearby called Dave's Cafe. The food is unbelievable. I don't know Dave's story, but somewhere the guy learned to cook big time.

I get the half rack of St. Louis style ribs. They are killer, but I need something to drink with them, so I ask Dave. He says this Chimay here was voted Best in the World. I say, Best in the World? Okay, I'll try it.

Holy Crap! That beer with those ribs...it was like a light shone down from above illuminating my plate and glass. The rest of the world went away. God spoke to me. He said: Find out where you can get more of this beer and others that taste like it.

So that's what led me to this site and man am I excited to try some new beers. I will use Chimay Blue as the yardstick by which to measure all others.


Got a 750ml bottle to reaffirm that this beer is as good as it was when I first tried it.

Brown-red color with thick beige head. Sweet with some bitter backbone. Great balance; profound flavor. This is indeed a brew for others to measure up to.

750ml bottle (25.4 oz) $12. 47 cents per oz.

04-01-2008 17:41:37 | More by dhd1491
Photo of ewpgolf2


3.93/5  rDev -8.6%

No distinguishable stamp date on bottle. Poured into the only appropriate drinking vessel>>a Chimay chalice. I chilled this a little more than I usually do for Belgians but still allowed it to warm for 10 mins. prior to drinking. This poured a hazy cloud with the color of cherry wood. I never got much of a head, which even that, dwindled down to a thin film.
I sensed a sweet burning aroma-like that of raw cane. The 9% ABV is almost nonexistant until the taste which doesn't overpresent itself.
Just a side note here; I've enjoyed the stronger dark ales for years and have always found something different within the same beer no matter how many times I drink them. BUT, this Chimay Blue has always been predictable.
The taste is incredibly consistent which is pleasing and merits revisiting a 2nd/3rd bottle in one sitting. If you could take caramel liqueur and simulate it into a beer; this is what you end up with. The aftertaste is a little sticky but pulls you in to wanting more.
To me, this is your typical/common "now-macro" Belgian go-to beer. Will continue to buy & consume for years to come.

03-30-2008 02:50:06 | More by ewpgolf2
Photo of Pencible


4.55/5  rDev +5.8%

This poured a dark, opaque brown with moderate tan head. It had a mild caramel scent, and tasted like caramel and malt with a bit of hops. It was surprisingly carbonated and watery, but had a nice long-lasting sweet aftertaste. Overall it was quite enjoyable; the flavor was delicious but the texture was a bit harsh.

03-27-2008 22:27:37 | More by Pencible
Photo of sholland119


4.2/5  rDev -2.3%

A-Pours a deep. dark brown, almost like iced tea. A very thick creamy light tan head that settle quickly into a moderately thin head. A little bit of lacing is evident.

S-Dark fruits, caramel and a nice Belgian yeasty spice. Very nice.

T-A nice dark fruit taste with lots of carbonation on the tongue. Nice malt flavor as well with a hint of spice on the finish. A little bit of alcohol warmth lingers.

M-Highly carbonated with almost a champagne mouthfeel, but in a good way.

D-A very enjoyable beer to drink.

I really enjoy this beer. I don't drink it often as there are usually lots of great choices at our regular places or in our fridge. But as I am in New Orleans on business, this is about as good as the selection gets.


03-27-2008 00:02:58 | More by sholland119
Photo of Lukie


4.72/5  rDev +9.8%

Poured murkey brown with a strong thick head that settled into a layer on top.

Dark Chocolate, roasted coffee bean, almost bitter, and some fragrant spices all come out of this. It smells dry from the alcohol and spice character.

Not too much sweetness in this, but lots of spicy characters, with hints of dried dark fruit. There is a slight medicinal quality in the finish.

Lots of vibrant carbonation that actually helps make this drink easier. It is very lively and not too heavy. The alcohol is hardly noticable.

03-26-2008 14:03:37 | More by Lukie
Photo of schroe58


3.98/5  rDev -7.4%

poured into typical pint glass

a- dark brown with thin lightly colored head that lasted, surprisingly, until finished. nice lacing on glass.

s- smells sweet, hints of caramel and spice and very slight alcohol

t-nose is somewhat citrusy, appearances of spice and slightly nutty followed by wheat rounded out by more spice and finished with more citrus flavor. all flavors blend well into a medium spiced citrus taste.

m-abundant carbonation up front, light clean feel accented by very very slight dry throat feel.

d-very drinkable due to the slightly dry feel in the aftertaste, leaves you wanting more. finished my 33cl in about fifteen minutes so i guess it goes pretty quick. didn't realize that it was 9% abv untill i was finished. can not taste the alcohol while drinking which i like in a Trappist ale.

