Chimay Grande Reserve
People always ask me 'Mike, what's your favorite beer?' My answer usually takes about ten minutes, and I list about 15 beers. Not exactly what they wanted to know. When I'm done talking most people have a glazed over look in their eyes and they walk away from me. If people would just ask me 'Mike, what's your favorite style of beer?' That I could answer in about one minute. Belgian style. Belgium is home to more styles and varieties of beer than any other country in the world! So to be more specific I should say Belgian Strong, Belgian Triple, Belgian Abbey, or Belgian Trappist are some of my favorite styles of beers. See, I still can't pick just one!
Chimay Grande Reserve, or Chimay Bleue as its known, falls into the category as a Belgian Trappist beer. Trappist means the beer must be brewed by monks, and under strict conditions at one of the six monasteries in Belgium. The aroma of this beer hits me with lots of yeast. The first sip is very warming, due to the 9% alcohol. Then the roasted grains and slight caramel flavors stay on the palate until the next sip. It's just a perfect example of this style of beer. The benchmark in my opinion.