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Maharaja - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
MaharajaMaharaja

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

4,737 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,737
Reviews: 1,743
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 10.4%
Wants: 265
Gots: 410 | 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: 4,737 | Reviews: 1,743 | Display Reviews Only:
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
Photo of longbongsilver
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had a chuckle at the store over the label, then noticed the strength & wondered how a 10% IPA worked, so I picked up a bottle. Pours out a dark orange, w/ a really thick light peach head, takes a bit to fill the mug. Kinda gives off a herbal smell, a bit of pear in there too (at least that's what it smells like to me), though that doesn't stay for long. So where's it go? Only one way to find out...

Wow...there it is! The hops come in on a warming, somewhat boozy wave, prominent without annoying my mouth. More savory than bitter, very little carbonation and not much malt note to speak of. Shifts towards a sweetness as it goes down, surprising considering the style.

I've got to say, the Imperial IPA style is a nice change of pace, and if the rest of it is in the league of this beer then count me as a fan.

longbongsilver, Feb 05, 2010
Photo of bcm119
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clear copper with a robust off-white head. Ripe citrus nose with a touch of sweet biscuit malt. Initially a pervasive but soft grapefruit rind bitterness spreads across the palate, but a balancing malt sweetness is not underrepresented. Hops are a bit raw and green, turning from citrus to leafy mid palate. The mouthfeel is buoyant and full, with plenty of fine carbonation and a slight viscosity. Malt is nicely integrated with the bitterness, and doesn't get too estery or cloying, but it gets close. Some nuances of tea and earth come through as it warms. Finishes big and bitter. Overall a nicely done beer; well balanced, complex flavors with an excellent mouthfeel. A nice double IPA with no real faults but not particularly outstanding in any way either. A bit pricey.

bcm119, Apr 19, 2008
Photo of gtermi
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: This pours a very nice copper with a one finger thick head that quickly fades. As the head fades, it leaves a lot of lace on the glass.

S: Lots of hops and malt. The hops give of a nice citrus and pine smell. There really isn't much else to the smell, but it honestly doesn't need it. It just smells so good!

T: At first there is a lot of hops, but then I start to get a nice amount of malt. The hop taste lingers on the back of the tongue and the malt on the front.

M: There is a strong amount of crispness on the front, middle and back of the mouth. It feels like I have a lot of foam in my mouth. It also has a strong crispness going down the throat.

O: This is a very solid DIPA. It is far from my favorite, but it does have a lot of great qualities.

gtermi, Jan 21, 2012
Photo of blackie
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle. White/off white head. Color is a medium amber. No freshness date indicated.

Immediate smell is of floral hops...grassy, citrusy, piney, in your face hops. Some sweet malt is hiding in there as well. Hints of tropical fruit (mango stands out). Ethanol is only evident if I look for it, inhaling deeply. Smells great.

Carbonation is very low, I wish there was just a little more to better carry those hops to my nose. Body is medium.

Hops are at the front again, but it seems that there is enough malt to balance them out pretty well. The hops are great...piney, fruity, citrusy, and tickling the senses. Finishes with a considerable hop bitterness and some slick malt remaining on the tongue.

A good one to try if you haven't had it, but a bit pricey (I paid $5.99). Could have been hoppier, especially on the tongue. Tasty as hell in any case. Drank this one at around 55 degrees.

blackie, Jul 03, 2005
Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a growler into a Goose Island tulip. The pour is an amber-apricot color, dark for an Imperial IPA, and has a bit of haze. The head is fine, about a finger thick, and is an eggshell white. I could smell this one the moment I opened the cap on the growler. Big notes of over-ripe peaches and grapefruit hit me smack in the nose. It's fruity, sweet, and a little bit resiny.

Medium-full body and a big creamy feel. The flavor is exceptionally well-balanced with big, malty flavors of toast and marmalade up front followed by hops that accentuate, not over-ride, the maltiness. This beer is sweet, but not cloying, syrupy, or medicinal. The hops add spiciness and fruitiness. The finish has just a hint of booziness, but not nearly enough to suggest that it really carries a hefty 10.4% ABV. Very drinkable for such a robust representative of the style.

Another Beer of Fame off my list. Definitely glad I waited to get this one on tap. Still, I wonder if it isn't a little bit past its prime. I expected something much more hop-forward.

deadonhisfeet, May 15, 2013
Photo of Wegbier
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
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.

Wegbier, Jul 28, 2009
Photo of daliandragon
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I remember having this on tap at Tyler's in Durham last year and I couldn't believe how good it was. I taste tested it against the Hopslam and discussed the merits of each with the knowledgeable bartender. I hope the bottle stands up to that experience. This Raja pours a muted orange and slightly hazy with a creamy off white head and lace that covers everywhere the beer has been.

