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Maharaja - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.

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4,936 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,936
Reviews: 1,769
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 10.38%
Wants: 301
Gots: 492 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,936 | Reviews: 1,769 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of TexIndy
5/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a tulip glass. Batch#12 bottled in May 2010. It was a hazy amber color with plenty of carb streams. I gave it a good pour to stir up the aroma so it had a large, pillowy, off-white head that very slowly settled into a constant foam cap. Great lacing with lots sticking.

The aroma is exceptional and one of if not my favorite these days. Amazing hop aromas blended in with some sweet malt to balance: citric and tropical, pine, sweet caramel malt. The taste is just as amazing. Starts out with a great hop bite with a bit of bitter and then is balanced by the sweet malt coming in at the end. Great balance. Mouthfeel was full and chewy with great carbonation and aftertaste.

Overall, an amazing ADIPA that I most highly recommend. This one is near perfection for me and my go to beer for when I want to have excellent flavor and just relax. As much as I've had this I was surprised that I hadn't reviewed it. Available here in TX. Rotation - heavy rotation and a must when I can find it on tap. Only problem I find (two if you count only being rotating release) is that I've had it many times on tap at the brewery so I'm spoiled by the really fresh ones which are hard to get in Texas. We seem to have 1-2 month lag time from release in CO to here. [R;Y]

Photo of billab914
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Southern Tier tulip. Poured a deep orange color with a thick frothy white head filling the top inch of the glass. The head faded to a thin covering but left some great lacing as I drank it.

The aroma has a very juicy, citrusy, tropical hoppiness with strong notes of pineapple, grapefruit, orange and pine coming through. I love the tropical, juicy flavors to it.

The taste shows the tropical, fruity and juicy hops right up front. A pretty bold malty, caramel, sweetness starts to come through before the finish. It becomes more bitter in the finish but still keeps some of the great juicy hoppiness. A moderate amount of warming alcohol is also present in the finish.

The mouthfeel is on the heavier side for the style. Carbonation is moderate and feels pretty appropriate. Drinkability is very good. The alcohol coming through hurts it a bit but the hoppiness is just so delicious it can overcome it. I love the tropical, juicy, hoppy beers and this one definitely fits into that category. One of my favorite DIPA's.

Photo of StlHopHead77
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P-Pours a cloudy,deep burnt orange with a fleeting,1/2 inch,off-white head that left gorgeous,clingy lacing.

S-Orange blossom honey,pine and pink grapefruit
with some noticeable sweet malt.Fragrant but not too aggressive.

T-Piney hops,white pepper,sweetened grapefruit and apricot.Good hop bitterness balanced by a nice caramel malt base.No real boozey character considering the ABV.

M-Full and viscous.Good resinous character.Coats and tingles the mouth nicely.Medium bodied with a moderately dry finish and limited carbonation.

D-A truly delicious and easy drinking beer.A deceptively high ABV that could be dangerous.

Photo of atsprings
3.95/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Woody's City Market served in a standard pint glass a crisp orange with a nice frothy off white head that diminishes to a thin layer and leaves decent lacing on the glass. Aroma is pine hops with some citrus in front of sweet caramel malts. The taste is loads of pine and citrus hops in front of burnt caramel malts. The beer is on the heavy side of medium with a bit of alcohol presence, but the 10.3% is very well hidden. I have always been a fan of this beer, at least when it's fresh (I've had it 9 months old and found it almost putrid) and this draft version was just what I hoped it would be.

Photo of StaveHooks
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a deep neon copper. Specks of sediment everywhere. Is that grapefruit pith! ;) Huge 3 finger head with great retention and leaves dynamite lacing.

S - Concentrated citrus along with a little pine, green apples and pineapple. Sharp alcohol vapors. Where's the malt?.

T - There's the malt! The flavor is quite different from the nose. Loads of sweet bready malt off the top, the hops are the supporting cast in this creamy silk beverage. The citrus hops come through with sweetness attached. Alcohol is noticeable and slightly sharp. Aftertaste has a slight mint flavor.

