1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Maharaja - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

4,938 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,938
Reviews: 1,769
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 10.38%
Wants: 302
Gots: 493 | 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
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Maharaja Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,938 | Reviews: 1,769 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of gatornation
3.97/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a hazy copper color with a nice head that dissipates to a nice 1/4 creamy beige head till end.the smell is a hop bomb that is grapefruit, hop, pine, grass, and malt i also smell alcohol...the taste is a tongue heater it hits in you face with hops, grapefruit and sweet malts and again that alcohol taste which detracts from the overall balance of this dipa.the mouth feel is robust and full with sticky oily hop resins but with a alcohol burn that i do not like in dipa's .this one is a good dipa and one that i will recommend but not as balanced or in the same league as dread naught ,double trouble,pliney,or hopslam..if this was tweaked a little and balanced out this would be an a-plus..still recommended of course

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

Had a pint of this tastiness at South Park Tavern. Poured in a standard pint glass, it didn't have too much head retention but had some good lacing. The body was golden amber and translucent. The aroma on this is powerful. Lots of grapefruit, melon, and citrusy hops. There was a weird faint note of strawberry!?! The 3C hops are also powerful in the taste with some orange rind and I know there's some malt in there somewhere but the hops overpower it. This beer has staying power, really coats the mouth with bitterness and just hangs out there. Someone posted a thread about a drinkability theory, if you start drinking it and HOLY CRAP it's almost gone, that equals good drinkability. That was the case with this one, sucked it down. Yum.

Photo of Wegbier
4.04/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

yellowish eggshell head that starts with dominating size and it slithers down into large oasis of big foam
the bubbles are few and they creep up slowly inside a brilliant honey amber. from a snifter
same bottle now pouring the second time into a regular pint glass and i see so much carb action

spicy almost stinging(alcohol) pine hops that are sweet from the light malt back bone.

the taste is deep and thick hop bitterness, only some hop citrus notes, i dont know where that aroma went.
from pint glass with enduring large head i wouldnt even guess it is the same beer, citrus pine notes mask the bitterness and bring out a distant caramel malt background

balanced and full of power is this great king. strong and complex. it is heavy on the palate
a little oily

heavy balanced dangerous mouth destroyer.

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

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a tulip. Bottled in February 2009, batch 9. ABV of 10.27%.

Appearance: Tan head, hazy dark amber body. Looks like a maltier DIPA, which I prefer to the thinner bodied DIPAs.

Smell: Oily and fruity. Tart green apples and pine. Little bit of alcohol is present.

Taste: Quite a bit of pine, but not overwhelmingly piney. Finishes with a minty flavor. I've never experienced so much mint in a DIPA before, and I really like it.

Photo of NewGeneric
4.28/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this one the other day after work. Poured a hazy orange copper color with offwhite head that faded slow and left good lacing. Smelled of citrus hops and light malt. Tasted of alcohol up front with very balanced malt and hop flavors. Very smooth. Definitely in my top IIPAs now, would probably be my favorite if the alcohol was masked a little better.

Photo of HoosBrews
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is a hazy orange with a creamy head and good lacing. Smell is a huge citrus-hoppy treat. The taste is even bigger than the nose. Initial bitterness followed by a full mouth of grapefruity hops. The malt is very well balanced with this insane amount of hops. Although this is a very rich beer, its incredibly drinkable for over 10% abv.

This is a top tier imperial IPA. I've had this on tap as well and it's even better in draft.

Photo of GRG1313
4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Nose is an assertive orange/grapefruit/lemon nose in a golden honey colored brew with thin white head.

Huge hop flavors of grapefruit and lemon and lemon mouse with front palate of stone fruit giving way to a gigantic grapefruit/lemon finish that goes on forever. Nice. Good balance of hops and malt.

This is a very good and drinkable IPA. This is actually my "go to" IPA and "regular" beer when I just want something that I know is good and it goes with all sorts of food!

Photo of djmichaelk
4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber, bottled June 2009 (batch 10).

A - Light-ish orange-yellow, nice two-finger head, recedes to a thin cap. Very pretty and delicate lacing and rings down the glass as I down it.

