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Chimay Dorée

Chimay Doree
(Picture from

Chimay, also known as the Abbaye de Scourmont, is the largest of the Trappist Breweries with a global reach.  Their three beers; red, white, & blue, can be found nearly everywhere.  In 2012, they released their 4th beer for public sale ever, a special 150th Anniversary ale that celebrated the brewery’s big anniversary.  One beer that you couldn’t find was the Dorée.

Dorée used to exclusively be the patersbier; available for the monks’ meals, guests of the abbey, and the brewery’s employees.  I had the opportunity to try this beer in September 2012 when I visited the monastery.  At that time, the beer was 4.6% ABV and was brewed with coriander and curaçao orange peel and the house yeast.  The popularity of Dorée and the growing interest in abbey “singles” has inspired Chimay to release the beer to select accounts around Belgium.  This bottle was sent me to by my friend Kevin, of the Belgian Beer Geek blog.

Appearance: Hazy pale blonde, white head, good retention.

Aroma: Coriander, orange peel, light cracker notes, with spicy yeasty notes.

Taste: Yeasty, citrus, biscuit notes, crisp finish with a touch a pepper.

Christopher at Chimay
Me trying some beers in the private tasting room at Chimay

Overall Impression: This is a light, fresh beer with a nice mix of spice and yeasty quality.  In many ways, this is a nice cross between a Belgian wit and a Trappist beer.  It’s flavorful and refreshing with good character.  If you see it on a menu while you’re in Belgium, definitely order one.  You won’t be sacrificing flavor while you give the alcohol content.

Availability: Limited locations in Belgium.

4.8% ABV

If you’d like to learn more about Chimay and the other Trappist monasteries, you can read about them in my piece: “The Brewing Monks.”

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