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Maharaja - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.

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4,985 Ratings

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Ratings: 4,985
Reviews: 1,774
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 10.38%
Wants: 313
Gots: 519 | FT: 4
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,985 | Reviews: 1,774
Photo of yamar68
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep pumpkin orange with a finger of steady off-white head. Almost zero beading. The nose hosts plenty of west coast style IIPA notes plus a slew of Chinook-like herbal, almost garlic presence. Not oniony or unpleasant (like Green Flash's Imperial... save that for another review) - it's just a bit more earthy than a traditional west coast IIPA, it's a nice change of pace. The taste is balanced but still aggressive. I don't know what hops are at play here but, to me, every hop highlight has its place in this beer - herbal, spicy, floral, citrus, spruce. A part of me wishes that this beer would take a direction of its own, but most of me is enjoying the hell out of it as it is.

Photo of micahgoldfus
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served to me with a 1 1/2 white, fluffy head that went nowhere for a good 3 minutes. It just sat there, looking so delicious. The beer itself is a warm orange-yellow cloudy color. The smell was like getting hit in the head with a sack full of hops. It was so earthy, piney, and flowery, with citrus (especially orange) all around. Someone was sitting next to me and asked me if I had windex in my glass. Despite that analogy, I thought the smell was fantastic, and it made me very excited to try to beer. The taste was powerful, but not as much as the smell. Obviously, the name of the game was the hops, which gave a strong, dry, nearly stinging linger to each sip. But there was also a warm alcoholic taste, notes of citrus fruits, and some sweet substance. A meduim body and light carbonation made this a great sipping beer that still won't let you take your mind off of it. In the end, I definately enjoyed getting it, but I thought it was a bit too potent for my tastes.

Photo of macrosmatic
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes. Poured from bomber into pint glass.

A: Golden caramel in color with medium size white head. Some visible carbonation.

S: Pine & citrus hops, caramel malt. An overall sweet smell.

T: Taste follows nose, with orange pith flavors, a large malt sweetness, and a bit of tropical fruit and flowery elements.

M: Bitter dry tingly finish, a nice level of bitterness. Only a moderate alcohol presence, well-hidden for this ABV. Pleasantly well-carbonated.

O: This is one good, maybe not outstanding, but I would certainly pick up another bottle.

Photo of elniko
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bomber into snifter

A: Deep rich amber, very little head.

S: Very strong and citrus nose. I really enjoyed the scent.

T & M: Wow, this beer punches you in the face when you drink. Very fruity along with hops, lingered on tongue. Solid mouthfeel.

D: Drinkable, but not sure if I would want to drink one bomber at the a time. Not sessionable but I definitely look forward to having again.

Photo of jwinship83
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle. bottled in feb 09. batch 9. 10.72%abv, 102ibu. sounds fresh and great!

A- dark amber colored body with a large two finger off white fluffy head. the head lasts a while, and leaves solid rings of lacing.

S- faintly of toffee and caramel malts with loads and loads of hops. fruity, citrusy, grassy, and floral. wow. i can smell this from across the room.

T- woah, massive blast of hops which makes the malt damn near undetectable. loads of citrus hops. lots of grapefruit. very unbalanced, but its what i was looking for when i picked this one out. slight burn from the alcohol.

M- medium-thick boddied with a nice level of carbonation. slight warming form the alcohol on its way to my stomach.

D- one is enough, and more than what i craved for my hop fix. wow, this was an intense IIPA. check this one out, especially if you can get it fresh.

Photo of birchstick
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - nice head with a nice, ruby/orange appearance

S - smells like hops, hops, and more hops. Very sweet and juicy with citrus hops and bready malts

T - tastes predominately of hops. Pine and a bit of citrus dominate. There is also some caramel sweetness and a little bit of bread from the malt. This is pretty well balanced for the style.

M - slick mouthfeel to it, nicely carbonated and goes down smoothly

D - This was a pretty good DIPA. It is decently balanced compared to some others and isn't as extremely over the top as some can be. Enjoyable, but the abv is going to make it hard to take down by myself.

Photo of nickss
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled Feb. 2006, Batch 3. 1.085 OG, 9.9% abv

Pours a bright, amber hue.... moderate apparent carbonation with a nice 1/2" rocky, cream colored head. The head is risilient, and leave some nice clumps of lacing on the glass as the brew it consumed.

HUGE hop aroma.... huge outdoorsy, fresh cut grass smell. Completely and unabashedly unbalanced. I give them huge marks for originality here.

The flavour matches the aroma perfectly. Unbalanced hop bomb... grassy flavour.... a fair bit of citrus in here as well.... nice.

Moderate thickness and a nice level of carbonation... pretty spot on for an IIPA, although I could use a bit more thickness... but thats just me being nitpicky.

