1. The BeerAdvocate Store is back! Pre-order your stuff now. Items begin shipping Dec 15. Christmas deadline = Dec 18 @ 5pm EST.
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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.

6,707 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,707
Reviews: 2,169
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.93%
Wants: 317
Gots: 953 | FT: 13
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 (4) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) Alström Bros
Ratings: 6,707 | Reviews: 2,169 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cosmicevan
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.

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.

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.

Photo of Pleepleus
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.

Photo of Shadman
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.


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?

Photo of cpetrone84
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-pours a bubbly light tan colored head with a deep reddish brown color that has a nice haze to it. The head lingers for a breif amount of time and leaves no lacing on the glass.

S-a light clove aroma, belgian yeast, and banana hit first followed by a tart cherry, some sweet citrus and plum

T-nice taste of dark cherries, plum, just a hint of clove, and a lightly sweet caramel malt backbone finishing with a pleasant bitterness

M-very smooth and hides the alcohol well, a nice full medium body with a good amount of carbonation and somewhat of a syrupy texture

D-very sweet and tasty with a solid mouthfeel hiding the alcohol very well. well done.

Photo of poriggity
4.7/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The Grande Reserve (Blue) is the second Chimay I have had the pleasure of trying. I poured it into an authentic Chimay glass, and I LOVED it. The Chimay Blue could easily be my favorite beer. Tons of sweetness, fruity flavors, and great smells coming from the glass. I highly recommend this one!

Photo of Long813
4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

G: Chimay Goblet

A: Murky brown-red body with minimal off white head. Quickly dissipates into a thin ring and leaves moderate lacing.

S: Wow, a lot here. Brown sugar, caramel, mixture of dark fruit like raisins and plums. Mild spices and some apple.

T: Mimics the aroma quite well. Sweet malts up front, picking out the brown sugar & caramel quite easily. Plums, raisins, sour apple and a little spicy. Also has a wheaty flavour at the end.

M: Medium bodied, high carbonation. The smoothness and carbonation make for a frothy feeling. Leaves a dry matly/fruit finish. Quite pleasant.

D: Tastes great, it's a load of complexity that it great to drink. All through out the aroma's never died down. This is something I find rare.

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

---Vintage 1998---

Pour - the cork is popped and the beer foams a bit from the bottle. Good sign as this means its still carbonated. Poured inton the glass it is murky brown, slightly viscous with some yeast sediment. The head is big, fluffy and white and leaves some nice tight clinging lace inside the glass. So far so good.

Aroma - malty, earthy, brown sugar/caramel, peaches (?), slightly sour (which made me a bit nervous), cherries, apples and raisins. Lots of smells to take in.

Taste - sweet brown sugar, toffee, earthy and mossy. This beer has aged better than I expected. Its slightly oxidized but that does not take away from all the flavors. Its got plenty of malty sweetness but also some yeasty flavors and a good amount of earthiness. Its slightly acidic and syrupy but not in a way that is off putting. Nice brown bread flavors as well. Its delicious and better than I hoped.

Overall - 11 years old and still amazing. This beer has taken on some earthy flavors and definitely become smoother and maltier with a slight bit of oxidization. Carbonation levels were great and overall flavor was excellent. Great beer and one of the oldest beers I've ever had.

Would I buy more of it? - not even applicable.

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

It pours a cloudy reddish brown, topped by two fingers of thick foam. The head slowly recedes and finally becomes a persistent ring, with much foaminess left behind on the snifter.

The smell is a strong aroma of yeast, dark fruits, caramel, candy sugar, alcohol, mild spiciness, dark bread, and an edge of floral and bitter. Very alluring, very complex. A cologne of this scent would be pleasant.

The taste. Wow. Full flavored and vibrant, it starts with a wonderful mix of plum, raisin, sugar, caramel, some toasty notes, and goes through a wonderful transition of tastes into a juicy, long finish of mild bitter, deep fruity essences, alcohol, and a light spiciness that leaves a bright clean flavor in the mouth. Marvelous flavor, extremely well balanced, blended, and complex.

Low carb, medium body, good cling, no cloying flavor here, pure clean flavor into an astoundingly good finish. Excellent in the mouth, a masterpiece.

