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Chimay Première (Red) - Bières de Chimay S.A.

Chimay Première (Red)Chimay Première (Red)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,487 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3487
Reviews: 1537
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 11.35%

Brewed by:
Bières de Chimay S.A. visit their website

Style | ABV
Dubbel |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-20-2000)
View: Beers (5) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,487 | Reviews: 1,537 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of ChristopherWIU-UTPA


4.75/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This finely, abbey produced Belgian Dubbel will puts some hair on your chest, that is for sure. It pours dark brown, with a large dark tan head that slowly dissipates (slower than usual). It has a strong aroma of caramel and fruit, which goes along with the similar taste. it leaves a sweet after taste, has an edge because of the ingredients alcohol content, and is very filling.

Widely available in the United States...

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2014 16:42:28 | More by ChristopherWIU-UTPA
Photo of harpus


4.11/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark brown colour with loads of head. Very little lacing and head retention is average.

S - Strong sweet chocolate and caramel with roated malt. Touches of vanilla and licorice as well.

T - Definitely a dubbel. Mild phenolic hit. Sweet at first but fading nicely - only the most slight bitter aftertaste. Bit of a burnt caramel/brown sugar feel. This one grows on you slowly as you drink....

M - Basically smooth but with a strong sense of carbonation - fizzes all the way down.

D - As I mentioned above this one seems to improve as you drink (maybe it's the mix of sediment into the beer). Either way I want more.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2014 16:42:19 | More by harpus
Photo of souvenirs

British Columbia (Canada)

4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed with poutine last night at Belgian Fries. So far, I'm not a huge fan of Belgian beers, but I figured since I was at Belgian Fries and the other options were Canadian macro brew, I should try something Belgian.

A: Cloudy chestnut with lots of head.
S: Yeast, roasted malts (not super super dark though), plus a light floral scent.
T: Deliciously malty.
F: Smooth.
O: I enjoyed this more than I've enjoyed other Belgian or Belgian style beers I've tried. I'd have it again.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2014 17:25:42 | More by souvenirs
Photo of BrewMakeMeFeel


4.75/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance: Pours a rich caramel color with a thick, beige head.

Smell: Mild, unique yeast aroma

Taste: Complex flavor profile centered around distinct yeast flavors, finishing with just a hint of bitterness.

Feel: Smooth texture with a pleasant bite of carbonation.

Overall: A classic abbey ale, with a yeast blend you won't find anywhere else. Smell slightly underwhelming, and doesn't quite measure up to the Grande Reserve but a fantastic ale and a great introduction to Belgian beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2014 03:28:50 | More by BrewMakeMeFeel
Photo of dacrza1

New Jersey

4.21/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

DATE TASTED: February 10, 2014... GLASSWARE: Chimay 150th anniversary goblet...OCCASION: PSU/Illinois Sunday... APPEARANCE: dark mahogany body; thick, creamy off-white head that clings to the glass; cascading lacing... AROMA: bright, aromatic hops; some apple and pear bake in a soft, doughy aura; some ginger or allspice as well...PALATE: almost light-bodied, dry, and beguilingly drinkable presence; smooth and inviting...TASTE: grape, grapefruit, and soft pine resin--soft, pleasant, after-dinner cordial warmth; slightly acidic... OVERALL: revisiting the first beer to make me say, "Whoa," Keanu style--and the beer does not disappoint to create a drinking experience where the beer IS the moment...the Chimay family grows in strength, but the opener in the sampler outperforms most other breweries' "first-ups by a long shot with drinkability and strength to spare...

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2014 05:13:55 | More by dacrza1
Photo of BierJager89


4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Pours a red tinted brown, with an off white head.

S: A little bit of citrus, some malt, and some dark fruit (plum?) in the nose.

T: Citrus, malt, plum, dark fruit, and maybe some apricot.

M: Medium bodied and a tiny bit smooth.

O: Pretty good. I'd recommend it, especially if you like the style. I'd say it's above average for the style.

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2014 16:22:07 | More by BierJager89
Photo of Nugganooch


3.63/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

11.2 oz bottle with my Chimay Chalice naturally
Notes from 01/25/14

A: Deep amber color. Rusty brown tones and a bit of yeast haze across the body. Thick two fingers of dense khaki suds forms atop. Near perfect retention efforts with some light dots and streaked lace travelling down the glass. Looks expertly crafted.

