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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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6,933 Ratings

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Ratings: 6,933
Reviews: 2,216
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.7%
Wants: 361
Gots: 1,183 | FT: 15
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 (5) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,933 | Reviews: 2,216
Photo of ajr24
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- A nice hazy and cinnamony (if that's a word) with a nice tan/white head that falls into a white-ish sheet of head.

S- Smells a bit fruity with deeper undertones of cinnamon, a bit earthy, too.

T- Tastes like a bit of brown sugar, cinnamon and earthy fruits, the alcohol is also hidden well... pretty much gone during the exhale.

M- Velvety and spicy, a great combination

D- For the high ABV, I would session this beer on taste alone... Like most belgian beers in my book.

Photo of bosco7
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

33 cL. bottle poured into proper chalice.

Dark brown with a head that seems to last only seconds. I've noticed that this seems to be common with the smaller bottles. Etching in the chalice provides a thin layer of tiny bubbles.

Bread pudding, raisin, fig, some chocolate, pepper, and phenols in the nose.

Starts a little sweet with some prune, fig, and raisin. Toffee and rum flavors become apparent in the middle of the sip. The finish is bone dry with spicy phenolics tickling the palate.

Highly digestable offering. Mouthfeel is crisp and smooth at the same time. I love having this beer during this time of year. Simply a classic and a great starting point for anyone wanting to enter the great world of Belgian ales.

Photo of GatorBeerNerd
4.52/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Pours a deep dark brown with a initially decent amount of head that disappears quickly. Leaves no lacing since there is no head left.

S: Belgian yeasty smell mixed with a strong alcohol aroma. It smelled like it was going to taste fantastic.

T: A very full taste with the alcohol content masked nicely. It has an excellent mix of earthy and fruity type flavors. It has the very slightest of aftertastes which is in fact pleasant unlike many competitors.

M: Feels a little too thin in the mouth to give it an outstanding score here, but it still receives high marks due to a perfect amount of carbonation to tickle the tongue.

D: The excellent aroma and taste makes you want to go back early and often for more of this one. I could really knock these back if my wallet could take it.

This is truly a fantastic beer. I now look forward to trying the others in the line. Hopefully they will be as enjoyable as this one.

Photo of ralree
3.41/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A: Deep caramel with a nice head that dissipates slowly leaving a great 1/4 inch lace.

S: Fruity but smooth - not too sweet or too alcoholic. Alcohol is there, but acceptable given the other flavors. Lots of spices and maltiness.

T: Pretty good, even though I'm not a fan of this style. Very alcoholic and fruity flavor up front with a nice alkaline sub-taste. Some great plum and apple flavors after the swallow. Finishes with a bit of yeast and continuing fruit/sweet/alcohol.

M: Medium-light bodied with pretty good carbonation. A little to carbonated for me. Fairly non-astringent.

D: Still a little too sweet for me - I don't think I will buy again. The red Chimay is much better in my opinion.

Photo of jbsteiny
4.48/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

750 bottle, 2006 vintage. Poured a dark red-brown with a nice & dense cream-colored head. Smelled of reconstituted dried, dark fruit (prunes, raisins), brandy, and spicy hops. Tasted like heaven -- chocolate, plum, port, hops. I'm not sure past that -- just deliciousness. A bit too fizzy for me, though -- despite being incredibly drinkable (no idea that it's 9%), the fizz burns my throat a bit. Irregardless, one of the world's classic beers.

Photo of GbVDave
2.53/5  rDev -41.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Poured from a 150cl bottle into a Chimay chalice. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Pours a cloudy reddish brown, dirty appearance, zero head. Hmmm.

S: Big whack of sickly sweet malt with an off-smelling red wine aroma. This is starting to look not so good.

T: Sweet malty flavors mixed with chocolate and that off putting red wineyness. Slightly sour (not in a good way) and finally a tiny bit of cola.

M: Smooth and rich, the lone bright spot of this beer.

D: Not so much...was this bottle bad? Or is this how it is? We were very, very disappointed with this.

Photo of Dougal
4.94/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

You have to give the Catholic Clergy their due...this is an exceptional brew...one that must have been contemplated with deep reserve...the nose is wonderfully light yet very complex soft fruit, herb, malt...the taste is wonderful, there are not many beers you will ever taste that can be said to be very similar to Chimay Grande Reserve...it is very balance with beautiful slight bite of the above smells of fruit, herb and malt...chimay is so sophiscated it is indulged like a glass of wine.