Drinkability is off the charts for a BSDA. I fear if I had a cellar filled with this beer my sobriety would be limited to those few hours I sleep.

Impression: An old friend, this beer is a must try for all those looking for the best beer flavors on the planet.

Photo of JamesS
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Pours a nice copper-brown color with some great initial head and decent head throughout; no lacing. Huge deep malty scent; sweet with dark undertones; hints of fig and a semi-candy sweetness. Thick dark taste, very malty with burnt sugar flavors; slight bitterness on the back of the tongue at the end with a little bit of licorice. Goes down smooth, if thick; there is a hint of alcohol in the taste and in the throat as it goes down. Nice Trappist ale!

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

Pours dark amber, great lace, little head dissipating quickly. Taste is creamy, fluffy, smooth dark flavors of chocolate and malts. Raison, brown sugar, & fig evident. However, I can faintly taste the alcohol in this one. Sediment floats on bottom. More carbonated than the red. Gives you a warming effect (alc).

I prefer the blue over the red.

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

Its funny, i love most belgian beer and I love german beers, but I am just recently trying Chimay.

Poured the lovely Chimay Blue into the Authentic Chimay Glass. A delicate pour (as per instructions on their website) brings about a wonderfully plump head with excellent lacing. A perfect pour.

Smell: Robust yeast with a hint of cloves. Floral almost.
Taste: So complex, so interesting. I would use the word balanced, its almost difficult to pick one taste as its just so flavorfull. Starts smooth almost like dried fruits with a touch of bitterness. As this leaves, you sense a spiceyness that melts into a dark chocolate bitterness that lingers on the tongue. Superb. I cant even notice the 9% alcohol, its so well hidden in the spice.
The mouthfeel consists of a balance of thick malt and tangy fine bubbles that tickle the tongue.

A true gem of a beer...It hasn't surpassed my favorite Aventinus or Maudite but comes close!

Photo of nicnut45
3.93/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-A dark ruby brown color. Seems to be a bit hazy. The head was not as big as I thought it was going to be. It has settled to a fine off white layer and it looks amazing.

S-Earthy, these beers have always reminded me of a pile of wet leaves in the fall. Dark dried fruits, apricots, blue cheese, a bit of toffee and pepper.

T-When I taste this gorgonzola cheese comes to mind. Alcoholic and peppery flavors dominate. Despite this it goes down relatively easy. Alot of tangy spicyness going on. Bread crust, sour apples. Im picking up dirt/mud flavors (wierd I know). Finish is dry.

M.F.-Carbonation is high, wish it was a bit lower so I can experience the flavor a more, instead it just kind of gets pushed out of the way. A bit watery, but most likely because of the attenuation of the yeast.

D-I like the dryness of this beer. The alcohol is high but doesnt leave you bogged down. However it has a strange twang to it that I just cant get used to.

Photo of stanley123
4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

drink this regularly at saskatoon's best pub Winston's , pored slowly into a large goblet and let sit for a moment, the smell is like no other beer I have tried to date it is inviting and tastes even better I would recommend picking up a bottle if you ever see one

price-$18 a bottle

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

There's too many good qualities to really describe in a short summary. The first pour offers an inviting presence, especially through its dark, cloudy nature. The taste is very complex, with the tannic mouthfeel. Drinking a beer of this caliber is similar to a fine wine given its feel and fruit hints.

Photo of MarsMoose
3.5/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My friend and I split a magnum of the 2000 vintage.

The color was darker yet more translucent than a regular Chimay blue (that is, it had less particulates).

The aroma was somewhat vinous, as was the taste, though both seemed to retain a mellow ghost of regular Chimay flavor.

The beer seems initially overly carbonated, but after 15 minutes the carbonation faded to a minimal level, fixing the mouthfeel.

Overall, I was glad to try it, but it wasn't so drinkable since the texture was different and the flavor I like seemed to have faded, so I wouldn't get it again.

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

A 33cl bottle into a Chimay goblet.

A- An exceptionally strong head settles onto a ruby brown base. Very attractive.

S- Rasins, grapes, jam or jelly, mild alcohol notes.

