Homebrewers Association | AHA Forum

General Category => Commercial Beer Reviews => Topic started by: euge on October 30, 2010, 06:59:12 AM

Title: Chimay
Post by: euge on October 30, 2010, 06:59:12 AM
I splurge on a a bottle of Chimay fairly frequently. I like the Red though they're all interesting and good or great usually. The last bottle of Red was freakin fan-tastic.

Nutty, a bit hoppy and malty. Clean tasting and in balance. It was like falling in love again.

Tonight the bottle's like a nasty ex-girlfriend. :-X Metallic throughout. Sour. Astringent.

I remember when the Red was less than $6. Now it's $12. And it's never consistent. Maybe it's me but that's my experience.



Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: tschmidlin on October 30, 2010, 07:07:49 AM
I've had similar experiences.  I won't buy it anymore unless it's on tap, and usually the places that have it on tap have morew interesting beers for me to drink anyway.   :-\

When it's good though, it's really good.  :)
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: punatic on October 30, 2010, 07:23:08 AM
Chimay Cinq Cents!
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: anthayes on October 30, 2010, 09:34:04 AM
I've had similar experiences.  I won't buy it anymore unless it's on tap, and usually the places that have it on tap have morew interesting beers for me to drink anyway.   :-\

You need to move to Europe. I have never had a bad Chimay and drink plenty of them.

Life without Chimay would be diminished.

Ant Hayes
Tonbridge, Kent
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: MDixon on October 30, 2010, 11:52:04 AM
What's funny is Chimay was the first beer which was distributed when we changed the laws in NC and upped the ABV percentage. Because it was first on the market it went in everywhere. I can get it at almost every grocery store. So one day I have to drive at least 3 hours to get it and the next it's 5 minutes away.

I've always found it to be pretty consistent, but I don't often reach out for a bottle...YMMV
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: capozzoli on October 30, 2010, 12:35:19 PM
gods beer.

 Sweet elixir of life.

I had one on tap last night for the first time, then the second, third (blur).....Im not sure how I got home and I cant find my truck.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: uthristy on October 30, 2010, 03:13:40 PM

You need to move to Europe. I have never had a bad Chimay and drink plenty of them.
Ant Hayes
Tonbridge, Kent

Preach on brother, preach on :D

I'm  often asked `is the beer really better in Belgium, short reply is a solid YES! put a six pack in your car for a couple months, then compare to a fresh bottle and see for yourself. ;)
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: punatic on October 30, 2010, 03:48:27 PM
I'm  often asked `is the beer really better in Belgium, short reply is a solid YES! put a six pack in your car for a couple months, then compare to a fresh bottle and see for yourself. ;)

You've hit upon why I started brewing.  My parents lived in Bavaria for eight years during the '80s.  I would go to visit them and drink the local Bayerisch weissbier.  Awesome!  Everything I found in the States was old and nasty; a total waste of money. 

So I started brewing my own.  It took a while to get it right.  Those banana and bubblegum-like phenols were tough to emulate back then. But, even my first attempt at a weissbier was ten times better than the stale stuff I found on the shelf.  Weissbier is definetly one style of beer where the local brewey has the home field advantage.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: dannyjed on October 30, 2010, 03:54:29 PM
I luv a good Chimay red every once in a while ;D  I've never had a bad one, but i have another question.  Does Chimay still use their fermenting yeast for bottling?  I was thinking of making a starter from one.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: punatic on October 30, 2010, 03:56:38 PM
Has anybody else noticed that they use Chimay bottles for whiskey bottles on the TV series Deadwood?
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: denny on October 30, 2010, 04:21:34 PM
Does Chimay still use their fermenting yeast for bottling?  I was thinking of making a starter from one.

AFAIK, yes.  As Stan pointed out in BLAM, with so much of the fermentation strain around, it doesn't make sense to use a different yeast.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: euge on October 30, 2010, 06:01:28 PM
I'm beginning to think that it how the Chimay is handled. The last awesome one was out of the cooler at Central Market where there's a "beer expert" on hand. The one last night was a warm one from a dusty shelf above my head and god only knows (and the stocker) how long it's been there.

But... I've had good ones off that shelf before.

I'll still buy it (sigh) because when it's good it's something else altogether and inspirational. I'm gonna buy a couple of the small bottles today from the fancy beer store and see.

It's like a bad relationship. Just keep going back for more...

BTW, I think the brewery uses malt extract and hop extract?
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: bluesman on October 30, 2010, 07:02:51 PM
Really like their beers.  I like the red best.  Can't say I have ever had a bad beer from this brewery.
Authentic Trappist Products at their best IMO.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: narcout on October 30, 2010, 08:24:04 PM
I luv a good Chimay red every once in a while ;D  I've never had a bad one, but i have another question.  Does Chimay still use their fermenting yeast for bottling?  I was thinking of making a starter from one.