This brew gets hurt in the drinkability category for simply being overwhelmingly hoppy. Dont get me wrong, I am savoring every second of this bomber, but I doubt I'll be able to taste anything for the rest of the day.

All in all... typical Avery.... in-your-face brewing... delicious hop belches follow the finish of the bottle... certainly a must-try if you're a hop head.

Photo of TheBierBand
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch 7; Bottled in Feb 2008. Picked up a 22 oz. Bomber to try. Poured into an oversized wine glass to produce a perfect 1" head of off-white foam. The head didn't last too long and settled down to a clumpy cap for the duration of the quaff leaving good lace. The beer is crystal clear and light orange in color (like watered down iced tea).

The aroma was quite good. Lots of citric hops with some musty basement aroma mixed in... but in a good way!

Taste: WOW!... quite the HOP Bomb! Citrus, not piney... quite good. Not balanced with a malt presence. Alcohol is masked quite well (my bottle says: 10.54% abv).

Mouthfeel: Maybe a touch too carbonated for my taste. Give this a good HARD pour to release some of that carbonation... I did that for the remainder of the bomber and the second half was MUCH BETTER. A harder pour makes for a better, more robust mouthfeel, coating and aftertaste. EDIT: Went from a "3.5" to a "4"

Drinkability: Pretty good. I'll finish the bomber with no difficulty. Not bad... although not my favorite either. Would mellow with age. Hop-Heads would love this! 102 IBU!

Photo of Soonami
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The second of 2 DIPA's I had on-tap at City Taphouse in Philadelphia.

Avery Maharaja was served in a 10 oz tulip that came to the table a bright copper color with dissolving foam that started leaving lacing on the glass. The beer smelled very resinous with good pine notes, sweet tropical fruit, and rich doughy malt.. The beer was very bitter with a sweetness from the malts as well as fragrant ripe pineapple. The low level of carbonation allowed the flavors to really come out of the beer and gave the beer a very thick smooth texture.

Photo of ocelot2500
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear amber, copper color with a nice size off white head that sticks around. Lots of lacing.

Smells of grassy and citrus hops and some malty sweetness.

Tastes of hops up front. The citrus and grass taste comes through upfront then followed by a nice sweetness that really keeps everything balanced. This is a hop bomb, but it is cushioned by the malty sweetness to make a really even beer. The alcohol also comes through in the end, but that is not unexpected given the abv.

The mouthfeel is a nice medium. Would like a little more carbonation.

This is very drinkable. The balance is key to the drinkability.

Photo of Pegasus
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear tarnished copper color with a large white head, which retains superbly; lots of scattered broken lace.

Aroma: Opens with a strong pine tar hop note, which lingers on and on. Beneath this there is a solid sweet malt backbone.

Taste: Rich and full sweet malt presence throughout the taste, beneath this there is a pronounced but restrained pine tar hop note, which lingers on well past the finish.

Mouth feel: Smooth, rich and quite full, very pleasant.

Drinkability/notes: Surprisingly good, an excelelnt example of a style that I do not usually find much favor with.

Photo of IBUnit63
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Classic-looking apple-honey-caramel body. Reasonably clear but a little rustic. Above-average carbonation rising to thick cappucino foam head with nice lacing.

Sweet, oily alcohol with powerful floral hops and maybe a little pine. Caramel-apple malt presence. Slightly disjointed but enticing, but maybe a little heavy on the alcohol burn. Some weird stewed vegetable scent - maybe sweet potatoes?

Sweet and savory - the sweet potato undertone comes out here too. Alcohol definitely provides a hot burn. Malt backbone is more dominant - braised apples and vegetables. Hop presence exists in background but is restrained. Very interesting but not as expected.

Creamy mouthfeel at first. The thin but strong alcohol burn evaporates quickly without leaving an aftertaste. A little lean overall but pleasasnt.

As mentioned, this one drinks a little hot from the alcohol...almost slightly astringent. The components are quite nice but more beautiful chemistry is in order.

Photo of jmich24
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 13 Poured into a Duvel Tulip.

A: Crystal clear amber in color. Big one finger head. Great sticky lacing.
S: Sweet carmel malts up front, touch of honey. Big citrus, some pine, spicy, and herbal aromas. Booziness come through as it warms.
T: Hopforward yet well balanced. Tastes as smell suggests. A touch hot as it warms. Great Hop flavors mostly citrus.
M: Medium mouthfeel, lingering bitterness.
O: I had very high expectation for this beer and that may be why I feel somewhat disappointed. This is 2 months old and may be past its prime. Too balanced for my ridiculous hoppy tastes.