Instant withering hops greet me as I take a slow skip. Citrus and especially pine are the active players. The malt then steps in with dark fruit flavors and caramel and chocolate tones. The finish returns to the hops and the aftertaste shows elements of both. Mouthfeel is thick and oily in the finish. I like this beer but I'm not overawed with it the way I was on tap.

daliandragon, Dec 14, 2008
Photo of TheSarge
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Maharaja Imperial IPA is a brew to behold. I was used to Avery’s Belgian style brews and it’s nice to try something a bit different from this brewery.

Judging initially by its appearance, I can see this is what I’d expect from an Imperial IPA. It produces a large amount of off-white head that sticks around until the very end. The body is hazy and amber/caramel in color. There is a slight amount of sediment visible here too.

The aroma this produces is obvious of a strongly hopped IPA; with dominate piney and spruce aromas.

Taking a sip of this brew is like biting into a grapefruit, to put it simply. I describe this to my wife (who doesn’t like beer much), and she tasted this brew the same.

Maharaja is thirst quenching at first, but finishes very dry. There is a slight warmness from the moderate amount of alcohol content.

Overall this brew is quite good. This is definitely comparable to Stone IPA with a bigger alcoholic kick. Schukria!

TheSarge, May 09, 2007
Photo of hopsaplenty
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep golden amber. Mountainous sand colored head of fine bubbles which settles slowly leaving strands, bands, and ribbons of thick lace. A handful of moderately active carbonation streams are visible. Rich resinous pine and tree sap and orange and grapefruit rinds are distinctly noticeable from a distance. The orange citrus oil flavor fills the front end along with an ample dose of pine resin. A thick malt body sports a thick coat of hops. The finish is warming deep in the throat and filled with spiciness and more citrusy resinous flavors, but they do not cling to the tongue and the finish is substantially shorter than anticipated. Certainly not a palate wrecker of a double IPA. Full bodied and on the thick side, the carbonation is relatively low. The hops oils are only a bit sticky and slick, but the malt weighs them down. Overall, the hops are big, but not huge and the alcohol is noticeable after the fact with its spicy heat. I could enjoy a few pints of this on draft and would be interested in seeing how it shines on cask.

Thanks go out to Heath for trucking me a box of fresh CO beers on a recent east coast visit.

hopsaplenty, Sep 11, 2006
Photo of Cascadia
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beauty of a beer. Deep orange-amber color with a really solid white head. Smells of noble hops. Hops hops hops and more hops. Tastes as the style should, good and hoppy, with citurs and piney hops, but the malt does come through and balences nicely at the end. Warming the belly on the second sip, this is a nice one. Good all-around double IPA, one I will try again for sure.

Cheers!

Cascadia, Jun 21, 2007
Photo of mulder1010
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Have to thank Nick6217 for sending this puppy out to me. Much appreciated.

22 oz bomber Batch #13 10.54% ABV

A-- Poured a deep reddish orange color. Opaque and shows very little carbonation. Eggshell off white head that was at best just under half a finger. On swirling the head changes to a near eggnog color. Get spotty lacing on the sides of the glass and the alcohol is obvious in this.

S-- Orange, more like Mandarin orange to me, ethanol, deep pine, mango, butterscotch and roasted pineapple. Once this got more air the flavors opened up a whole lot more and got more of the tropical notes and also got lighter in smell. At first more of the orange and ethanol.

T-- A lot of alcohol in the first taste followed by gritty Carmel candied orange and then a big punch of bitter grapefruit. Other tastes do get passionfruit and other tropical notes. Alcohol is very apparent.

M-- Oily. Very oily. Mouth feel is mostly orange, honey, big fresh pine, and ripe bitter grapefruit. There are some syrupy parts to this at times but the alcohol is much more muted in the mouth. Very big feel and low carbonation. Get finishes of orange, tangerine, lemon and more grapefruit.

O-- To me this is the imperial stout when you are drinking a DIPA. It is big and it is aggressive. It is not like the West Coast DIPA's that have the alcohol hidden and can drink several of them. This is a sipper. It is a bit sweet and syrupy at times but it gets bigger and bolder as I drink on. ABV is very apparent and it is a negative but the more air this gets the better it gets and the bigger and more complex. Do not think this is for everybody though. Not a beer you can shoot 2-3 down easily. One is an accomplishment but would very much buy again.

mulder1010, Apr 11, 2011
Photo of jimilayne
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Disclaimer: I purchased a bottle in August 2012 that was a Sept 2011 batch. I know the purists will discount the review because of that, but what do you want from me?

Appearance - beautiful golden maroon with a thick creamy head.

Smell - overpowering hops

Taste - way too hoppy and intense for me, but not in a good way like the Dogfish Head 120.

Mouthfeel - Very oily, greasy and thick.

Overall - too much for my taste. Overly hoppy and oily on the tongue. I might go back if I find a fresher bottle and give it another go.

Update: I found a fresher bottle and went back. Boo-ya! Love it.

jimilayne, Jan 01, 2014
Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 4,737 ratings.