1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Maharaja - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
MaharajaMaharaja

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

4,797 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,797
Reviews: 1,744
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 10.4%
Wants: 273
Gots: 419 | FT: 7
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: 4,797 | Reviews: 1,744 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of oberon
4.18/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice to try another big bad double IPA,pours a slightly hazy deep orange with a tight one finger head that leaves a sheet of lace behind on the way down,well what would you expect from a double IPA aroma wise HOPS and more hops in the aroma pine and definent grapefruit coming thru srong not much malt profile but it wasnt expected.This beer coats the tongue somewhat thick in the mouthfeel dept the alcohol flavor doesnt overpower though by any means,big resiny and citrusy can make the tongue curl.Not quite as good in my opinion as its Colorado cousin Great Divid Hercules double IPA but this is no chump damn fine beer.

oberon, Jul 10, 2005
Photo of largadeer
3.58/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Feb. '08 bottling, batch 7.

Appearance: Sunset amber with plenty of hop haze. The head never rises very high, but it does retain well, especially for a beer weighing in at almost 11% ABV.

Smell: Fresh pine and ripe tropical fruit; melon and mango in particular.

Taste & mouthfeel: Pine and alcohol dominate the flavor leaving little room for subtleties. Hints of tropical fruit do appear as the brew warms. Mouthfeel is thick and a tad syrupy, but it's thankfully not overly sweet. Warming alcohol in the finish, slightly astringent. Pretty boozy stuff overall. This beer would probably be better with less alcohol.

Notes: Good but not quite stellar. Avery's regular old IPA is better. Just goes to show, stronger ain't always better.

largadeer, Apr 30, 2008
Photo of TMoney2591
3.76/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Served in a chalice at WhirlyBall - Vernon Hills.

Been a while since I last visited the old Raja; let's see what he's up to today, shall we? This stuff pours a clear sunset amber topped by a half-finger of off-cream foam. The nose comprises ruby red grapefruit rind, light leek, orange peel, pine resin, and plenty of toffee. The taste brings in more of the same, with a heavier influence of grapefruit and pine, a more caramel-y tone in the backbone, and some grass tossed in for good measure. The body is a solid medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a drying finish. Overall, a fine and dandy hop bomb, indeed.

TMoney2591, May 13, 2013
Photo of emerge077
4.13/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Goblet at Long Room.

Amber tinged orange, bright with a fine clarity. Bursting with citrusy orange, grapefruit aromas, approaching tropical proportions. Smooth bodied, a little bit syrupy, with sturdy anchoring malts holding down the fort under the huge dank/fruity hop load. The foam is lasting to the end, and leaves generous lace. A really nice DIPA that i'm glad to have discovered. Locally comparable to Flossmoor and FFF in quality and taste.

emerge077, Apr 18, 2009
Photo of JAHMUR
4/5  rDev -5.4%

JAHMUR, Nov 20, 2011
Photo of biboergosum
3.9/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This bomber pours out a reddish medium copper hue, with lots of foamy white head, and lacing all around the glass. The smell contains a whole lot of citrus hops and strong caramel malt essence, and is quite wonderful. The taste starts with a big citrus hop blast at the front, which mellows quickly and smoothly into the sweet raisiny malt body. There is low carbonation, and a warming from the alcohol. This is quite an intensely flavoured beer, true to the style, and quite good, and sharing the bomber is just about right.

biboergosum, Nov 10, 2008
Photo of zeff80
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in June 2006 Batch #4

A - Poured out a copper/amber color with a foamy, two-finger head. Very good lace.

S - It smelled of hops and grasses.

T - It tasted of hopas, grass and a little malt.

M - It was crisp and and sharp on the tongue. A heavy-bodied beer.