Photo of sfoley333
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bottle marked Feb 2008 batch 7. Poured into New Belgium Snifter with a copper red hue and thick off white head that foamed up two fingers, also very good lacing. Smell is sweet mixed with pine and citrus, would say that its a lot different from batch 2 I tried in the past which smell like dank pot( and no I wasnt smoking any before). Taste is heavy on the grapefruit and pine resin flavors with a a sweet malt backbone, I have to say while good its a could be a little bit better balanced with the bitterness level and hop flavor. Mouthfeel is medium body close to a barleywine with an excellent medium to low carbonation level. While at 10.54 ABV its very drinkable for the alcohol I find the bitterness is a little over the top but still a very good beer, just remember being better in the past.

Photo of barroomhero1234
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Smell: Pineaple and citrus nose, alcohol warmth and sweet back ground.
Taste: nice home bitterness with a really nice malt backbone. citrus fruits mixed with a nice sweet backbone, alcohol warmth at the back of the throat.

Nice II IPA, good bitterness and not harsh, but low drinkability recommend sharing a bomber.
All and all a pretty nice beer, would recommend for hop heads and beer lovers.

Photo of ajcobb24
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - dark orange mixed with a light amber color. The beer pours with a little head (about one third of a finger). If you look closely at the top of the beer (in a snifter glass), you can see the volatile chemicals on the top (they will give that rainbow effect in the light like your chemistry projects did sometimes). A lot of lacing on the glass as you swirl the beer around the glass.

Smell - Heavy hops smell mixed with citrus notes. This beer smells very similar to Bell's Hopslam, but also has a slightly bitter smell mixed in that the Hopslam did not have.

Taste - initially you get a pleasant and smooth hoppy taste which then morphs into some heavy citrus notes. Can taste grapefruit and orange. The only downside to the taste is that this beer has a heavy bitter bite at the end. I enjoy a nice strong finish to a beer, but not this strong.

Mouthfeel - Pleasant medium body at the beginning with a moderate amount of carbonation while the beer is in your mouth. The heavy hops that are in this beer really dry your mouth and throat at the end.

Overall - Reminded me quite a bit of Bell's Hopslam, but with an unpleasant bitter taste at the end. Despite that, I was pretty impressed with this beer. I enjoy the fact that they just didn't want to copy the Hopslam taste but try a little bit less hop bitterness at the end.

Photo of mmcave
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased this at grapes of mirth in columbus ohio, during christmas time. Poured into red wine glass , huge inch and a half white head that slowly dissipates, with foamy lacing that grows thin. The body is a musty red orange, lightens up at the bottom of the glass. Smells of hops right up front particularly flowers, pine, citrus, grass, a little sharp and tense. Subtle hints of caramel malt, biscuits are back there too. Taste is a bit easier going, a refreshing bitterness is present backed by a malt backbone, not very much sweetness though. Some nice caramel notes emerge toward the middle and a nice pine finish with a tinge of malt sweetness. Personally my only real complaint is the alcohol becomes a little too apparent as this warms up, but still this is a good interpretation of an imperial IPA, fits every well with in the style, and its very much worth a try.

Photo of webmanspidey
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber. This was a dark caramel-amber color poured into a Duvel tulip glass. Smell has a bitter caramel character with definite hoppiness.
Taste is initially dominated by malt, the sweet caramel/Campbell's soup-esque darker malts that I've picked up in a number of beers.
Following that are the typical strong IPA flavors: bitter hops/grapefruit, pine needles, etc. A lot of earthy characteristics to this one.
Not too strong, alcohol is there but not overwhelming.

Photo of tavernjef
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chill hazed fiery amber. Delicate cap of medium stature. Hued in newspaper yellow. Keeps a misty haze with a bit more at the collar. Fine petri dish microorganismish lacing.
Dull tangerine pineapple nose commencement. Orange oil musk. Deep earthy hop pine. Unfouled yet a smidgeon greasy and waxy with a skimming of ink tannin. Piney alcohol gnarls its teeth in time.
Slippery front with a brazen burntness to the overall grain contour. Dark melted orange slides in quickly there after. Blackened toffee caramel undertow. Sweet but grainifiedily peppery. Many eluding after effects of scorched and burnt beer items. Dark piney hops yield to scrappy burnt offerings of tangerine and lime. Strangely acceptable hints to tin appear late as it cinders with burnt grain and fruit skins.
Medium body with a tinge of both burnt and metalic tinges along its route and barking at the bit. Smatteringly rough and grainy. Back-ended heat sifts through the burnt fruits late. Neither aggressive or bashful hopping. Mostly introverted hop flavor and no big bittered thorniness. Mild but stern. Warming temperature tenderizes its tone. Opens creamy, flips over fast, narrowly escaping itself with harsh, salty, burnt subsistings into fruity lime alcoholic heat. Weirdly the D.IPA weird if there ever was one.
Mentor Encomium.

