Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) | Bières de Chimay

2,340 Reviews
Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue)Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue)

Brewed by:
Bières de Chimay

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-22-2001

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Reviews: 2,340 | Ratings: 7,670
Photo of generallee
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Presentation: It was poured from a stubby brown 11.2oz bottle into a signature Chimay chalice that came with the gift set.

Appearance: The body has a beautiful deep dark brown colored body with dark ruby highlights and a slightly hazy body. The head builds up tall and thick with an abundance of small tiny, tight packed bubbles. It has a creamy off white color and good retention as it slowly settles down to a light thin covering. Lacing is very slick and minimal.

Smell: The aroma has an intoxicating mix of sweet malt, earthy yeast and dark fruity esters.

Taste/Mouth feel: Ageing only adds more complexity and character and each sip will reveal different flavor notes. To start there is a nice lightly roasted, almost smoky malt with different layers of dark fruits that is revealed as it warms. Plums, figs, dates, dark and golden raisins are some fruits I noted and all is surrounded buy the presence of a pleasant warming port like alcohol. Its palate is full and well rounded with a smooth feel and mellow carbonation.

Notes: For me this is about as close to perfect as a beer could be. It is an absolute pleasure for all the senses.

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Photo of mrweems
5/5  rDev +16.8%
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.

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Photo of MLasoski
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I don't even know where to start. This is my favorite of the Chimay series and has probably topped my list of favorite beers, let alone Trappist beers.

Served: In a bottle, poured into an ale glass.

A: Perfect. As I poured the beer in, the head already started to form, never surpassing 1.5 inches. The body is an unfiltered dark tan color with copious amounts of bubbles. Looks very mysterious.

S: Smells rich with mild citrus and a perfect amount of hops and yeast.

T: Tastes how I described it in a perfect blend. I don't think I could stress the "perfect" enough. Incredibly smoothe and leaves you wondering what you're really tasting.

M: With a mild carbonation, it starts out moderately hoppy with a fruity aftertaste. I want to say lemon and orange.

D: With the ABV of 9.00% set aside, I would love to have another one. This beats out the Chimay Red & White, but not to take away from those two either since they are really good as well. This is my first "all 5" beer.

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Photo of JT2875
5/5  rDev +16.8%
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.

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Photo of Mike1962
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Spent New Years Eve in Brussels. Asked in a restaurant for a good dark beer and given Chimay Grande Reserve (Blue). Amazing taste and after one glass set you in the right festive frame of mind. Great with cheese and understand matures with age. Brought several bottles home to UK. If you like dark beers, particularly Porters, then you will not be disappointed with Chimay Blue

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Photo of smallbatchbrewer
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have been drinking this stuff for ages. These monks have been making this stuff for as long as history has been written. I have been told the secret is in the yeast and the slow process. Others say it's the rock filtered waters in their wells. I dunno what it is, but these monks know how to brew and I never want to see the day this stuff isn't on the shelf.

To me, the sweetness and the hint of bitterness in this beer mix just right to create its own unique flavor, even among other great Abby ales. My palate summons grapes, dates and spiced apple.

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Photo of WAbeerfiend
5/5  rDev +16.8%

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a tulip on 03.31.14.

A: 4 finger head. Almost nearly opaque dark red/brown.

S: Dark berry, earthy, bready, wheat. Very complex. Some sweetness.

T: Dark berry, wheat bread dominate. Ripe banana, plum, malt, sweet yeast are there too. There is some alcohol burn on the back end.

M: Creamy smooth.

O: This was an impressive and very complex beer.

Rating: A+

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Photo of scottbrew4u
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Pours into chalice a clear brown color with some burgundy tones and a two-finger tall frothy tan head that settles beautifully but remains the whole time. Lacing is present.

S: Candy apples, molasses, dark cherries, vanilla, rich roasted malt complexity with a hint of burnt malt. More cherries and fruity esters keep going wild and wonderful and somewhat port like. Some spice from yeast and hops in the background.

T: Dark cherries, black currants, vanilla, jasmine, roasted caramel and bready malts combine with some toffee and molasses sweetness. Some sherry and port like flavors with a spicy yeast and it is a touch of heaven. Finish is smooth and well balanced.

M: Velvety smooth medium to full body with a slight alcohol warmth but mostly well hidden.

D: A luscious beer to say the least! So complex in aroma and flavor but balanced and smooth it is a world class beer worth repeating!

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Photo of RushLimbmalt
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is one of the best beers ever brewed. It pours a dark, hazy brownish color and has a ton of fine carbonation and a fat off-white head that leaves little lace on my glass. The aroma is as complex as the flavor and you would need a book to properly describe it. It has a very sweet, spicy malty character that is a mind blowing experience. The only thing holding this beer back is it's price... $13 at my local liquor store. That said, I buy it whenever I feel the need to pamper myself with a great Belgian beer. This is brewing at it's pinnacle.

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Photo of Sabre311
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Trappistes beers are really in a class of their own. This 9%er doesn't taste it at all. Its sweet but not too sweet. Just enough bubbles perfect color.Fruity but not overally just a perfect drink.

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Photo of joeleaux
5/5  rDev +16.8%
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.

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Photo of HeyItsChili
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 2007 Vintage jeroboam bottle into a gigantic Chimay chalice.

A - Cordovan brown with big globlets of yeast floating throughout, capped by a substantial, puffy ecru head.

S - Essence of spices; clove is the most prominent but there's pepper in there too. Malty aroma, dark fruits, toffee.

T - Just incredible. There is a rich, delicious malt flavor mingling with warming spice and dark fruits. There's no alcohol aftertaste though it is present in the flavor.

