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

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

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4,181 Ratings

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Ratings: 4,181
Reviews: 1,580
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 11.08%
Wants: 177
Gots: 436 | FT: 4
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 (4) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,181 | Reviews: 1,580 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of TheBierBand
3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the 11.2 Oz brown bottle into a Chimay Goblet. Etching on the bottom of the glass kept a 1/4" of head to the bottom of the glass. The liquid was slightly cloudy amber color.

The aroma of this beer is un-spectacular, but you can pick up almost a hefewisen smell.

The taste.... well, it tastes a whole lot like a hefeweisen... only more ROBUST.

Mouthfeel: Too fizzy for my tatste. Nice and somewat thin.

Drinkabilty: Nice, robust recommended.

Photo of pojo41
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Darkish amber color with a good, off-white head. Good lacing on glass.
Malty aroma. Tastes of caramel, malt and raisins with a touch of bitterness at the end. Another beer shared with my brother. This tasted great as did every beer we drank that night. Another great beer.

Photo of oelergud
3.53/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Hazy semitransparent ruby and mahogany body. Big tan head that falls very quickly and leaves almost no lace. Very high carbonation.
Brown sugar with plenty of dark fruit notes. Quite spicy and complex.
Sweet and mild molasses with abit of raisens. Aftertaste is somewhat stronger than the initial taste. Some sweet malts at first but then the hops come through, finally, and take over the rest of the flavor.
Light to medium body with a slightly dry finish and very little coating.
Good drinkability. I wish the carbonation was toned down abit and the flavor needs some more intensity.


Photo of biggmike
4.33/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a dark brown-reddish color with nice creamy off-white head that lasted a while. The attractive aroma is of caramel and fruit. The flavor is malty up front with the taste of dark fruit and a slight bitterness at the finish. Mouthfeel is rich. Another one I have to thank my brother for introducing me to.

Photo of adowney523
4.7/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Belgian-style chalice from a 33 cL brown bottle. Pours a reddish-brown with an off-white head that fades quickly but leaves good lacing.

Smells of dark fruit and molasses with faint alcohol.

Tastes very sweet with vinous character. Slight medicinal phenols along with the flavor of baked brownies and plum.

Great carbonation with a sweet finish makes it very smooth and drinkable.

Outstanding! Near perfection in a bottle to me. Let this one warm before you drink it as the flavors are best at cellar temperature.

Photo of brendan13
3.83/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - A hazy reddish brown colour with a latge fluffy off white head that falls away to a thin whisp.
S - Smell is a nice mix of caramel sweetness, mild yeast dark fruit notes & a bit of spice.
T - Along the same lines as the smell but with a bready sort of taste. Theres a bit of a alcohol touch but not too much so.
M - Fairly smooth mouthfeel but a little lighter than what I was expecting.
D - A nice beer thats worth trying. Wouldn't be a regular in the line up though.

Photo of OKCNittany
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

330 ml bottle into a Chimay goblet

A: Reddish brown body w/ just a little haze (I guess I finally poured one of these darn things properly). 1/2" tan head that disappeared rather quickly & left a silver dollar sized disk. Left very little lacing on the glass.

S: A little caramel bread aroma w/ some clove. Sweet but spicy. Nice, but not enough of the good stuff.

T: Malty sweetness throughout, balanced well by a touch of clove, pepper, and yeast - tasty, but not spectacular.

M: Over carbonated - fizzy. Medium bodied. Very dry finish.

D: Very drinkable (despite the carbonation). Enjoyable beer leaving little reason to stop at one. However, not as good as its reputation.

Photo of Noxious26
3.4/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

330ml bottle in a tulip glass.

Dark red brown amber and hazy. Light brown head is 1/2 inch on the pour and a steady cap after. Lots of carbonation streams.

Aroma is mostly Belgian yeast with alcohol and some sweetness.

Flavour is dominated by yeast and alcohol with hard candy in the background. Perhaps I'm a little sensitive to the alcohol, but I can't get past it. Harsh phenol/petrol finish.

Harsh mouthfeel, medium bodied and very bubbly.

I guess Belgians just don't do it for me. After trying several, and of different types, I'm going to just stay away from now on. Worth a try though.

Photo of tempest
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Split a bottle over dessert, made a great pairing with tiramisu and white chocolate cake. The aroma was a bit weak, but not surprising for a traditional dubbel. It smelled of the carmelized candi sugar with hints of dark fruits. Dates came out more in the flavor, along with a very smooth caramel malt with a touch of spice. As my glass warmed, subtle, grassy hops came out. Not amazing, but pleasant and tasty. Give this beer a little time to breathe, the carbonation is a bit harsh at first.