Photo of guzzle211
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

bomber poured into an imperial pint glass

A- vibrant golden orange pour, white head explodes
S- first smell was of grapefruit vodka, mellowed as it warmed to flowery.
T/M - very well balanced hops flavor, but still tastes and feels like a big beer. avery has taken big beers to the in-your-face extreme. hint of orange. very fizzy. alcohol only emerges if over appropriate temp.
D- on a hot day like this (96, heat index of 104) it went down incredibly smooth for a 9.7% abv brew.

Photo of brewcrew76
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 3 Bottled Feb 2006

A - Pours a murky copper with orange highlights and a small white head with a tiny bit of lacing.

S - Grassy, citrus, piney hops with peppery spice and a solid sweet caramel backbone.

T - Very sweet up front followed by juicy hops of grapefruit and citrus. On the sweet side without enough bitter backbone.

M - Medium bodied with a mouth coating resiny, slightly syrupy characteristic.

D - Good DIPA but on the sweeter juicier side as far as DIPA's go

Photo of eternaljester81
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

First off, I consider this to be Avery's second best DIPA - behind the absolutely awesome Dugana - which is saying something, considering how much I enjoy this beer.

A - Pours a very nice, hazy/cloudy amber, with a decent white head that holds well. The lacing is minimal, but the little bit that's there is decently sticky. Overall, this is quite the attractive beer.

S - The smell is a full-on assault of almost dessert-like citrusy hops and caramel malts, mixed with a bit of spiced rum-like alcohol. It's pleasant in small doses, but on the overbearing side when enjoying a full bomber.

T - It's hard to believe that Maharaja is 11.0% ABV, and 102 IBUs, as this is an incredibly tasty, and well-balanced beer. There's next to no heat from the alcohol, and the hops, while definitely present, are well rivaled by sweet, caramel malt. The finish is a bit odd, as it's both drying, along with a lingering sweetness that begs you to take another drink to try to discern all of the complexities.

M - Smooth, slick and little oily, the mouthfeel is quite nice. The malts give that illusion of chewiness, while the hops coat the mouth wonderfully.

D - Maharaja is dangerously drinkable at the high ABV, as it hides its strength exceptionally well. A bomber goes down quite effortlessly.

It's amazing that Avery has crafted two of the best DIPA's available (at least in my area), as both Maharaja and Dugana are simply excellent. While Dugana is more of hop-bomb, Maharaja is one of the most balanced - and best flavored - DIPAs I've come across.

Photo of joe1510
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz. Bomber

As soon as I popped the cap I got a big hit of citrus hop goodness. I poured the Maharaja into my snifter and it looks damn tasty. A big two finger creamy white head sits on top of a fiery orange semi-clear body. The head lasts forever with hardly any dissipation and sticky sheet of lacing all the way down.

Smell is a big backbone of caramel up front that fades but sticks around for a solid backbone. Ther is also a candy sweetness. The hops are citrus and big. Mostly orange and a little grapefruit bitterness.

This is a really well balanced IIPA. The malt and hops go hand in hand particularly well. Everything meshes together so seamlessly that I can't even pick any certain flavors from the profile but there is a grapefruit bitterness mid-palate. There is a touch of alcohol at the swallow that leaves a nice heat down my throat.

Mouthfeel is right on. Medium bodied and smooth. Prickly on my tongue and cheeks. Small alcohol on the back of the throat and swallow.

Drinkability is pretty high because of the nice balance. I could actually session this beer if it wasn't for the high alcohol.

This is a good IIPA from Avery. About half way through my review I noticed it was bottled in June....damn. I'm going to buy another, fresher, bottle and re-review. I'd imagine the hops are more pronounced but we'll see. It is an exceptionally good beer even though it isn't as fresh as I'd like. With that said, give it a try if you spot it.


Photo of Gambrinus1184
4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap in a 10-ounce hexagonal glass at Delaney's in New Haven, Conn.

A: Poured a bright, ruddy orange amber color with a thin veil of creamy white carbonation and slight bubble spires rising into the dense foam. Bright, yellow-gold highlights show through the light.

S: Smells quite floral and medicinal, with bits of carob, hop spiciness and an herbal, sweet caramel aroma to it.

T: Big sweetened fruit and creamy malts combine with a lush, resinous grapefruit and candied citrus hop palate. Warming and bittersweet towards the slick and tasty finish. Slight alcohol burn but a DIPA of good balance.

M: Full bodied and slightly slick with hop resin. Some chewiness as well, but warming and smooth overall.

D: Super smooth and malty DIPA; loads of sweetened caramel malts combined with a subtle sweet bitterness which allows the 10.24% ABV to fly under the radar. A very good aperitif or a brew to go before your spicy veggie burger with cajun onion rings.

Photo of Haybeerman
4.03/5  rDev -5%
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.

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Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 4,985 ratings.