Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) | Bières de Chimay

2,354 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: 2,354 | Ratings: 7,713
Photo of howardrh10
4.98/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Drinking this beer was like an epiphany to me, and every time I'm lucky enough to have another, there are always great memories and moments to savour. This is a complex and substantial beer, which has a masterful blend of flavours, not competing, but harmonising with each other like a fine symphony. Every Grand Réserve Blue is an historical occasion.

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Photo of sherillc
4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This is a very unique beer. It has a light, effervescent mouth feel while expressing dark, malty, spicy, stewed fruit flavours and aromas. A touch sour and herbaceous on the finish which adds complexity.

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Photo of whatthehull
4.37/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a wine glass from a 750 mil bottle

A - a hazy nearly deep brown with a two finger almost ran off white head and little to no lacing

S - lots of yeast both bready and Belgium notes, floral hops, fruity hops, lots of sweet malts, sweet and dry grain, sweet booze note, oak, dead and living earth, crisp water and Caramelized bananas.

T - wood, green/brown earth, lots of soil, fruity/floral hops, sweet and toasted malts, dry and sweet grains, banana bread yeast, lots of fruit, rich malts,

M - light yet full bodied, well balanced, nice complexity, medium minus acidity, medium plus carbonation and a malty delight from start to end

D/O - really easy to drink with lots of flavor. Huge malt with a slight hop all while being very refreshing and pleasant to drink. Cracked one open on a cool humid night and is/was perfection. Pairs well with most foods and desserts but it pairs the best with itself (meaning opening more than one in a night). Great any day, any time of year and as often as you'd like to enjoy one.

Final thoughts - at $9-13 a bottle the price is quite high but the 9% abv will make sure you don't need more than two unless you're sharing with a friend or few

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Photo of ordybill
4.75/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 11.2 OZ bottle into a goblet. The appearance is a dark brown with a huge tan head. The aroma is caramel and yeast with some hops and fruit added. The taste is sweet caramel with some yeast or dough in the background. A great beer.

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Photo of CanadianBacon
4.14/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - This beer pours almost a black color but the edges appear redish brown in direct light. It pours a 3 aad a half finger foamy off white head that just does not fade. Carbonation is extremely lively and very visible.

Aroma - The first smells to hit your nose are dark fruits, plum, raisin and fig are all there. Then you get a soft slightly burnt caramel undertone followed by spice and fresh baked white bread.

Taste - Again fig, raisin and plum hit the tongue first followed by a medicinal phenolic taste. then you get burnt caramel and toffee followed by pepper and fresh baked bread. Apon swallowing you get a strong boozy warmth.

Feel - medium-light body with carbonation that tingles and is creamy at the same time, a boozy warmth finishes off this feeling.

Overall - This is a very good Belgian dark ale. As far as trappist ales go I've had some blondes and tripels that surpass it in my tastes. I prefer light fruits to dark fruits though, With that said this has to be up there with rochefort 8 as one of the better strong dark ales. The flavors mesh very well and It is rather smooth. I just feel like they could have hidden the boozyness better. Either way I guess this way it makes for a better winter beer to come home to on a cold day. Cheers!

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Photo of enrique_m
4.81/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

poured this into a snifer and it gave me lots of head that some spilled. the color is a dark amber and the head is a nice beige color. it has nice lacing and the smells is of dark fruits like plums, figs, and raisins. the taste is delicious and smooth. you can taste figs, dates and hint of nuts. overall this is very tasty and I am going to cellar one for a couple for a couple of years to see how it changes.

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Photo of Pourharddrinkslow
3.76/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Look - Caramel brown in color; large, foamy white head.

Smell - Malt and dark fruit, slightly sweet smelling.

Taste - Malt, fig, caramel, molasses. Definitely has a slightly boozy taste to it. The overall taste is slightly sour, which I don't love and feel that it takes away from the positive aspects of the beer.

Feel - Medium body, creamy, slightly bubbly on the tongue.

Overall - Didn't live up to the high reviews to me, oh well, to each their own!

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Photo of Dzu
4.53/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

L: Dark red, amber-black with a little foam head.
S: Smells fruity with raisin's notes.
T: Sweet-tart and dry.
F: Don't feel alcohol.Very smooth!
O: Great dark ale with a beutiful aftertaste!

