1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

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

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.

6,805 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,805
Reviews: 2,187
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.93%
Wants: 340
Gots: 1,048 | FT: 12
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-22-2001

No notes at this time.
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: 6,805 | Reviews: 2,187 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of KCHopHead
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured into my Boulevard Smokestack Goblet. Pours one finger of head. Dark brown but translucent in some areas near the top where you can see several yeast floaties. Interesting.

S - Very fruity and yeasty.

T - A hint of alcohol and lots of semi-roasted grain taste. Fruit tastes weren't as much banana but more like a berry. Barely a hint of chocolate. Yeasty taste as well.

M - Great mouthfeel. Very full and carbonated so flavors are all over the place.

D - Very good. Just slightly ligther than a quad but pushing the line there.

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

Poured into a Chimay glass and the beer quicky produced a dark ruby color with a rich tan head. The head goes on to produce a nice clingy lace.

This beer contains lots of wonderful aromas. I detect raisins, apples, hops, sugars, and alcohol. The aforementioned aromas do a good job of hiding the alcohol.

The flavor is fruity and malty with a nice hop aftertaste. Likewise, the alcohol is noticeable in the aftertaste.

The mouthfeel and drinkability hit the mark. All in all, a superior beer.

Photo of thepeter
4.65/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Just having a night cap and thought I'd share. . . just my thoughts, not the beer.

A - Dark mahogany, poured a finger and a half head that turned to a thin film halfway through (I admit though that I was using a Belgo Chalice and not the proper Chimay one which is wider). Not too much lacing.

S - Apples, candied fruits, and alcohol. All more subtle than I would have expected. EDIT - Aroma perked up as I drank this and by the end everyting was more prominent with the addition of some slightly tart cherries.

T - Dark roasted malt, candied figs, raisins and dates, a bit of alcohol. Very well balanced and very nice. Aftertaste is pleasant and a bit sour and fruity. Wonderful!

M - Perfect! SO smooth and rich and wonderful. I usually combine Mouthfeel and Drinkability but not with this one. Carbonation and body are perfectly balanced and full.

D - I could drink this all night and would if I had more.

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

a - poured a two-fingers thick tan head into my Chimay chalice that left thin lacing and sheet throughout. the body was reddish-brown.
s - aromas of bananas, clove, phenolic esters.
t - plum, apples, chocolate.
m - bubbly.
d - nicely done even though a little heat was evident yet pleasurable.

Photo of TheFightfan1
3.78/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a murky colored brown with ruby highlight's.Tan heading that disapates to a nice fine ring around the glass. After a while about halfway down the glass turns flat.

Smell is of dark fruits right off the bat. Some clove takes over followed by a brown sugar molasses aroma.

Taste and Mouth is more of clove than anything.Again dark fruits and kind of yeasty. Followed by a slight sting of spice and clove on the tongue.A bit of a heavy boozy bite settles on the palate and warms the belly. Medium-full bodied with excellent carbonation. Nice and bubbley that sits on the palate alive and well.

Drink is a bit boozey really a bit to spicey for a good session beer. A definite taster. Not a session brew at all in my opinion.

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

Poured into a chalice.

A- a fizzy pour yields a thick, dense khaki head that has been sticking around for quite a while. It floats atop a dark fig colored hazy beer.

S- Sweet smell of apples and pears, as everyone else has said, but it bears repeating.

T- The apples show up in the palate too, which is a very good thing. Its crisp and juicy. Slightly dry finish.

M- Higher carbonation, its pillowy and soft.

D- Pretty drinkable, the alcohol doesn't pack an overly vicious punch so this is a very drinkable beer.

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

Poured from 11.2 oz bottle into a wine goblet.

Appearance: slightly opaque mahogany brown with a nice head which dissipated rather quickly.

Smell: apples and pears right off the bat. There's a nice crisp malt there which you might call a biscuit aroma, and below that a heady yeast aroma which just adds to the experience. It's great!

Taste: tree fruit and a bit of an alcohol bite, but there's also this muted chalkiness which adds an underlayer of flavors which meld together but which I can't really identify; perhaps the creamy mouthfeel is contributing to this chalk perception. It's very good though.

Mouthfeel: enticing creaminess I have come to expect from Chimay.

Drinkability: at 9%, the alcohol really starts to affect the drinkability of this. It is super tasty, but we're talking about a nice dessert or digestif beer here.

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

Ap. Poured a nicely dark golden brown, cloudy.
Sm. Malty and caramel and spice.
Ta. Very sweet, malty, clove spice, and caramel.
Mf. Very smooth, with nice carbonation. Fills your mouth.
Dr. Very good, but I doubt I'd do more than one. It's more like desert than a "drinkin" beer.

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

pulled a bomber out of the cellar marked 3/08 on the cork. poured into a Chimay goblet

A- dark caramel color with a nice 3-finger head. when held up to the light, has plumb hue with lots of carbonation and a little sediment floating around

S- sweet raisin smell with a hint of biscuity malt. faint note of hops and alcohol on the end. very nice.