D - Very good. Another great Avery product and another great DIPA.

zeff80, Jan 20, 2007
Photo of StonedTrippin
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pretty damn good avery! pours a dank reddish color with a thick white head on er. smells incredible, sticky hops and booze. genuinely would wear this as cologne! taste is complex for an imperial ipa. more than just that hop smack, its got a lot of fruity stuff happening, some lemon or orange in there as an acidic and complementary thing. there is also a sort of earthy naturalness to it, a purity. mouthfeel is perfect to, chewy thick hops with a bright carbonated finish. this one is a keeper

StonedTrippin, Nov 01, 2011
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.47/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, you can actually smell pungent and citrusy hops just upon opening the bottle! Avery usually delivers, and this one is no exception. It pours a slightly hazy reddish-copper body with orangeish highlights beneath a short but creamy head of white. Unfortunately, the head doesn't hold quite as well as might be hoped for (but with 9.7% alcohol by volume that's to be expected!), and it does leaves some thin rings of lace about the glass. A firmly caramelish and delicately biscuity malt comes into play within the aroma, although the hops are still clearly present with notes of grass, pineapple, orange peel, dried pine needles, and muddled grapefruit. In the mouth its filling and dextrinous as the very-fine-bubbled carbonation warms and becomes airy before sliding away like silk pajamas on silk sheets. The flavor delivers a heavier blow than the aroma suggests with its solid maltiness ducking and weaving between punches of hop flavor and hits of solid bitterness. There's no real pattern to the way that it appears on the palate, and slaps of hops or hits of malt seem to come and go in a different fashion with each sip. Everycomponent is always there, but certain characteristics just seem to pop at times. The one constant, however, is it's lingering, resinous and citrus-fruit-rind finish. There's bitterness there as well, but it doesn't come across as being raspy because of the thin but sticky layer of sweet malt that so stealthily hides itself while slowly receeding. It's a really nice, very well-balanced IPA that offers a decent amount of changing character in its profile; but might actually be lacking in complexity due to it's being "too balanced" - if that's possible. Still, this IPA rocks! The alcohol rarely appears, and its bitterness never overwhelms the palate! You can't drink too many because of the strength, but it's definitely drinkable.

NeroFiddled, May 10, 2005
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 WVbeergeek
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appears a hazed orange copper hue with orange tined cream head formed large and thick rising above the rim of my glass, leaves an evenflow of bands of lacing around my chalice. Aroma is heavy on grapefruit peal and cut grass balanced with a sugar coating of light biscuit malt character the sweetness and fruit aspects really come through in this one. Flvors of citrus peel, grass, and mild pine combine on the palate upfront with strong bitterness but are balanced out by the large dose of malts with just enough biscuit sweetnss from the pale malts evdient alcohol not overdone at all. Mouthfeel is medium to fuller bodied with enough oily girth from the herbaceous to be fuller but still really smooth with even carbonation. Drinkability is incredible much better than their barleywine, triple, or quad but I could definitely enjoy many more of these especially if that near 10% alcohol allowed it.

WVbeergeek, May 22, 2007
Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.83/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Label reads “Bottled in Fed. 2006 Batch 3”. Poured from a 22oz. bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is a bright amber color, with a short foamy white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is intense and is a well-blended combination of hops and citrus, very pleasant. There are some notes of caramel and vanilla in the back ground, but it’s pretty much hops and citrus all the way as a good 2IPA should be.

T: The taste is very well-balanced. The strong hops bitterness and sweet citrus flavors couple each other excellently. The malt character provides just enough substance to make the beer smooth. The after-taste maintains the balance of hops & citrus.

M: Smooth and very crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, very clean finish.

D: Very tasty, goes does easy enough, not-too-filling, excellent representation of style, I liked this beer a lot. The only thing I regret about buying this beer is that I didn’t buy it sooner. Looking forward to trying more beers from Avery as this was my first from them.

TheManiacalOne, Dec 14, 2006
Photo of nickfl
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - One and a half fingers of off white head on a hazy, dark copper colored body. Good retention and lace.

S - Lots of hops, balanced by equally powerful caramel malt. Citrus, grapefruit and pineapple with some toffee.

T - Spicy hops up front; pineapple, lemon and basil. Sweet, sugary malt powers up in the middle. Caramel, toffee and brown sugar. Bitter hops balance out the sweet finish.

M - Moderately thick body, medium carbonation, and a somewhat sweet finish.

D - This is a heavy, thick DIPA and despite its huge flavors, it is balanced enough to remain relatively quaffable. This beer is full of pungent hops, especially in the aroma, but it is one of the few examples of the style that is just as much about malt as hops and bitterness. The rich toffee and caramel not only balance the hops and preserve drinkability, but also add complexity and make for an excellent drinking experience.

nickfl, Aug 24, 2009
Photo of Kegatron
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap @ Shady McGrady's (Harrisburg, PA) on 4/10/09. Served in a tulip glass.