03-26-2008 05:11:28 | More by schroe58
Photo of Sixpoint

New York

4.03/5  rDev -6.3%

poured into my Westmalle goblet

Nice ruby chestnut color, although head retention not quite as strong as most Belgian darks

aroma of figs, caramel, and yeast spiciness and clove

well balanced taste with medium alcohol warmth

great effervescent mouthfeel and light to medium crispness to cut through the hop bitterness and sugar

overall a drinkable brew but not one of my favorite Belgian darks

03-25-2008 03:10:07 | More by Sixpoint
Photo of LittleBreeze

New York

4.3/5  rDev 0%

This is absolutely fantastic. The balance is near perfect. Subtle sweetness and the light feel made this a rather refreshing beer. Carbonation made for a little dancing on the tongue and complimented the overall mouthfeel. ABV is hiding somewhere. Drinkablity is too good. I suspect that hidden abv will show itself.

03-25-2008 01:20:33 | More by LittleBreeze
Photo of Goliath


4.03/5  rDev -6.3%

Pours a dark brown and completely opaque with one finger off-white head sitting on top. Aroma is beautiful. Dark ripe fruits, a little yeast, sweet malt, and a bit of alcohol. Taste is great. Dark fruits, malty sweetness, a little breadiness, and a slight alcohol warmth. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and appropriately carbonated. Drinkability is moderate because of higher alcohol, but great flavors make for easy consumption and a pleasureable experience.

03-22-2008 17:50:45 | More by Goliath
Photo of wataazu


4.75/5  rDev +10.5%

Poured from the 0.75 liter bottle into a .25 liter goblet. Seemingly dark brown with a slightly thin tan head (due to the shallow goblet) but it was very dark in the bar.

Spicy smell, malty taste with a hint of alcohol but the alcohol taste didn't linger. Usually with a beer this dark it takes me a few sips to get "used to it" but this beer was instantly in tune with my palette.

After drinking a third of it my fish and chips arrived and they went surprisingly well together. Even so I think I prefer the Red with something like fish but I'd like to try the Blue with a steak or stew sometime.

I saved the third glass for after my meal and it left me a pleasant taste in my mouth and honestly I was nicely buzzed when I left.

Definitely recommended!

03-22-2008 17:04:37 | More by wataazu
Photo of Mora2000


4.78/5  rDev +11.2%

Poured from the small bottle into a pint glass. I had heard a lot about this beer and it definitely lived up to the hype. I had it with a nice grilled ribeye steak and the two compimented each other perfectly.

The beer poured a dark reddish/brown with a thick head. The aroma was very pleasant and the taste was perfect. You can taste the alcohol in the beer, but it is not overwelming. For a beer with 9 percent ABV, this is a very drinkable beer.

I waited a long time to try this beer but I will definitely have more soon.

03-22-2008 04:00:04 | More by Mora2000
Photo of SurlyDuff


4.28/5  rDev -0.5%

Numero 3 of my Chimay sampler! This is just a 11.2 oz bottle, wish i had a 750 : /

Dark cloudy tawny brown. Head dissapeares quick.

I split this ingo 2 seperate pours. The first did not include any of the sediment, the second...all of it!

Super fruity and spicy aroma. Alcohol twang in there too.

Bright cherry and plum flavors. Spicy raisin too. Woody.

I liked the red and white a bit better than this one. I wouldn't mind getting another bottle and aging it. As it is, this seems overly sweet and not my prefered style.