S - More subtle than I usually get from a hoppy monster like this; the hops are there, definitely, but they don't smack me in the face the way I had expected.

T - This is a seriously good beer. As with the nose, it's subtle. Hops upfront, more malt in the middle and then a long hoppy finish. Very smooth. I don't get the alcohol; it's covered very well for something with a >10% ABV.

M - This is exactly the way I want a DIPA to feel. Silky smooth, carbonation is just right. Maybe the best feature of the beer.

D - Halfway through the bottle I'm thinking I could drink this all day... then as I get toward the end the ABV starts to hit me and I realize that as much as I want one more, this is going to be it. Until tomorrow?

Photo of jeffthecheff
3.43/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Batch 10, June 2009

Orange color with slight haze, with a head that builds up nice at first, settles down with some large bubbles and then to just a cap.

Aroma is nice, but misses the strong, raw, fresh hop aroma that I want in a DIPA. It has a slight grass aroma, herbal, and with a slight citrus, and maybe apricot. When it warms it smells to boozy.

Taste is nice, bitterness is about as strong as you can imagine. Wintergreen type of sensation, sticky hop flavor, and a touch of sweetness. Much better when it was cold then as it warms.

Bitterness is so numbing I have a hard time describing mouthfeel. As it gets towards room temp, it feels a bit sticky. Drinkability is about what you expect. High ABV so it gets better towards the end of the bottle.

Photo of GregPearson33
4.16/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured dark amber with a cloudy hue and a thick single-finger head which receded to the rim of the glass after a few minutes. Could definitely taste the hops, but a sweet caramel malty flavor made its way through backed by a distinctly boozy aftertaste. I guess some IIPAs mask it (out hop-it) better than others, but not a problem! Mouthfeel was very smooth, moderate carbonation and excellent drinkability. Moreover a great enticing taste! No problem killing a bomber of this (but only one... 10.5% ABV) and a brew I'd definitely recommend.

Photo of jlb307
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this from my buddy Dave. Poured from the bomber into a snifter.

A: Golden brown in color, hazy and almost opaque. Developed a 1/2 inch off-white head that was nice and fluffy. Retained nicely and developed nice sticky lacing along the sides of the glass.

S: Almost nothing but hops. A little sweetness akin to ginger, and an overlying grapefruit aroma.

T: Definitely like it smells. Started off almost too bitter, but then mellowed a bit as it approached room temp. Really bitter aftertaste clung to the roof of my mouth.

M: Excellent balance with the carbonation. Sticky resin feel that left my mouth feeling like I just drank maple syrup.

D: Very easy to drink if you are into the really hoppy beers. Because of the 10%+ ABV, it can be a bit dangerous too. A bit more than I'm used to, but would gladly have it again.

Photo of nomomentwasted
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this today at Beverages 4 Less with my main man Freddy. You're the man Fred, I'll be back soon.

Appearance: Pours lighter than the 10.3% would let you believe, but still dark orange-brown and with fairly good head retention.

Smell: Hops, hops, and more hops, but the smell is slightly less than I was thinking a 107 IBU beer would be. Floral, but has a bit of malt on the few sniffs afterwards, but with any beer that's got that kind of IBU rating, it's hops, then hops, then more hops.

Taste: Hoppy with a bit more hops. Did I mention hops? Bitter and yet not overly so, finishes with a syrupy hop finish and just a hint of bread-like malt to it as well. Whew, for as hoppy as it is, you can tell they're trying to balance it, but hops win out major in the end.

Mouthfeel: Syrupy, thick, resinous, and delightful. I mean, it's hop resin all the way, and takes that feeling up a notch.

Drinkability: I had no idea this was 10.3% til after I finished it with Freddy. Would've guessed 8.5-9. Delightful to have such an intense beer finish less-so. Definitely a hop-bomb with little balance, but very fun for what it is.

Photo of DrDCon
2.78/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

I am truly disappointed in this brew. It poured from the bottle nicely with a pale orange color and white foamy head that stuck around.

Sour-mash, grapefruit, balsam tree smells.
Tastes of orange initially, fading into an radically bitter pine-tree, almost of unripened juniper berries. Mouthfeel is dry, makes my taste buds desire water over more of this beer, the beer's greatest downfall in my opinion. I struggle to drink it because of the lingering balsam-juniper taste which I feel is uncomplimentary to the initial fruity flavor.