Pours a crystal clear copper with a 1/2 finger of foamy brite-white head. Beautiful looking creamy layer of retention stays robust, leaving some massive, drenching lace back. The aroma is just a huge hoppy nose of spicy and floral hops and juicy tropical citrus, and some additinal tangy notes of caramel hiding out in the back. This aroma is so rich, I can actually smell and enjoy it over the thick cloud of smoke that is hovering around me in this ash-pit of a beer bar.

The taste is exceedingly bitter and spicy with a mouth puckering resinous hoppiness. A potent blend of citrus, caramel, and toasted malts tries valiently to even things out some but..DAMN!..this sucka is bitter and proud of it! The mouthfeel is fuller bodied with a beefy feel but overall creamy carbonation to it. There is some definite alcohol heft to the body that combines with the extreme bitterness to impart a sharp sting to the feel but I never do get that medicinal taste, which is a very good thing.

This is just a MASSIVE hop bomb of a DIPA from Avery. Huge body, bitterness, and tropical fruits are the highlights, even though they might not always mesh at times. If your looking for a hoppy punch in the face, definitely check this out.

Kegatron, Apr 13, 2009
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

RblWthACoz, Oct 21, 2012
Photo of Slatetank
4.4/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at Shady McGrady's Downtown location - 1/2 price during happy hour, served chilled in a snifter.

A - A rust colored copper w/ good clarity and thick whipped light beige cap with a tiny bead. The color has accents of gold and crimson and lace clings well

S - the smell is rather pungent ad hoppy with both pine and citrus with a mild floral element. The nose is bolstered by a slightly sweet malt note and light alcohol ester

M - The feel is very good, it starts sweet with a gentle resinous texture from the hops with a bitterness that builds and spiced tinges with the alcohol moderate in the feel. There is a drying effect from both the alcohol and hop resins on the palate with mellow malt sweetness and hop acidity

T - A flavorful blend of hop goodness! The slightly piney hops have a light spice and rind flavor with a mellow bit of fruit acidity and light astringency. The resinous texture leads to a mild malt which balances the almost hot alcohol flavor and high bitterness. The taste is well nuanced with hop flavor utilized above the bitterness factor, it comes off as a really juicy sweet hop taste first and bitter spicy and warm taste next with alcohol only noted after the swallow

D - This is a seriously well made Imperial IPA, I commend the talented folks at Avery for the fact that malt presence and yet still an abundance of hop flavor and long finishing with only a very mild alcohol influence on the taste - you definitely know it is there after the first glass which is whey I gave a 4, but very smooth for the strength of 10.3%

Slatetank, Aug 12, 2010
Photo of russpowell
4.63/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I figure I'll give this another review, had it since my original review. I believe I shorted it, we'll see...

Pours a light amber with 3 fingers of rocky offwhite head. Super lacing & head retention.

S: Huge hops potpurri! Pine & grapefruit

T: Grapefruit, pineyness & some lemmon notes up front. Malt & caramel sweetness sneak around the hops as this warms, but not for long. Also jammy & fruitty notes infiltrate before getting crushed by the hops (herbal & piney). Finishes warming, uber herbal hoppy & a little fruitty (dates & apricots). A great total DIPA taste package

MF: Medim bodied, slightlty oily, with medium carbonation, skews hoppy, duh

Drinks fairly easy, a little to intense to session on, but I could if forced too! Still a bit pricey @ $6.50 a bomber

russpowell, Apr 08, 2007
Photo of MasterSki
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bottle of this one as soon as it showed up on shelves here in Chicago. Batch #13 from March 2011. Served in a Stone IRS tulip.

A - Quick-dissolving white foam that settles to a thin haze and persistent thick collar, leaving behind spotty lace. Transparent bronze body.

S - The hops have that slightly cheesy dank note to them that I get sometimes, along with tropical fruits and a bit of citrus. Brown sugar malt backbone is present, but this lies somewhere between the coasts in terms of balance. Alcohol is extremely well-hidden.