Isn't it Wyeast 1214?
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: denny on October 30, 2010, 08:51:47 PM
I luv a good Chimay red every once in a while ;D  I've never had a bad one, but i have another question.  Does Chimay still use their fermenting yeast for bottling?  I was thinking of making a starter from one.

Isn't it Wyeast 1214?

Yep.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: SiameseMoose on October 30, 2010, 11:00:29 PM
I think the Chimay beers seem particularly sensitive to handling and storage issues. Some of the most disappointing bottles I've ever opened were Chimay, especially the Red.

We had the good fortune to visit the cafe at Chimay last year. All of the beers were phenomenal! Plus, the Blue they served us was properly matured (about 6 months old). We also visited In De Vrede, the cafe for Westvleteren, and their beers were so fresh that they were a major disappointment. No real character at all. None were more than a few weeks since bottling.

I also learned that Cinq Cents (White) is different in kegs vs bottles. The kegged beers have additional dry hops, although it's unclear whether there were dry hops still in the keg. I had one at a beer dinner in Antwerp that just blew me away! It had just as much hop flavor and aroma as many of the newer Belgian-American IPAs have. That was also where we learned about the additional hopping for the kegged beer.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: euge on October 31, 2010, 09:09:59 PM
I would love to have the nectar at the source.

Bought 3 Red and 3 of the White. My sinuses are behaving today so I resumed the taste test this afternoon.

As far as quality issues check this out:

(http://lh6.ggpht.com/_BGa2L64KQdY/TM3Y_jQWeTI/AAAAAAAAAVA/WuR-yNP02AI/s720/100_0143.jpg)

I still bought it so a photo could be made. And the lighter one tasted better but basically the same beer.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: punatic on October 31, 2010, 09:20:27 PM
It's hard to say for sure from the photo, but the bottle on the left looks like it's made with darker glass.  Look at the glass in the space above the beer.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: capozzoli on October 31, 2010, 09:27:10 PM
could be the condensation is making it look darker.

Their portion control is off too. One bottle has a little less. Unless it was opened.

Oh wait, I thought they were red and white side by side.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: euge on October 31, 2010, 09:32:28 PM
It's hard to say for sure from the photo, but the bottle on the left looks like it's made with darker glass.  Look at the glass in the space above the beer.

Snap!

Thanks! I check and it is indeed different glass. I'm kicking myself since spotting that sort thing of is my actual job.  >:(

So "perception" may be a bit skewed here. I'm doubting myself. I know! More experimentation is in order...
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: punatic on October 31, 2010, 10:07:31 PM
It was on my mind because recently I split a 15 gallon batch of mead imto three different 5 gallon carboys, the only difference being the yeast.  I was amazed that different yeast could make one batch so much darker than the others.  Then I realized that the darker batch was in a green glass carboy, while the lighter two were in clear glass carboys...    DOH!

BTW, I really enjoyed your performance in The Magnificent Seven
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: dannyjed on November 01, 2010, 09:07:37 PM
I was alsways under the impression that Chimay's yeast strain was different from Wyeast 1214.  I've used 1214 twice and I wasn't too fond of it, but maybe it was my fermenting temp. 
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: gordonstrong on November 01, 2010, 10:16:43 PM
Quote
I was alsways under the impression that Chimay's yeast strain was different from Wyeast 1214.  I've used 1214 twice and I wasn't too fond of it, but maybe it was my fermenting temp. 

Probably. Go cold. Low 60s. Too warm and it tastes like bananas and nail polish remover.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: majorvices on November 02, 2010, 01:24:44 AM
Quote
I was alsways under the impression that Chimay's yeast strain was different from Wyeast 1214.  I've used 1214 twice and I wasn't too fond of it, but maybe it was my fermenting temp. 

Probably. Go cold. Low 60s. Too warm and it tastes like bananas and nail polish remover.

+1. I start it off at about 64 and hold it for a few days finishing it off at around 68.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: punatic on November 02, 2010, 01:36:11 AM
Too warm and it tastes like bananas and nail polish remover.

Dang!  That's not a good thing?  I like bananas and nail polish remover...
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: corkybstewart on November 02, 2010, 02:10:55 AM
I'm drinking a delicious bottle of the Blue right now.  I love the Red but the grocery store quit carrying it.  In fact this is the first Chimay I've seen there in months.  I've never had a bad bottle, either here or in Europe.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: majorvices on November 02, 2010, 11:52:50 AM
I like Chimay well enough, but it is probably my least favorite of all the Trappists - and by far the most commercialized.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: bluesman on November 02, 2010, 11:55:07 AM
I prefer the Westmalle Dubbel over Chimay's.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: gordonstrong on November 02, 2010, 12:00:37 PM
I prefer the Westmalle Dubbel over Chimay's.

