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Maharaja - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,799 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,799
Hads: 5,234
Avg: 4.2
pDev: 17.62%
Wants: 345
Gots: 651 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-03-2005

Maharaja is derived from the sanskrit words mahat, meaning “great”, and rajan, meaning “king”. Much like its namesake, this imperial IPA is regal, intense and mighty. With hops and malts as his servants, he rules both with a heavy hand. The Maharaja flaunts his authority over a deranged amount of hops: tangy, vibrant and pungent along with an insane amount of malted barley – fashioning a dark amber hue and exquisite malt essence. Welcome to his kingdom!

The Maharaja is the second installment in our Dictator Series.

102 IBUs

ABV varies slightly batch to batch.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,799 | Hads: 5,234
Photo of velosuds
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In my never ending quest to find a great, bottled, DIPA above 10% ABV, I decided to give this a try. My favorite DIPAs tend to range between 7.7 and 9.4% ABV. It must be very difficult to stay true to style above 9.5%. This is no different, but closer than others, in that it also was too much like a barleywine.

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a clear pint glass. May 2010 Batch 12. Paid $8.99 at John's Market.

A-Poured a hazy, medium, golden-amber hue with a two finger bone white, frothy head with nice retention and gorgeous, sticky lacing. Nice appearance.

S-At 102 IBUs there are plenty of hops present, mostly of the citric and piney essences, but not fragrant enough. There is also too much sweetness from the malt bill. The high ABV is not masked adequately. Smells a bit more like a barleywine.

T-This was too malty for style. Much more like a barleywine than a DIPA. Too pungent from the alcohol noticeable in the taste at 10.48 ABV. Somewhat disappointing. Not a bad taste, by any means, just not a great DIPA. But, Avery already has an excellent barleywine in Hog Heaven.

M-Is very smooth, but a little heavy from the high ABV. Its roughness mellows as it warms.

D-This was probably the best DIPA >= 10% ABV I have had and it comes closer to the DIPA style than the others I have reviewed. A bit pricey, but I will look forward to trying a fresher batch in the future, willing to modify the scores if warranted.

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Photo of sjverla
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Nose: Caramelly and fruity. A little raisin that gives way to citrus and dank, damp green grass.

Appearance: Clear copper, big sticky off-white head. Laces like crazy. Gorgeous.

Taste: Big, sweet and juicy. Strawberry preserves and toffee quickly followed by a cavalcade of hops. Piny, resinous and mildly astringent and slightly drying. A hint of alcohol taste, but no real burn.

Overall: This big boy is quite good. Not mind-blowing - but a nice, sweet Double IPA that drinks huge.

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Photo of Estarrio
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a cloudy, copper with a big, off-white head. Decent retention, with significant, chunky lacings throughout.

Orange, grapefruit and sweet malt aroma blend with a big, pine hoppy presence.

Orange slices up front with a grapefruit and hoppy finish. I expected this to be a bit more bitter, but the hop presence is definitely felt. The aftertaste is also surprisingly, not dry. The saving grace is that this has a very smooth taste, with almost no alcohol presence. Still, not what I expected from a DIPA.

Very well carbonated with no syrupy texture, this is a very drinkable DIPA with a light, nice mouthfeel.

This is a nice, smooth brew but it just does not deliver the high hop profile that one would expect from a DIPA.

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Photo of Alkey
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz. bottle poured a cloudy reddish/brown color with small white cap that leaves some lace around the glass. Smells of malt and yeast in the nose and taste big and malty with an equal portion of earthy, floral hops. It also has a yeasty thickness to the feel and leaves a bit of an alcohol dryness to the aftertaste. This brew is easy to drink and is very balanced between the malt and hops but doesn't seem to have anything that jumps out at me and I would probably not go out of my way to obtain this one again.

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Photo of Yagman3000
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a bomber into a snifter.

Appears a brown with a subtle dark orange. A thin creamy head remains - 1/4 inch.

Smells heavy duty. No real fruits in nose but a noticeable non-citrus heaviness.

Tastes like a heavy wine. More malty than I expected. Want to research what hops are used. There's a bit of muddy overripe fruit in there.

I dont think I'd purchase another one so quickly but I'll gladly split one if you bring it over. :)

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Photo of cdkrenz
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I'm lucky enough to have a wife that buys me buy such as this.

A - Copper body with a dash of red kicked in. The head is the purest of white and has nice stamina at a quarter to a half inch.

S - Citrus hops with a sweet candy-like accent.

