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Maharaja - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
MaharajaMaharaja

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

4,687 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,687
Reviews: 1,739
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 10.64%
Wants: 259
Gots: 396 | FT: 6
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:
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 added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-03-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Maharaja Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,687 | Reviews: 1,739 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Haybeerman
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Hazy copper/amber color. Poured a 2 finger light tan head with good retention. Generous, thick lacing. Decanted continually.

S: Big piney hops with grapefruit and pineapple notes. Resiny pine lingers. Also plenty of sweet caramel malt.

T: Very clear and assertive citrus bitterness with resiny pine. Sweet caramel malt brings a bit of balance. Bitter grapefruit finisch with warming alcohol.

M: Medium to full body. Well balanced carbonation. Creamy, warm and coating with a lingering hop finish.

D: Good for a10+% ABV DIPA. Nice blaance of citrus bang, sweet malts and bitter finish.

Haybeerman, Nov 24, 2008
Photo of koopa
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber received in a trade with smokepot23 thanks Joe! Let me start out by saying that the packaging on this brew is stellar. Nice silver foil top with big red "A" for Avery on it. Cool spearmint green label that pops.

Batch 11 bottled in March 2010.

Appearance: Pours a transparent rusty butterscotch with a massive 2.5 finger off white crown that shows good retention and lace.

Smell: Nice grapefruit, spruce, and floral hop bill. The malt is caramel like and plays nothing more than a supporting role.

Taste: More caramel malt than in the nose, slight candied orange citrus fuit note, a hint of spruce, and a strong amount of grapefruit.

Mouthfeel: On the full side of medium bodied and a touch chewy with decent carbonation.

Drinkability: Well balanced but strong!

koopa, Apr 11, 2010
Photo of IceAce
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a copper-penny body with a sticky, lacy collar of foam. Clarity is excellent. Aroma is laced with alphas...this one is going to sting.

Entry is smooth with limited carbonation tickling the inside walls of the cheeks. Midtaste shows off the voluminous depth of the malt while the alpha acids from the bountiful hops line up to strip the enamel from my incisors. The finish is hoppy-dry with the emphasis on pine.

This is an excellent example of DIPA and would pair well with Thai food.

IceAce, Dec 26, 2006
Photo of seand
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear orange tinted amber, with a fair amount of dense white head. Enough retains in clumps on the surface and around the edge of the glass to leave solid sheets of lacing.

S: Strongly hop dominated, with huge pine and citrus notes. There's a touch of malty sweetness, but no alcohol to speak of.

T: Huge hops, with strong citrus, especially grapefruit, and quite astringent. There's a malt backbone which is especially noticeable at the tip of the tongue, but gets a bit lost in the hops towards the middle and finish, just barely peeking out again in the aftertaste. Booze is noticeable on the finish.

M: Full body, slightly syrupy, medium carbonation.

Overall a good but perhaps over-the-top representation of the style. It's pulled off well, but if you don't love hops and big beers, you won't like this beer.

seand, May 01, 2011
Photo of jsulko
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber poured into a tulip glass

Pours a clear almber with a decent sized off white head that lingers.

Some citrus and malt in the smell, with a heavy pine smell as well.

Taste is quite sweet for a DIPA with a slight hops bite on the aftertaste.

This bottle was not as fresh as I would like. A DIPA I would love to revist.

jsulko, Nov 04, 2011
Photo of jjayjaye
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy butterscotch color will less than a full finger off white head that fades quickly. 3D peaks of lacing observed.

A sweet malty smell mixed with a more timid pine and grapefruit nose.

Medium bodied, the mouth feel has an immediate tingle from the carbonation and an additional solid hop characteristic while swallowing. A nicely balanced, yet not overly sweet, malt presence.

The flavor is mirror image of the smell. Sweet and citrusy. An enjoyable interpretation of the style. Best when allowed to warm up some.

Drinkability - The 9.7% ABV is well hidden on the flavor, but it is present on the way down. Another lazyboy beverage or possibly the last one on the way out. Good drinker; Avery rocks!

jjayjaye, May 29, 2007
Photo of Contra
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got a chance to get a growler of Maharaja, as it was on tap at Half-Time, my local distributor.

Apperance is rather cloudy, with a golden tinge towards the bottom of the glass, becoming amber colored towards the top. The aroma has a rather sweet, mildly fruity smell. Very malty, and of course, very hoppy. Compared to some of the other major Double IPAs out there (Weyerbacher's Double Simcoe, Stone's Ruination, Great Divide's Hercules), this beer isn't quite as hoppy. Still, a nice bitter bite with an excellent pine-peach finish. Whether you prefer this over the other Double IPAs I mention is probably more of individual preference, rather than an innate superiority. Of course, that's usually the case.

