Grande Réserve (Blue)
Bières de Chimay

Grande Réserve (Blue)Grande Réserve (Blue)
Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Strong Ale - Belgian Dark
Ranked #2
Ranked #595
4.33 | pDev: 10.39%
Bières de Chimay
Grande Réserve (Blue)Grande Réserve (Blue)
Notes: Originally brewed as a Christmas beer in 1948, this dark ale has rich flavors of mulling spices and caramel, with a smooth palate and warming finish.
View: Beers
Reviews: 2,451 | Ratings: 8,136 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of marcablanc96
marcablanc96 from Missouri

4.74/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is obviously an amazing beer. The only question is if it's better than Bernardus 12. While Bernardus seems to get more attention, Chimary Grande Reserve is, for me, the Archbishop of trappist beers. Simply the best. It is the beer I have on the most special occasions.

Jun 14, 2020
Photo of bwriley4
bwriley4 from Arkansas

4.93/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is one of my favorite beers, of any variety. Although I would often choose an IPA for an everyday beer, the Chimay Blue is so delicious (tastes of caramel and chocolate and alcohol), with a smell that is a bit like an apple banana from Hawaii (a bit of banana and a bit of sour apple), and a mouth feel that is outrageously smooth and easy to drink. I think this would be a great beer for non-beer drinkers to try during the Christmas holidays, to begin to open the door to the world of beer. I hope to visit the brewery one day.

Jun 11, 2020
Photo of Danzifer
Danzifer from Ohio

5/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours deep amber with a large cream head. I poured mine about a half hour ago and it's still at a centimeter head which is a retention unheard of.
Smells sweet like a banana with a tinge of sour.
Man this stuff is delicious. It's like liquified candy in a bottle. Only downside is that it's one of the higher costly brews out there.
I don't know if the whole Belgian Trappist's Ale being brewed and baptized in monasteries by monks is credible but it's quite a story.
Anyways, Chimay Blue is hands down one of the best beers in the world in my opinion and I've tried thousands of brews. Cheers!

May 05, 2020
Photo of OK_Denise
OK_Denise from Oklahoma

4.58/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I enjoy all of the Chimay beers and this is probably my favorite....maybe the is very close. The taste, look, and aroma are all top-notch. After drinking more trappist ales, I have to add to the review that this one has a great mouth feel and has a full body that is strong but not overpowering. I think it is a great example of this style!

Apr 10, 2020
Photo of andaub

4.1/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is the benchmark for Belgium Trappist beers. A great beer that gets better has it warms up. 10-12d is ideal and wow do you taste the difference. Looks nice, wonderful bouquet, caramel hazelnut smell, very malty as well, and the taste is smooth and dangerous for a strong beer. World class beer

Mar 08, 2020
Photo of Mugman8
Mugman8 from New York

4.67/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

My tour of the great Belgians continues with this stop at Chimay Blue - the original Christmas brew. It is a great looking beer with a sweet malty aroma and a cloudy mahogany tint and a big beige crown and plenty of lace. Mouthfeel is creamy and full-bodied and I really love the taste - a delicious mix of mullling spices, caramel and booze. Not as sweet as the Trappistes, but is very warming and smooth. A truly great beer, one of the best I've had.

Mar 01, 2020
Photo of davillanx
davillanx from Wisconsin

4.63/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is my annual birthday indulgence that signals the end to my Oct - Feb alcohol abstinence. Friends and family know this as 'Chimay Day'. Happy Chimay day friends!

Feb 27, 2020
Photo of spdemon91

5/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My favorite beer! I am not a beer connoisseur and do not drink frequently but when I do, I like to have something that is special. Chimay is that beer for me.

Jan 17, 2020
Photo of jjamadorphd
jjamadorphd from Florida

4.09/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had the 'Red' and the 'Blue', the 'Blue' is definitely better...

Great looking beer with a sweet malty smell and the hint of booze was there, just in the distance. Mouthfeel was creamy and full-bodied and I really enjoyed the taste - very much a delicious mix of malt and booze. Overall, this was better than the 'Red' but still both of them are very good.

Jan 06, 2020
Photo of GarrettB
GarrettB from Colorado

4.06/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

October 2rd, 2015 - On the long list of Trappist ales to taste this is the last of the evening, after the grandiose luminaries like St Bernardus 12 and Westvleteren 12. The Chimay Blue has the range and availability of the Bernardus but the pedigree of the Westy, and has some of flavors that keep beer drinkers in the hobby from Age 21 to 91. This bottle has a bottle that starts with a little cheesy fink and some mushroom, but with a slight peach sweetness. And the taste is very similar, though with a bedding of grain flavors underneath like a saison, and reeking of the penurious delight of light grain. It is simple, parsimonious, elegant and nearly perfect, with a rue and swirl of molasses in just the aftertaste, but disappearing as quick as they appear.