Photo of aaronxsubaru
2.68/5  rDev -36.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

I'm really sorry guys, i know i should think this is a god beer but i don't. it was highly recommended by my bartender. It tatsed like pine sap to me. Other than that it was a pretty good beer, but it was to hard to get past this taste for me. I've had other, more balanced tasting IPAs that didn't hit me over the head with pine taste. i prefer more citrus than pine.

Photo of avalon07
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a growler to a tulip glass. Had an amber color and a cloudy consistency. There was a quarter inch of foamy, long-lasting head and good lacing.

S: A nice aroma of hops, citrus, malt and a floral quality.

T: Complex taste of hops, grapefruit, malt and a certain odd sweetness. It's a big, bold taste - just like an Imperial IPA should be.

M: A highly carbonated beer with a mainly smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

D: A drinkable beer. Has a big ABV%, but is still easy to drink.

Photo of kdoc8
3.95/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out with a thick whitish-bubbly head and lots of lacing. The color is clear and crisp orange/tan. Smell is mild and mostly of bitter and citrus, but with a sweet hint as well. The taste starts out pretty sweet, then there's some nice malt character that is often missed in these strong IPAs. The finish is hints of citrus and bitter hops, and a twinge of alcohol. The aftertaste is mainly of those bitter hops. Good drinkability - a little rough in the later tastes on the mouthfeel, just because of the alcohol taste, but it's to be expected at this high ABV. Good stuff.

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

This brew was found at the Happy Gnome in St. Paul, MN. Poured cold in a tulip glass this beauty shows a light copper, clear and glowing with a fair off-white head and decent cascading lace. The aroma emits a pronounced but tasteful grapefruit, somewhat floral at times with a sweet bread base. The flavor is tart cider pine with full malt earthiness. It borders on the bubblegum edge but instead reaches into that hard grain core to keep you grounded and blissful. As you go you pick up some peanutty touches and evident alcohol to warm you up a bit. It's full bodied, lightly but confidently carbonated and smooth as can be. The bitter hops hold the highlight here, becoming even more pronounced as you go. Drinkability would seem marginal based on alcohol but it is a wonderful taste sensation. Very grainy, tart and good!

Photo of gatorbreath
4.97/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Pours golden sandy color with some pearly colored head with lacing that stays..she's a beaut and we're off to a good start.

Smell: WHOA! definitely floral with overwhelming piney and citrusy grapefruity notes all over.

Flav/MF: Off the chain, just like it smells, LOTS of grapefruit and other citrus notes. Accompanied by piney taste with a hoppiness unlike any other i've had. This brew is truly one of a kind. The Alcohol is not noticable to me until late in the aftertaste and still hidden very well. Mouthfeel is good, carbonation is balanced and the mouthfeel is clean forreal.

Drinkability: not for those uncultured to DIPA's. not a good starter. This was my 1st DIPA and i was overwhelmed, drank it because it cost much but i enjoy it much much more now. Being that it's seasonal grab one while ya can. Got one today.

Overall this brew is amazing, my first flirt with the DIPA and I am in love now and it is my favorite style. Very nice IPA here, get some if you can.

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

Somewhere between copper and amber, clear with a soapy 2 finger cream colored head, fades to half inch. Smell: first whiff is all tropical fruit - pineapple, papaya, passion fruit. A toasty and caramel sweetness that goes well with sweet fruits. Pine, spruce, and mineral notes. Taste: sweet with a big piney, raw, leafy flavor. Canned pineapple mix of sweet and acidity. There's seems to be a little citric rind down in there too. Smooth and sticky with a healthy dose of the ibu. Mercilessly drags you to the intersection of pine and pineapple road, it's a nice place to be. A nice fresh June 2009 Batch 10. By the end of the bomber it's time to bump the rating up a bit for that wonderful piney dance on the tongue and the ability to light one's breath afire.

Photo of Yesac
4.15/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pale orange in color, medium sized white foamy head that quickly fades to a thin layer.