Overall, great stuff. Easy to drink for such a thick, heavy beer. A beer I could drink over & over again, and not get tired of.

Contra, Feb 04, 2008
Photo of alexgash
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Peachy orange with golden edges. Marshmallowy, dense, long-lasting, great-lacing, bright light khaki head fills up the top 2 inches of my Corsendonk glass. Very nice. Bright, hoppy nose featuring lemon rind, Scotch tape, pine, marmalade, and mint. Candy-coated fruit and butterscotch malt aroma is more evident as the beer warms. Butterscotch malt flavors up front, followed quickly by herbal, piney bitterness. Tropical fruits come in mid-palate with some warming alcohol. Hops turn a little citrusy and increasingly numbing and bitter. Grapefruit finish. Medium body with a sticky feel and plenty of carbonation. Well put-together, but not quite a top tier IIPA in my book. Still, I would love to try this fresher and on-tap.

alexgash, Mar 15, 2007
Photo of SShelly
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours bright yellow with large poof of white head, retention and lacing all look above average.

Aroma is citrus and grapefruit, straight hops in the nose.

Not overly bitter, but a nice upfront punch, layers of citrus behind, leaves sweet hop flavors in the mouth.

Overall very tasty, but something with the balance of this beer has always bugged me, it just doesnt all mesh together for me and leaves me thinking a few tweaks could make it amazing.

SShelly, Jul 01, 2010
Photo of popery
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful amber liquid with a creamy beige head. The aroma is lush and full of oranges, spruce and caramel. It's big and full and wonderfully hoppy. The flavor is fairly incredible. It's incredibly sweet. I like sweetly hoppy beers, but I could understand a criticism of this aspect of the beer. The feel is oily with hops. The alcohol is almost completely hidden, except for some peppery notes in the finish. It's a wonderful beer with a huge amount of hops.

4/12/2010 - Batch 11 (10.41% abv). Not quite as great as I remember but still quite good. Seems fairly boozy this time without quite as much hop delicacy. Some bland bitterness.

popery, Jan 14, 2009
Photo of JRed
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy orange topped by a mountain of white fluffy head. Awesome hop aroma with deep citrus notes and cream. Citrus flavors, hop bitterness, huge hop flavor. Creamy mouthfeel with a heavy body. Alcohol is there but not too oppressive. One of the kings of the IIPA's.

JRed, Jan 01, 2010
Photo of vtfan77
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From what I understand, only a few cases of Maharaja were shipped to Virginia this year, and I was fortunate enough to score a bottle of this brew. My good luck almost turned sour when, upon returning home with my score, I dropped the bottle on the pavement. Thankfully it did not break. Hopefully the beer did not suffer as a result of my clumsiness.

A- The beer pours a crystal clear copper with a healthy head and great lacing. This looks like a good indication that the beer survived the fall without harm.

S- Intense hop aromas emanate from the beer. Tons of citrus and floral are present. Hints of honey and alcohol come through as well.

T- Sweet upfront with big flavors of orange and pine. The malt is a force as well. It does more than just provide a backdrop for the hops; it asserts itself with a strong caramel and honey flavor. Alcohol is present too, but it's not too strong. The bitterness is strong on the finish, but it's not too much.

M- The body is thick and almost a little syrupy. The carbonation level is fairly low, but still tingles the tongue a little.

D- It's rich and alcoholic, so the drinkability is limited in that respect. Still, the beer is good enough that the bottle can be consumed in one sitting.

This is a very good DIPA. It reminds me a good deal of Bell's Hopslam; too bad it's so rare in these parts. If you're a DIPA fan, you should definitely try this if you can find it. Recommended.

vtfan77, Jun 28, 2008
Photo of cooler4life
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured a one finger light sandy brown head that dissipated rather quickly. Created a oily, multicolored pond of bubbles off to the side when settled. Color is a murky, red pine with generous micro-bubble lacing.

S: Malt, lemon, winter pine, caramel apples, new leather, pineapples. The nose is really sweet.

T: Starts with sweet cream, piney hops, and citrus. Transitions to a more powerful alcohol bitterness. Strong malt backbone throughout. The sweetness lures you in..until you are beaten into submission by the Maharaja.

M: Resinous and sticky, this beer presents itself reserved and smooth. I could use a tad bit more carbonation. The ABV does not even make an appearance.

