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

Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue)Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

5,555 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5555
Reviews: 2119
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.93%

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: 5,555 | Reviews: 2,119 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of JT2875


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

A- Poured into a Chalice. Pours a dark Apple Cider color with a huge light tan head with excellent retention and lacing.

S- The aroma is a lot of dark fruits such as plums and raisins, spices, dark cherries, brown sugar and mild alcohol. Excellent aroma.

T- Like the aroma is malty up front with dark fruits, spices, little yeast, and some very mild alcohol in the finish.

M- The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a mild carbonation.

D- Overall, liquid heaven! Great beer, highly recommend it! A bit pricey but something that will be in my cellar.

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2011 14:11:30 | More by JT2875
Photo of beerlove82


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

A:Nice Creamy tan two finger caramel head with a dark caramel honey brown cloudy appearance.

S: Notes of sweet port wine, fruit notes, caramel and honey also, a hint of spices. Yeast

T: Heaven! honey, fruit, caramel, yeast, theres a lot going on here, can't explain it all but its great!

M: Perfect carbonation, not too dry, refreshing.

D: If I could drink this all day I would be one happy man, but a very drunk one at that. Everything is perfect here!

Serving type: bottle

02-15-2011 15:31:36 | More by beerlove82
Photo of alkemy


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

Out of an 11.2 ouncer...

A - Pours a murky, slightly rusty brown. A couple fingers of thick and creamy tan head sit above.

S - Although not real powerful, the smell is spectacular. Dark fruits are most notable for me. Plums, figs, and tart cherries. Then a doughy cinnamon shows up. That Belgian yeast is surely there, but again, a bit subtle. There's also a hint of clove and just enough alcohol that you have to hunt for it.

T - Follows the aroma quite a bit. Nothing overpowering. Everything just works together...sum of the parts thing. The dark fruits are there at the beginning and never really disappear. The balance between the spiciness and sweetness is perfect. I did notice a woody apple note that never appeared in the nose. Taste is impressive.

M - Starts creamy, but does have a little bite toward the end. Actually makes it feel refreshing...pretty good for 9%.

D - In a word. Unreal.

My first 5.0!

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2011 17:11:50 | More by alkemy
Photo of MufflnMan


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

Have a 2007 Jeroboam of this I can't wait to try. This pour was from a 750ml into a Chimay chalice. Everything you could want and ask for of a strong dark ale. Gorgeous contrast of the dark brown body with the white lacy head. Intensely complex smell of fruits and spices. Taste follows suit with the most incredible balance of flavors. Somehow, even with its complexity and 9% abv this is still so easy to drink, but I wouldn't dare do anything but sip this. Overall, as close as it gets to perfect.

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2011 04:17:55 | More by MufflnMan
Photo of KBBA


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

Opened a corked bottle that has been cellar-stored, sitting upright, for the past two years.

Appearance -- Dark, dark brown with slight reddish hue. Loads of carbonation with a beautiful, sand-colored head which laces the glass. It appears a touch cloudy, but the color is so thick that it's difficult to truly tell.

Smell -- Traces of sweet, sugary plum, as well as dates (personal favorite of mine).

Taste -- carbonation is the first sensation to touch the tongue. Quickly, plums and dates come to the forefront, as well as hints of chocolate, molasses, and malts. The aftertaste is sweet and yeasty. Hops are very subdued. Alcohol is almost impossible to detect, which can be quite deceptive as this is 9.00% ABV.

Mouthfeel -- very creamy and smooth, but also quite thick (positively so); quite heavy, this is a sipper, and you'll likely want to share the bottle as it may be overpowering for one person.

Overall -- simply outstanding.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2011 00:09:52 | More by KBBA
Photo of jcomp21


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

I love this beer! It was like cherries and strawberries with a smooth finish. It was my first trappist and I didn't know what to expect. I somehow thought I didn't like Belgian ales but I tried it with a bunch of other beers and it was my favorite BY FAR. Soooo tastey!!

