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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.

6,025 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,025
Reviews: 2,136
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.93%
Wants: 242
Gots: 592 | 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: 6,025 | Reviews: 2,136 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of barefootbrewer


4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This poured a dark cloudy brown with a very thick persistent head. The smell is floral and a bit hoppy. The taste is well balanced between malt and hops with a floral hint. The aftertaste is a bit sweet. The mouthfeel is medium bodied but unexpectedly light for the color. The carbonation adds just a little zing to this brew. I’d consider this one a delight to have whenever possible.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2006 02:37:05 | More by barefootbrewer
Photo of expatsteve


4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Deep mahogany with a few cloudy orange hues. 1/2 inch head leaves good thick suds. Low/medium viscosity.

Aroma: Bready malts, with a muted background of licorice wisps, blood plums, cherry skins and hints of booze.

Taste: Bread, plums, and hints of apricots - great balance in this one. Hints of licorice and fennel, with caramel and cocoa developments.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, with a great bitter finish. Good malty aftertaste. Low carbonation.

Drinkability: A solid Belgian ale - very smooth, very mellow, and very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2006 18:50:47 | More by expatsteve
Photo of Iguana


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

Appearance - Poured a nice looking dark brown with a small 2cm head that settled down quickly.

Smell - Hints of vanilla, ripe fruit, spice, fig. Smells pretty good.

Taste - The taste is good, I guess I may have been expecting more, but I am enjoying this. Spicy, extremely rich and sweet. I'd call it a dessert beer its so rich. Alcohol burn comes through in the end.

Mouthfeel - Sticky, syrupy, thick. Very enjoyable, coats the palette and allows you to fully enjoy what your tasting.

Drinkability - May not have more than 1 of these in a day, but definitly will look to have this again. A great after-dinner beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2006 06:15:35 | More by Iguana
Photo of BabaJohn


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

Beautiful deep brown coloration with a good inch of light brown head fading fast to little clusters and circles of carbonation, but very, very inviting. Has a nice malty, bready nose on the subtle side with some vinegar/olive traces. Taste is vinegar up front, turning malty after the first swallow, carbonation is brought by the third and a nice balance arrived at in the fourth. Alcohol of course is detected in the aftertaste, and a bit of bitter hops on the back end. Some wine like qualities as in other dark Belgians. Chimay is right up there with the best of them.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2006 02:35:04 | More by BabaJohn
Photo of MaltyGoodness


3.73/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz. bottle. 1998 vintage. Thanks to Mushroomcloud for this one!

Pours a dark chocolatey brown with a fluffy tan head. Mild lacing on the glass.

Lots of dark fruity aromas and light bready tones. There is also a slight booziness present, but it's a very positive contribution. It smells like this has aged extremely well.

The taste falls short of expectations. It has definitely lost it's edge over time. Don't get me wrong, it does taste just like it smells. Just like a slightly watered down version.

Medium body, good carbonation.

Still very drinkable, but certainly past it's peak. Overall, it was a very enjoyable experience to get a chance to taste this vintage brew.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2006 02:34:10 | More by MaltyGoodness
Photo of Golden2wenty1


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

Round 7 of the 9-Round Trappapooza/Trappaganza '06 with expatsteve.

Pour: murky mahogany/garnet with a cm of khaki foam that fizzles to nothing.

Nose: dark, funky fruit - black cherry, prune and date - spicy yeast, sweet vinegar fruit, light booze, tart kiwi.

Taste: dry yeast, plum, caramel cream, booze, flaming cherries, brandy raisins and doughy yeast.

Feel: fizzy, slick, light body, yeasty grit. Substantial yet far from rich due to the alcohol content.

Drinkability/Overall: very high for the abv, this is a lesson in understated, refined complexity and balance. Very nice.

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2006 20:16:32 | More by Golden2wenty1
Photo of Socrates


4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into crystal wine glass to maximize aroma.

Thick head is a tannish color, medium to large size bubbles giving way to small bubbles upon dissipation. Beer is a nice brown color, opacity gives about 1 inch of visibility.

Smell is very light, some hint of spiciness, but not at all an indication of the flavor, which is much stronger, and enhanced by the active carbonation. Notes of cinnamon and brandy fade to a nice lingering memory of maltiness, carrying the edgy presence of alcohol all the way through. Still, the aftertaste leaves one begging for another swig. However, it is not light enough to permit the consumption of more than one.

I would recommend this beer with a meal where some strength can be used to prepare the palate for each bite, i.e., not a spicy dish. Perhaps turkey with sweet potatoes would be an ideal accompaniment, ideal for thanksgiving, perhaps. I don't think this goes well with salty foods, unlike many other beers.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2006 19:15:50 | More by Socrates
Photo of stodbrew


4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Chimay goblet, it is a deep brown color with hints of a nice ruby red. Pretty clear, too. Relatively thick off white head that settled to a nice somewhat thin cap relatively quickly.