O: I'm torn with this one. As the beer warms it becomes more complex, but I'm a bit scared to fully embrace it. Overall, a solid offering from Avery.

cooler4life, Feb 10, 2012
Photo of CrellMoset
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Extra from afterexile - thanks! Poured into a 22 oz. brandy snifter.

Appearance: Pours a hazy, dirty orange ... or red ... or brown? Not sure, this one's a very strange color. Lots of active carbonation, very fine, and a huge, sticky meringue-like head with amazing retention and structure. The lacing is also fantastic, thick, sheet-like, and leaves rings with each sip you take. It'd get a perfect 5.0 if the color were a little more vibrant.

Aroma: Hugely sticky, resinous pine tree and grapefruit. Wow, I can even smell the bitterness. Or is that alcohol? Is it a bad sign I can't tell? It smells like burning, but it hurts so good.

Taste: More hugely sticky, resinous pine tree and grapefruit, but plus an absolute crapton of bitterness. Sticky, bready caramel malts, a few other roasted notes.

Mouthfeel: Incredibly thick and syrupy, mild carbonation, and medium bodied (as far as head goes).

Drinkability: Had this on tap before (at Brickstore in Decatur), and I think it was a little better on tap. Still, a solid, good, west-coast IIPA.

CrellMoset, Nov 14, 2008
Photo of thethrone
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours bright copper, with frothy 1" head, heavy lacing

S - Fruity hop aroma in the nose. Smell of oranges with floral notes.

T - Certainly doesn't hide what it is: Strong hop flavor, notable citrus and pine. A little alcohol burn on the back end.

M - Full bodied, with a low carbonated, silky/syrupy feel on the palette.

D - Definately a big DIPA, and I found it very enjoyable. Would certainly reach for it again, and would love to try it right off the tap.

thethrone, Aug 12, 2008
Photo of tr4nc3d
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled in Feb.2009 Batch 9

Poured from a bomber into my pint glass

Pours a hazy copper color with a white three finger fluffy head. Good head retention all throughout the beer and lacing is left scattered all behind.

Smell is full of citrus/piney hops with good floral notes to it with the caramel malts. Just like an IPA should smell like.

Caramel malts upfront that mellows out into a slightly citrus flavor. Piney hops follow leaving with a small bitter hop bite at the end. The age on this one has been noticeable and the hops have faded quite a bit. Still a tasty brew.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with good amounts of carbonation. Dry sweet aftertaste.

I want to try this again but being more fresh, still a good brew as it is and would pick one up again.

tr4nc3d, Jun 05, 2009
Photo of dagubna
4.04/5  rDev -4.5%

dagubna, Sep 17, 2014
Photo of TuckerCarlson
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Drank on-tap out of a tulip glass. Cloudy amber with a decent head to it and better lacing than I would have expected, given the alcohol content.

Beautiful floral smells. I could have spent the entire time just breathing in the aroma and feel like I'd gotten my money's worth.

Strong hoppy citrus flavors in the introduction, followed by decent malt flavor. Finishes with overpowering piney oils that may be a bit over the top.

Incredibly rich mouthfeel, among the best I've had, though it missed the 5 by having a bit less carbonation than I felt it deserved. Could have been a fluke, though, because I've had other draft beers come across as under-carbonated because they were either from the bottom of the keg or from a keg that wasn't finished quickly enough.

Drinkability goes down because this beer is so overpowering that it almost precludes conversation. As a friend who sipped my beer said, "that's work", and then immediately afterward commented that his Lagunitas IPA tasted a bit insipid by comparison. Also, I had donated blood earlier in the day, and the effects of the alcohol were downright distracting by the time I got to the bottom of the glass. Not that I would have considered not finishing it, however.

I will definitely order this beer the next time I'm at Korova, a bar on the Commons in Ithaca, NY.

TuckerCarlson, May 12, 2007
Photo of Jason
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap @ Sunset Grill

Deep orange hue, excellent lacing. Semi-pungent citric oil hop aroma, hints of pineapple & granny smith apple skin as well. Super smooth and creamy viscous mouth feel. Hay like, citric zest, toasted malt, fruit with passion fruit and a fruit punch like flavor. Soft yet muscular bitterness ... lots of hop petal flavor, aka "grassy". Warming alcohol has not problem showing off a bit.

A "kick in the pants Double IPA".