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Photo of Faaphotog
4.08/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a large chalice, Dark, thick, rich head almost a Caramel color.

Aromas of dark fresh fruits mixed into some rich malt.

Upon first sip has a bit of spices and fruit lingering in the undertone. As it grows it gains Caramel/malt

For a beer that i can regularly aquire at my local grocery and beer seller it's certainly a good treat after a long week on the job.

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Photo of crisis1290
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Yummy. This beer is outstanding. Nice deep dark color. Amazing head on the pour into a Chimay chalice. Great smell to say the least. A bouquet of fruit and some spice. Not to heavy on either side. Super smooth alcohol warming effect. Some say to let this beer warm a bit before the pour. I say to each his own. Chimay Grand Reserve is a main stay in my beer stash.

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Photo of Franziskaner
4.19/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Deep brown in color and very murky complexion. There's a massive dark brown dense head resting on top and moderate lacing. The aroma is of sweet dark Belgian candy sugar. I taste plenty of that dark Belgian candy sugar, dark malt, plum, and alcohol. The mouth is lightly sticky and definitely warms you up with the alcohol.

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Photo of archyquaffer
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the magnum bottle into a schooner glass. A moderate pour produces a creamy tan head of about an inch. The beer is a hazy yellowish-brown of moderate depth.

The aroma is bready, earthy, fruity and minerally. The flavor has a distinct maltiness, suggesting a gingerbread cookie. Also apparent is a spicy apple-raisin fruitiness, and a lemony tartness on the finish. A peppery bit of spice and pucker punctuate the flavor, while a light earthy funk underlies it all. A little boozy warming is apparent, and perhaps a touch of spicy alcohol bite. Vinous, port-like notes and dark fruit hints become more pronounced as the beer warms. The mouthfeel is frothier than one might expect.

This is obviously a world class beer worthy of its reputation. I'm on a bit of a Belgian kick at the moment (this style becoming more available in my area), and am enjoying this and other Belgian beers very much this Thanksgiving weekend.

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Photo of kevofficiel
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Chimay Grande Réserve from Belgium

The look of it: dark brown body

The smell of it: Cherry/ strawberry with the malt

Taste : Vanilla, straberry , cherry, malt and the sweet is really present. 9% ABV feels like a 6 or a 7. Very light in the mouth.

So overeall would I recommend it ? Hell yes, what a beer I really did enjoy that beer. Thanks to my friend to recommend that beer.

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Photo of Ninjakillzu
4.54/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L: Poured into a Chimay chalice. Dark brown body, one half finger width creamy tan head.

S: Dark fruity esters like cherry, plum, and spiced raisin. There's some toasted malts, vanilla, some hot caramel as well.

T: Includes everything in the smell.

F: Surprisingly light bodied. Medium carbonation and a smooth finish.

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Photo of Andrewharemza
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From bottle, Grand Reserve 2014. Dark brown with medium white head. Aroma is fruity, caramel and sweet malts. Taste spices, fruity, caramel, malt. Very nice.

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Photo of Caleb2496
3.88/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Had this beer a while back. Dark ales are not my favorite but I remember this being surprisingly tasty. It was inside the bottle still so I could not see the color.

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Photo of fscottkey
3.77/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: [4.00] There is staggering 3 fingers of eggshell colored head. The head looks fairly dense and very creamy. The head is covering a mahogany colored beer. The cork lists the vintage as 2014 and the bottle lists the ABV (9.0%).

S: [3.25] The dense head is making it hard to get an initial nose. The nose seems subdued. I am getting caramel and red wine esters.

T: [4.00] The taste follows the nose with a nice rich caramel taste. This beer has a really solid malt build that gives some toast flavors in the middle. On a few sips I thought I got an off rust flavor. My favorite flavor is the one that is NOT there. I really do not like Belgian yeast. This beer has none of the Belgian yeast flavor.

M: [4.00] Nice carbonation. Slick mouthfeel, maybe a tad on the watery side though. There is no sense of the 9% ABV.

O: [3.75] This bottle has aged for almost a year. I have never had the beer fresh - but this is really good. The primary flavor is a caramel that is very appealing. As mentioned above there is no flavor of Belgian yeast (which I dislike). I left this bottle for a long time for fear of the disappointment of Belgian yeast. I find this to be a really enjoyable beer.

