Grande Réserve (Blue) | Bières de Chimay

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Grande Réserve (Blue)Grande Réserve (Blue)
BA SCORE
4.33/5
Outstanding
Grande Réserve (Blue)Grande Réserve (Blue)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Bières de Chimay
Belgium
chimay.be

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.

BEER STATS
Reviews:
2,434
Ratings:
8,073
pDev:
10.39%
 
 
Wants:
560
Gots:
2,116
Trade:
18
 
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User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 2,434 | Ratings: 8,073
Photo of generallee
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 itsscience
5/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

11.2 oz bottle poured into Chimay goblet

Pours a dark brown iced tea color with a finger of white head with carbonation bubbles streaming up the side of the glass. The beer has a rich, sweet dark fruit aroma with big plum and raisin notes, along with a bready malt smell, caramel, and slightly spicy, slightly funky yeast. The taste is big on caramel and sweet malts up front, almost like a Werther's Original candy, then it blends with raisin, plum, and cherry tastes for the finish. The high level of carbonation keeps refreshing the palate and preventing this big beer from seeming like a big beer.

I've been searching for a flaw in this beer over the course of this review and continue to come up empty-handed after half an hour, so I do not give it all fives flippantly but as a last resort. It's just a perfect, benchmark entry in my favorite category, Belgian strong dark ales and quads.

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Photo of Sabre311
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 superdavex
5/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

What can I say about this beer that hasn't been said before. Perfection in a bottle. The great thing about it is that it's so easily available, if not cheap. It is wise to buy it from a reputable store as I've had one or two that tasted like they weren't stored properly.

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Photo of RushLimbmalt
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 scottbrew4u
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 smallbatchbrewer
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 Mike1962
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 KBBA
5/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Opened a corked bottle that has been cellar-stored, sitting upright, for the past two years.

Appearance -- Dark, dark brown with slight reddish hue. Loads of carbonation with a beautiful, sand-colored head which laces the glass. It appears a touch cloudy, but the color is so thick that it's difficult to truly tell.

Smell -- Traces of sweet, sugary plum, as well as dates (personal favorite of mine).

Taste -- carbonation is the first sensation to touch the tongue. Quickly, plums and dates come to the forefront, as well as hints of chocolate, molasses, and malts. The aftertaste is sweet and yeasty. Hops are very subdued. Alcohol is almost impossible to detect, which can be quite deceptive as this is 9.00% ABV.

Mouthfeel -- very creamy and smooth, but also quite thick (positively so); quite heavy, this is a sipper, and you'll likely want to share the bottle as it may be overpowering for one person.

Overall -- simply outstanding.

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Photo of greg202stewart
5/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One of my favorite Trappists. I have to buy it in the cask and I can't help but finish the whole thing in one sitting. For a dark ale it drinks very smooth and has a complex mix of flavors. Just writing this review makes me want to go get another cask for tonight.

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Photo of Beer-Revelry
5/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - At first pours a pretty dark brown, forms a white one finger head, which dissipates down to a film. After pouring the remaining yeast rich half inch, beer becomes very dark brown with cloudy yeast nuggets.
S - Notes of raisins, dates, and a mild malt presence.
T - Amazing, sweet, notes of raisins and bananas. Very fruity notes.
O - Extremely delicious beer. 5 stars.
V - Worth the price.

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Photo of gbarbee
5/5  rDev +15.5%

Appearance: Amber
Smell: Fruity and malty
Taste: Caramel and slight chocolate.
Mouthfeel: Full
Drinkability: A great beer and the makes me think of the classic Belgian Style. My favorite out of the three Chimays.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of HeyItsChili
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 meecrob
5/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Enjoying my first Chimay ever right now and Im happy to try the Blue version. This amazing trappist beer has a dark brown color, looking like ice tea to me and has a medium head with good carbonation. It says on the 330 ml bottle that the best serving temperature is between 10°C - 12°C, means that a fridge would be way too cold for this brew!
I smelled dark fruits, raisins and chocolate. Amazing mouthfeel. The 9% ABV is perfectly hidden. Im sure I could drink a lot of these without any problem :) Really, an amazing beer, little pricey but probably the best on this planet!

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

I'm fairly new to the craft beer scene, but absolutely the best beer I've ever had. Rich foamy head, smooth taste, easy to drink. Not too sticky. Just the perfect beer, I would drink it every day if it wasn't so expensive where I live.

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

I would rate the Chimay Blue as my favorite beer of my favorite style. As classic as the Chimay Red is as Belgian dark ale, the Blue seems to be its perfect evolution.

It pours and looks practically like syrup, but the taste and armoma are surprisingly light and fruity. There is absolutely no hint of the 9% alochol content.

I have a small shrine on my bar as a tribute to this beer -- please come visit if you're worthy ;-)

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Photo of likethetaste
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 Md23329
5/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a Chimay Chalice with a 5 minute breathing period.

What can I say, this beer speaks for itself. The taste of spices and the dark color leave you satisfied and thinking of perfection that is beyond any review or breakdown of a true Belgium Style Trappist beer.

The Blue is my favorite and I definitely enjoy the red as well.

This will not disappoint!

A minimalist review for folks looking for the bottom line!

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Photo of mrweems
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 John
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 JT2875
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 mmthompson33
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 bottles....it'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 EMon81
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.

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Photo of freditoj
5/5  rDev +15.5%
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 matthewarmstrong
5/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2010 Vintage Chimay Blue served into a Chimay goblet.

This beer has an amazing appearance, a nice dark brown colour like an old toned copper penny. One finger of beige head which retains nicely whilst drank.

Smells wooden and sweet and tastes just as you were hoping with nice caramel blushes. Just a beautiful finish and thoroughly filling, everything you want a nice ale to be.

I can only imagine how good my 1.5L bottle sitting in the cellar will be five years from now.

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Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay
Beer rating: 4.33 out of 5 with 8,073 ratings