03-20-2008 03:26:04 | More by SurlyDuff
Photo of beavers

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

From an 11.2 ounce bottle into an oversized st. bernardus wineglass Pours a dark cloudy chestnut brown with a bubbly tan head that dissipates rather quickly into a thin covering that last the life of the beer. No lacing to speak of. Smells of ripe dark fruits, raisins, brown sugar, tarry tobacco, bubble gum, black pepper, and a barely noticeable alcohol note. Very carbonated and fizzes quite a bit when lightly swishing. Rich malt flavor that translates into plum, candied dark fruit, cola, caramel, with an alcoholic finish that seems to prevent any cloying affect from the rich maltiness. The mouthfeel has a bit too much carbonation for me but it doesn't seem too out of the ordinary for the style. This may also be part of the anti-cloying. The mild alcoholic finish is nice and warming. There is also some residual flavor and bittness in the cheeks after a few sips. I could have another and would love to pick out more flavors. Quite enjoyable and I would say drinkable for being a Belgian Strong Dark Ale. I would love to enjoy this with a nice aged blue cheese. It has the strength to cut through the sharpness and the complexity to create an interesting contrast.

03-19-2008 05:08:04 | More by beavers
Photo of RomanW70

Rhode Island

4.75/5  rDev +10.5%

Pours brown/purple with a huge frothy white head. Wonderful floral aroma. Great balance of aromatic hops and rosted malt. Subtle combination of flavors, including vanilla, toffee, and dark fruits. Also has a vineous quality. Clean smooth finish. Beautiful, subtle, complex beer. A nice change of pace from the hit you over the head with malt and hops American RIS's and IPA's

03-19-2008 04:20:38 | More by RomanW70
Photo of jamesm7485


4.68/5  rDev +8.8%

Had high hopes going into this with all the reviews and it lived up to the hype. Pour was a dark red brown with a very quick to form thick head( could have been my pour) smell was somewhat fruity with big hints of yeast on the nose. Taste was wonderfull and the mouthfeel was very non offensive. Wish it wasnt 9 dollars a bottle but between this and delirium nocturnium id choose this any day of the week.

03-18-2008 05:22:02 | More by jamesm7485
Photo of csmiley


4.33/5  rDev +0.7%

A - Pours a deep brown with hints of red. An average amount of head stuck around for a while and lacing was good.

S - Nose is made up of yeast, caramel, bread, and bitter fruit. None of these really stand out enough to put in any particular order.

T - In the front of the flavor profile is a deep sweet caramel flavor mixed with a mild amount of spiciness. Next is yeast and bread followed by dark fruit. Not bad.

M - Medium bodied. Carbonation was good. Finish is slightly dry.

D - Drinkability is very good. This is what I would look for in a Belgian Stong Dark Ale. Highly recommended.

03-13-2008 03:13:43 | More by csmiley
Photo of champ103


4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

A: Pours a cloudy, dark red color with a large white, foamy, frothy head. Lots of lace as well.
S: Sweet and toasty malt and some dark fruits (plumbs, raisin's, dates, ect)
T: Sweet malt dominate, but it is not cloying at all. Caramel and dark fruits that follow the nose closley.
M/D: Smooth, rich, and creamy. Deceptivley easy to drink for the high ABV.

This is one of the first Belgian beers that I tried. I fell in love from the moment I took a sip. One of the best beers anywhere.

03-12-2008 23:38:10 | More by champ103
Photo of FleeVT


4.43/5  rDev +3%

Brown bottle into chimay goblet. No date.

A: Poors a deep cloudy mahogany with almost no light passing through. Thick, off-white head that simmers to a nice lace.

S: Mild sweet malts are most noticeable, with caramel, pear, and hints of cola coming out later.

T: Smooth malty spiciness and a kick of alcohol. No bitterness to speak of.

M: Medium carbonation, medium body, and silky smooth.

D: A true sipper. Great beer!

03-12-2008 13:32:00 | More by FleeVT
Photo of JEdmund


4.1/5  rDev -4.7%

Half inch head that settles quickly; dark brown body

Brown sugar and raisins

Taste & Mouthfeel
Mouthfeel is excellent as the fine carbonation turns velvety with the slightest agitation; lots of brown sugar and malt flavor

Enjoyable and very drinkable, though not my favorite Trappist ale

03-11-2008 15:58:40 | More by JEdmund
Photo of jeonseh


3.95/5  rDev -8.1%

Poured from one of the short fat chimay bottles into a chimay goblet and it is from the 2005 batch.