T - A combination of bitter hops with pine for a rather unique flavor. There is a hint of citrus and evaporating alcohol to act accordingly. I give Avery some credit for taking a stab at this flavor in an Imperial IPA. I've never really had anything like it. For that it's good, otherwise I'd say average.

M - Thick and sticky like any good DIPA should be. There's a slight coarse feel in the finish.

~ This isn't something I'll seek out again but I will recommend it to friends. The reason being, this is a unique flavored Double IPA. For that it should be sampled.

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Photo of MsRif
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Let me just start off by saying that I am not a big fan of double IPA's. IPA's are pretty brutal on my taste buds to begin with...but doubles are even more so. With that said, this is THE best double IPA that I've ever had. Poured a nice golden brown color with a good sized head that gave some lacing. Aroma was HOPPY...but there was also a presence of citrus and, well, booze (it is 10% after all). Actually tasted pretty sweet in the start, but it finished very hoppy/bitter. Not to the point that I was not wanting to finish the glass, but it was actually pleasant...and I never feel that way about supremely hoppy beers.

Pretty smooth, light to medium in body...again, pretty darn drinkable for a 2x IPA. I wouldn't go out of my way for this one, but if I had to drink a double IPA...this would be it.

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Photo of Kraken
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into standard pint glass. This was batch 7 bottled in Feb 08. Pour yielded 1 finger white head with virtually no lacing. Smells, of course, very hoppy, but also very rich and complex. Taste is initially citrus, oranges and grapefruits. Rich body, slight alcohol followed by pine resins, slight vanilla , finishes dry with an immense bitterness. Bitterness is a bit much for this reviewer, my taste buds maybe slightly off due to Tortellini Alfredo. Bitterness diminishes part way through. Subtle complexities become apparent as beer warms.

Will have to revisit at slightly warmer temp.

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Photo of trekbiker3000
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fairly clear amber color. One finger head, large bubbles. I should have stopped with a swallow left in the bottle but I poured it all out and got some large flaky sediment in the glass. It settled slowly, while dancing on the bubbles. The head dissapted fairly quickly leaving just a slight layer of bubbles.

The aroma has the expected floral hops, slighty resinous, but not over the top. It was bottled in February (Batch #7), so I wonder if the aroma settles over time?

The taste is a blend of malt and hop bitterness. It seems well balanced starting with the malt flavor and quickly hitting you with the hop bitterness. If you're a hophead, this brew should rank fairly high for you.

I found the mouthfeel to be too carbonated. It seemed to just foam up once it hit the palate. A very smooth finish, and quite full bodied, coating your mouth.

As with the previous 22 oz bomber, this beer is too biog for me to drink more than one at a sitting. That being said, this would be a good beer to start with before you move on to lesser hoppy brews.

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Photo of goldbot
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle. March 2010, batch 11.

Copper to light brown, a bit cloudy. Dense, off-white head. Great head retention and lacing.

Mango, pineapple, orange and citrus hops. Thick, sweet and floral aromas. Resiny, thick smelling, but not overly grassy or planty. Hints of caramel and cherry. Little to no ethanol smell.

Plenty of bitterness; lightly sweet caramel malts; a bit toasty. Falls a bit flat with hops. A bit of citrus and pine, but nowhere near the strength or complexity that was present in the aroma.

Bitter with a full body. Nicely balanced.

This one smells like a great IIPA but tastes like an average barleywine. Still a nice balance going on, and it's certainly good to see an IIPA doing something with malt flavors as well as the hops.

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Photo of claspada
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aromas of super obvious but not extremely strong citrus hops, mildly pungent but still awesome. Quite inviting and just what I hope for in a good DIPA.

Taste is quite sweet and very rich and malty. There are hops here but to me it's more like am English barleywine. Mouthfeel is thick, caramelly and bready with a bit of a hop bite on the finish. Very smooth and creamy, almost a pillow-like feel with decent carbonation.
Overall this is a wonderful DIPA; as someone that likes malty examples this favors my preferences. This was quite refreshing and something i would buy again when available. If you are looking for a traditional palate wrecking DIPA look elsewhere as this is excellently balanced with malt sweetness and Pacific citrusy hops.

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Photo of zrab11
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a nice orangeish color with a small white head. Decent lacing

S- Had the aroma of oranges and grapefruit and sme sweet carmel as well. Also picking up some pine and hops.