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Photo of PorterPro125
4.24/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Serving Type: 33 cL (330 mL) Capped Bottle

A- Pours a nice brown with a slight amber tinge. Lingering tan head.

S- Nutty and earthy. Dark Fruit making a presence as well (raisin, prune, etc)

T- Dark fruit and christmas spices (nutmeg, cinnamon, etc) as well as a slight booziness. Despite the label's prescribed drinking temperature of 12 degrees Celsius, I poured the beer straight from my fridge which is just around 2 degrees C. I noticed that the boozy character thinned out as the beer warmed and more dark fruit came through. I definitely recommend that you let this one warm (to about 12 C) before consuming.

M- Medium body and moderate carbonation. I noticed fine bubbles clinging to the bottom sides of the glass which is something I seldom see in a beer. Neat!

O- At last, an additional world class Trappist Brewery makes it's debut in my Province (the first was La Trappe)! As soon as a saw a shelf of Chimay Blue, I jumped at the chance (despite the high asking price of $6 CAD per 330 mL bottle) and I have to say that I was not disappointed in the least. What a beautifully executed Belgian brew.

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Photo of spacecake9
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my Ommegang glass.
A - Pours a deep raisin brown with 2 fingers of cola-like head. But this head stays for a good long time.
S - Maybe my sniffer is not working today, but this beer has almost no aroma at all.
T - Tastes of dark fruits (muted) and a little bready. Slight alcohol kick. Some sweetness comes in on the finish.
M - Medium body and carbonation.
O - If you are new to this beer, don't drink it cold. Let it warm to almost room temp to get all the flavors. This is a difficult beer to identify because the flavors do not hit you over the head. But it is wonderful, one of the best of the Belgians.

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Photo of Ant777uk
4.28/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Just bought in a bottle from my new local supermarket in Paris, never had before, not sure what to expect...

Bottle looks pretty cheap. Not expecting much...

Dark, deep, lingering foam...

Aroma is natural, deep and inviting. Though a little too carbon dioxidey (in case you are foreign, that is not a word, I just created it...)

Very flavoursome and highly drinkable, for 9%. Reminds me of Christmas, even though it is October. Bitter, citrussy, loving it. Definitely going to be drinking more of this. Unfortunately not tonight as my supermarket closes in 8 minutes and I live on the 7th floor with no lift, typical hardcore parisian style.

Very good feel, it really zings in your mouth and the bubbles themselves have flavour.

This beer is pretty cheap in Paris, and the best I have had so far that they sell locally. Will have to be careful as it probably will not mix too well with my current 7th floor no lift parisian style

After 8 months in Paris, I would add that this beer is variable, sometimes it really is not that good, and recently it's taste has massively reduced in my experience. So I am downgrading the ratings...

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Photo of khmel
4.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This is a beautiful beer. Pours a semi-opaque brown with an amber tint. The head is big, foamy and beige/off-white. The nose is very reminiscent of a mash tun. Lots of sweet malt smell with some sweet fruit notes (like baked apples) and that unmistakeable smell of wort. The taste is just a bit of hops in the front but the sweet malt follows quickly and covers any bitterness until the dry finish that carries a few of the burnt notes. Mouth is very smooth and full-bodied but keeps a dry and light finish. A really great BSDA.

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Photo of gandres
4.09/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From bottle to wine glass
Appearance: pours dark brown, dark amber
Smell: Aroma of slight toasted grains
Taste: very good, well balance
Fell: very good, slightly carbonated
Overall: Very good beer, will drink again

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Photo of BeerSamurai34
4.11/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pretty good and has a touch of sweetness on the finish like many other traditional trappist Belgian ales. I didn't love this, but the flavor is very complex and palatable. I wouldn't drink this very often, but it was enjoyable.

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Photo of Bruno74200
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Well, how to describe Chimay blue?
First off I would say don't drink it fresh. Age it and drink it at room temperature. It's one of this beer that you drink as a good wind. It's complex. It's a lot about the yeast and the grain and it's great

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Photo of worldsworstextra
4.36/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Finished off a bottle that was aged for 5 years. Age likely impacted my experience but this was a great beer. The flavors are integrated very well, little heat, and the brandy comes through nicely in the finish.

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Chimay Grande Réserve (Blue) from Bières de Chimay
4.28 out of 5 based on 7,713 ratings.
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