9/11/2007 - Focus, focus, focus. All these Eastern religion crazes and astrological ombudsmen always blather on about focus, finding one’s center and maintaining spiritual energy at the nexus and vertex. Everything from urban development to cake decorating is centered around…well, the center. Proper balance has become a higher art, put into form in everything, including beer making. And that paragon of centered flavor and palate is the Chimay Blue. What a beautiful beer; beautiful in its precarious balance. The color is like a light baby bear’s fur, and the foam a casual light tan color. The whole appearance is gentle and soft, picturesque to anybody with a disposition to tactile experience. The smell is extraordinarily complex, fuming with copious yeast and some teriyaki sauce. I must say, the aroma is quite mild, not unlike the taste. The flavor is just light enough to match perfectly with the palate. The whole flavor compound lingers on the tongue for a long time, allowing the drinker to take his time and really immerse himself in the Chimay Blue experience. It lets one center themselves, finding the same coveted balance that the brewers at Chimay instill in their signature beer.

Dec 27, 2019
Photo of Gordono
Gordono from Nevada

4.53/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

The nose is subtle, sweet, spicy and sour. Same with the flavor, sweet, a touch of spice, not overly sour, complex, slight metallic finish. The more I let it breath, the better it got. At 9% surprisingly very little alcohol flavor. Pour carefully, very effervescent, nice lacy head, dances on the tongue. Would buy again.

Nov 22, 2019
Photo of Herbabee
Herbabee from Pennsylvania

4.69/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

just another ring-in with a venerated institution. perhaps the most available genuine Trappist out there.

Wow, very frothy 3-finger head when poured into my Ommegang stemwear... it's unique, gray/brown-ish and frothy; dissipates into a lingering gurgle on the surface.
Smell is what one should expect from such a potable - dark fruits, a noticable phenol tang, "smelly socks(? - sorry, i know but... bring the funk!).
Taste is fruity, malty, bready; swallow not too sweet, not too bitter. It leaves a craving, but restraint and respect is key here. If one were to load this into a beer bong, they'd be a fool and miss the whole point entirely.
Afterglow, bloodstream feels quite stimulated, that is for sure.

How fortuitous that "doing God's work" can also involve the concoction of remarkable ales. Let us pray...

Oct 23, 2019
Photo of Reef
Reef from South Carolina

4.61/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

330 cL bottle coded 18-764 FWIW

Amazing three fingers of variegated head, opaque brown, scant sediment
Strong prune, toffee, plum, date, light allspice aromas
Cherry,raisin, clove, plum, bread flavors
Coating mouthfeel, light fruity bitterness at the back of the mouth. Everlasting carbonation.
My favorite strong, dark Belgian.

Oct 20, 2019
Photo of Lanas
Lanas from Greece

4.19/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Another very strong "Belgium" beer out there.. The Alcohol is little too strong to me but i can take it.. The beer itself is very strong and can fill your month very easy.. The taste is little weird and remind you caramel.. Also in the end has one sweat and great feeling..
Overall one very good beer out there. It has anything you want.. Has great taste, great aroma and balance alcohol for both people sides.. Can satisfied one strong mouth but also and the one weak..

Sep 14, 2019
Photo of Barettes
Barettes from Washington

4.17/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a mild dark coffee brown with a creamy head and a lingering lacing. Licorice and molasses up front on the nose. Creamy and bubbly feel. Taste is anise, prune, caramel, toast. Nutty. Smooth and balanced finish.

Aug 15, 2019
Photo of PhilCarta
PhilCarta from Florida

4.16/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Rich and flavorful. Quite similar to the Premiere (red label) but more robust maltiness and spice. Extremely smooth and easy to drink without overt alcohol flavors.

Jul 24, 2019
Photo of Oh_Dark_Star
Oh_Dark_Star from Washington

4.19/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Full three-finger foamy head with stellar half finger head retention and good lacing on a dark caramel brew. Lots of sweet prune and caramel aromas and good carbonation. Dark fruits of prune, raisin, and dates and quite sweet. Enjoyed more than TR#8 and TR#6 tried recently.