S: Dusty minerals and some mild Trappist yeast character on the nose. There are some soft bready notes and a light toffee sweetness. Not incredibly pungent aromas. Some distinct banana and clove materialize as well.

T: Toasted dark breads with some dried fruit and Belgian yeast notes. A light combination of banana peel, clove, and peppery spice. There is a subtle toffee sweetness to the beer by and large. Not particularly bitter to me and the alcohol is pretty much nonexistent. Wet earthy minerals at the finish. Not bad but not terribly exciting.

M: A bit watered down and thin in feel. Medium to lighter body. Some soft drying at the finish.

D: This is a decent Belgian Dubbel with some nice and easy drinkability. Definitely starts off strong but tends to fall apart at the seams for me. Good but not great.

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2014 23:09:45 | More by Nugganooch
Photo of Act25

New Jersey

4.66/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Chamay-moi, Chamay me fan. I used to think Blue was it, but red, white, blue all good in their own rights. Much depends on the temperature and condition of the bottle. This red Dubbel is a good one.

Appearance: Pours an opaque mahogany brown color with a tan fluffy head that hangs around and leaves much lacing. (served in a Carton Tulip)

Smell: Caramel malt backbone is decorated with herbacious, cedary, woody, raiseny nose; much must and yeast also, but it all works for me. Old world Church like.

Taste: As it smells, but fuller, rounder, with some spicy clove, berries, and a nice long bitter ride to the finish, then toffee sweetness and fresh cut tart apples. Beautiful finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium creamy, well carbonated, cidery, tingly, and again a beautiful, appetizing finish.

Drinkability: Subtle, contemplative. I like it as well as any other dubbel. In some ways, so far, I may give the edge to white, red, blue in that order, but it's l always love the one I am with.

Serving type: bottle

02-03-2014 20:14:15 | More by Act25
Photo of BeerDrinker01

United Kingdom (England)

4.56/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bomber served in Chimay goblet, Dark Amber with a two finger off-white head with not a lot of lacing. Aromas, sweet maltiness, candy sugar, Raisins, Fruit, Caramel. The taste is very similar to the nose it's very complex and beautifully balanced! Mouthfeel creamy medium bodied with high carbonation. The ABV is hidden well!

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2014 13:10:29 | More by BeerDrinker01
Photo of ThisWangsChung


3.45/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

11.2 oz bottle into a Chimay goblet, natch.

A: Pours a murky dark brown color. The head is about a finger high, with a cream shade - it doesn't have good retention at first, but seems to last a while after fading to a thin film. A little bit of lacing is left behind.

S: There are lots of apple notes from the esters that really mesh well with the strong caramel and brown sugar aromas. There are even slight hints of chocolate and cherry. So, the aroma is three parts caramel-coated apples and one part chocolate-coated cherries. How is that not awesome??

T: Didn't live up to the aroma, sadly. Apple esters hit the palate immediately and end up as the primary note over the secondary caramel and brown sugar flavors. The balance between these two notes is bang-on; it's the lack of the depth (and the unwanted metallic notes) that kill its chance at greatness. Still, this is enjoyable enough.

M: Very fizzy, as expected. The fizz bothers me here a bit more than it did in Chimay Blue, simply because this doesn't have the full body to help mask it slightly. But it's as bone dry as can be, and that gives it rock-solid drinkability.

O: As a straight-up dubbel/BSDA, it doesn't hit me the same way Rochefort 8 did. It's far from bad, don't get me wrong, but I'm kind of nonplussed here. This is probably on the lower end of quality in terms of trappist ales.

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2014 21:52:20 | More by ThisWangsChung
Photo of LVituri


4.69/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Outra cerveja que eu acho menosprezada pelos especialistas. Mas na minha visão, trata-se de uma cerveja de coloração linda, bom aroma e ótima presença gustativa. Um rótulo da Chimay que me surpreendeu nas duas experiências que tive com ela, principalmente na versão rolha.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2014 13:18:30 | More by LVituri
Photo of RandomExile


3.75/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: translucent red/amber; giant fluffy tan head, porous; spotty lacing
S: initially malt, with a metallic tang; clarifies into fruit, reminiscent of a lambic, with notes of apple and pear
T: opens with strong malt, per the nose; caramel replaces fruit as the second element, with a muted apple undercurrent; bitter finish
M: medium-bodied; creamy; dry
O: solid dubbel, maybe a bit too bitter on the finish, but fans of malt and apple may find this ideal

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2014 06:33:43 | More by RandomExile
Photo of Andrew041180


4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured slowly into a Chimay chalice. Head rises minimally and maintains thanks to ample carbonation. The color is a brownish amber, a bit hazy, but not enough to hide the carbonation. Little to no lacing.