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2012 08:15:39 | More by jcomp21
Photo of matthewarmstrong


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

2010 Vintage Chimay Blue served into a Chimay goblet.

This beer has an amazing appearance, a nice dark brown colour like an old toned copper penny. One finger of beige head which retains nicely whilst drank.

Smells wooden and sweet and tastes just as you were hoping with nice caramel blushes. Just a beautiful finish and thoroughly filling, everything you want a nice ale to be.

I can only imagine how good my 1.5L bottle sitting in the cellar will be five years from now.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2012 13:41:36 | More by matthewarmstrong
Photo of freditoj


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

Appearance - Darkish brown color, very inviting. Thick head that remained for a long time.

Smell - Malty, sweet aroma.

Taste - Incredible taste, great balance. Flavor is sweet, malty and some hops are noted. Amazing taste. This is what craft beers are all about.

Mouthfeel - Good balance, smooth.

Overall - Amazing beer, you need to taste this. Well worth the price.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2012 22:14:56 | More by freditoj
Photo of joeleaux


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

THIS is what beer is supposed to be!

Pours a solid dark brown with ruby highlights, and a generous tan/off-white head with some lacing. Notes of spice, grain, toffe and yeast greeted my nose. As it warmed, I tasted cocoa, vanilla … its malty sweetness (one of the richest malts you’ll ever taste) blends with a spicy yeastiness and a wonderful warmth from the alcohol. Easily a 5/5.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2012 19:11:08 | More by joeleaux
Photo of mrweems

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

I love this beer. This is possibly my favorite. I have yet to find a beer to captivate my tastebuds quite like this.

My favorite beers are ales so i feel a bit biased with reviewing this one.

It's beautiful, smells beautiful, and tastes superb. it almost has a licorice look to the color. The head is a beautiful coffee brown. The taste is a sparkly enchanted ale.

Its a lovely brew, i share with friends when i find out they havent had this before. The ones that dislike it say its to heavy or to thick in taste. So for a beginner beer drinker id say this would be a bit intense for your taste buds if your not used to this type of ale.

Serving type: bottle

01-22-2013 22:48:46 | More by mrweems
Photo of itsscience


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

11.2 oz bottle poured into Chimay goblet

Pours a dark brown iced tea color with a finger of white head with carbonation bubbles streaming up the side of the glass. The beer has a rich, sweet dark fruit aroma with big plum and raisin notes, along with a bready malt smell, caramel, and slightly spicy, slightly funky yeast. The taste is big on caramel and sweet malts up front, almost like a Werther's Original candy, then it blends with raisin, plum, and cherry tastes for the finish. The high level of carbonation keeps refreshing the palate and preventing this big beer from seeming like a big beer.

I've been searching for a flaw in this beer over the course of this review and continue to come up empty-handed after half an hour, so I do not give it all fives flippantly but as a last resort. It's just a perfect, benchmark entry in my favorite category, Belgian strong dark ales and quads.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2013 04:23:01 | More by itsscience
Photo of BarleyBeatsGrapes


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

This is the first review I'm going to write and it was this beer that inspired me. To me, this was the perfect beer. Mellow, smooth, and strong. I've been trying different porters, stouts, barley wines, and old ales but this one was the most approachable and balanced. It wasn't the best 'everyday' beer but that's not what I was looking for... Perfect sipper, great taste!

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2014 04:19:27 | More by BarleyBeatsGrapes
Photo of Sigmund


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

An outstanding beer, very close to "perfect". I agree with all the positive things said by other reviewers, and has little more to add. The spicy, oaky complexity of the aroma and flavour is "out of this world". Wonderful, lingering aftertaste. Alcohol is well hidden. Simply exceptional!

Serving type: bottle

05-29-2002 08:17:20 | More by Sigmund
Photo of Hunter


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

2nd Chimay in as many days for me. Cinq Cents is my personal favorite, so I'll save that one for last. Grande Reserve is supposedly Chimay's "big brew", the one the monks themselves brew and drink infrequently. Whether that's true, or the stores here believe the hype, this is the most expensive of the three, at $9 for the large. At those prices I could be drinking at a pub! But these beers are worth it. As I said in my Red review, DON'T buy the smaller bottles - something's lost in translation. Chimay's website almost admits as much when it mentions that their beers take on special characteristics when the secondary fermentation after bottling is allowed to work in larger volumes.

