It was the best of beers. It was the worst of beers. Anyway, about 7 weeks ago I brewed my first all grain as described here. Two weeks later, using the same process, finings, etc, but newfound knowledge, I brewed an all grain Newcastle clone from AHS that went much better. For the Chimay, I did two weeks in the primary and three in the secondary, and then into bottles for two weeks.
The Newcastle was 3 weeks in the primary, and then two weeks in the bottle.
Both beers were stored in my beer closet (~68-70 degrees). After a week, I sampled one of each. The Chimay was flat, young, but had a good flavor. The Newcastle was medium carbonated and great flavor. This week I sampled one of each again. The Chimay was still flat (not undercarbonated, but flat), but still with a good, but young flavor. The Newcastle is getting close to great.
Both beers are remarkably clear and have very little yeast sediment in the bottle, but noticeably less in the Chimay. I know that RDWHAHB is the answer, or shake them up and move them to a warm place (warmer than 70?), but somehow this is just a little wierd. Why such a different outcome with two beers with consistent finishing techniques?