I've never come across a beer that the nose was so different from the taste. The mouthfeel was decadent! There is some perfect taste somewhere in there that is hard to pick out.
A solid DIPA.

Photo of nickd717
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Review transcribed from notes from April 2009.

Feb. 2009 bottle from City Beer in SF. People say the hops in these "fade" after a couple of months. Well 2+ months after bottling, this one wasn't faded, but after drinking it and a few homebrews, I definitely was! Ok, bad joke. Anyway, wow. This is definitely top 10 in style I've had thus far. Deep golden color with a foamy white head. Strong piney hop aroma with a little malt thrown in. Flavor is lots of sweet caramel malt with a huge citrusy/piney hop punch and some slight light fruit notes. Medium-full, fairly oily on the palate. Party on, excellent.

Photo of jrallen34
3.8/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber into my Rochefort glass...Pours a dark orange with nice white and very sticky head...Really nice aroma of grapefruits, sweet, very similar to dreadnaught. Light hops on the back end...The taste is down a little, malty caramel backdone not much of the grapefruits. Mostly pine resin from start to finish. Its not too overpowering as far as this flavor goes, but a little one dimensional.

Above average ipa, worth trying but not worth searching out or trading for.

Photo of punkrkr27
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy orange pour with a dense off-white head that fades to a nice lacing. Loads of juicy grapefruit aroma with caramel and honey in the background. Lots of citrus hops upfront in the flavor with a strong floral note. Some sweet malts coming out which are then quickly overpowered by a lingering pine flavor and a healthy dose of alcohol. Has a hint of spiciness in the aftertaste too. Full body with a dry finish coming from the alcohol content.

Photo of TCgoalie
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy, peachy-brown and I'm surprised to see that it is rather hazy. Not much head, but the bubbles that stick around stick to the sides of the glass in a minimal manner.

A good deal of bready malts exist in the scent along with orange hops. There is also a good deal of barleywine like mustiness.

Everything about this beer suggests a barleywine-like IPA but the balance is wonderful. Right when you are thinking that this is malt heavy, grapefruit hops make their presence known and save the day.

On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being extremely heavy in the mouth, I would rate this a 6 or 7. The mouthfeel is one of the best aspects of this beer, nearly creamy but definitely soft feeling.

This is not the most drinkable beer, but deserves a good score for its complexity.

Photo of drabmuh
3.6/5  rDev -15.1%
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.

Photo of PicoPapa
3.97/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle. Pours a deep orange that is very cloudy. Little head but some thick lacing. Smells somewhat sweet with a very pleasing citrus and pine hop aroma. Tastes of grapefruit and some orange with an obvious presence of Hops. Some malts as well. For an Imperial Ipa with a ABV over 10%, it doesn't have an overwhelming taste of alcohol. A bit pricey compared to some other Dipas that taste better or as good, but overall a really good beer. Hope to have it on tap sometime.

Photo of Mavajo
3.72/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a golden copper color with a good white head. Moderate lacing. Nose is a generous offering of hops and some malt. The taste falls a bit short, in my opinion. The hops are there with a tropical flavor, backed by a good malt backbone...but it doesn't doesn't do it for me. I can't put my finger on what I didn't like, but it just didn't do it for me. Mouthfeel was good.

All in all, a decent DIPA, but not one I intend to buy again. The package just didn't come together for me.

Photo of Slatetank
4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
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%

Photo of VelvetExtract
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Looks the part. Dark amber with foamy head.

S-Various types of hop scents woft from the brew. Spicy and malty backbone comes out after the tropical hops.

T-Complex hop flavors. Strong malt backbone makes this brew a well balanced beer. I taste some pear as well which is unique.

M-Full bodied. Nothing wrong here.

