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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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6,872 Ratings

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Ratings: 6,872
Reviews: 2,204
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.7%
Wants: 353
Gots: 1,118 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-22-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (4) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,872 | Reviews: 2,204 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brdc
4.87/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Large corked, "caged" bottle. 2007 printed n the cork.
A very nice looking brownish brew with multiple red nuances, and a minimal tan head with little lacing.
The aroma is just marvelous, toasted, sugary, yeasty, candyish, alcoholic and phenolic.
Velvety on the mouth, it goes down wonderfully for such a high powered beer, showing multiple complex flavors on the way down, as suggested by the nose; sweetish, yeasty, heavily malted, peppery spiced, at times dry.
(Barely) Short of fantastic.

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

Poured an attractive brown color with an off-white head that hung around a long time. Malty aroma of caramel and fruit. Rich and oily mouthfeel. Alcohol content well hidden. Perfect amount of carbonation. Really excellent beer and a style I need to explore further.

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

This was a restaurant bottle, 11.9 ounce I believe, blue label but did not indicate Grande Reserve as shown on the larger bottle pictured here. Judging from the other reviews this must be the same stuff, and it is good. This was a deliciously murky, root beer colored fizzy brew with lots of large suspended particles and with a fairly minor head and a slight lacing. It smells of pear and malty brown sugar. It tantilizes the palette with sprite carbonation that refreshes while delivering a fairly strong raisin sweetness. The alcohol is quite present yet it has a smooth feel that finishes a bit dry. Fairly drinkable considering this 9% kick. Very nice stuff. Pour me another one...

Update (7-16-08) from a "champagne" bottle tasting after nearly two years in cellar (the bottle, not me): Light mahogany clouded ruby with good off-white beige head and solid lacing. The aroma is a pleasant raspberry and malt chocolate. A smooth cherry malt, raisin and dry earthy hops flavor. Sprite carbonation, flavorful and quite drinkable. Nice.

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

Picked up a 750 ml corked bottle for a Friday night. The cork said it was a 2006 vintage. Poured into a Chimay chalice, so I managed to get about 2 and a half glasses out of the bottle. There was a nice head upon pouring, and color was a dark red. Taste was very enjoyable. I've had better Belgians, but for a readily available beer, this one is superb. It was a bit lighter than I would have expected from a strong dark ale. On the other hand, this made it quite drinkable, I drank the whole bottle myself and barely noticed the 9% abv. Chimay Blue is a quality beer at a excellent price for a Belgian.

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

a: frothy head forces its way out right after popping the cork, pours a near-black color with dark brown tints around edges, moderate head settles to thin veil, surprisingly with little lacing. did i get a bad bottle?
s: sweet -- raisins, caramel malts with a twinge of alchohol
t: thick malts with raisin flavor on the front end and finishes with a warm alcohol flavor/hit
m: a very smooth beer given the abv with very good carbonation & a medium/creamy body
d: as stated, very smooth and very enjoyable. admittedly not as good as i remembered the 1st time around, but solid nonetheless. things could be much worse if you're only choice is chimay.

Photo of dannon71
4.9/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

APPEARANCE: The body of this beer has a rich brown color with a slight hint of red. Cream colored head that starts about 1" - 2" thick depending on your pour and settles to about 1/4" throughout.

SMELL: Beautiful aroma of fruits, malt and molasses blend very nicely together. At first, a complex variety of fruit aromas are evident and hint strongly of figs combined with raisin. Light plum and pear are present here as well. Fruit aromas are quickly followed by the sweet scents of caramel and molasses which linger around the nose for some time. Alcohol is evident but nowhere near overwhelming.

TASTE: Instant flavor of yeast is evident followed by a perfect combination of the spice and fruit pairings. A small hint of bitterness follows then quickly turns sweet on the palate. Taste finishes with a dry crisp that leaves the mouth lingering - no begging - for another sip. Absolutely wonderful!

MOUTHFEEL: Medium body with a definite champagne like carbonation. the finish is nicely smooth and slightly dry.

DRINKABILITY: Very easy to finish the glass due to the complex flavors and uniquely warming qualities of the beer. Very difficult to slow down between sips and to truly savour as this beer warrants. A 750ml bottle is not near as difficult to drink as one may think.