Photo of Nipitato
4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bottle at Trader Joe's in Brookline, MA.

A: A 2006 cork date. Rich amber brown hue. Opaque. Quarter inch white head with a good stand.

S: Textbook dubbel aroma. Malt has a sweet caramel almost chocolate character. Dark fruit esters and subtle clove notes round out this excellent aroma. Some floral character as well.

T: Again, textbook. malt flavor is strong and awesome - toffee and slight chocolate character. Some fruity esters but not as strong as I would have figured. Clove/pepper phenols add to complexity. Nice hoppy flourish at the end.

MF: Medium-light mouthfeel. Moderate/low carbonation. Alcohol warming. Overall mouthfeel is light and airy - very nice.

D: This is a great beer. Complex, balanced, and wonderfully drinkable.

Photo of bloberglawp
4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I've had the 330ml and 750 ml bottles, this review is from a 750 ml corked and caged bottle, it has been cellared 2 years.

Bottle opens with a loud pop, pours medium hazelnut orange/brown, white head that dissipates quickly. Aroma of belgian candy, wheat and earthy hops. Earthy hop taste, hints of molasses, faint malted wheat flavor. The cellared bottle taste a little dull compared to the fresh one. Don't get me wrong, it's still very good, but I'd not bother holding onto one hoping it will mature futher. The fresh one was exploding with wheat, sweet candy, balanced hop bitterness.

Photo of Lothore
3.55/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Pours a dark reddish brown with a massive doughy head.

S- Smell is sweet, of dark fruits and berries. Hints of raisin bread peek through.

T- Taste is sweet hints of apricots, assorted fruit and alcohol come to the forefront of the flavor. Starts off strong and backs away fairly quickly leaving a syrupy lining that tastes a little like robutussin in my mouth.

M- The mouthfeel is slightly thin, highly carbonated.

D- This beer seems to suffer a bit when it comes to drinkability. I'm just not digging the sickening sweet aftertaste that coats your mouth.

Photo of goochpunch
3.68/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a beautiful dark amber with lots of crimson. Head leaves something to be desired. No lacing to speak of. Kind of weak in the nose. Some toasty malts, some dates, some booze. Nothing bad about it, just lackluster. Flavor is a big improvement over the smell. Starts off with toasted and roasted malt, which leads into a fruit and brown sugar middle with just a whisper of yeasty phenolics. Finish comes back with some more of the higher kilned malts and a kiss of the hops. The weight of the beer in the mouth is about moderate, but the carbonation is harsh. Decent drinker, but, really, the weakest of the 3 Chimays.

Photo of BEERchitect
4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Surprised to see this on tap at the Liberty Taproom, Myrtle Beach. Served in proper Chimay chalice and a reasonable temperature. The beer seemed under carbonated, especially for a Belgian Trappist, and was evident in the thin foamstand and the more dull texture. The aromas are candy sweet, malty, fruity tart, and berry like. Flavors bring the same characteristics as the aromas, and add dark, dehydrated fruits, syrup sweetness, bread, yeast, and cherries. The body was firm and moderate despite the light caronation. Finishes quite sweet with a hop bittering. True to Trappist quality, this is one fine brew.

Photo of MiScusi
3.58/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- maybe a shade lighter than other Dubbels. Creamy head.
S- muted Belgian yeast and malt
T- Belgian earthy yeast that doesn't stand out too much, subtle malty flavors with a hint of spiciness as well.
M- Smooth, medium bodied
D- Ok Dubbel, a little less exciting than I thought.

Photo of irishkyle21
4.05/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Decided to buy a case (12) of the 75ml corked bottles. Probably the first Trappist that I ever had ( about 3 years ago). Pours a nice dark ruby red. Has a nice off white head but it does not last that long. Some nice lacing though. Hints of fruit in the nose. The taste is well rounded, fruity, malty and the hops are just noticeable. I really enjoy this one although the Blue is my favorite.

Photo of Infamous7100
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the large bottle into aa snifter.
A: Poured a light brown/apricot color. Somewhat cloudy, very little head on this pour. Average lacing.
S: Right way, I could smell apple and pear overtones. Along with the alcohol and yeast, which was masked well, one could pick up a hint of citurs.
T: Pears and apples. The alcohol was more prevalent in the taste than it was in the smell, but it wasn't overpowering by any means. There was some hang upon completion of a sip, but nothing to keep you from having another. The taste was than of a beer that let you know you were drinking something uncommon and uncommonly good.
M: Finished smooth and a average hang, as I stated before. On the pallet, it was quite pleasing as you could feel the fruits biting at your tastebuds.
D: This is a beer you break out to break away from the norm. I would not reccomend drinking a lot at one time, if only so you can savor it when you do have a bottle. The bottle goes quick and you will feel it a little, but you'll feel better knowing you had a classic brew.