T - Huge tropical fruit character, with straight up melon and cantalope flavors mingling with lightly browned sugar and cookie malt character. Bitterness is surprisingly low, and alcohol is non-existent. Drinks a little bit like candy.

M - Smooth texture, medium carbonation, medium-full body, oily residuals. Could use a bit more dryness in the finish to offset some of the sweet flavors.

D - This is a balanced DIPA but a very good one. Too strong for sessions, but something that I would purchase again and have on-tap if I knew the keg was fresh.

MasterSki, Mar 30, 2011
Photo of XmnwildX12
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%

XmnwildX12, Nov 22, 2013
Photo of oline73
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: Pours a beautiful dark amber with a finger of light tan head that leaves some lacing and a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Quite sweet and malty, carmel and fruity apricot notes.

Taste: Bitter citrus peel hops kill the tongue. Sweet malt with mild fruity notes and some alcohol in the finish. Simultaneously a hop bomb and a malt bomb.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with smooth carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: I enjoyed the balance of the hops and the malt. I enjoyed the fruity notes. I'm not sure how fresh this was, but I thought it was quite good.

oline73, Jul 10, 2011
Photo of drabmuh
3.6/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer served in a wine glass, 0.33 L. Beer is amber to red and kind of hazy. Forms a thick head of off white bubbles that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. Carbonation is moderate.

The aroma is mostly piny and malty. Not too strong.

The beer is sweet first, medium to big in body. I suppose this is what people call a balanced IPA. Eh, its kind of malty and the bitterness is cut overall by the malt. Its not dry, its kind of boring. Definitely not my favorite IPA.

drabmuh, Aug 14, 2010
Photo of feloniousmonk
4.47/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Lightly hazed coppery crimson hue, under an adequate layer of beigish foam.
Nose reeks of hops. Piney and citric, yeah, ripe and luscious, a refreshingly lively aroma, very raw, like steeping ones senses in the freshest form of hops.
Taste: thick with hoppiness, again, rich and full of flavor, not the least bit timid....hops and bitterness hang on the palate, dig in deep, stay a spell...
this is a menacing monster of an IPA, and I want to make it my friend!
A challenging ale, but exactly the challenge we hopheads require...each sip releases a succor which enacts a sublime kind of pleasure... (that means I liked it! ;^)...
Full-bodied, intensely flavored, long, bitter, fruity finish...
The Maharaja is a mighty ruler and commands the palate in full, it's reign lasts long beyond the length of the 22 ounce bottle...if you love the homulus lupus, he has you in his sway, no questions asked...damned good stuff. Ranks among the best IIPAs I've had, somewhere in there, anyway...blessedly hoppy, leaving hop trails all along the palate...goodness, they're coming out of my burps, now, too...may I say? a very nice drink, for those of us on the hoppy side...oh, yeah!!!

enormous thanks to mentor for the bottle!

feloniousmonk, Jun 05, 2005
Photo of mendvicdog
4/5  rDev -5.4%

mendvicdog, Mar 18, 2013
Photo of Rifugium
3.9/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Eulogy, Philly, PA

A: Golden brown with an nice white head allowing for some lacing.

S: Hoppy aroma with subtle fruits, and just a tad alcoholy.

T: Sweet and grainy up front, with mild hoppiness taking over. Slightly bitter aftertaste.

M: Somewhat smooth and light, with a bit of alcohol burn.

D: Moderately drinkable.

Rifugium, Dec 10, 2010
Photo of mactrail
2.93/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Looks are nice, with a white foam on the typical orange amber brew in the small globe. Sharp on the tongue. Warm and spicy, with vast sweep of tropical fruity flavors. Plenty of hops. Smell of green vegetables, like fresh green beans. Murky flavor of something like hummus.

A fairly one-dimensional flavor profile. Something about the combination of spritzy carbonation and the flat sweet flavor is not very inspiring. Bitterness comes along to take over the mid-range and aftertaste. A little lemon, and even more like grapefruit soda.

Sweet yet harsh, carbonated yet flat-flavored, hoppy yet murky. I will have to taste this again, but this bottle is not much to brag about. Release No. 15 Winter 2011/12.

mactrail, Apr 12, 2012
Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 4,797 ratings.