This is by far my favorite Belgian beer. If you can come across a properly aged bottle, which is very hard to do these days, the experience is even greater! There are some exceptional Trappist brews out there but when you consider quality, availability, and cost, this one tops them all!!

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

Trappist #3 out of 6 for me. I can't believe I haven't had this before. It's about time, and today is a great day for it.

APPEARANCE: Pours an opaque brown with a vague red tint to it. The head started out at a one finger height and dropped to a nice off-white cap which holds to the very end. Lacing, however, is non-existent.

SMELL: It doesn't seem to have very strong aromas, but they increase at it warms. Light smells of Belgian yeast as well as some fruit (peach, plum). Alcohol is only barely detectable, but it is there.

TASTE: Begins with a quick jolt of Belgian yeast flavor along with the same fruitiness in the aroma. It becomes quite sweet towards the finish, and alcohol starts to come out. As a result, the finish is a little hot and dry. But it's such a complex beer. Incredible.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium to medium-light bodied with a fine, champagne-like carbonation. Very smooth, but slightly dry.

DRINKABILITY: A really smooth beer hindered only by the heat (not to sound like a broken record). Really fantastic though. I should have bought the 750 mL bottle.

I see this beer on tap from time to time, but never ordered it. I guess I thought since it's so widely available, it wouldn't stack up to some of the other Trappists in comparison. Today's tasting has proven me wrong, and I'll definitely be drinking Chimay again in the near future.

Photo of TheBierBand
3.92/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I got a bottle of this (1PT, 9.4 FL. OZ.) at KROGER Grocery store! I paid $9.99 for the bottle. But I figured that hey.... you get what you pay for.... so, I tried it! The brown bottle has a CORK. The bottle label said "see vintage on cork" (My cork said 11/05.... does that mean November of 2005?)

I poured it into a goblet to produce a 1" light tan head that disappeared to a fizzy ring. The beer is the color of dark caramel. Cloudy. When held to light it is a deep red.

The aroma is rich and a bit fruity. Sweet caramel.

OK.... here goes the taste: WOW!.... This is strong stuff! Taste of plum with a big alcohol finish. A touch of caramel sweetness but a good bitterness to balance it out.

Mouthfeel: A bit too fizzy for my taste.... this beer is highly carbonated. Also a bit thin for my taste.... I would prefer a bit more substance. Nice aftertaste and mouth coating.

Drinkability: This is a BIG BEER! 9% ABV. It was all I could do to finish the bottle.... best bet....share with a friend. I will buy this again and let it cellar to see the difference.

Photo of sinstaineddemon
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz. bottle, bottled in 1998
from mushroomcloud via Secret Bunny '07, but saved it for my 500th review

A - explosive right out of the bottle, but nearly all was saved, looks a hazy brown cola-esque color, with a thick nougat colored head that dissipates rapidly, too hazy to note significant carbonation

S - raisins and grapeskins dominate the bouquet, even the girlfriend can pick those aromas out, alcohol and a hint of molassess round out the nose

T - this is dangerous! this doesnt feel like it is a wallop of a beer! the flavors from the aroma are there, the raisins proceed to the forefront, and the grapeskins flavor is extant, but fades relative to the raisin, and a molasses/brown sugar sweetness rounds out the flavor

M&D - as stated, very dangerous, smooth and light bodied, and kind of fizzy, it seems to have lost some body over time, but the flavors have remained, what an amazing beer and aging has been good to it thanks again to mushroomcloud

Photo of sterstar1
4.57/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

What a great beer. It's so well balanced and simply tastes wonderful. It pours as a lovely color and an excellent head and has a wonderful, fruity nose. The taste is superb. I don't care for the red or the white but this is a trappist that I will always enjoy.

Photo of jdubjacket
4.04/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is quite an exceptional beer. I typically pass this beer up at the liquor store since I heard it was a pedestrian beer. After reading raving reviews for it, I had it for the 1st time last night. This beer is exception in all aspects except for its smell. I wasn't too impressed with the aroma. The taste is very clean and refined. This may be one of the few 9.0% ABV beers that can act as a session beer.