D-Pretty drinkable had it a few times and always go back

Photo of JohnWaynes44
3.68/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured dark hazy orange. Thick off white head stuck all the way around the glass. Smells of figs, dates and apricots, toasty sweet malts and citrus. First a sudden burst of piney hops and heavy malts. Hints of orange and caramel peak through the hot alcohol taste at the end. The mouthfeel is very smooth and creamy. Drinkability suffers because ABV is not hidden as well as some in the style. Overall pretty good.

Photo of ZeroSignal
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle, bottled in May '10 Batch 12

A - Pours a hazy light copper with bits of sediment floating around; pours with a good 2 inches of off white head with excellent retention and sticky lacing that lasts the duration of the drink

S - Powerful pine and citric notes in the nose; resin, grapefruit and a bit of caramel malt

T&M - Navel orange and grapefruit come through first, and in the flavor the resin actually takes a back seat to a more assertive spicy and herbal character. The citric tart and spicy hops are nicely balanced by a sweet malt presence. Full bodied with the spice, malt and citric flavors hanging around for a bit.

D - Very tasty, a nit heavy and high in ABV to have a lot, but I'm finding this one bottle to be very easy to drink, and am happy to have another in the fridge!

Photo of Thorpe429
3.7/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The new top 100 is encouraging me to put in some old handwritten reviews!

Pours a reddish amber with a nice off-white head and decent lacing as it goes down. Smell is tropical fruits, some citrus, and a few hints of earth. The taste is much the same, but it lacks the punch of the nose and some of the more-intense West-coast DIPA's. Medium body and somewhat dry. Drinkability is affected by a bit of an alcohol taste and a slight lack of cohesion to the hop flavor and intensity.

Photo of Anthony1
4.54/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1" beige head over the clear orangey amber brew. Head lasts, and laces delicately yet plentifully. Aroma is juicy fruit hops. Taste starts with a light malt sweetness, and quickly morphs into fruity hops which tantalize, yet do not overpower. We're talking hops flavor here, not just the bitter hammer over the taste buds. Mouthfeel and drinkability are both great for the style, which can sometimes be daunting. An almost subtle yet effective brew, surprised by this one

Photo of rudzud
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Great slightly cloudy amber color with a solid one finger head that took quite some time to go away. Nice lacing down the sides of the glass.

S - Gotta love that pine resin. As soon as the bottle was open your hit with a wave of citrus and floral pine.

T - Just like the smell, intense piney greatness intermingles with grapefruit. Very delicious bittnerness.

M - Nice medium carbonation really works with this DIPA. Nice and dry with a strong hop finish.

D - One of my favorite DIPAs. Had everything working for it. Really something to try. That 10% does sneak up on you though!

Photo of Thur123
4.08/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

(May 2008) So its a bit aged

This beer pours with one finger of light khaki head over a very hazy, deep orange/brown color. Looks nice and as it should. Smell is big caramel malts with a subdued blend of hops. Dark fruit smells abound as well with a slight citrus, herbal bitterness along with the dark fruit sweetness.

Glug glug glug

The taste is big on the malts rather than the hops, but as this beer has been sitting around for almost 2.3 years I should've known the hops would be faded. Malt tastes traditional with toffee and caramel. What hops I do taste remind me of white grapes, mango, slight grapefruit and a bug orange flavor with a slight lemon citrus edge. This fresh might blow my socks off with hops. The mouth feel was full without being heavy and a little chalky at the end but no big deal. The drinkability was great and a sure benefit of its age. No alcohol tastes what so ever. This could have been a 7% brew as far as I could taste but as it's 10.5 or so, good job beer. Overall I think this is good but I need to try it fresh.

Photo of cbutova
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have heard this is one of the hoppiest beers of all time, on several occasions. The May 2010 batch is the first time I have seen it fresh in MA, fairly excited.

A- Pours a dark peach-orange with massive, creamy three-finger head. The head has great retention and doesn't wanna move, some good froth going on here. Amazing pattern of unpredictable but beautiful lace, this is what beer should look like.