T- Rich, robust... peppercorns, raisins, red apple skin, A tannic essence... Very fruity and flavorful. Impressively complex.

M- Great carbonation, good body.. no complaints here. Wonderfully crafted.

D- Moderately high. I took my time with it... but really enjoyed it and will buy some 750mls to tuck away for a rainy day. A great beer.

Photo of Seanstoppable
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked this up in a corked 750ml, such as is portrayed in the bottle. Opening the bottle resulted in a satisfying 'pop' with some visible gases and bubbling.

Pours a dark brown color with a finger of bubbly head. Bubles are very fine in size.

Smell consists of darker fruits and malts, and a bit of yeast and sweetness.

Taste follows scent, with the dark fruits and malts. A nice molasses/brown sugar like sweetness is present. Also present is some alcohol taste, yet it blends in quite nicely with all of the above. Some extra, but not excessive, carbonation in this as well.

Finishing off the bottle gives me a nice warmth, a minor buzz, and wishing I had a second bottle. Very nice overall. A friend of mine once said this was her favorite beer, and I am now beginning to see why.

Photo of mikeborglum
4.03/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had the small bottle with 'Peres Trappistes' on the label; citrus, raisin, spicey aroma, some sulfur presence, deep dark copper color cloudy with frothy white head, some sediment visible, light sweetness, some fruits, mild alchohol presence,medium body, lively, long finish,

Photo of spartanfan
4.03/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a stubby bottle.

A: Pours a deep dark copper color with almost no head that quickly fades. Some sediment is seen floating in the glass.

S: Smells quite fruity with notes of apples and cherries, spicy clove is also very apparent in the nose. A faint hint of alcohol is evident as well.

T: Taste is of dark fruits. Not too sweet, but not very bitter at all. Alcohol is quite apparent, but it is not a turn off for me.

M: Quite a bit of carbonation in this one, which prevent it from being too heavy. A bit of bite on the back end, which I'm sure could be cure with some time in the cellar.

D: While this is too expensive for me to drink all the time, if I could I would. Each sip leaves me wanting another.

Photo of confer
3.78/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

There is a lot of pressure released when the cork popped. Had to be careful when pouring as a giant head forms when not poured correctly. The color is as I would expect a Belgian strong dark ale to be, brown.
The smell is sweet, oranges and raisins.
The alcohol comes through with a rich malty taste.
Carbonation bubbles highly active throughout.
My wife liked this beer more than me which was I really didn't expect. Our combined rating is the 4 for drinkability.

Photo of yuriruley
3.88/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - brown with a frothy head that hung around for awhile.

Smell - Fruits, some yeasty smell, sulfur which bothered me.

Taste - dark fruits and malt, good flavor I have come to expect from this style. Could taste the alcohol, but it wasn't overpowering and blended well. Little bit of the sulfur taste in there.

Mouthfeel - Body was medium with great carbonation.

Drink - I rated this low only because the smell was absolutely throwing me off. I love to breath in those smells right as I take a drink and I was getting a snout full of sulfur. Which made it difficult for me to drink.

Notes: I don't know if this bottle was off, or the water it is brewed with has some sulfur in it or the yeast produced this smell. Minus the sulfur smell intruding the flavor was excellent. My friend said she thought it was excellent and couldn't smell the sulfur. But I grew up on well water all the time so I pick up on sulfur really fast. I will buy another bottle and hope the sulfur isn't a permanent feature, because I can see this being a great beer.

Photo of Stunner97
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance- nice thick and foamy white head, nice brown color, very murky and cloudy in clarity,lots of carbonation and lots of bubbles stream the glass, plenty of sediment to be seen,

Smell- spice, fruit, clove, malts and sweetness, beautiful smell, typical belgian yeast smell, very nice

Taste- very nice clean finish, taste of slight alcohol, fruit, spice, yeast,sweetness is nicely balanced out by a nice spice finish, very nice long lingering finish

Mouthfeel- medium bodied and crisp, heavy carbonation

Drinkability- Highly drinkable, great finish, the complexity is great and is definitely one I will ocassionally be visiting, overall nice balance and a nice winter warming beer,

Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
96 out of 100 based on 6,707 ratings.