T- Wow this was a kick in the face DIPA. Smooth at the begginning with the carmel sweetness but then a bitter hops and grapefruit flavor till the end

M-Medium to light bodied with good carbonation

D-Overall i was exspecting this to be a faded DIPA b/c i estimated this bottle to be abot 4 weeks old. But it was toatly the opposite. The hops and grapefruit flavor were way to much for me to enjoy this beer. glad i was sharing this with a friend or i would of drain poured the rest. Its not a bad beer by any means. Its just that anything with a big grapefruit taste i tend to stay away from. Glad i tried it and i reccomend everyone try it but it just wasn't doing it for me.

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Photo of midaszero
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 22oz bottle into pint glass

A - Clear orangish amber with with 1.5 fingers of tan head

S - Citrus with some floral and a touch of sweetness

T - Bitter hops (grapefruit?) with some good sweet malt flavor.

M - Some burn with medium body and medium to high carbonation

D - If you are a hop head you could probably session this. Personally one pint is good but enough.

I know I am commiting an IPA crime but putting 2 bottles of this down in my cellar but I tried a 1 year old bottle awhile back and really enjoyed it.

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Photo of Gtreid
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled Feb. 2008, Batch 7.

Unfortunatly my snifter is in the dishwasher, so this was poured into a pint glass.

A: Slightly cloudy burnt orange with one finger of creamy off white head. Very nice spotty lacing that lasted the entire glass.

A: Huge citrus hops. Lemon, orange, and grapefruit. Sweet pine as well.

T: Hops again dominate this brew. Malts try to balance it out, but the hops are overwhelming. Finishes with a very crisp alcohol sensation.

M: Oily, medium body beer. Good amount of carbonation.

D: This is a big beer, definately not for the novice. One 22 oz. bomber at 10.54% ABV is more than enough. This is a good offering for the style. Skal.

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Photo of mwearl
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A supremely hoppy high gravity Double IPA, this beer poured copper colored with a nice foamy head and lacing that lasted forever. Smell very hoppy with definite grapefruit and floural odor with a light green grape scent. Taste was smooth for such a hoppy high ABV brew. As expected, the hops really stand out but its not completely out of balance. Mouthfeel is rather light with a slight alcohol burn on top of tongue. Drinkability depends on your tolerance for a stout beer. I'd never drink more than one per session but will definitely drink more.

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Photo of Floydster
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22 ounce bomber from Cooke's Market in El Segundo

275th review on here, every 25 or so, I am going to try to drink a special brew from here on out

Poured into my Dogfish Head snifter and was a cloudy light brown, bottled was released in Febraury and let sit until tonight, and surprisingly, it was still very hoppy

Head was about 1/4 inch and fizzled immediately, slthough lacing was evident throughout my entire glass until the last sip

Smell was a little malty with some citrus accents, mostly oranges and not too much lemon

Taste was hoppy at first, followed by sweetness, then a charcoal-like aftertaste, this beer tasted strong, being that it is an Imperia IPA, about as dry as they get and took me an hour and a half to drink even though it was not too heavy, could have drank more, just took my time to enjoy the dry everlasting taste

Could probably be cellared even more, at least 3 more months, seven months did not seem to have an effect on the hops, too bad it is only seasonal, need to try the Czar and Kaiser next to esnure that Avery's seasonal brews are as good as they are cracked up to be

Highly recommended

Would have again, especially if I see it at Holingshead's Deli in Orange on tap again some time

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Photo of northaustin
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

yummy yummy i love these world ruler beers that avery makes the maharaja tastes like an ipa should. its high abv is perfectly countered by the hops. the label on the bottle is beautiful like most of averys select beers. perfect seasonal to try just a few times while its around. beware of overpricing on this and other avery beers

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Photo of fisherman34
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Amber in colour with medium-high carbonation. Huge grapefruit and pine hop nose, along with a good strong caramel malt note. While I had been expecting a thick and syrupy brew, there was actually a dimention of lightness to the palate which was quite refreshing. The up-front flavors are dominated by sweet caramel malts, which evolve into a more grainy note before the assault of orange and grassy (almost minty) hops. Not the most complex example of an IIPA out there, but definitely one of the more easy drinking ones.

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Photo of kaiyote
3.81/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber with about a finger of head that slowly dissipated and left a capping on the liquid. Decent lacing left behind as I drink it. Smells like walking through a pine forest, but the taste seems more about malt than it does hops. There's still a decent hop bitterness there, but (and especially on the first sip) there is an overriding malty sweetness. Carbonation is very low, but a burn from the ABV helps lighten it up some.