+1.  If it hasn't been mishandled.  When I buy Westmalle, I hold the bottle up to light and see if I can see a lot of 'floaties'.  Not the normal bottle-condition stuff, more like larger individual flakes floating throughout the bottle.  If those are there, there is a good chance the bottle is oxidized and the flavor profile is off.  I'm not sure what they are or how they are formed, but I've seen a correlation between their presence and the condition of the final beer. YMMV.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: bluesman on November 02, 2010, 12:10:24 PM
I prefer the Westmalle Dubbel over Chimay's.

+1.  If it hasn't been mishandled.  When I buy Westmalle, I hold the bottle up to light and see if I can see a lot of 'floaties'.  Not the normal bottle-condition stuff, more like larger individual flakes floating throughout the bottle.  If those are there, there is a good chance the bottle is oxidized and the flavor profile is off.  I'm not sure what they are or how they are formed, but I've seen a correlation between their presence and the condition of the final beer. YMMV.

This is good to know. I'll have to remember to do that the next time I buy some.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: markaberrant on November 02, 2010, 04:47:27 PM
I like Chimay well enough, but it is probably my least favorite of all the Trappists

Fully agreed.  I just don't get Chimay, even the aged Blue doesn't do it for me.  I do like their cheese though, but hoo-wee does it get rank if aged too long. 
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: majorvices on November 02, 2010, 08:33:42 PM
I prefer the Westmalle Dubbel over Chimay's.

+1.  If it hasn't been mishandled.  When I buy Westmalle, I hold the bottle up to light and see if I can see a lot of 'floaties'.  Not the normal bottle-condition stuff, more like larger individual flakes floating throughout the bottle.  If those are there, there is a good chance the bottle is oxidized and the flavor profile is off.  I'm not sure what they are or how they are formed, but I've seen a correlation between their presence and the condition of the final beer. YMMV.

I have seen that with Achell but never Westmalle. Guess I've been lucky with buying relatively fresh bottles.

FTR I'll take an Orvall any day of the week over all of 'em.  ;)
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: punatic on November 02, 2010, 08:47:27 PM
Just picked up a bottle of Cinq Cents to celebrate Election Day!
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: redbeerman on November 03, 2010, 04:17:29 PM
The liquor store I go to turns over Belgians pretty often, so that it's fresh.  I've never had a bad one yet.  That being said, I enjoy dubbels, but they are not my favorite style,  I prefer their stronger counterparts for the darker styles.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: euge on November 13, 2010, 08:26:46 AM
Getting a bit colder. It was  $1.75 off on the Chimay Red 75cl tonight so bought two and chilled at the same time. Inspected the differing translucencies of the glass. First cork says 3/10- eight month. Tastes like a Premiere...

The brewery must have a wide latitude. Why?

The second bottle...

I'm reading the back. Blah Blah Blah... never pasteurized... serve slightly chilled...? So I'm doing a web search. Eddie murphy Raw is is on. (http://www.thefreedictionary.com/chilled)

All relaxed after the first bottle I have the 2nd bottle on the table twisting the tab and BORP! the cork and cage fly off the bottle! This beer measured below 50F. Optimal.

Why does this cork just only say 2010? The cork ripped out of my hand. Awake now. The beer is fiercely carbonated. Almost harshly so. I like it better.

Hey, it's the same beer.

Makes me a little more confident as a brewer.  8)





Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: majorvices on November 19, 2010, 09:52:58 AM


Makes me a little more confident as a brewer.  8)







Start shipping your bottles across the ocean, then shipped in refrigerated, or perhaps just as often unrefrigerated trucks, and the let them sit on the store shelves for several months and see if you are still as confident.  ;)
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: phillamb168 on November 19, 2010, 10:17:18 AM


Makes me a little more confident as a brewer.  8)







Start shipping your bottles across the ocean, then shipped in refrigerated, or perhaps just as often unrefrigerated trucks, and the let them sit on the store shelves for several months and see if you are still as confident.  ;)

You know, you bring up a good point. I haven't tried Chimay since I moved to Europe, I guess it's gotta be better than what I found in the states. IIRC it had just a really harsh flavor and I couldn't see why people liked it so much. Time to give it another shot.
Title: Re: Chimay
Post by: ryang on November 19, 2010, 03:42:21 PM
You know, you bring up a good point. I haven't tried Chimay since I moved to Europe, I guess it's gotta be better than what I found in the states. IIRC it had just a really harsh flavor and I couldn't see why people liked it so much. Time to give it another shot.

It's much better in Europe from our experience.  Plus it's much cheaper and the little 375ml bottles are everywhere.  When my wife and I were living in Paris for a while, we drank quite a bit of chimay.  Good stuff.  I don't think I've had it since we got back home (about 2 years)