Jason, May 03, 2005
Photo of ADR
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Good medium copper apearance, a stiff but overall short head of about 1/4 of an inch. Nice laces, spread evenly about the glass. Aroma has a good hop oil scent, a bit on the lemon side, not so pithy or juicy. Good mouthfeel, heavy but with OK carbonation. Flavor is well-balanced and that's a good thing, I say. A brown sugar thickness, some molasses but a big hop counterpoint that does the beer in good standing. There is no way I could mark this beer down, now that I am drinking a bottle by myself (it was fun pouring it with Adam Avery at the last BA fest)...the "Raja" has a balance I don't get in many Double IPAs...maybe its still the memory of Russian River face-to-face with this that makes it good but not world-class in what that style CAN be...

ADR, Aug 07, 2005
Photo of mutterfudder
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured in to a Stone IPA Tulip-ish glass.

A - Copper and somewhat hazy. Thick white head that settled down to a thin layer of foam. Lacing down the glass of foam and bubbles. Quite nice looking!

S - Fresh hop, citrus and spice. Ahhh.. I haven't had a hop bomb in a bit and it smells darn good.

T - Hmmmm. Malty up front, almost sweet. Oh, there are the hops! They don't really hit as hard as I thought they might. Very piney and bitter by the finish, pretty complex for the style I thought.

M - Surprisingly not very carbonated. It left a bit of a oily taste in my mouth. Not bad but not good either.

D - I liked this beer well enough, but one was enough. There are other beers to try.

Somewhat disappointed in this, after hearing all the raves. A good DIPA but not one I'd reach for often.

mutterfudder, Jan 07, 2010
Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to sprucetip for sharing this one. purchased at brown jug.

Pours a nice clear amber/orange color with good white head. Smell is mostly spicey flavor hops and malt. Taste follows, spicy hop flavors mixed in with some good grapefruity hop taste and a solid malty backbone. Mouthfeel is what it should be for a good DIPA. Drinkability is suprisingly good considering this batches abv is listed at 10.54%. a good DIPA, and one I will buy again when looking for good balanced hop flavors without a palate thrashing hop bite. Thanks to sprucetip for the brew!

AKBelgianBeast, Apr 03, 2008
Photo of Alieniloquium
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle poured into 2 pint glasses. I'd like to say I shared it... but I didn't.

Appearance - Dark amber color. Very dark for an IPA. Quite clear for an IPA, too. Cream head that disappears quickly, not much lacing, but there's a good amount of residual on the top of the beer.

Smell - Dominated by grapefruit. Great aroma. Sweet background caramel smell. Smells great and lets you know it's not a light IPA by any means.

Taste - Citrusy hop flavor. Not bitter at first. The fresh hoppiness gives way to a strong malt sweetness very quickly. The end is a bitter finish. As it warms it picks up a slightly odd aftertaste I can't quite pinpoint.

Mouthfeel - Has the mouthfeel of a barleywine. Syrupy with all the sweetness. Much like a Bigfoot's mouthfeel. Very heavy bodied for an IPA.

Overall - I've had two bottles. The first I was not happy with. The second one I am much happier with. There's definitely an off-flavor in there. The second time around I didn't detect it as much. I have a couple bottles left that I'll definitely drink, but I won't by as much next year until I try it first.

Alieniloquium, Apr 07, 2011
Photo of thagr81us
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served from tap into a standard pint. Pours red-orange with a one finger white head. Maintains excellent lacing throughout. The aroma was comprised of sweet hops and a very slight hint of malt. The flavor was big on hops, with a bitter bite upon swallowing. It had a medium feel on the palate with high carbonation. Overall this was a nice IIPA. The hop flavor can start to get a little overwhelming after some time but the bite at the finish is quite nice. This one is a must try for all hop heads out there as it is pretty close to be a complete hop bomb.

thagr81us, Jul 16, 2010
Photo of SpdKilz
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a hazy copper color with about a finger of slowly dissipating head that leaves pretty good looking lacing around the glass.

Smell - Heavy citrus aromas such as grapefruit and orange peel. Piney and hoppy.

Taste - Bitter up front from the hops and unripe grapefruit - however, there is actually quite a heavy malt backbone, i.e. sweet caramel and toasted malt.

Mouthfeel - Medium to heavy mouthfeel. This is one thick sucker - lower carbonation, finishes with a slight bitterness.

Drinkability - One and I'm done. I've been meaning to try this but it isn't what I was expecting it to be. I feel there are two heavy competing tastes - the massive bitterness which gives way to a heavy malty backbone. I personally don't like beers made as such, so it is just personal preference. Also, there is definitely a slight alcohol taste while sipping this beer, and a noticeable warming of the throat.

SpdKilz, Jul 25, 2010
Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 4,687 ratings.