S - Very mild, but the aromas of sweet malt and Belgian yeast are certainly recognizable.

T - Follows the nose. Flavors are subtle and compliment each other. Light sweetness gives way to a greater balance with the yeast as the beer warms. Maybe a touch of floral hops in there?

M - Very full mouthfeel, in large part due to the carbonation. Feels great.

O - Very enjoyable. This came as a small bottle as part of a gift pack, and by the end of it I was definitely looking around for more. The price on the bomber size is a little higher than I would normally spend, but this beer is good enough for me to at least consider it. Looking forward to the Tripel and Quad!

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2014 16:58:46 | More by Andrew041180
Photo of Mike_Moe


4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Very dark amber with good off white head.
Aroma: Aroma of sweet malt.
Flavor: Sweet maltyness is intertwined with fruit flavors . Silky smooth with a good amount of carbonation. Full body, non bitter finish.
Overall: Very good beer. Bold sweet malt smooth taste. My favorite of the Chimay’s. Has the right amount of ABV.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2014 06:48:41 | More by Mike_Moe
Photo of ryanocerus


3.68/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Picked up a Christmas sampler with chimay chalice. Poured a cloudy dark amber color with 1/2 inch of caramel head. Head dissipated quickly with minimal lacing. The aroma is characteristic Belgian in nature with hints of banana. The taste has a yeast/malt initial flavor with an astringent mineral finish. Nice carbonated full mouthfeel. Overall an above average beer, but there are other Belgian style beers I would drink before this.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2014 03:00:17 | More by ryanocerus
Photo of HoppyBastard


4.56/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 1 pint 9.4 ounce corked bottle into a shaker pint glass, the cork was dated "2012".

APPEARANCE: Cloudy amber color with a two finger off-white head that soon dissipated to a partially covered thin layer with minimal lacing, somewhat higher carbonation.

SMELL: Citrus, bread, banana and slight spice, fairly assertive.

TASTE: The taste follows the nose, initially sweet citrus and banana, then yeasty bread and a nice spicy hop profile that pleasantly lingers, very complex, there are some caramel notes as well, the taste changed as it warmed. I swirled the sediments at bottom of bottle and poured...wonderful. Well done Father Theodore.

PALATE: Very creamy with slightly higher carbonation for the style, alcohol is well hidden, extremely drinkable.

OVERALL: This is the best Dubbel I have ever had, it's a little pricey compared to other beers available but I don't care. Plus, all the proceeds go to charity. I can drink beer and help others? Yea, sign me up again...I will definitely have this beer again and would recommend to anyone who enjoys the Dubbel style.

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2013 04:44:39 | More by HoppyBastard
Photo of Franziskaner


3.8/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Amber reddish hue with a half inch of small, tightly compacted light brown foam. I see a lot of busy carbonation bubbles. I get caramel,Belgian candy sugar,and Belgian yeast in the nose. Mouthfeel is dry and there's almost a mineral aspect and yet it is somewhat creamy despite that! The flavor is biscuity malt,dark Belgian candy sugar,and Belgian yeast. There's a slight tartness to the finish with the year.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2013 23:17:00 | More by Franziskaner
Photo of CalgaryFMC

Alberta (Canada)

3.99/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 330 ml bottle into a genuine Chimay chalice. This iconic dubbel is a reddish-orange hue, less dark that one's Trappist beer schema might dictate, with a massive light tan head that retains form quite well. Smells like dried dark fruit (figs and dates), sweet white bread, cola-like brown spices, and a little cellar musty character. Palate is sweet, herbal, spicy, somewhat medicinal ... Clove and nutmeg spicy phenols, some wintergreen or birch beer herbal character, treacle, light chocolate, hints of citric fruitiness, and an earthy spice that reminds one of ginseng root. Body not terribly thick and the brew is quite bubbly, which provides an interesting contrast to the dark and rich flavors. Finish includes some hop resin, booze, and further spicy, earthy notes. Not roasted or toasty. This was my very first Trappist brew, sampled years ago in graduate school, and I am happy that it still hit that sweet spot for a guy whose taste buds have been plastered by double IPAs and stronger Belgian ales. Younger examples may include more banana flavor from yeast esters ... This one (minimum two years old) was less fruity.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2013 01:20:52 | More by CalgaryFMC
Photo of ONovoMexicano

New Mexico

4.41/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up the gift package to reward myself for all my hard drinking, got the Red, Yellow and Blue plus a chalice for $20. Sweet deal.