Photo of soupyman10
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into a pint glass. Pours an amber brown color with two fingers of big bubbled head that dissolves oddly fast. Second pour goes better, a solid improvement shows that first look was just a bad pour. Nose is molasses and spices. Smells good, but fairly mild. Taste, on the other hand, comes out of nowhere and kicks you square in the nuts. A touch of alcohol up front. Prunes and raisins. Chocolate and some light caramel. The only hit to the flavor is that the alcohol keeps sticking its nose in throughout. Body is medium and highly carbonated. A good beer - one that actually. However, second pour went better and all in all, an excellent one from Chimay.

Photo of surlyseth
4.9/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Spendy, but worth it if you've never tried it. I hosted a beer tasting and this won the foreign round, hands down. Somehow it combines abundant fruity flavors with a genuine beer taste. Not too sweet. It's a tight-wire balancing act kind of adventure.
Perfect for a celebration!

Photo of bahumutx
4.6/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served from a 11.2 oz bottle into a snifter

Appearance: Pours a red brown with about a one finger head that dissipates quickly.

Smell: Dark Fruits, Malt and a slight alcohol aroma.

Taste: Prunes, figs and other dark fruits. There is also a nice malt background that is present and a nice sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Great mouthfeel with the right amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: I could have one or two of these in a sitting but not more then that due to the high alcohol content.

What a great beer. I will definitely try the other offerings from Chimay. Keep up the great work.

Photo of jar2574
4.12/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown, the color of weak coffee, with a cream colored head.

Smells of fruit, plums, maybe a touch of rasberries. A hint of alcohol as well.

The taste is very rich. It is full of complex fruit flavors, yeast and spiciness. Goes down very easily given the high alcohol content. Threre's a nice mouthfeel and chewiness here. Almost a meal in and of itself. It wouldn't be a dessert, because this is too complex and not sweet enough. This would be a main course and a fancy one at that.

Photo of saintwarrick
4.59/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a bottle I've had for a little over a year now and was eager to see how it differed from the fresher Chimay's I am used to having.
Pours a solid head, but not as big a head as I am used to from this brew. It settles down to a fine lace, which is odd for a brew normally more carbonated.

Smell is distinctive grapes, plums and prunes which dominated the fruity esters that abound in this brew. The aroma and taste is almost like an old port, sort of reminiscent of a barley wine or an old ale in some ways.

Wow, this beer really ages well. I would recommend setting a bottle of this aside for a year or two the next time you buy some. The fresher Chimay is good, but the older stuff is better. You can't make a bad decision with this brew.

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

750ML bottle.
Served at cellar temp and poured into my Duvel tulip glass.

Appearance is very good. Very dark brown/red color with a thick, soapy and fluffy almond-colored head.

Snell is good. Plum, raisin and powdered sugar dominate with a pleasing earthy malt fragrance to round things out.

Taste is good. Huge plum flavor, sugary dates and alcohol fumes. Literally like biting into a plum. Luckily, the sweetness doesn't become cloying. There's an earthy, yeasty presence as well. Not extremely complex but well done.

Mouthfeel is good. For the style, carbonation level is almost perfect. Lively in the mouth but finishes a little bit thin.

Drinkability is good. Mostly because the sweetness isn't cloying, the drinkability jumps. One bottle would be enough though.

Not the most exciting Belgian Strong Dark Ale out there but worthy of being in the rotation. Nice for a Belgian beer beginner.

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

no words do this justice, the greatest ever perhaps.
dark pour, nice head all the time.
goes down smooth, obviously crafted the way a beer should be crafted and I've come to expect it from the fine people at Chimay. I buy multiple bottle at once and bring them to parties where ever I go in an attempt to educate those who are less fortunate and willingly drink garbage like bud all the time. They don't know what they are missing.
The greatest of all time, period.