A - the beer seems to from the bottom of the glass towards the top to be at first a deep, dark, purplish red and then it seems to lighten up as there is an deep orange hue in the middle of the beer. There is a small head that sits on the top and never formed at all. See a lot of carbonation going up to attack the head from all sides and in the middle as well.

S - Smell is a dark grape flavors, also reminds me a bit of a red wine except sweeter and not as big either. That was the prevalent smell that came to me. There was also a hint of bread in there as well.

T - Hmm there seems to be a little bit of everything in here as I get some tart citrus orange and there is also the taste of candied dates that comes in a bit later and also get a bit of a bready yeasty flavor in there as well. Get a nice taste of the alcohol in there as well and with the fruity flavors reminds me of a brandy or brandy soaked dates. The flavor could even possibly be described as rum raisin bread pudding. This gives the beer a bit of a bite in the end of the taste as the alcohol makes itself known. Everything seems to transition together well and the beer is rather balanced.

MF - The beer seemed to have a good bit of carbonation which comes on strong at the beginning and comes with the orange flavor that I found so prevalent. That carbonation really adds some zing to this beer and to the initial feeling in the mouth. It then faded away as the deeper, darker candied, alcoholic date flavor came in. The after feeling is a nice warm feeling in the mouth that just chills out there and not much else.

D- Overall a good beer but not one that really seemed outstanding. It is balanced well and would be good to grab to maybe have with some duck or a dinner party or even to pop open to have with some cheese and fruits. It is one of the easiest to find Belgian strong dark ales but not one of the best, yet still good.

03-11-2008 03:47:03 | More by jeonseh
Photo of rodenbach99

Quebec (Canada)

4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

750ml corked brown bottle.

drank in a chimay calisse

A:nice brown reddish colour, foams a lot but it dissapeared fast
S: nice spices aroma
T: nice candy sugar, lots of spices, nice roudness, multi-layers, complex beer
M: round, full body, long
D: perfect sipping beer,

03-10-2008 23:40:16 | More by rodenbach99
Photo of RJLarse


3.63/5  rDev -15.6%

I had this one in a small cafe in downtown Spokane. Poured in to a pint glass.

Pours a dusty brown color and is cloudy. A bubbly beige head caps the beer.

The smell is sweet with some dairy aromas, cream perhaps.

Taste is a mellow burnt sugar flavor, with a little dry bitterness on the finish.

Mouthfeel is smooth and full-bodied, with a hint of alcohol heat.

Drinkability is average for a strong ale. It's not an everyday sort of brew, nor is it sessionable, but it's passable as a single serving. It was overpriced in my opinion at $7 a bottle. I would not have it again at that price.

03-09-2008 18:00:51 | More by RJLarse
Photo of mattster


4.47/5  rDev +4%

Opened 750ml Bottle, poured into snifter. Bottle marked "L07-479"

Pour reveals nice dark brown - mostly opaque brew with bubbly tan head of 1/2" atop. Head dies down to a thin lace across top. (as head dies down, brew becomes less opaque).

Aroma is of yeast, dark fruits and sugars. Taste has a nice dark malty taste with really good flavors with excellent wine like qualities. Is not overly yeasty on taste and has an excellent mouth feel with really good finish. Bubbles are present, but not overwhelming, very drinkable, very smooth.

I plan on spending the rest of the evening with this bottle. Salut!

03-09-2008 06:10:05 | More by mattster
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy

New Hampshire

3.95/5  rDev -8.1%

11.2 oz bottle with Chimay Goblet

2007 vintage.

This one is a dark brown amber color, very active and lively, especially the yeastie bits in the center of the glass. Gyser-like bubbles rushes to the surface to create a classic, brown-tinted, tight, soft, sticky three-fingers deep head. Disspates in moderate fashion for the style but leaves plenty of surface foam.

The nose is of sour-fruity yeast, toffee and mild chocolate malt with fresh, veggie, grassy scented hop.

THe balance of flavors is sublime. A clean, semi-sweet malt hits first. There's a rich fruity tanginess from the wonderful Belgian yeast. The hops come mostly in the finish with a very herbal and earthy effect.

This is a smooth, full-bodied feel but very clean on the palate. Lively carbonation keeps this crisp to the fisnish.

high quality stuff.

03-03-2008 15:46:07 | More by GratefulBeerGuy
Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
96 out of 100 based on 6,207 ratings.