The appearance is really something special. A thick, pillow-like head forms above the head and settles like clouds upon a mountain. With a cream color, this could easily be the foam atop a cappuccino. Plus, it persists long after the pour and even when I take a sip, the dissipation is still minimal and the lacing huge. As for the liquid, we have a light brown with a cloudy quality to it. There's decent carbonation arising throughout.

The smell is at first very malty, then a bit yeasty, then the fruit profiles emerge alongside a slight earthy spice. Second whiffs bring bread and toast, specifically a bready crust.

Many of the characteristics on the nose continue when the beer hits my palate. There's bread, plums and other earthy fruits, and slight hints of yeast and booze.

The beer's booze is well masked, the mouthfeel creamy and smooth, making the beer easy-drinking. Still, there's a lot of complexity here and this beer is one that I want to sip, enjoy and contemplate. I'm mad at myself for not drinking more of this given that it's so easy to find.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2013 03:52:06 | More by ONovoMexicano
Photo of DenverHopHead


4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a caged a corked bottle, into a pint glass.
Appearance -cloudy and red, but more orange against the light. Thick, creamy white head that fades . Lacing is hit and miss.
Smell - sweet bread, possibly some peach and apricot.
Taste - very flavorful and smooth.
Feel - light to medium body, nice carbonation. Refreshing at 7%!
Overall - a nice treat, but I wouldn't spend the extra dough when I could get better quality at a better value.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2013 22:36:57 | More by DenverHopHead
Photo of itsscience


4.09/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a Chimay goblet

Pours dark brown with two fingers of off-white head that dissipates quickly. Right after pouring you can hear the carbonation and feel it on your nose, just like a soda. The nose has an over-ripened plum, cherry, and raisin characteristic to it with the bready malt and candied sugar smells that are common in Trappiste ales. It tastes surprisingly low-key with some bread malt up front, an earthy quality throughout, and a sweet finish with no big fruit notes like the nose has. It feels pretty light-bodied and watery even with the high carbonation. Still a very good dubbel.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2013 07:34:23 | More by itsscience
Photo of SoupKitchenBeerSnob


4.43/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Ok, what can I possibly say about Chimay that hasn't already been said before? Is it the finest beer I've ever tried? No, but definitely a standard to be measured by. This one was poured from an 11.2 oz bottle into a Chimay chalice (seemed appropriate). Wonderful aroma and head. Amazingly smooth beer that is easily put down. My honey-bunny says it makes her nipples hard and that's good enough for me. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2013 22:32:45 | More by SoupKitchenBeerSnob
Photo of vfgccp

New York

4.01/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2011 bottle opened 2013

A - Lightly opaque ice tea body. Black-brown sediment. Fine bubbled off-white head. Nice retention and low lace.

S - Classic belgian spice and yeast nose. Banana, cardamon, clove, orange zest, buiscuts.

T - Refreshingly bright and lively carbonated. Lemon, thyme, banana, black currents, yellow raisins, white bread, and toffee.

M - Medium frame with great carbonation.

O - Still a great beer after all these years, and it's even more refreshing than I remembered it.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2013 23:40:39 | More by vfgccp
Photo of Kyle_Hanson

North Dakota

4.51/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Very malty and smooth with a slight bitterness way on the back of the tongue that lingers a bit. Creamy texture and a marvelous pillow head that receded quickly but remained right on the surface of the liquid. Very pretty, a dark cloudy ruby red that's nice to look at... but even better to drink.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2013 07:46:54 | More by Kyle_Hanson
Photo of sfprint


4.21/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

exp 2014, so a bit aged.

A: Not much of a head, not much rising carbonation, very cloudy reddish, yellowish brown. lots of floating sediment.
S: both chocolatey and marachino cherry. slight bit of cream. Pretty damn amazing.
T: chocolate, slightly "watery" or rather it's relatively very light.
M: slightly grainy
O: A very very nice beer. Very high on my dubbel list.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2013 21:43:08 | More by sfprint
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Chimay Première (Red) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
92 out of 100 based on 3,487 ratings.