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

Not Rated.
Chimay Première (Red)Chimay Première (Red)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

3,853 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,853
Reviews: 1,556
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 11.35%
Wants: 156
Gots: 309 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Bières de Chimay S.A. visit their website
Belgium

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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,853 | Reviews: 1,556 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bashiba
bashiba

Iowa

4.03/5  rDev -2.7%

Poured a hazy brown color with a thick white head that left rather quickly, but still had substantial lacing down my goblet.

Smells of dark fruits like dates, raisons, and plums along with a slight yeasty odor.

Taste is much more subdued than the smell would leave you to beleive. Has a nice Nutty maltiness to it without being sweet. Balances very well with a nice dry earthy finish.

Mouthfeel is a very full warming feeling along with a slight dryness, overall pretty nice.

Drinkability is pretty good, the more I drink this the more I like it.

11-30-2004 23:06:56 | More by bashiba
Photo of connecticutpoet
connecticutpoet

Connecticut

4.1/5  rDev -1%

This one poured out a cloudy brown beer with a good-sized tan head, in appearance somewhat similar to the Grande Réserve.

The aroma was quite different, however, with mostly sweet dark malt dominating. Hints of caramel and a bit of honey seemed to hover in the background.

The taste was of darker malts, with more than a hint of nuttiness. There was almost none of the musty quality that many dubbels I have tried seem to have. It did give that pleasing warmth on the way down.

Good body to this one, somewhat chewy. A good dark beer for a winter's day.

11-23-2004 05:02:41 | More by connecticutpoet
Photo of oggg
oggg

California

3.85/5  rDev -7%

This beer pours an orange brown with a small quickly receding head. Leaves decent lace. Aroma is mild floral. On the tongue this beer is very smooth, a bit thin, minimal bitterness. Nice Belgian yeast character. Alcohol subtle. Overall, a little thin but I had this after the Blue (9%) -- quite nice.

11-14-2004 20:21:15 | More by oggg
Photo of cncbofh
cncbofh

Colorado

4.65/5  rDev +12.3%

Poured a dark clotted blood color into my chimay goblet. Nice thick off-white head that stuck around the entire drinking session.

Smell: Halls Menthol drops, orange candy, bananas and cloves.. nice esters.

Taste: Dare I say jolly rancher sweetness, apple tartness, lots of great fruit and candy sugar flavors. Much sweeter than I thought. But it's not overpowering and has a sharp bite followed by a real mellow aftertaste that is not entirely unpleasant. Good Stuff.

I could (and will) drink lots more of this. Moving on to the Blue and Cream labels later.

11-13-2004 02:51:55 | More by cncbofh
Photo of watermelonman
watermelonman

California

3.68/5  rDev -11.1%

This poured to a dark red and brown color with a massive head. It's leaving a reasonable amount of lace behind, too.

The smell is of dark malts, caramel, and a bit of alcohol. The taste brought more of this, with some amount degree of esters as well. It's a well blended and balanced brew, although it's lacking the complexion found in some of the competition.

11-08-2004 07:14:39 | More by watermelonman
Photo of sacfly
sacfly

Maryland

3.93/5  rDev -5.1%

Reddish brown pour. Dense, thick head. Very small bubbles that lace well. Slightly fruity, musty smell. Smooth and creamy start, with a slightly bitter aftertaste. Good dubble, but not great. Flavor is a bit too subdued compared to other examples of this style.

11-01-2004 20:48:59 | More by sacfly
Photo of davewrona
davewrona

Pennsylvania

4.88/5  rDev +17.9%

This has a light hint of carmel flavor and is just delicious. Rather expensive, but worth the money! You will love drining this beer for its taste and nouthfeel. You will appreciate even more if you a have a couple domestics lights before sampling this one!

11-01-2004 14:24:43 | More by davewrona
Photo of beerceller99
beerceller99

Louisiana

3.28/5  rDev -20.8%

33 cl.with a "LAK 345 J-9" bottling code; sometime in 2002. Pours a orange-red color with an off white head. Has a vinous smell with a very dry, malty, grape sweet and spicy flavor. Light bodied with a lively bubbly mouthfeel.
Not my favorite style,but a decent brew nonetheless.