Photo of likestoswallow
4.19/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle from Vons. Pours a dark cloudy unfiltered brown with a tan head that disappears somewhat too quickly. Aroma is complex with caramel, cinnamon, root-beer, oranges and yeast. Flavor is nutty with almonds and walnuts in the forefront; anise, oranges, yeast in the middle; and mild hops bringing up the rear. Mouthfeel is full, creamy and smooth. Finish is long and satisfying. An Ale for the Ages.

Photo of bunnyhustle
4.02/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The end of my Chimay trilogy. Poured from bottle into Chimay chalice. Very thick, off-white head at first but it didnt stick around for long, a thin layer is left behind and no lace. Very deep brown, looks black in low light but more of the rich brown color. Smell is great. Smells of bread, apple, raisin, some yeast, and a little roasted grain (fruit being the dominant smell). Taste is on par with smell. Some fruits, grain, and a touch of alcohol, there is a definite earthy overall taste to it. Moderate carbonation and a somewhat creamy mouthfeel to it, leaves a relatively dry feeling in the mouth. The alcohol is hidden well but be warned, it will sneak up on you.

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

I split a 750 ml corked and caged bottle with my friend rdunham at a recent party. Thanks for the treat!!!

A: It poured a dark ruddy brown with a caramel to brown sticky head with tiny abundant bubbles that lingered like whip cream on the top of the brew and supported a nice rich curtain as the experience continued.

S: It had a strong rich aroma of roasted malts and dark grainy bread.

T: It had a complex balance of flavors that together presented a sweet warm profile that reminded me of hot chocolate with marshmallows on a cool fall night. Beyond the malty chocolates there was a distinct presence of dark sweet fruits including figs, raisins, and dates.

M: It is a full bodied brew with a sweet fruity front and nice clean back leaving a warm spicy feel in the mouth and a lingering desire for another sip.

D: It was full bodied with a smooth rich balanced presence and a clean finish. This may be best as an after dinner treat or a night cap. Two or three of the 750s would make a full night of joy for me.

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

Into a tulip - should have went with the goblet.

A - Murky cola color, nice thick head to start that shrinks within minutes. Very coating, foamy lacing.

S - Sliced apples on top of cotton candy. As it warms, the sweet deeper malt comes through.

T - Wonderful balance of sweet burnt candy and bitter finish.
Elegant, and I don't usually use that word for beer taste.

M - Very carbonated, creamy. Full mouth, not a thin beer. Maybe a little, just a little, too carbonated for my taste.

D - Alcohol pretty well disguised and the taste is not overly taxing on the senses. It would be easy to drink quite a few of these.

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

A - Pours a deep, opaque brown -- like an unfiltered apple cider. Head wasn't too impressive and it dissolves into a light film that stays with the beer.

S- A fruity apple scent covers a sugary malt scent.

T- Again the apples are strong. It's a sweet apple taste. A bit of caramels and just a bit of a spicy taste from the hops. A little bit of alcohol but not enough to burn.

M - Moderate body with a good amount of carbonation.

D - A fine after dinner beer that's great around the holiday season.

Photo of cswhitehorse
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The blue pours a dark amber with a nice foam head an no lacing. The smell is terrific malt dominated aroma. I smell a little brown sugar and faint orange smell The taste is really smooth and it finishes sweet. Overall one of the best Belgian's I have tried to date. I would recommend this one to anyone.

Photo of LeRay
3.97/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I don't drink too many Chimay beers, mostly around Christmas. However, I did get to try this one out for the first time recently. The taste is great, really fresh. Good head and nice appearance. This is a beer you just want to sip and enjoy. I really enjoyed it and I'll be getting more in the future.

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

Beer bottle (33, 75 cl), tasted in 1999.
Appearance: very dark amber beer, beautiful creamy foam
Smell : deep rich caramel aroma
Taste & mouthfeel : very good palate, mellow and fine. Fruity aroma of yeast, without being sweet, delicate taste.
Drinkability: Great beer well balanced.

Review added 10-27-2007, translated from french 2-26-2008.

Photo of dankman38
4.27/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Why spend 12 dollars on a 750 ml. bottle of beer?

Because it’s Chimay Blue Cap. Really one of the true classics Blue Cap really does a good job of promoting the high quality reputation the monks have made for themselves when it comes to making beer.

