Chimay Première (Red) | Bières de Chimay

1,682 Reviews
Chimay Première (Red)Chimay Première (Red)

Brewed by:
Bières de Chimay

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This copper-colored ale boasts flavors of apricots, brown sugar and nutmeg. Brewed since 1982, Chimay Première is the first beer ever produced by the Trappist monks of Notre-Dame de Scourmont Abbey in Belgium.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-20-2000

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Reviews: 1,682 | Ratings: 4,836
Photo of FBarber
4.37/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy brown with lots of yeast sediment in it - yumm! Frothy light tan head slowly dissipates down to a thin foam covering the whole beer. Gorgeous head and excellent head retention. as the head stays until the last drop.

Smell has aromas of brown sugar, dark fruits, dried prunes and raisins, with undertones of alcohol and a nice yeasty presence.

Taste has flavors of dark fruits, dried raisins, prunes, and dates. Some mild brown sugar sweetness coats the tongue nicely initially before giving way to a very robust yeast flavor that provides a peppery and ginger finish on the tongue. Lots of classic "belgian" character to this beer and its wonderful. As the beer warms some herbal flavors are noted as they become more pronounced.

Feel had medium carbonation providing a tingle on the tongue initially. Nice smooth feel on this. Slight sweetness provides some coating on the tongue and the peppery yeast provides a drying finish.

Overall a very fine dubbel - not the best Trappist dubbel, but certainly in the upper echelon.

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Photo of captaincoffee
3.81/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a slightly hazy brown with thick medium head that lasts and eventually leaves a film and ring with spotty lacing. Nose is a mix of yeast, dark fruits, and syrup, but also dusty. Flavor is slightly bitter raisin, like the stem portion, with a little sweet malt. High carbonation. Overall, a good beer, but not really one of my favorites in the style.

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Photo of PorterPro125
4.16/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Serving Type: 330 mL Bottle

A- Pours a Hazy Brown-Copper with a fizzy slightly off-white cap. Head disappears fairly quickly. No lacing. The remains of the head form a fizzy ring around the glass.

S- Sweet notes of caramel and dark fruit (prunes, dates), as well as a classic Belgian yeasty banana aroma

T- Big hit of sugared Dates upfront followed by the clove/banana note present in the aroma. Tapers off with a bit of caramel sweetness.

M- Moderate Body and moderate-high carbonation. Not overly aggressive carbonation, just gives the brew a liveliness. Very fine bubbles.

O- Classic Trappist beer. Offers a great range of Belgian Ale flavours without being overly pressing like some Tripels and Quads can be. Must try for fans of Trappist beers or otherwise.

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Photo of larryarms847
4.14/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a slightly murky and dull red brown with a two finger head of plump off-white reddish brown foam.

Caramel, toffee, plum, dates, banana, and spicy yeasts.

Yeasty, banana, clove, toffee, figs and dates, and slight caramel sweetness.

Medium-bodied, high carbonation, soft, creamy.

Overall, another top of the line Belgian. Can't go wrong with a Chimay.

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Photo of vladdswrath
4.32/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Mud brown, like apple cider with a big foamy head. Aroma is all malty sweetness, with banana notes, dates and figs. Taste is amazing and just as sweet as it smells, but not overbearing. Lots of yeast and bread. There is also a delicious creaminess to the brew that makes it go down quite smoothly. Mouthfeel is as I said smooth and creamy, but with a ton of carbonation that creates an interesting contrast to the creaminess.

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Photo of Ferb
4.92/5  rDev +20%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

There is something special to me about Trappist beers, much probably is emotional. Monks being actively involved, using the labor as a means to a spiritual end, surplus wealth going to charity and of course, centuries of history in a land far away.
What I like most is the taste. This Chimay is all malt, bread and yeast tempered with dark fruits like fig, prunes and some pineapple with just a.whisper of clove. Aroma is easy echoed in
The tasting

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Photo of rex_4539
4.42/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

L: Murky brown with some golden tint. 3-4 finger off-white head. High carbonation.