T- so much going on here it is hard to catch it all. biscuit and bread on the front with dark fruit & chocolate on the end. very well balanced with the note of alcohol evident on the end. very smooth for a 9% abv.

M- very well balanced. sits well in the mouth...full body with one of the better balances of carbonation that I've had.

D- love this beer. I am partial to Belgian Strong Ale and this is a fine example. Have several more bombers in the cellar...hope I can keep my hands off for a couple of years to allow to age

Photo of patobandito
4.78/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Finally brought myself to spend the money to try one of these gems. Glad I did.

Pours a fantastic caramel color with a light, creamy head, the color of coffee with cream. Smells a bit like cloves to me, kind of Dunkle-ish. Its a heavy bodied beer, but it drinks extremely smooth. Its one of the most balanced beers I have ever had the privilege of drinking. There is a bit of chocolate flavor that comes through, and it tends to have a bit of an acidic tang on the finish.

Overall, a great beer that simply must be enjoyed, preferably for a celebration of some sort, due to the price. But i would definitely but this again.

Photo of pmccallum86
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a very beautiful deep red with a smooth creamy head.

S- Dark fruits and biscuit malt. Faint raisin aroma and slight hops.

T- Very complex taste with a lot of flavors bursting onto my tongue. Fruit, raison, biscuit malt and hops. Also a warm taste of alcohol.

M- Great mouthfeel, very smooth with the perfect level of carbonation. I like it very much, yum.

D- Very smooth and easily drinkable, however at 9% ABV it will catch up to you sooner than later.

A very good dark belgian, you owe it to yourself to give it a try.

Photo of jera1350
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours into a Chimay chalice a muddy brown with suspended bits. Looks like a glass of gelatin. One finger head reduces down rapidly. Minimal lacing, but good retention of the suds.

Buttery biscuit like smell. Some peanut butter and hops coming through.

Intense complexity. Buttery, bittering hops. Rich malt. Chocolate and oatmeal like flavors. Some prune and raisin are also present. I can't even do this justice with my description.

Rich, creamy and robust. Fuller bodied, silky carbonation.

This has great drinkability for a 9% beer. Alcohol is very well hidden. So enjoyable on the palate and the complexity keeps me going back for more.

Photo of Evocatus
4.65/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a small bottle; has a deep red-brown color and a thin head. Smells of bread and malts with a hint of fruit. Taste definitely has some alcohol in it as well as some dark fruit, giving it a nice semi-sweet taste with a slight kick, definitely something to keep in the mouth to savor.

Photo of kiddynamite920
4.72/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm glad I had held my thumb over the cork of this 750ml, because as soon as the cage was off and I removed my thumb, that bad boy popped right off.

A: Wonderful appearance, a nice deep reddish brown with a very fizzy head. Chimay just looks better in its respectable goblet. The head started as large fizzing bubbles but has diminished to a smaller ring of off white miniscule bubbles. Very pleasing.

S: I pick up dark fruits on the nose, cherries especially and a very malty aroma. It has very nice spice notes as well and a very noticeable yeasty smell.

T: Taste is out of this world. Very malty and bready with a nice follow up of dark fruits and banana. The cloves and spices are evident towards the end. Very rich and luscious tasting, especially drinking it warmer.

M: The carbonization hits first and last, while in the middle the symphony of flavors and aromas takes place. Different flavors seem to dance across the palate ever so nicely.

D: Very drinkable and elegant. This is a nice beer to sit down and watch movies with, or to share with someone over a nice cheese plate.

Photo of Floydster
3.8/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

750 ml corked and caged bottle purchased from the grocery store for right under ten dollars, split with my dad last night, poured into a Chimay goblet, I have had this a few times before as well, color is a mix between medium brown and a dark amber, one inch creamy off white head, aroma consists of Belgian sugars and yeast, dark fruits, sweet malt, citrus, toffee, hint of booze, and strawberries, flavor begins with sweet malt, mostly caramel and prunes in the middle, finishes with some sweetness from oranges and same malts, bit warming in the finish but very mild, warms up with more fruit character and complexities from the caramel, sweet, creamy, and malty mouthfeel, medium bodied, pretty high carbonation that kind of dampered the whole mouthfeel for me, goes down pretty easy for a nine percent beer, smooth and not overly sweet, would be a nice beer to have lying around in the colder months, this beer is a staple and there is good reason for that, not the best but it is a classic Belgian brew and it deserves it rank, I am sure I will cross paths with this one again, worth trying

Photo of Stonepot
4.93/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Simply incredible. Beautiful dark reddish body with a small head. Very strong taste with an ABV of 9% but the alcohol is masked behind glorious flavors and spices. Its also sold at the supermarket around the corner from my house, yeah. I will have this again.

Photo of tone77
3.35/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a brown 11.2 oz. bottle. Pours a cloudy, dark brown color with a 1 inch head. Smells of alcohol and sugar. Taste of yeast, a bit sour, and alcohol. Feels great in the mouth and has decent drinkability. Overall a good beer, but not great like the other reviews here.