Photo of jcdiflorio
4.68/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One of my favorite beers wanted to rate it for the Michael Jackson toast since he's the person I heard about a from on the Beer Hunter series years ago. Reviewed it on my birthday instead,named my German Shepherd after this beer and had it instead of wine at my wedding. My special occasion beer.

On with the review,poured into my Chimay glass (what else?) a mirky reddish brown color,looks like apple cider. Has a creamy,froathy light tan head that falls into a constant creamy coating that never dies. Extremely tiny bubbles very tightly knitted togeather screaming towards the surface. Love just watching it.

Spicy,very earthy,with a nutty character,lots of dark fruityness with a musty/woodsy scent.

Complex taste dark fruit raisins/dates/figs reminds me of a fruit cake. Delicate spicyness,very earthy with sweey syrupyness. Slighty tart with a touch of sourness. Finishes dry, with a warming booziness creeps up on you nicely, just enough,but not overbearing,nor does it drown out any of the other tastes of the beer. Perfect!

Very smooth and creamy has a light mouthfeel,velvety with some pleasing tangyness. Soothing beer goes down almost too easy. Very enjoyable haven't had this beer in a while almost forgot how great it really was. Won't wait this long again before I have another. Would be a great winter warmer beer. Must try beer.

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

I've enjoyed this beer many a times before, but this time, I hooked myself up with a little Chimay cheese to boot. So, this is a special double review, cheese and beer.

A: Beer pours a cloudy brown red body into my wide rimmed Chimay glass (yes, I went that Chimay crazy) topped by a 1-1/2 inch light tan, silky head. The head sticks around for a few minutes, but never leaves completely, setting down into a thin lace that constantly guards the prize.

Cheese is a shiny eggshell with a hard orangish hide. Room temperature, the cheese feels semi-soft, a firmer than a cold brie.

S: Beer has big fruity esters, backed by a wave of sweet and spicy alcohol.

Cheese is big, sweaty and salty, slightly sour.

T: Dry grainy sweetness with a peppery fruit swallow. The alcohol follows through from the nose. A slight washington apple tartness presides over the whole drink.

Cheese tastes a double dose of the smell, HUGE. The sour pungency follows all the way down, clenching the tongue will only subdue it so much. By itself, a little overpowering for me.

M: Beer is crisp and dry, very refreshing. Medium/high carbonation.

Cheese is creamy and soft. Holds the flavor close to the tongue and cheeks.

D: This is a very refreshing beer. Full flavored and satisfyingly sweet, while never becoming from being overpowering.

The cheese by itself is a bit much for me. I top out at a good Stilton for strong cheese. But, followed by a slow pull of this beer, the cheese becomes the perfect compliment. A nice combination all can enjoy.

Photo of MMAJYK
4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Very foggy dark brown. Head is off white, and very thick and lacy. Head sticks around for the duration of the drink.

S- Smells of caramel, marshmallows, with lemony sneaking in from the side.

T- Taste is of caramel, nuts, and spices. I would have liked to give this one the 5 here, but I just can't do it.

M- Mouthfeel is very creamy and malty. Very pleasing to the mouth is this beer. Carbonation is perfect!

D- This is a very drinkable beer. I love this one. I could drink it all day if I had the stock. Stong brew, but very well hidden in the taste.

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

A- Foggy translucent dark red/brown body that pours with creamy light tan head. Head slowly subsides to a big thick creamy collar and some lacing is left behind in the glass.

S-Nose is heavy on dark fruit-particularly raisins, and has a big spicy yeast background.

T- Dark fruit, particularly raisins, are upfront with a big hefty spicy yeast backbone. Hints of sugary sweetness also come through. The finish is mostly spicy yeast with a big presence of alcohol. What lingers on the palate is a big spicy yeast profile and hints of alcohol and fruity sweetness.

M- High carbonation and medium weight body heavy on alcohol and yeast. The alcohol is hard to swallow but the yeast smooths it out.

D- I find this more drinkable as it warms. The 9% ABV does not hide in this one at all. It is a complex and enjoyable Belgian ale meant to be treated with care. Good and something I am willing to revisit-but not sure it is worth $5 for a 11.2 oz bottle.

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

A - very dark red, but brilliantly clear. Effervescent, with thick tan head. No lacing.

S - raisin and spice. I'm not getting a lot of aroma.