The Blue cap pours a dark garnet color, with a long-lasting head the color of beach sand. the head easily regenerates itself with some gentle agitation. Some bits of yeast and sediment will find their way into your glass with all but the most careful pours, but it's really a minor complaint. Nice, steady carbonation in thin threads from the bottom of the chalice.

The aroma is at once more complex, and more muted than the Red. What's hiding in there? Clove, candied fruit, and...mystery. There is a light slap of alcohol (and at 9% it would be unavoidable) but it's more of an inticement than anything else.

The first thing to hit the tongue is a crisp wine-like essense, carried on a silken mouthfeel. If autumn had a taste, it would be this. Dark, earthy spice, oak, berries, and plum. Reminds me of a November sunset, bracing with the promise of frost. (The alcohol must be taking over - I'm rhapsodizing here ;))

Too hard to judge after only one, as it shows you something new each time. This beer is like a beautiful woman - she won't give up her secrets readily. I love this beer, and it's only due to the prohibitive cost that it's not a daily thing for me. As high-brow as beer gets.

Serving type: bottle

05-21-2004 22:48:56 | More by Hunter
Photo of andjusticeforale


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

Pours to the top of the letters on the Chimay chalice. Deep reddish-brown with bubbly -fine carbonation, heavy in body enough to produce large bubbles that form just below the head. It looks a lot like Gulden Draak, perhaps a bit darker.

The smell is yeast and bubble gum with clove; banana bread, and a faint touch of raisins.

Upon first taste, and mine was slightly chilled, the carbonation sits right in the middle of your tongue and will not let the beer meander around your mouth. The mouthfeel and carbonation here are perfect; alive, vibrant- yet subtle, and certainly not watery and apple-juice type feel of a stout; this is more like a cross between pepsi and mineral water.

The alcohol present on the first few sips does create a medicinal, and I have read, I must note correctly, a “menthol” taste. This bitterness balances the sweetness factor. But... as the beer warms, the sweetness wins and the menthol subsides, however, there is always bready-yeasty dryness at the end of each sip; a superb bittersweet hint of apple skin and cappucino.

Compared to the other big Trappist products, the Rochefort 10 and (I’ve never had Westy 12) but
St. B Abt 12, and the like; I would say that this beer is not inferior, neither by style nor the fact that it is marketed and accessible; There is a subtlety in this beer that makes it tremendous, and an accessibility to the Trappist genre that makes it a great “gateway” to beer appreciation.

Perhaps what this beer has that some of the huge quadruples can’t achieve is drinkability- This is a world class beer with truly high drinkability. This is a certain “must try” for all beer enthusiasts.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2005 12:48:07 | More by andjusticeforale
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 Lexluthor33

New York

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

Poured a golden, dark brown with a medium head that settled to a sticky lace. It had a smell of caramel raisins with malts and nuts.
The flavor is insane. The alcohol level is so subdued, yet the balance of malts and yeast were perfect. The touch of spice and the fruitiness seemed to join forces to arouse the senses. It was sweet, but with a bit of light bitterness.
It felt light,medium carbonation and crispy. So high in alcohol and yet so smooth. As it warms the flavors really come out, the creaminess and the all the other wonders of this Ale are revealed.

Note: This beats wines worth twice the dollar amount. The monks from Westvleteren recommend the Chimay Beers if you can not buy their famous brew. This Chimay is something special,do not look past it or take it for granted.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2008 01:21:05 | More by Lexluthor33
Photo of Cromster


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

This review is of a Chimay Grande Reserve 2001 vintage that was purchased from Beer Mania in Brussels. That cork was very tough to get out due to how long it had been sitting in this bottle.

Poured into a Chimay Goblet.

Appearance - Poured a dark brown with a nice thick creamy tan head. Decent lacing.

Smell - First thing that comes to mind is that this beer smells like a really good Port Wine. Smells of grapes, raisins, and caramel. I can't stop sniffing this beer.