S: Nice, sweet, malty.

T: Great taste. Leaves malty aftertaste.

F: Fantastic feel on the palate due to high carbonation.

O: Outstanding beer. Better tasting than the blue Chimay.

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Photo of Guppy314
4.04/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I really wanted to taste something special because this wasn't cheap, but no not really, just simply good. Reddish brown with an unusually frothy head. There is a malty or toffee sweetness with some plum-like fruitiness and clove flavors.

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Photo of dbl_delta
4.02/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler into pint glass. Pours a beautiful reddish-honey color with a modest off-white head. Initial impression is smooth, malty sweetness - maybe I'm prejudiced by the honey color, but it has a distinct honey flavor with (in decreas brown sugar or molasses, dark friut, and a very slightly bitter finish. Medium mouthfeel, medium carbonation. Very drinkable. Nice.

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Photo of Czequershuus
4.67/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This beer pours a shining ruby brown with a very large head. The aroma offers up banana, brown sugar, and fig. The flavor follows the same course, tasting of rich fig and brown sugar, with notes of molasses and ginger also apparent. The mouthfeel is full and fluffy. Overall this a a sensationally tasty beer. Wonderfully fruity and complex, this may be my favorite Chimay.

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Photo of jrsqc7
5/5  rDev +22%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bright sunshine beginning of summer William DeVaughn's "Be Thankful For What You Got" playing kids at the neighborhood playground screaming about chocolate bars. Frothy malt lingers introduces spices warmth. Fantastic.

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Photo of Beginner2
4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Reviewed in "Michael Jackson's Great Beers of Belgium", this awaits my review with another tasting.
Reviewed also in Roger Protz' " 300 Beers To Try Before You Die!"

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Photo of tekstr1der
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Gorgeous brew, deep hazy dark copper pour with ultimate off-white pillow of tiny bubbles. This is how I envision beer. Aroma is malty with some biscuit and caramel. Just a touch of candi sugar sweetness. Flavor is about the same. Probably I'm late in the game, but this is not as impressive as I'd hoped. Still looking for the best dubbel, but starting to believe this may not be my style as much as I love quads and some (completely different) trips.

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Photo of adodds
4.48/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

L - Pours a hazy, dark brown with a massive ivory head.
S - Smooth, with some malty flavors.
T - Delicious cream and toasty malts! This is a great dubbel, no extra shenanigans going on here. When I close my eyes and sip, I get a very smooth "creamy-tan" color in my mind. I love how the ivory vanilla note balances with the dark-tan nut flavors.
F - Smooth, light body. Lets the flavors do the talking.
O - This was a great surprise! I have heard repeatedly that blue Chimay is the best, but I think that the red is a much easier everyday sipper. Sublime

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Photo of Viaduck
4.51/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I'm not sure I got the right beer, my label is different from that pictured. "Contents under pressure. Use extreme caution ...when opening". Yes they are. A very loud pop followed by a very lovely aroma of barley & hops. Hazy Reddish brown & topped with an impressive off white head. Tastes great, a bit salty, big grain flavor with a kick from the alcohol & carbonation, no bitterness. A great beer.

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Photo of matcris
4.2/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

APPEARANCE: A hazy rust in the snifter with a good finger+ of khaki, creamy head that settles down after a few minutes to a nice thick layer. Hard to say about the carbonation. Hold a flash light up to the glass and I see a few small bubbles rising, here and there. Spotty lacing down the glass.
AROMA: Very floral, bready like fruitcake. Dark dried fruit, molasses. No detectable alcohol.
TASTE: Very bready, lots of dark dried fruit, raisin, figs. A nice bit of sweetness but not overwhelming. Brown sugar or molasses. No detectable alcohol in the taste, either.
FEEL: Medium body with plenty of carbonation, but not overkill. Quite dry all the way through the sip. The body seems a little thin right at first and then a second later, seems almost a little chewy.
OVERALL: Lots of nice dark dried fruit, bready, and molasses notes but there is enough on the opposite end to keep it balanced and not cloying at all. Nice high level of carbonation helps with this too, I'm sure. Very nice brew. Blue caps little brother.