Aroma is an abundance of dark fruits. Plum, raisin, etc. Some yeast spiciness/phenolics, too.

Flavor is more of the same, with a nice, subtle roastiness thrown in.

Mouthfeel is quite full with a nice, high carbonation.

Overall, its a good beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2006 03:42:47 | More by stodbrew
Photo of Winter


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

Pours (in a goblet, of course) a dark reddish brown with a thick tan head that is sustained throughout consumption. It settles down to a thin creamy covering. Aroma of sherry, leather, cocoa and alcohol. The mouthfeel is full with a lot of carbonation. The carbonation softens a bit as the ale warms. Dark malt flavor on the front combines with plummy sort of fruitiness. Woody, oaky rum hits midway with the alcohol. No, masking the 9% here. Some feint chocolate toward the back.

This is easily one that could be aged and I wouldn't mind doing so to see how the flavors change over time. Chimay Blue is a sipper... one to sit back with and enjoy. A nice comptemplative, relaxing ale.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2006 21:20:30 | More by Winter
Photo of peabody


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

Pop goes the beer!
Man, this Chimay has some carbonation. After the big boom I poured a tulip glass full and the head almost spilled out. Three fingers at least. The carbonation stays with the drink for quite some time. Very little lacing but the beer was kinda cold.
The cork says 11/05 but you can smell the alcohol first and foremost.Fruits malt and nuts are the main aroma after that.
Malty sweet flavor meets the tounge and a toffee and cinnamon aftertaste followed by a warm alcohol feel in the back of the throat.
This is by far the better of the three Chimay's available.
Mouthfeel is very pleasant with a slight resiny feel after the carbonation leaves.
all thing said, this is a very good beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2006 01:18:38 | More by peabody
Photo of AmorousAngel

South Carolina

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

Poured from a 750 ml corked and caged bottle, dated 02/06 (split it with my husband; I didn't drink the whole thing).

Very dark opaque brown with a reddish tint. Very fluffy tan head that resembles the froth on a root beer float.

Distinct roasted malt aroma, with a hint of fruit and sweetness. Pleasant touch of caramel.

Flavor does not disappoint. Complex, dominated by roasted malt and sweetness.

A bit tingly on the tongue in the begining, but as it warms toward room temperature, it gets smoother.

A very nice beer for sipping. Heavy and luscious, as expected. Will have to try this again when the the weather gets cold.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2006 00:32:12 | More by AmorousAngel
Photo of kimcgolf


3.93/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from the 11.2 ounce bottle to an orangey brown color, with one finger tan head which quickly faded to a thin tan cap. Lacing was excellent. The aroma was malty and dark fruit, mostly grapes and alcohol. As the glass warmed, the alcohol became much more evident in the smell. Ditto for the taste. At first, the flavor was slight malty sweetness, and pleasant clove spices. At mid-glass, the alcohol became the dominant taste. The finish, whiile pleasant, was warming and again, dominated by alcohol.

In conclusion, I enjoyed this beer, and it is definitely a classic rappist Ale. I might drink another on a cold winter’s night (instead of today’s 90+ dgree weather). But at only 9% abv, the alcohol was a little too noticeable in taste and smell, as I felt more like I was drinking shots of whiskey.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2006 01:57:41 | More by kimcgolf
Photo of atigerlife


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

Poured from a 750ml bottle with the cork dated 04/06.
I've had this beer many times but never got around to writing a review...so here it goes:

Cork comes blasting off which adds to the excitement. Big brown head which is rather clumpy. Decent lacing. Beer is a dark brown with reddish highlights when held up to the light.

Aroma is very complex. Lots of dark fruit [plums, figs] and roasted malts. Also has the distinctive sweetness. Perfect.

Taste is of fermented dark fruits and rather "winey". Still has the sweetness. Alcohol is there, but light considering its ABV.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a spritzy, cleansing feel. Rather smooth.

Overall, this is an amazing beer that should be had by all [though some won't like the style]. Certainly, for the style it is a classic. Very distinct. Only downside is that I can't have too many at a sitting as the strong flavors and sweetness get to me [as does the high alcohol content]. Nice digestive.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2006 00:11:11 | More by atigerlife
Photo of haz77


3.65/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a murky red-hued brown with a couple of inches of light tan head. This falls after a minute or so to a rocky fingers worth. A few clumps of lacing are left behind. Appears to be highly carbonated.