T - What's lacking in aroma, is more than made up for in flavour. Big dark fruits, bready malt and a smooth spiciness throughout.

M - Noticable alcohol, very warming, but smooth. A little too carbonated to start, gives everything a "sting." Light body and ample carbonation gives the feeling of a fluffy fullness.

D - This is pretty good, but still no Rochefort.

I drank some of this on it's own, and then had it with some Chimay cheese... oh my god, the combination is fantastic. The cheese has a smoky burnt flavour, and then you taste the beer and the wonderful sweetness comes shining through.

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

Dated 2006, 750 ml. bottle. Dark, reddish/brown pour. Sweet, slight chocolate, carmel and very, very faint coffee-ish flavor, maybe a touch of raisins. Soft and warm mouthfeel. Alcohol is hidden well. All in all an excellent Belgian Strong, it lives up to it's reputation.

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

Had a mini quad tasting with HellsBells24 in April 07. Had this one after the Rochefort 10.

Picked up this 11.2oz bottle at Discount Drinks in Wyandotte.

Appearance: Pours a hazy brown color with a 1 finger tan head. The head fades quickly on this one. Slightly red around the edges. There is a little bit of lacing on my snifter. This looks very similar to the others, just not quite as nice.

Aroma: Starts with some dark fruits and a slight alcohol burn. This is followed roasted malts and more dark fruits, possibly cherry. The aroma is more pronounced as it warms, just like the others. Not as pronounced as the others.

Taste: Starts sweet with some nice malt notes. There are hints of cherry and dark fruits. In the finish, there iswarming alcohol and some spicy hops. There is a nice malt background that balances all these flavors.

Mouthfeel: This starts creamy followed by the sweet dark fruits. These flavors hang for a short while.

Drinkability: This is very smooth too. This doesn't seem like 9%, but after a few, you know it is. I could put back about 4 or so of these, but it's best when comsumed slowly and enjoyed.

Overall. This finished last behind the Rochefort 10, Westy 12, and Abt 12. Another truely a world-class beer (as were the others) that's probably the most available of teh four we had. The flavors and aroma are not as pronounced as the others, but it's still damn good. Pick one or more up and see for yourself.

Photo of 0tt0
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz. bottle, decanted into a Chimay chalice.

Pours a chocolately brown with amber/ruby highlights at the edge of the glass. 1/4 inch of off-white head, loose but sticky. Malt dominates the nose, with the most notables scents being toffee, raisin, and freshly baked bread. A slight, slight citrus note as well. Much like the nose, the taste is of a slightly burnt sugar, raisins reconstituted in dark rum, and something akin to passion fruit. Finish is slightly dry, with some tongue-tingling carbonation in the middle and a medium decay. Mouthfeel is chewy and creamy, almost velvet-like. I am enjoying this one on the porch on one of the first cool nights of fall, and its ideal in these circumstances. Alcohol is extremely well cloaked. Not as complex as others in the style, but its no slouch at all and highly enjoyable given its drinkability. As an added incentive, its readily available at most decent bars and liquor stores, so there is always a terrific belgian close at hand. A consistently great beer.

Side note: I once paired this with some pulled pork and tomato barbecue sauce featuring molasses and it was outstanding. One of the better pairings I've encountered. The spiciness and sweet malt blend perfectly.

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.7/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The night of the Chimay in my front room. All three beers to be drank in one session. Red, White and Blue, the colours of the 'Union Jack' .

This blue labelled 33cl bottle with its best before date of 2012 was taken with a whole round of Chimay cheese, also with the blue label. Both bought in Belgium on a resent visit.

Poured into my 'Forbidden Fruit' chalice glass, it looked fine, I ensured the whole bottle including the sediment got into the glass.

Dark and a little cloudy, because of my pouring, the off white head didn't hang around, pity.

Although some BA's can smell the scent of a randy fox from half a mile, I struggle to smell my own farts sometimes, so it is not suprising that all I can smell is burnt malts and plums in this fine beer.

The taste however is easier to detect, a good blend of malt and plum fruits are there for all to find, this is a flavoursome beer and the 9% alcohol doesn't kill the intermix of quality products this beer is obviuosly made from, allowing them to infuse without ruining them.

A very good beer indeed, the cheese from the Monks also helped to intensify the flavours, try them together if you ever get the chance.

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Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
96 out of 100 based on 6,933 ratings.