Jun 27, 2019
Photo of wisrarebeer
wisrarebeer from Wisconsin

4.27/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I honestly haven't had this beer in about 20 years and heard that the quality has gotten a lot better. Great frothy head, nice estery nose, great taste and feel. Not as unique as some others like Rochefort, Westmalle, but very, very good.

Jun 17, 2019
Photo of Vetbidder
Vetbidder from Pennsylvania

4.24/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I’ve had this in the fridge a while. Tons of head and a cola look on this brew. Banana bread mixed with a malty nose. Waiting for this head to calm a bit... more banana bread mixed with slight alcohol and sweetness on the flavor. Pretty well carbonated. Quite decent.

May 31, 2019
Photo of heydre
heydre from Oregon

4.31/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

GREAT first sips but lost some points on further and warming to room temp. Malty and fruity (bit pruney) with a bit of bread. On tap at Primal Cuts...

May 13, 2019
Photo of EMon81
EMon81 from Vermont

5/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My absolute favorite beer. The taste, the mouthfeel, the head, the color... It is everything I look for. Malty, fruity, and effervescent, this beer has been brewed for over a thousand years in accordance to tue tradition of monks. Reddish brown in color, unfiltered, and bottle conditioned, it comes in a bottle with a cork on it not unlike a fine wine. A must try if you like malty beer.

May 02, 2019
Photo of CTHomer
CTHomer from Connecticut

4.38/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: opaque; cola brown in color; less than a 1 finger tan head that receded to a splotchy cap; very little lacing;

S: sweet dark fruit, epecially prune, and caramel with a bit of spice; a little perfumy;

T: the caramel and spice carry over from the aroma; at the outset, the prune is noticeable as well, but by the middle, cherry takes over; mild bitterness on the finish;

M: medium bodied; moderate, prickly carbonation; smooth; alcohol is noticeable, but appropriate for the ABV;

O: dangerously easy to drink; great complexity;

Apr 27, 2019
Photo of JacobusFavier23
JacobusFavier23 from Texas

3.86/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L- Dark mahogany colored Belgian with a nice frothy tan colored thick head that's about three and a half fingers tall.
S- Heavy yeast, banana, nutmeg, stone fruits, coffee and bread. Sweet undertone.
T- Stone fruits like plum and cherry are picked up immediately, followed by heavy bread flavors and sweet spice. Very nice, not overly stated flavor. Nothing home runs for me, though.
F- A bit what you'd expect. Medium bodied with a good enough amount of carbonation. Nothing bad.
O- A very good Belgian strong dark. I wouldn't rate it as high as it is, but ehh. That's my own opinion I guess. I would try it out for yourself to see what you think... Which means I recommend you try it I guess. I can tell its wonderfully crafted, I've just had far better, and far worse.

Apr 27, 2019
Photo of Gadzook
Gadzook from Georgia

4.23/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a tulip from a 12 oz. bottle

L: Dark dark ruby/amber. Nice 2 inch foamy head with great retention, leaving about 1/8 inch for most of the experience. Lacing is very pretty.

S: Dark malt, candy sugar, dark fruit (grape/raisin), touches of spice, cherry. No booze.

T: Not as sweet as the scent would indicate. Malt, cherry, raisin, clove-phenols, bready, grain/hay-like in the finish reminiscent of a German dunkel. There's a tad bit of booze at the end. The overall finish is similar to rich red wine with some grape and alcohol.

F: Medium-bodied. Very dry. Very present carbonation that makes the spice pop. Pleasant warming.

O: Man, this is great. Not as sweet as some others in the style. More malt present here as well (which I'm all about).
Very easy to drink. Goes great with roasted dishes. This is a great beer.

Apr 21, 2019
Photo of octortus
octortus from Canada

4.2/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

330 mL Bottle. ABV 9%.
Appearance: Purple-Brown, Less than one finger of off-white head, Lots of sediment, Decent head retention.
Aroma: Grape, Malt, Bread, Plum, Spice, Slightly funky.
Mouthfeel: Medium body, Moderate carbonation, Slightly creamy, Slightly flat, Dry finish.
Flavour: Malt, Bread, Alcohol, Caramel, Plum, Grape, Slight Molasses.
Overall: Aroma and taste are difficult to describe, though pretty complex. Slightly underwhelming mouthfeel to be honest. I'll definitely enjoy this one again, but not quite world class.

Review: 13

Apr 08, 2019
Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay
Beer rating: 96 out of 100 with 8136 ratings