Photo of jar2574
4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a large bottle. Soft, earthy brown color. Cream colored head. Average carbonation, perfect lacing all the way to the last drop.

Spicy, boozy scent with a touch of banana. There's a perfect amount of alcohol here, just enough for you to know it's packing a punch but not enough to be overpowering. I prefer this Chimay to their Reserve, blue bottle.

It's an earthy beer. Malts, yeast, spices, banana, a touch off sweetness, and loads of complexity. Excellent, I could drink it all day.

Photo of styxnpicks
4.78/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pourd an opaque murky brown with a hint of copper, head is a creammy soapy tan lasts halfway through the beer. aromas, if that of fruit and lovely yeast more like wine than beer. Flavor is INCREDABLE with balanced hop bitterness and a perfect sweetnes, all balanced in a mastered blend of unfiltered bliss, heavy body, great mouth feel, and perfect with my steak, the ceamy finish lasts and paired well with the rich fatty steak, I thought I had died and gone to heaven for a minute. A tru winner if you appreciate REAL beer

Photo of Beerbuddha
4.65/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance - pours a deep brown, reddish in color

Smell- Nuttiness, a little orange and lemon, sweet smelling, some caramel,

Taste- Coriander, sweet and nice balance of hops and barley

Mouthfeel - medium-bodied with good amount of carbonation

Drinkability - Very drinkable I recommend this beer to everyone

This beer is by far one of my favorites!!

Photo of dstc
4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy brown with red hues. Full tan head that falls kind of quick leaving little or no lace behind.

Smells sweet, malty and a bit spicy.

Tastes wonderful. Sweet and fruity with nice malt flavors. The beer seems to get even better as it slowly warms in the glass, it enhances the flavors.

Smooth, rich and full in the mouth. Small warm alcohol feel and moderate amount of carbonation.

This is a very drinkable beer as all Chimay products seem to be. My recommendation is to let it warm up a bit. It's fantastic.

Photo of Tyrawlings
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml. Bottle poured into a snifter glass.

A: Deep brown in color with ruby hues. Huge, fluffy off white head pours three fingers thick. Excellent retention. Sheets of lacing cascade down the sides of the glass.

S: Rich malts. Ripe fruit. White pepper. Clove. Asprin. Warming alcohol.

T: Sweet bready malts with caramel undertones are followed by flavors of ripe dark fruit and a hint of citrus juice. Medicinal hops chime in and are drowned out by cloves and a white pepper spiciness on the tongue. Mutted flavors of raw earth and moist tree bark are followed by a warming alcohol presence.

M: Smooth and crisp. Medium carbonation. Warming and dry.

D: Dangerously easy to drink. A complex beer with good balance and body. I am beginning to appreciate the Belgian Ales for what they are...True brewing art. Recommened.

Photo of WeisGuy
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Corked and cages 750ml.

a - pours a deep brown with reddish hues, one-finger white head with little retention and lacing

s - big spicy, malty aroma, some coriander and some citrus in there, a little orange and lemon, very sweet smelling, some caramel, slight alcohol

t - sweet maltiness up front, yeasty and caramelly, lots of spice in the body, coriander sticks out, a little lemony and orangey citrus in the body, finish is sweet with not much alcohol evident

m - medium-bodied, good amount of carbonation, sweet finish

d - fairly drinkable, alcohol not very noticeable and the taste doesn't wear out the palate

Very good Belgian ale overall. I will definitely revisit this one in the future.

Photo of crwills
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thought I'd add some additional comments here, and wanted to upgrade the numbers from my previous review.

I had a small bottle of this a few months after the original bomber and liked it a lot more. Both the aroma and flavour were more complex than I recalled, with a lot more dark fruits (prunes, plums), a little bit of molasses. Not sure where I got the "light" or "unripe" notes in my original review, as there was none of that in this bottle, and it wasn't grainy at all. Really enjoyed it, having not had a trappist beer in a while, and will grab some more if it's available at the LCBO again.

Photo of meadhead
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

as per the 3 Chimay ales
mild subdued and refined
not at all over the top
with a bready yeast bottom line

hints of tart fruit and fig
subtle spice and mild sweet
a little phenol in close
well balanced indeed

taste is subtle and

mouthfeel well carbonated

very easy and not complicated

Chimay Première (Red) from Bières de Chimay S.A.
93 out of 100 based on 4,181 ratings.