10-31-2004 17:11:46 | More by beerceller99
Photo of elricorico
elricorico

Alberta (Canada)

4/5  rDev -3.4%

Poured a murky brown with a good sized bubbly tan head. The head had some staying power to it, and never completely disappeared.

Has a faint cherry smell, with a bit of alcohol to it. I also think I may detect a bit of raisin to it.

The taste is dark and sweet, with a bit of a sour cherry finish. It is fairly pleasant.

This beer is pretty easy to drink. It has a good balance of carbonation and body. Though not a beer I'd have all the time, it's not something I'd hesitate to buy again.

10-29-2004 03:15:26 | More by elricorico
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk

Minnesota

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

Clear crimson coloration, with busy fizzing above in the beigish head, which dies quickly..nose is spicy, sweet, caramel, and cola, dark fruits and more, but, really, not enough...these days, I expect more from a dubbel.
In the mouth, tasty enough, but not much more than average...nutty, slightly chocolatey, very light, very lean, leaves the palate quickly, though...and a dull fuzz remains on the tongue, and dies...pretty average, really.
Boy, this used to be a good beer, I mean, a really good beer, but, this is just kind of dull. Medium bodied, dull, soporific finish...fizzy cola-ish taste...very dull, compared to other Belgian, hey, even, no, especially American offerings!!!
I am damned disappointed in the dullness of this rather dreary, lackluster, coasting- on -the- coattails- of- it's- past-kind of brew.
It's been several years since I've had a bottle of this, and it may be many more, now that I've had it again. It's like you get a glimmer of the taste, but it dies too quick, and does nothing...this should never be thought of as an exemplar of this style, if you really want to try the real stuff...even Maredsous is better than this!
A better beer than, say Milwaukee's Best, but not a match for St. Bernardus or even Allagash!

10-26-2004 10:38:59 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of 99bottles
99bottles

Pennsylvania

3.98/5  rDev -3.9%

Appearance: Reddish amber body, a 1.5" head of tiny off white bubbles rises and dies to a thin lace after a decent amount of time. Active carbonation for the style.

Smell: Toasted malt, some faint frutiness. Would anyone know what "Chimay Smell" is if I were to use it as an adjective? Because there is this unique smell common to all three Chimays that I can't describe, but I'd recognize anywhere. I bet Venom could describe it for me. Spent yeast, I suppose?

Taste: Moderate sweet malts tempered with some toasty grain notes reminscent of breakfast cereal. Alcohol is there, but actually contributes it's own to the flavor which is well balanced and consistent. Yeasty and light fruity esters in the finish. Not wild or crazy, but certainly a solid Belgian beer.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, but kept light by active carbonation and lively yeast. Best in my opinion when the yeast is kept in the bottle.

Drinkability: Oh, it's easy to enjoy and rather common nowadays. I'd usually look to the white or blue, but the red is a good intro to Belgian beers and is easy to enjoy. As with all imports the price is a consideration, especially with more interesting items to pick from, but Chimay is a tasty brand and one that keeps its products rather consistent. Nice beer.

10-13-2004 23:24:20 | More by 99bottles
Photo of Beaver13
Beaver13

Colorado

2.9/5  rDev -30%

The Chimay Red poured a cloudy copper-gold. It had a fizzy fine-bubbled white head that had decent retention.

The aroma was very vinous (red wine / champagne) with some sour notes.

The flavor was strong pear and champagne with smaller notes of alcohol and a little sourness. Some yeastiness and bitterness came out as it warmed. The mouthfeel was pretty smooth, but a little fizzy.

Overall, I personally didn't care for the flavor at all (pear and champagne). I really don't like champagne and this was way too similar for me. It was pretty well made and did get a little better as it warmed, but I was already tuned into the flavors I didn't care for.

10-07-2004 06:07:27 | More by Beaver13
Photo of diamonddave
diamonddave

Pennsylvania

3.93/5  rDev -5.1%

Finally gave in and bought a small bottle of this stuff. Four bucks for an 11.2 oz. bottle, so honestly, I hope I don't like it too much. I just ain't got the fundage to drink like this on a regular basis.

Pours murky amber with a respectable thin, fuzzy head. Smells sweet and a little tart, like bitter fruit or something. I think I might smell a hint of raisin or plum; but then again sometimes I think Sammy Davis, Jr. is still sleeping in the guest room, so don't mind me.