S- Right away, from about four feet away I get a wind of hops from the pour. Fruit, citrus, earthy and pine, all in large amounts. A lot of orange and peach fruit aroma. A surprising amount of grainy malt comes through and gives this one a unique IIPA scent.

T- Right off the bat I notice the hops taste more like just general hops than I am led to believe by the aroma. I certainly get some fruit, pine (most prevalent) and citrus but like Hop Dam and Devil Dancer, I almost feel like I am chewing on an actual hop (I do prefer this to those). Caramel malt backs up the hops in an over the top flavor that will destroy your palate. Definitely a bit like a Barleywine.

MF- First time I will say this in a mouthfeel, I like the feeling of the foam hitting my upper lip every time I take a sip, this head never goes away. Moderate body that is creamy and fairly warm with good carbonation. Bitterness level is through the roof and blasts the taste buds away. Oily, probably from the hop oils that couldn't dissolve into solution, wow.

DB- I am not going to complain about the price, you get a freakin' huge beer but one that is slightly over the top. Lots of hops in a flavor that will probably prevent you from legitimately reviewing another beer. Amazing looks, great smell, good flavor... you will remember this one for sure. It might be a bit much to drink a whole bomber solo but I didn't get sick of it.

Photo of Gobzilla
4.37/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: poured a tangerine orange with yellow highlights that had a half finger of head and left some good sticky lacing.

S: very nice fruit forward DIPA which consisted of mango, tangerines, and citrus grapefruit. There is a very nice floral piney hop aroma that had good malt presence.

T: very nice oily fresh piney hop punch upfront with mango, tangerine, and citrus grapefruit accents that also had a pretty good malt backbone.

M: medium body with a good amount of carbonation that had a fruity, sweet, oily, and hop bitter punch crisp finish.

Photo of MeisterBurger
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Reddish amber. Cloudy. Frothy white head. Spots of lace.

S: Mango and peaches. Citrus. Bright tropical fruits. Pine and grapefruit. Smells great. The hops really shine. Traces of caramel pull up the rear.

T: Follows the aroma with lots of citrus and grapefruit pith. Sight vegetal aspect. Pine bitterness. Alcohol warms the chest but is otherwise stealthy. Mildly yeasty with a brown bread, caramel malt. Assertively bitter without being overbearing.

M: Full bodied chewy mouthfeel with a good amount of carbonation.

D: Very drinkable for something this potent. Great stuff.

Bottled March 2010. Batch 11.

Photo of dasenebler
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From a bomber, Maharaja pours a chill-hazed deep amber hue with a very thick head that retains and laces quite nicely.

Aroma is hoppy: very woodsy, spicy and piney, yet at the same time relatively tropical and fruity.

The flavor is very big. This is a huge DIPA that I don't think could be any mightier, lest it literally shred one's tongue and erode one's enamel. This beer doesn't even care about balance, it simply goes for grandeur in every regard-- hops, malt and alcohol. It's quite malty and in the Colorado DIPA tradition, but it's also one of the hoppiest beers I've ever had. Incredibly juicy, chewy and resinous with a piney, bitter aftertaste. Enormous mouthfeel. You can really taste the booze here, but it's still one deliciously hoppy sipper.

Even though this isn't my ideal DIPA, it's a very impressive brew.

Photo of StJamesGate
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a ruddy amber with a clotted cream-thick off white head that puckers and sheets. Fresh Centennial hop flower nose with spiced berry jam malts. Stewed plum, some butter-and-brown-sugar plus Amaretto malts with brandy-soaked orange and an herbal bark quality like Fernet Branca. Orange rind linger. Chewy, heavy and hot.

bottled March 2010; batch 11; labeled at 10%.

Monster; every flavor is steeped, intensified and doubled up. That has to hurt the drinkability - this is a one and done beer. And as flavorful as it is (no noticeable loss of hops at 5 months) between the sweet malts masking some of the IBUs and the ABV burn, this is not my first choice for a hophead DIPA.

But what a way to finish the night!

Edited for change from Drinkability to Overall.

Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 4,936 ratings.