Taste - The taste comes in waves. Brandy, caramel, raisins, and yummy belgian yeast. The alcohol has been subdued by the aging process and the flavors are much more pronounced than in a non aged Chimay Blue. This is one of the best beers I have tasted. The aging has done wonders to this beer. I rank it up there with the Westvletern 12.

Mouthfeel - There are waves of bubbles. The amount of carbonation is intense but it adds an amazing sensation to drinking this beer.

Drinkability - I would drink this every day if I could. I am going to start aging my own ASAP and just wait for the goodness that will be there in the next 5-6 years. This is one amazing beer and if you ever get the chance to have one aged this long do it, no matter what the cost. You will not regret it.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2008 07:14:13 | More by Cromster
Photo of jjohnson


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

This review is for the Chimay Grande Reserve 2001 vintage.

Serving type: bottle

Appearance - Poured a dark brown, thick head

Smell - Smells of grapes, dark fruits, raisins, and caramel. Incredibile smelling beer.

Taste - Tastes of yeast, brandy, raisins. The flavors are much more intense than a non-aged Chimay Blue. One of the best beers I've tasted.

Mouthfeel - Carbonation is pretty high but it didn't distract from the beer. Full mouthful, very dry almost like a fine red wine.

Drinkability - I could drink this all the time if I had the opportunity. This was a truely incredible beer. I highly recommend you try it if you get the opportunity. You will not regret it.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2008 18:00:30 | More by jjohnson
Photo of BigJTrucker


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

Picked up this beer as part of a great deal on a Chimay gift set that included the 3 beers (Blue,red,Trippel) & a Chimay goblet.

Poured into the goblet a cloudy brown color, Off white head settles fairly quickly. Smell is absolutely amazing! Sweet malt flavor, raisins, fruits, dark bready aroma. MMMM!!! I've had some other belgian strong dark ale's that a really strong anise flavor that really turned me off, but not so in this one. Taste is amazing! Mouthfeel is smooth and moist, not harsh or bitter in the least. Finish is nice, doesn't linger any longer than necessary. This beer totally surpassed my expectations. As far as drinkability is concerned, let me say this. I've had many different beers, but never before has one made me want to rush out and buy a case of it. WELL DONE!

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2008 02:25:41 | More by BigJTrucker
Photo of pokesbeerdude


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

From Notes:

A: Rich brown, almost a cola color, off white head. 4.5

S: Sour apples definite Belgian yeast, fruity and very sour. 5.0

T: Very complex, distinctive yeast profile, fruity flavors really pop out as it warms up , no hops, balanced alcohol for being 9%. 5.0

M: Nicely carbonated, not too thick but still a big mouthful. 5.0

D: Easily drinkable at 9%, one 750ml does the job though. Drinking anymore of this would be a waste, but very fun. 5.0

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2008 02:38:55 | More by pokesbeerdude
Photo of pradipta


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

2009 vintage. Belgium to Singapore via Australia, so probably a bit travel weary. Exceptional, still. Not much of a head, subtle spices in the nose, delightful pungency and same subtle spice taste, light subdued carbonation in the mouth, aftertaste of spices, caramel and an undefinable pleasant bitterness lasts practically for ever. Exceptional beer!

Serving type: bottle

04-25-2009 14:38:03 | More by pradipta
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.

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2009 12:29:27 | More by greengorilla
Photo of Hanger


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

330 mL bottle poured into an oversized wine glass

A - Opaque red-brown with 10-15 mm of creamy head that dropped to 1-2 mm in a short time

S - Complex - dark fruits & spices along malts, some alcohol

T - similar to smell - spicy dark fruits and sweet malts. overall sweet with noticeable alcohol

M - creamy and full bodied, alcoholic aftertaste, became smoother

D - amazing - really complex and enjoyable aromas and tastes. could easily have one more, will definately drink again. quite possibly the best beer I have ever tasted

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2009 11:32:17 | More by Hanger
Photo of Dougal

New Jersey

4.95/5  rDev +15.1%
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.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2007 03:25:41 | More by Dougal
Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
96 out of 100 based on 5,555 ratings.