The taste is like BANGBANGBANGBANG! Highly carbonated and tingly, slightly fruity, just the tiniest bit acidic/medicinal (which I guess would be called "phenolic"). Finishes malty and sweet. Bounces around all over the palate. Very complex flavor. Those Trappist monks must really know their shit.

Pricy, but definitely worth drinking sparingly. Unless you've got a six-figure salary or a trust fund, pick one up every once in a while, savor it, and then forget it exists.

09-29-2004 16:34:27 | More by diamonddave
Photo of KroMagnon
KroMagnon

Tennessee

4.33/5  rDev +4.6%

I didn't see a vintage date on this (if I recall the bigger bottles have it on their cork but the little ones lack a cork). The beer poured a clear golden-amber with a nice tan head that lasted very nicely. The aroma was a touch worty-malty with some slight mustiness and a touch of melon and spicy vanilla (but not really strong) - I expected more esters for the style, and complex raisin notes, but the aroma was nice. The flavoer was superb - fully malty, robust, with caramel and toffee notes as well as some toasted bread. The bitterness was not dominant and was easy to miss, meaning it blended well with the malty profile of the beer. Also the alcohol didn't dominate either, and was almost not noticable. This one could get very dangerous very fast. Wonderful.

09-28-2004 11:53:34 | More by KroMagnon
Photo of paterlodie
paterlodie

Belgium

3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

Well being it one of the Trappists I always think of great beers, most certaily if the name is Chimay and I love the white/tripel version of it.
Now for something else a bruin/dubbel.... Apearance good but little light to my taste and not completely clear. Smell hops and some caramel so OK. Taste gets more sweet while I drink the 0,33 l bottle but doesn't get over the sweet edge, that with some caremelmalty taste in it makes it in my eyes a good bruin beer.

09-24-2004 19:40:31 | More by paterlodie
Photo of Doppel07
Doppel07

Pennsylvania

4.05/5  rDev -2.2%

Monstrous foamy Chimay head that diminished well but left behind a thick cottony lacing. Sweet floral and yeasty fragrance. Also aromas of stone fruit, bubble gum, and cotton candy. Flavors of citrus and candy-sugar. Alcohol is noticeable. Lively champagne-like mouthfeel but medium-bodied and silky smooth. Very nice.

09-09-2004 02:36:33 | More by Doppel07
Photo of TinusTime
TinusTime

Virginia

4.05/5  rDev -2.2%

Pours a medium reddish brown with a large slightly off white head that lasted a good while. Smell is fruity with a touch of white pepper sharpness and what seemed to be just a touch of camphor. Taste is malty and fruity strong at the beginning. The spicyness seems to come in just when the beer might seem to be getting too sweet. Some tartness at the end but not a lot. Over all a steady offering. I would drink it again, but at the price I might choose something with a bit more personality

09-07-2004 16:40:20 | More by TinusTime
Photo of allengarvin
allengarvin

Texas

4.05/5  rDev -2.2%

750ml bottle. Been sitting in my fridge about a year (cork reads 03/03). I let it warm up a bit after taking it out, and it gushed out over the top when I popped the cork...what the heck? After I let it gush out in the sink, I poured a glass in a proper Chimay goblet.

Appearance: Deep reddish-brown with a good head of creamy foam.

Aroma: bready, yeasty aroma.

Flavor: Good malt, with strong estery notes (raisins, perhaps? plums definitely), though not as strong as many abbey ales, low hops. Alcohol slightly detectable but not strong. Nice body. Drier finish than I remembered, over fairly quick.

Though I prefer the Chimay Cinq Cents best of the line, I do try to get in a few Reserve's and Grand Reserve's a year. When I first tried it about 12 years ago, I found it shocking and nearly undrinkable; now it's just one of a number of trappist and abbey beers I drink regularly, and though it's not the most interesting one out there, its still a classic.

08-30-2004 02:24:41 | More by allengarvin
Photo of NEhophead
NEhophead

Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev -2.2%

750 ml bottle.

Pillow-like, off white head that settles after a moment. Plenty of noticeable carbonation. Some yeast-floaties are also present. Thin, spotty lacing that has trouble sticking. Ruby red hue and light brown in appearance.

Faint nut-like aromas along with some dark fruit (cherry, grapes). Malty sweetness. Alcohol presence is also apparent.