M - Like carbonated velvet. Boom.

I gave this one all 5s. Chimay Grande Reserve is fantastic as it is, but being in the gigantic bottle changed the way this one ages somewhat and having put a few years of age on it really made it something even more special.

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Photo of freditoj
5/5  rDev +16.8%
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.

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Photo of kegerator
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

from start to finish, this is a great one.
pours a hazy deep brown with a nice offwhite head about 1 inch thick or so that dwindles nicely, leaves some good lace behind as you drink
smells of yeast, malt, caramel and some spice.
taste hits with some strong spice up front but finshes smooth with a caramel, malty finish...outstanding
i really enojoyed this one
i gave it all fives except on the appearance, i woudl have liked to see a bigger frothy head, for a strong belgian ale. but it was still awesome

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Photo of magpieken
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

330ml bottle. BB 2018. Amber brown colour with a dense, light tan head and left some nice lacing. Aroma of caramel, raisins, sherry and alcohol. Medium sweetness and minimal bitterness. Smooth, medium-full bodied with alcohol warmth. Like drinking a fine fortified wine. Delicious. I can't fault this one, one of my favourites. 10.

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Photo of rbb1010
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer was extreemly smooth. Served and the proper temp it just goes down with the most amazing flavor! I highly recommend this beer! I was able to find this beer in a 1.94 pint bottle at my local Harris Teeter which made this taste test very convient. I would have to say at this point, it may be my favorite beer ever!

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Photo of putnam
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

If the red is like solera calvados and black cherries, and if the white is like great, overripe Sauvignon Blanc like the ones Didier Dageneau makes, then this is young vintage port. Slate-infused fruits with thick black skins appear immediately. There is a suggestion of winter rye as well. Smart yeast here, using one grain to impersonate another. It is a perfect, and I mean perfect windup to a session featuring one 33cl bottle of each color. The red bears contemplation, which I did as I planned my menu. The white: aperitif heaven, but used tonight to accompany pan-grilled shrimp with garlic and beer-sauce of Red and White dregs. Alongside it there was flash-infused garlic oil used to sear fresh, organic summer squash from Yale MI's Maple Creek Farm, finished with a pile of wilted romaine from same...and steamed, nutty, fresh broccoli, also from the Lutz'...So the point is my palate has been lavished with living things. And then comes this. As it warms up it brings palate-heated aromas of raw cocoa, whole vanilla pods, new leather. Wonderful texture, just like the others...think of whipped cream melting furiously from applied heat. Wow. I hope Paterno protects this work of art from conglomerate beer snatchers. It must be allowed to live.
Warmer still and crazy XO cognac sensations become noticeable. Hennessy Paradis tastes a little bit like this...all candied orange peel and spicy, essential chocolate. What a beauty.

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Photo of MufflnMan
5/5  rDev +16.8%
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.

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Photo of John
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Presentation: 33cl (11.2oz.) capped bottle. Exceptional brew all the way around. Gorgeous dark and hazy appearance. Big malty sweetness blends with peppery yeast spiciness and pleasant alcohol warming sensation. A brew to savor on a special occasion.

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Photo of Carolvs
5/5  rDev +16.8%

The only disappointing thing here is that 'The Bros' don't rate this Divinely inspired beer a perfect "100." This is perfection in taste, appearance, mouthfeel, and everything else. As close to heaven as you'll get in this world brother.

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Photo of likethetaste
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I wanted to try this beer because it is so highly rated! Well it is not the type that i would normally go for but I must say this is a good beer. The fact that I like it and it is not a type I usually like says a lot!

Nice lookiing dark amber with nice head.

Spicy smell.

Wonderful spicy flavor with strong but not overpowering or alcohol taste! This would be a great winter warmer beer!!!

Lots of alcohol but very drinkable with good mouth feel. I like this! And will drink it again on a cold snowy night. WATCH out this is very drinkable but STRONG! Be warned :) What a great beer just perfect for cold nights. MUST BE DRANK AT THE CORRECT TEMPERATURE and the older the better! :) Also drink from the proper glass!

An incredible beer that has become one of my all time favorites. After drinking this (and the other Chimay's) all my other beer reviews seem like straw! This is an incredible beer that blows away everything else I have ever tried.

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Photo of sunrisechina
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

THE BEST. My first review, so of course I start with my favorite. What else can I say about perfection in my eyes. Like the perfect woman, only better.

Why does this system say I have to write more words about perfection. Can something so good be done by me? no. Do I even really understand perfection? no Can I explain perfection? no 250 characters yet?

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Photo of MikeA21
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Chimay is the reason I drink craft beer. I was turned on to chimay about 20 years ago and it was very hard to find a beer as good until the last few years when craft beer has really become popular. The Grand Reserve has a bold strong flavor that keeps you coming back for more. It has a strong malt smell and pours dark with a good head. Their are many great beers around today but not many have been brewing as long as Chimay.

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Photo of mmthompson33
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer demands respect. To fully appreciate it, it should be drank at the proper temperature, and hope that you have a good bottle, because the quality can vary. But if you get one of the good's heaven. Incredible head and aroma, with a surprisingly light, fruity complex taste for its dark color. And some serious 9% kick. Drinking this beer at a campground near the brewery in Chimay, Belgium (where a 750ml bottle is $2.50) was a religious experience.

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Photo of BeerManDan
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Very dark amber in color with tight cream color foam. Nice pleasant complex smell and taste of fruits and roasted nuts. Slightly on the sweet side with a tangy but not bitter finish. Just a little sourness on the after taste also. Best Belgium brew so far!

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Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay
4.28 out of 5 based on 7,670 ratings.
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