S - Fruity esters, yeast, caramel, quite perfumed, prunes, figs, dark/burnt sugar.

T - Dark fruits at first, with a candy sugar middle. Warming alcohol finish and aftertaste with bubblegum in the background. Dry-ish ending.

M - A little thin for my liking, with high carbonation.

D - Somewhat disappointing given its reputation, with several others within the style being superior brews. Worth trying though.

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2006 14:31:27 | More by haz77
Photo of thebarracuda


4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

first of all, this beer was corked! (vintage Jan 06) which is what
interested me in it in the first place. (at over $12 a bottle, I hope
its worth it) It pours a dark brown with a tint of red. It has light
floral scents, with a smooth taste, low to mild carbonation and lightly sweet aftertaste. its hard to believe that this is a 9% beer as the alcohol bang isnt there.as it warms up, the flavors emerge into an incredible beer. dang, this is a very easy drinking beer! I mean seriously, I enjoy the flavor, its almost chuggable. (but that would be a waste of perfectly good beer) even warm,(above room temprature) this beer has incredible flavor. wow.
certainly pick up a bottle of this next time you see it. hell, hunt
for it. You will be impressed!

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2006 06:49:28 | More by thebarracuda
Photo of mithrascruor


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

750 ml. bottle poured into an oversized wine glass.

**POP!!!** There goes the cork! That's the first sign you're in for a treat...

Appearance: Pours a deep red/amber brown color, somewhat hazy and mysterious. Looks nearly black, or more like a rustic dark brown, without much light. First pour doesn't have much head, but subsequent ones have a nice, thick (1 in.), foamy off-white head that becomes a shallow, foamy film. You can see the carbonation bubbling up on the edges.

Smell: The beer has an aroma of some rich, deep roasted malts, caramel, a bit of yeast, and some spices and ripe, dark fruits. One of the more complex smells that I've found in a beer.

Taste: The dark fruits made the first contact here, followed by the caramel and then the malt. Extremely rich! Very little bitterness in the taste, though there is a bit of alcohol noticable at the end of a sip.

Mouthfeel: There's quite a bit of carbonation, but it isn't really noticable until just when swallowing it. What's always most surprising to me is that this beer isn't as heavy as you'd expect. Seems to float along the tongue.

Drinkability: Despite the high (9%) alcohol content, this beer is very drinkable. It's incredibly rich in flavor, but as long as you aren't stupid and try to chug this you'll be fine.

This has been one of my favorite beers for a long time, so I finally had to review it here. The aroma is quite possibly the best thing here -- so complex and well balanced. Tastes and looks great as well. If you haven't tried it yet, you should! Spoil yourself with a bottle of this... one of those beers that I always look forward to having. Trappist monks may give up their earthly pleasures, but I'd say this one is rather godly!

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2006 05:35:32 | More by mithrascruor
Photo of hunteraw


3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Off-white one-finger head atop a rich brown body. Appears to be highly carbonated, constant stream of bubbles rising. Good head retention.

Smell: some malt, and the distinct Belgian yeast aroma, with a hint of spice.

Taste: Spicy, with some dark fruit character but it's in the background. Enough bitterness to balance, this one isn't overly sweet. Dry, slightly woody finish, with alcohol dominating the aftertaste. On the plus side, that means it finishes dry, which always helps drinkability for me.

Mouthfeel: wow, very highly carbonated, so much so that it gets in the way of enjoying the beer. Fairly light mouthfeel, thinner than I was expecting, I think.

Drinkability: too boozy to be highly drinkable. I really wanted to love this one, but I just like it. Didn't live up to my expectations, at least.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2006 02:30:19 | More by hunteraw
Photo of Estarrio


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

Poured into a wide glass from a 2/06 bottle. My best efforts could not thwart the large foamy head. Color was an opaque muddy brown with hints of red and yellow.

Very pleasing, complex aroma. Sweet malt, caramel, floral hops and fruity esters.

This brew has sweet malt and candied sugar flavors up front with lots of dark fruit esters. The doughy yeast really takes over in a tart, bitter and spicy finish. At 9%, there is a subtle initial impression of alchohol flavor, which becomes less apparent in the aftertaste.

Widely distributed, this beer is an excellent Belgian representative. The complexities and flavor really come out with cellaring.

Serving type: bottle

07-27-2006 02:37:13 | More by Estarrio
Photo of HimerMan

New Jersey

4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle served in small goblets on 7/22.

Excellent pour with a tanish head and dark brown body that sustains color and smell throughout.

Mild beer with alcohol present at the start, with a mild fig and brown sugar, spices and typical Belgian flavors that make a sweet, almost wine-like feel in the mouth. Very nice malt balance with a clean and crisp taste throughout.