A malty sweetness that isn't too sweet due to the carbonation that cuts through the dubbel. An oak flavor drives this ale. Some faint fruity esters that provide a mild tartness. A warming alcohol flavor is also present throughout.

Medium bodied; The carbonation is a bit high but doesn't override the flavors. Actually quite refreshing and not too heavy.

Very enjoyable. Not the best dubbel I've had but definitely worth a try. The heavy alcohol aroma/presence isn't hidden well at all and 'could' limit the amount of pints consumed. Otherwise a nice dubbel.

08-29-2004 16:16:13 | More by NEhophead
Photo of DrJay
DrJay

Massachusetts

4.35/5  rDev +5.1%

Hazy, dark reddish-brown. Thick off-white head that settled to a fine lace after a couple minutes. Light clove and peppery spiciness, some malt sweetness, and fruity esters were present in the aroma along with some light phenolic character. Most of the aromas carried through into the flavour with much less spiciness and a little boost to maltiness. Additionally, there was a slight alcohol warming, the fruitiness was reminiscent of plums, and there was a light bitterness providing some balance. The finish was more malty, with little bitterness coming through. Medium/high carbonation adds to the medium body to produce a very smooth texture.

08-21-2004 02:01:06 | More by DrJay
Photo of Rio
Rio

Kansas

3.78/5  rDev -8.7%

The bottle says it's '11,20 oz.,' which I'm guessing is 11.2 oz. Pours a cloudy reddish color, with a nice, thick bone white head that receeds a bit, but hangs around. Smell is lightly hoppy, and has a bit of a fruity aroma.

Taste starts out kinda sweet, but turns tart towards the end. Reminds me somewhat of like a grape juice, I think. A few other fruity flavors in there, as well, but hard to put a finger on. Feels crisp in the mouth, and pretty clean, but it feels a little bubbly around the edges.

All in all, it seems like a very good beer, for one of my early ventures into the style.

08-19-2004 02:49:51 | More by Rio
Photo of ybnorml
ybnorml

Rhode Island

4.2/5  rDev +1.4%

This is a cloudy dark amber / brown ale with a small beige head. A sweet fruity aroma with a spicey hop characteristic. The fruity sweetness tantilizes the tip of your tongue at first. Then a smooth spicey hop presence perculates on the middle of your tongue and the finish leaves a great tasty coating in your mouth.

08-17-2004 14:32:06 | More by ybnorml
Photo of AllThingsNinja
AllThingsNinja

Massachusetts

3.95/5  rDev -4.6%

Boom! I popped the cork, and poured this garnet (or darker - where's my home depot color match) liquid. There was little head formation, but the aroma of candied sugar, and raisins was enticing. The brew was light bodied, and well tempered. As dubbels go, it seemed mild but employed a palate of flavors to create subtle and shifting moods. The sugars and raisons were the dominate flavors, but some hints of banana and maybe even close made their way into the flavors. Each taste seemed slightly different but always enjoyable.

08-08-2004 15:04:15 | More by AllThingsNinja
Photo of BJ1833
BJ1833

Kansas

4.3/5  rDev +3.9%

Very excited to try this brew as I've read much about the trappist ales. Pours a light brown, almost gray color. Nose is very fruity, almost like a bowl of mixed berries, with a hint of spice. The mouthfeel is very smooth, but maybe a bit overcarbonated. This is full of different flavors, tasting something new with each drink. The first taste is yeasty with a strong date and raisin flavor. The spice flavors come through with the next drink as well as a slight banana flavor.

This beer is much of what I expected, very flavorful and complex. I can't wait to try the blue and tripel ales.

07-31-2004 20:57:52 | More by BJ1833
Photo of mntlover
mntlover

Tennessee

3.45/5  rDev -16.7%

Pours a redish brown with a off white headthat doesn't last long. Aroma is good sweet fruity and malty with light wiff of alcohol. Tastes is malty with light fruit flavor and light yeasty bread flavors followed by lightly bitter finish. Mouthfeel is light medium drinkability is good but honestly for the price you can get so many better beers. I know lots of people think highly of Chimay but I fail to see why, still have the blue to go hopefully it will live up to the hype.

07-22-2004 19:30:22 | More by mntlover
Chimay Première (Red) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
92 out of 100 based on 3,853 ratings.