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Photo of Roguer
3.81/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Surprisingly dark reddish brew. Fairly small off-white head with decent retention. Looks fairly clear, but difficult to tell in poor lighting.

The aroma is fairly neutral; you can tell that it falls in the IPA or ABW family, but everything is kind of subdued. A touch of pine and citrus hops meld with caramel grains and brown sugar.

Sweet, big, and bold on the palate; the hops really kick in on the last third. Fairly juicy and barleywine-esque. One of those big DIPAs that really straddles the line.

Oily and syrupy on the palate. Normally, that's a detractor for a DIPA in my book, but the way this brew presents itself (think: the smaller, lighter cousin of Devil Dancer or 120 min), it's actually a very enjoyable feel. 10.2% alcohol is very smooth.

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Photo of Jwburns75
3.81/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a HF snifter/wine glass. Pours a dark, rusty auburn color with about a one finger head. Laces well, and there is an abundance of sediment floating around in there. The bottle has been sitting in my fridge for about 3-4 weeks. Medicinal smell, some alcohol in the nose. Taste is sweet, caramel like. This is a malty imperial IPA, alcohol is present in the taste but not overwhelming. This one is a sipper.

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Photo of Reaper16
3.81/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

served from a 22oz. bottle -- batch 9, Feb. 2009 -- into a goblet

Looks like an IPA should. Nice and ruby-orangy with a decent, off-white head. The head recedes quickly, but leaves a neat, solid wall of lacing behind.

The hops are already faded; I can tell from the nose. I suppose I should have figured from the bottled-on date. It smells like, well, months-old HopSlam: the citrus, mango and pineapple scents are there, but fleetingly so. Some astringency. Various undistinguished malts dominate the nose.

This definitely tastes like a past-its-prime double IPA. But that doesn't mean that its bad or without merit. Caramel malt sweetness meets an initial earthiness from the hops. Around the middle of the drink, the fruits make themselves known. Tangerine and something that tastes like plum (the aging has affected that flavor, I take it) dance around before giving way to a slightly astringent earthy finish. Its old, sure, but its still good. I've had less flavorful fresh double IPAs.

I love the mouthfeel on this beer. Perhaps its months-old age has something to do with it, but this beer strikes a superb balance for me. Its just thick enough to be luscious but also thin enough to be refreshing and drinkable. Thanks in no small part to the mouthfeel it is not a chore to polish off the whole bomber. Most people aren't going to want to drink more than one 22.oz bottle of this at a time, so I'd say that this beer is drinkable enough.

Despite having some age on it my bottle of Maharaja was pretty good. I'd love to see how intense the fruit flavors and the IBUs are in a fresher bottle.

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Photo of AaronHomoya
3.81/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 oz brown bottle brewed in 2005 as stated on label.

Deep amber-red or auburn color with a nice, big, fluffy head and great lacing and head retention. Beautiful. Aroma is fruity and sweet with hops and a hint of alcohol. The flavor is sweet, bready with noticeable alcohol, some piney hops and bitterness in the finish. I would have liked more hops, but there were enough to balance all the malt. Medium body and a clean finish. A bit sticky feeling, though. Overall, a good beer but not as hoppy as I think an IIPA should be and the alcohol was too noticeable in the taste.

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Photo of hooliganlife
3.8/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

served on tap in a tumbler glass

color was deep copper with a light fluffy white head. light retention.

smell was very bitter citrus, huge hop scents

taste was bitter in the finish, but with a stronger malt backbone up front. lots of biscuit notes. very bitter hops, little floral presence.

very smooth overall and rather full. kind of syrupy.

very drinkable, but over time. not a session beer by ANY means. but this is a GREAT DIPA that i will be drinking over the next few months. i also had this from the bottle, and i preferred the bottle hands down.

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Photo of organicbrewer
3.8/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled March 2010, batch 11. NICE!

A-clear but not brilliant bronze. Huge off white head.

S-tangarine. slight dank. some mango. Juicy fruit. Hops are really hiding the malt.

T-Firmly bitter (who woulda thought). Candy like. Piney. Earthy. More citrus in the aroma than the flavor.

M-medium bodied. Thicker than I thought it would be, but still nice. Some alcohol. Medium carbonation.

D-The alcohol and thickness make this a hard beer to drink a lot of. Really nice aroma with a decent flavor. Maybe dry it out a bit, or not. Still good.

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Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 1,799 ratings.