Photo of PhiloPsych
4.31/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color was dark copper brown as it poured into the glass and dark, hazy reddish brown in the glass with a giant bubbly tan head. Smell was a bit weak, but malty and sweetly fruity. The flavor was very rich and the mouthfeel fairly thick (not quite creamy because of the sharp carbonation). The complex malt and fruit flavors are just what I expect from this Belgian style. Despite the 9% ABV, the aroma and taste are both less alocoholic than Chimay's red and white beers. In my opinion and for my tastes, this is Chimay's best brew. It is quite drinkable, too.

Photo of sleazo
4.07/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Fresh direct

ARuddy Brownish opague liquid with a big foamy head that dissipates quickly. No lace, leaves slicks of bubbles floating on top

S-Sweet cherries and other dark red fruit. Mild alcohol heat. Some roasty malt.

T-Candi sugar sweetness with a rich malt backbone. More of those fruits, with a dose of baking spices then an aftertaste which is mildly bitter. The alcohol is there, you know you aren't drinking a session beer. A complex brew.

M-Highly carbonated, medium bodied

D-This is dangerous to me and qualifies as a session for me. The price deters too much imbibing.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from an 11.2oz bottle into a flute glass.

A: The beer is a dark brown color with a large beige head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is faint but fruity with apples & dark fruit and a touch of yeast.

T: The taste is of fruit, spice and Belgian yeast and is very well-balanced. There's a slight touch of chocolate and no hint of the 9.00% ABV. The malt character is hearty and the hops presence is mild. The after-taste is yeasty and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, slightly sticky finish.

D: Tasty, goes down very easily, not very filling, excellent kick, very good representation of style, after drinking just the 330ml bottle, I'm regretting not buying the 750ml bottle. This is definitely a good beer to drink for a whole evening.

Photo of RedHaze
3.74/5  rDev -13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle. with 11/05 on the cork.

Pours a slightly hazy, very dark garnett, with a one finger head that settles slowly to a thick cap. The lacing is very thick and sticky, completely covering the interior on the glass.

Smell; a bit more subdued than I was expecting, but there are some dark fruits with a little bit of a dusty yeastiness.

Taste; much better that the aroma. Very fruity with some figs, currants, dates and plums. Caramel and cinammon, with a little touch of pepper are present, as well as some cloves.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, which is a bit thinner than I expected, especially considering the higher abv, and the drinkability is pretty darn good.

Oddly enough, this is the first time I've ever had the Grand Reserve (I first had the Premiere about 11 years ago). While this is a good one, there are better, and much cheaper ones to be had.

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

Poured on a trappist Rochefort glass.
Medium-bodied. Mild bitterness. Perfumed, dried sweet herbal hop aromas. Full carbonated mouthfeel with toasty caramel malt flavors and prominent dried herbal hop character taking hold through the finish. Carbonation is rather high and vigorous.
Really great beer, but I still prefer the dubbel Chimay Premiere.

Photo of MCDuhamel
4.19/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a corked 750 ml bottle into a Westmalle chalice, moderately chilled.

A: Pours a somewhat murky dark mahogany, nearly opaque, with some ruby highlights when held to light. Head is compact and dissipates, but leaves a one centimeter cap. Little lacing.

S: Fig, ripe fruit, some spiciness. Also a bit of a jammy character.

T: A wonderful combination of fig and dark, ripe jam, with a slight aloholic spiciness. As it finishes, there is a quick hop bitterness followed by a lingering taste of dark honey or caramel.

M: Medium bodied, perhaps a little too gassy, but very easy on the tongue.

D: Pretty easy to drink the entire 750 ml bottle, notwithstanding the potency.

Overall: This is a very good Belgain dark ale, although it is not as good as Rochefort 8 in my opinion. As good as it is, it seems to lack depth and intensity.

Photo of Redrover
4.27/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a wide mouth glass just like the label suggested, the beer is a reddish brown with a chill haze. The tan head is massive. Surprisingly not a ton of lacing.

The nose is fruity with brown sugar and a bit of spice. Very inviting.

The taste is of slightly smoked caramel, brown sugar, dark fruit and something spicy which reminds me of white pepper. Some molasses and a trace of alcohol late. Great use of malts.

The beer has a slightly sturdy mouth with a nice dry finish. This beer is complex and very easy drinking. Well done!!

Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
96 out of 100 based on 6,872 ratings.