S- Sweet nectar of squeezed hop juice.. yum. The barley has a strong presence as well. There is a sweet overtone of green apple that makes this one of the best smelling IPA's I've had.

T- Bitter but juicy hops cling to your tongue up front.. and balanced malt follows through meanwhile the 10% ABV is making its presence known. The finish is not impressive.. its a thick monotone flavor that masks the balance I smelt. I liked this less and less the more I drank it.

M- Thick bodied. The taste left on the palate is bland and is not sticky.

D- Hop heads will enjoy this one. Its balanced, but lacks in mouthfeel however it's got balls with the 10.24% ABV.

Photo of chicagobeerriot
3.52/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours cloudy copper with a one inch cream colored head. The citrus smell from the hops and the light carmel malt combine to create an interesting plum smell that's a bit different than most DIPAs. The mouthfeel is a bit thick for the style but that's moderated by the lively carbonation. The taste starts with an intriguing toffee/peach sweetness that blends with the lavender hop taste while keeping the strong bitterness at bay. Each sip takes a long time to develop: the sweetness lasts surprisingly long and, just when you think that the hops will pull a no-show, they slowly fade in as the sweetness retreats. The finish is like spending a January night with a Nelson Algren book: long, bitter, and a bit alcoholic.

The beer never quite comes together to a coherent whole and I wish that some of the more complex citrus hop flavors were allowed to shine a bit more, but there's a lot to explore in this beer and it's definitely worth trying. Sidenote: the malt complexity here makes me think that this may be one of those rare DIPAs that becomes almost like a good barleywine when aged. Time for a little experiment...

Photo of Jmoore50
3.68/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I bought this at a BevMo and was surprised how much I did not like it.

The appearance is a GREAT golden amber color that is really thick for an DIPA. It has a really nice oily texture and the alcohol consistency does wonders for this one. Looks great with a big white two finger head. Also left a lighter lacing.

The smell was great. It had a great citrus pine smell that made my mouth water. Once the bottle is opened it just explodes with smell. Also smells sugary sweet.

The taste is like WHAT?!? Great first impression then there is a pine or herbal bitterness that just shocks you midway and after. What the hell? I paced back and forth trying to figure out what the hell was going on and I just figured it was the bitterness with the mouthfeel that just lets me down. I love unique DIPA's, but this is not for me. The alcoholic taste is not masked very well and makes the bitterness even worse. I do not know and people will think I am crazy but this was a HUGE letdown. Honestly Avery has not showed me anything spectacular. I have some more of their brews to try but overall this was sub par.


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

Served in a tulip glass. Color was a deep orange copper with a nice finger of solid tan head. Beautiful film of lace.

Spicy pungent hop aromas with a big citrus twang. Sweet and caramelly bread behind.

The malts are toasty caramel and spiced bready malts. The hops are big, fruity, sour, and citrusy up front, and bitter, spicy, slightly grassy, and resinous in the aftertaste. Nice alcohol bite.

Med bodied, hop sappy, smooth.

Drinkability was great, high in alc, but well masked by the other flavors. A very well done beer. Super hoppy, nice malt character, and a good alc%.
I reviewed this beer once before from a bottle that must've been past its prime, it was good but no where near what I had heard about it and have now personally witnessed.
I only had an 8 oz. pour, cause it was an outrageous 8$ for 10oz. But it was awesome and I wanted to drink more. I will keep my eye out for you Maharaja! And if you are fresh, I will buy you and drink you!

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 Natural510
4.69/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a murky blood-orange color. No head when it came my way, and it can't be determined whether or not this is due to bartender's pour. Love the color, tho.
I can smell this one two feet away; very bright and sweet with fruity malt goodness. Quite unique; no other beer, especially IPA, smells like this.
Also sweet upfront. Very juicy, as in orange, mango and grapefruit. Honey and brown sugar notes also factor into the sweetness. Nice dropkick of piney hops to balance out the malts.
Creamy and admittedly heavy in the mouth.
This is a wonderfully complex beer. Much more going on than the standard floral/grapefruit in many offerings of the style. Be careful, the alcohol is well-hidden in this one, and hits you hard if you're not careful.

Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 4,938 ratings.