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Photo of EMH73
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I know that I am in the minority, but I feel that this is the best beer from Chimay. To me it is a little more complex and flavorful than the Grand Reserve.

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Photo of crisis1290
4.75/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Chimay Première (Red)- No need to repeat what has been said a 1000 plus times about this amazing world class gift from Belgium. This is one of those "must try" beers. Once it is tried once, you will revisit ! This is a smooth medium-bodied Dubbel. You might be paying more for this gem, but you wont regret it !

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Photo of LennyOvies
3.71/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

L- Dull hazy brown body with noticeable carbonation going up. Bubbly ivory head with low retention.
S- Brown sugar, dried fruits, raisins, some cinnamon.
T- Dried fruits, sugar, bread, belgian yeast.
F- Smooth, slightly fizzy.
O- Nice beer, ABV was hardly noticeable. Not very fond of this style but this was fairly good.

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Photo of Dr-Baltar
4.64/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Look - Murky bronze / brown. Cloudy yeast clarity after a gentle pour.

Smell - Raisin, dark fruits, baked sweetness

Taste - Caramel, toffee, medium alcohol taste, slight dark fruit notes but not as much as on the nose.

Feel - A little under conditioned than I would expect from a Belgian, but still nice.

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Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
4.17/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From teh 330 ml bottle purchased in France, it pours a dark amber with a moderate off-white head, replenished by a constant stream of bubbles from the bottom. Nose detects fruit and malt, mouth is equally pleased with malt and caramel tickling the tongue. Enjoyable! Wow!

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Photo of Tonyjenlasc
4.39/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look - A murky/muddy reddish brown type color
Smell - Dark fruits, brown sugar, caramel, spice
Taste - Prunes, raisins, plums, toffee sweetness, spice

Overall - Another great trappist ale. The Blue crushes this though.

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Photo of craftbeersweden
3.88/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this 75 cl bottle together with a huge order from Beergium. The cork says it’s bottled in 2015. Best before December 2019.

The beer pours hazy, red-brown with a huge, fluffy yellow head. About two finger high in my new Trappist-glass.

Nose: Caramel malt, fudge, dried fruit, plum, floral and herbal spices. Taste: Sweet chocolate, nuts, caramel, coriander, molasses, oak and plum.
Mouthfeel: Creamy, silky and smooth. Light carbonation. Complex texture. A nice smooth bitterness at the end.

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Photo of joaopmgoncalves
4.07/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a Chimay glass.

A: The body is opaque brown with a 2-finger thick beige head. No lacing but lots of retention here. Got through the whole drinking experience.
S: The aroma felt like a regular dubbel, being constructed mostly by "belgian hops" (not sure if they're actually from Belgium, but it's the ones who are used regularly) and the typical strong yeast.
T: The strong yeast is what is tastable here - this beer has some hints of toffee but in its whole is very yeasty, which is good, but could be better.
M: WOW. This beer is very well conditioned, the mouthfeel is great due to its carbonation. The head had a tremendous retention, which could only be made a superior level of carbonation. This is awesome. No bitterness, more turned to sweetness actually.
O: For the first time, I had a Chimay that I want to revisit. Bold and solid.

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Photo of _Froggy_
2.8/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

2015 date on cork. 1/18/2016 I sampled this beer from the 75cl or (750ml) bottle
why do i feel this tastes close to a stout???? more than an ale??? it's not bad but I wouldn't recommend it to friends ...
bottle/cork/hood finish is super nice ~ everything about this beer was super promising
I just didn't enjoy it as much as I thought it was basically a let down.

it basically comes down to tasting like an expensive red/amber Guinness...not that it is a bad thing but it's definatly not for everyone ~ cheers

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Chimay Première (Red) from Bières de Chimay
4.1 out of 5 based on 4,836 ratings.
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