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

2008 vintage
Poured a very dark amber color with good carbonation and a small white head. Nose is malt, dried fruits and citrus. Taste was nice malt, caramel, figs, prunes and light citrus. Really smooth and very drinkable. Mouthfeel was creamy and drinkability is good but its not my sttyle.

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

This beer poured a gorgeous deeply cloudy reddish brown with a one of the most lively bubbly white heads that I've ever seen. Head retention is outstanding eventually receding to creamy foam that leaves nice sticky lacing on the glass. Nose is of dark fruits - cherries, raisins, dates, and distinct but not overpowering alcohol presence. Taste is of the dark fruits - cherries and raisins with some molasses in the body, there is a touch of spice as well in here, alcohol is also easily present. As the beer warms, fruit flavoring becomes more pronounced and I pick a bit of plum and apple in the taste. Medium body with moderate to high carbonation, light and airy feel on the tongue. This is incredibly drinkable beer - 9% it is a sipper but could sit with it for an evening.

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

Small bottle poured into a snifter. Dark purplish brown with a nice amount of tan head. I'm little happy already that this didn't overflow, as the last few high end Belgians I've had have disappointed me this way.

Smell is very sweet and sugary. That sweet, grape, yeasty definitive Belgian smell... alcoholic and estery. Taste is pretty subdued and mellow. Light alcohol for a beer this strong, fairly sweet. Dark woods, spices, and fruits. Grapes and chocolate.

Mouthfeel is fizzy.. fairly light. Drinkability is excellent. Definitely a great beer.

Photo of magine
4.78/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a Duvel glass.

Pours a dark brown brew with a touch of light red on the edges in the light. Has a nice big chunky light tan head that has pock marks in it as it settles to a nice 1/2" thick head (prior to drinking). After a few sips head is now a nice island with the traces settling to fill the glass nicely. Some lacing.

Has a strong smell of variety in flavor - fruits, cloves, toffee and yeasts.

The brew tastes smooth and creamy - very balanced. The brew tastes of spice, dark fruits a roasted malt flavor. Has a superior mouthfeel to almost everything else out there. The smoothness and balance is second to none. Alcohol presence is in there - but more of a warming effect then a taste. Wow.

Wow - this brew is a definite sipper. Something to be enjoyed. This is a brew to savor, and enjoy on special occasions or times of year. Not something to "get whacked" with... although it would be easy and fun to do so. Stellar.

Photo of wknight167
4.55/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

04/08 vintage

Apearance - Pours a reddish brown with a thick tan head that quickly drops down to a thin layer before it holds steady.

Nose- Unrefined sugar, raisiny, spicy, dark cherry?

Palate- First thing that comes to mind is that the spices are very well balanced. Caramel flavors complement the fruity undertones. The alcohol is just enough to provide a warming feeling, but not knocking you out.

Mouthfeel- Definitely full bodied, but just barely so. Smooth and lively.

Drinkability- High. Easy drinking and very intriguing. Each sip makes you want another. I wouldn't mind going through quite a few of these in a sitting.

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

330 ml of 2008 vintage poured into Chimay chalice.

Dark cloudy coppery brown topped with tan head, that quickly dissipates into unstable lace, until only a lacy ring is left on the glass periphery.

Unrefined sugar, fruity esters of cherry, raisin and fig, light alcohol.

Sweet malt, cherries, raisins, figs, quite noticeable alcohol warmth, slightly peppery, hint of bread crust with delicate bitterness at the end. 330ml seems fruitier and lighter bodied when compared to Grand Reserve.

Light-medium bodied, prickly and quite dry.

Could sip this one all night long.

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

I poured this beer out of a 33cL bottle into a tulip glass. It is a dark brown with a bubbly thick light tan head.

The appearance was really beautiful, but it only got better from there. This is how a beer should smell and taste. It makes my mouth water just thinking about it.

If I could rate the mouthfeel above a 5.0, I would.

It is really exceptionally drinkable no matter what its ABV, but at 9% the drinkability is insane.

This rivals the Rocheforte 8 for my favorite overall beer.

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

I've been told to buy this by countless people, and for once I listened. One of the beer stores mislabeled five bottles as $3.99 while the rest were all labeled $8.99. I told one of the guys who manages the store about the mislabel and he said "Well, you might as well buy those $3.99 ones up since they're already in the computer."

Fuck yeah.

So I did. And MAN is it awesome. Just awesome. Dark ale with head that retains throughout the entire fucking drink. I'm really excited about it. Glad I finally bought it, and even more glad that I got an awesome deal.

Smells of bread, grain, nuts, and sweet malt.

Tastes fantastic, goes down really smooth. And not even "Man, for 9% alcohol this is really smooth," either; just smooth.

Sometimes I think smooth should be spelled with an e at the end, but i'm pretty sure that's wrong.

Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
96 out of 100 based on 6,805 ratings.