Brewed by Chimay
Style: Belgian Strong Ale
Baileux, Belgium


on tap

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Bottle conditioned - 150 cl, 75 cl, and 33 cl bottles. Named Grande Réserve in 75 cl bottles, and Magnum Grande Réserve in 150 cl bottles.
Chimay Blue is principally distinguished by its character of a strong beer. This is a beer whose fragrance of fresh yeast with a light, flowery rosy touch is especially pleasant. Its flavour, noticed when tasting it, only accentuates the pleasant sensations perceived in the aroma , while revealing a light but pleasant touch of roasted malt. This top fermented Trappist beer, refermented in the bottle, is not pasteurised.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
biznizness (1070) - Mooresville, North Carolina, USA - JUL 4, 2004
UPDATED: MAY 11, 2006 This is the beer that got me started drinking beer. And now, after all the other kinds of beer I’ve had, this is still one of my favorites. A delicious ale that is always appropriate and never disappointing. This beer is sexy.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
arjoseph (639) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JUL 3, 2004
UPDATED: JUN 8, 2005 7/3/04 Rating: 3.1. Big bottle into Chimay Trappist glass. Disappointment. Tasted like the bastard stepchild of De Dolle Oerbier Special Reserva after a severe punishment and no supper. Comes from a good family, mind you, and the foster parents mean well, but they can only do so much with what they’ve been given. Considering the high ratings this got a few years ago, I’m guessing it’s going downhill. Shame. Poured brown-orange and darkish, beige head large to fully diminishing, fizzy. Not much lacing at all. Smelled citrusy and yeasty, maybe a bit of honeydew melon in there. Tasted vaguely like an orange peel, somewhat smoky, alcohol, malt. Not much of a finish. Fizzy, medium bodied mouthfeel was kind of unpleasant. 6/3/05 Re-Rate: 3.7. (2003 Bottle, 750 ml into tulip glass). Uncorked quickly, lots of pressure. Yeast, bread, banana, lemon, some skunk and black pepper on the nose. Huge fizzy fluffy grayish-beige head, rocky, with a latice of sticky lace. Clear ruby brown in the light, darkly transluscent in the glass. Medium body, prickly carbonation, low to medium acidity gets stronger through the finish. Caramel and chocolate malts with a tad bit of roast, slight malted milk ball flavor and lots of musty white bread toast in the middle. Some nuttiness in the beginning of the finish. Some tangy mealiness in the beginning of the finish detracts, but the banana flavors in the finish are awesome. Overall, despite all the complexity, I found the flavor profile to be kind of weak in intensity and the feel to be watery for how big the beer is, especially since I could notice the alcohol in the mouthfeel.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Kevin (2047) - New Mexico, USA - JUL 1, 2004
Bottle from 5-99. floral doughy aroma. appearance is a purplish tinted brown. tan head. flavor is complex.malt and yeast are the first taste to hit my tiongue has an alcohol bite that is not overdone. an earthy quality to this. i have been trying to place one of the other flavors and it just came to me, molasses and brown sugar without being overly sweet. and interesting beer. thanks for the bottle, Lumpy.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - JUN 29, 2004
"Pop!" goes the top, the resounding sound of cork’s release a tease of what lies in store. Color, a ruddy brown, tawny and opaque. Head is off-white, fuzzy and activley bubbly. Aroma: playing it quiet, actually spare, arid, I’m getting nothing at all! Light echoes of nuts and toffee, wafts of maltiness. Not too happy with this aspect. On first sip, a big blast of hops, with malt following immediately on it’s heels. We find that this is a brew that must be allowed time to open up, give it a little time and space...shows off earthy, nutty, chocolatey flavors, with a generous amount of zippy, zingy spark on the palate. Taste becomes better, richer, more complex and fruity. Excellent effervescence, featuring that special Belgian spark and yeasty taste. Smooth, though before long the alcoholic component kicks in and rides tall in the saddle. I’ve neglected Chimay for quite some time, perhaps after encountering Ommegang, a better tasting ale, in my opinion, when fresh, and at 1/2 the price. Perhaps I’ve got to try this cellaring business to see what an older sample might offer up to us. On this tasting, a pretty nice drink, but didn’t blow me away.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
robertsreality (2460) - Minnesota, USA - JUN 28, 2004
Bought at a little grocery store in Paris....Need to get this one again...as was very unimpressed by the flavor, considering the ratings given this one. Dark Brown Coloring. White Head.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
Zeswaft (1361) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JUN 26, 2004
I don’t know anything about these Belgian beers. I know they are supposed to be the best in the world but I am still not convinced. Though this was better than the last one it was still just alright. It was as carbonated as a Coke. It tasted pretty much like a Paulaner but a little more alcohol like. $5 a 11 oz bottle was a rip, too. Oh yeah, it reminds a lot of Steel Reserve high gravity.

   AROMA 2/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 2/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 3/20
BrockLanders (771) - Panama City, Florida, USA - JUN 25, 2004
UPDATED: DEC 2, 2009 ** 6-27-04, ok, I had to visit this rating again. Yes, the experience wasn’t good, but the flavor wasn’t horrible. It just wasn’t as good as it should’ve been. Still disappointed.** ****Forced to endure this swill again at a birthday party. Is it possible it’s gotten worse?...alas tis’ true, what a joke this beer has become. ****recent price hike has me rating this lower....poor value, basically a huge sham.**** May 2005 rating...it just gets worse. Oh how the mighty have fallen. Disappointed is the best word to use here. Tim Webb reported the demise of this once fine ale in his beer guide last year, but I wasn’t convinced till this taste. To look at it you’d never know things had gone so bad. Taking a taste removes all doubt. I think Mr. Webb’s quote "...overtones of damp cardboard..." says it all. What complexity that was there before is all but gone. I lived in The Netherlands for three years and grew to love this jewel. All I can say is that the bottled stuff available in the US now is NOT worth the money---not even close. I remember this used to compare very well with Rochefort 10 and Westvleteren Abt. Those fine brews blow this one to smithereens. I’m sure it’s no coincidence that Chimay’s demise occurred just after they were bought out. I love Belgian ales, but you should stay clear of this one until they figure out how to get their old swagger back. A friend offered this up tonight.....it stinks just as bad in 2009. It actually might be worse.....simply awful.....the brewery that’s belching this crap out needs to be hit by a few Tomahawk missiles.......blow it to oblivion.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Hugh (153) - Zillebeke, BELGIUM - JUN 25, 2004
Stil looks like the Chimay Blue I used to love, but all the complexity of old is missing. Is it no longer being matured for long enough by the brewery or is malt extract being used? Something is missing that I can’t put my finger on, but to me, this is now a very simple beer. Tried it next to a Rochefort 10, which might be why I’m so jaded, but it used to and should still stand this comparison. It doesn’t.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
foglemark (42) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - JUN 24, 2004
Creamy head and a cloudy body. Smells ignitingly sweet and soft. Creamy texture and lasting full, rich taste with hints of brown sugar.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
MMM...Beer (385) - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA - JUN 19, 2004
In my mind Chimay is theepitomy of Trappists. Deep copper in color with a porous, white head. Somewhat spicy on the nose with hints of fruit. Tangy/spicy on the palate, yet extremely elegant.

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