Overall, the alcohol presents a warming, but not at the expense of taste. Very easy trappist to drink, and easily found at liquor stores. Very nice beer.

I would always look for one of these to enjoy with friends, breads and cheeses. Great beer - buy it, its a great priced beer for what it tastes like.


Serving type: bottle

07-23-2006 19:20:19 | More by HimerMan
Photo of jhollick


4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Presentation - Served at cellar temperature from a 75cL bottle with a 04/05 date on the cork.

Appearance - Pours a deep ruby with a brown tint with a sizable and fluffy tan head which dissipated after a few minutes.

Smell - An alcohol warmth greets the nose immediately, followed by a treasure trove of smells, including grapes, raisins, plum, cherries...all sweet and very inviting.

Mouthfeel - Medium to thick in body (about on par with other Belgian strong darks), with a tingle that numbs the tip of tongue. Whether its from the high carbonation level or the alcohol isn't for me to say.

Taste - Magnificent! All of the aforementioned flavors come forth with the candied sugars, transforming from flavor to flavor, sweet to tart, dry to slick and back again. Very complex brew. The alcohol is a tad strong at first, but the mouth quickly adjusts. As the beer warms, it becomes even sweeter and darker in flavor.

Overall - This is a spectacular beer, and well worth the hype that surrounds it. Nothing else needs to be said. This is absoultely one of the best beers I have had.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2006 00:00:58 | More by jhollick
Photo of shroompod


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

Although I've had this many times , my first review. This is also my first "aged" beers with a date of 3/3 on the cork.

Poured into pint glass with no floaties , good head , not much lacing sticking around.

Smell is faintly hoppy , some alcohol coming through.

Taste has a butterscotch tone (more scotch than butter); although somewhat muted , possibly from age.

Mouthfeel is crisp , I wouldn't say dry , but balanced. Good carbonation for 3 years in the bottle.

Drinkabitly is great , a very smooth beer for 9%. I may need to age more of this.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2006 01:44:20 | More by shroompod
Photo of bigman147

New Hampshire

4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Appearance is dark auburn color with garnet hues. A dark brown yeast particles settle in the bottom of glass. Head is dark, tan and heavy 1-2 inches. It lingered in the glass and lacing was apparent.

Aroma: Smells of dark malt and slight chocolate. Slight hop spiciness and pleasant alcohol notes that warm the senses in preparation.

Taste: The taste is less pronounced than the aroma. Taste is of malt and dark fruits (dates and figs). A slight caramel note. As the beer warms the alcohol becomes more balanced on the tongue.

Mouthfeel: Slightly creamy with good carbonation. A little cloying and syrupy but not to the point that its a negative.

Overall, this is a very drinkable beer. I like the balance of malt and hops. The alcohol is pleasant and not overpowering. I could imagine this beer would balance out a little more as it ages.

Serving type: bottle

07-12-2006 00:29:20 | More by bigman147
Photo of barleywinebrewer

New Hampshire

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

Everyone has a fallback beer. For me, this is my fallback belgian. Thankfully it is getting easier to find when I do my beer runs. Year over year it is consistently good. Shared a glass with a friend who was not a belgian drinker. I have converted another person to my hobby - drinking quality beer.

I'll pass on the review. At this point odes have been written regarding the taste and smell. Enjoy if you can!

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2006 15:01:22 | More by barleywinebrewer
Photo of zeff80


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

750 ml bottle pours out a Brown/Maroon color with a huge tan, foamy head. It smelled of mild hops, fruit and there were some floral notes, also. There was a strong malt flavor with hints of spice and caramel. It has a slightly bitter aftertaste. Initially it has a very sharp mouthfeel, but it softens as it warms. It is very drinkable. The only knock on drinkability is the high ABV.

Serving type: bottle

07-06-2006 15:08:19 | More by zeff80
Photo of orfeu

New Mexico

4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33 cL bottle, chilled to just below cellar temperature, poured into a silver-rimmed Chimay chalice. A careful pour yields a deep ruddy brown with a skimming of grey-yellow foam. Yeasty sour clove aromas mingle with scents of vanilla tobacco and green lettuce. Sweet caramel-dipped cherry flavors begin the sip with a cinnamon-roll doughiness at the middle. Allspice and white pepper shore up the back end right before an alcohol-bitter finish. Slick and actively carbonated peppery mouthfeel, medium-to-thin body. As it warms, the mouthfeel becomes fluffier, but not enough to make this outstanding for me. Certainly a good beer, but as far as Trappist beers are concerned, I think I'd choose any of Rochefort's offerings first.

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2006 15:50:17 | More by orfeu
Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
96 out of 100 based on 6,025 ratings.