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Maharaja - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,810 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,810
Hads: 5,360
Avg: 4.2
pDev: 10.48%
Wants: 362
Gots: 726 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States | website

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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,810 | Hads: 5,360
Photo of Foxman
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It pours a crystal clear rusty amber. A full finger of tight beige head settles slowly to islets of froth. Sheets of lacing veil the inside of the glass.

The aroma delivers an equal opportunity mix of toasted malt and resiny hops, yielding caramel, some light sweetness, grapefruit, and pine. A soft presence of alcohol drifts by lazily.

Upon tasting, there's a meaty push of toasty malt sweetness, boasting homey caramel and light sugar. The sweetness is promptly negated by a potent hop bitterness toting an oily note of pine sap and some citrus at the back of the tongue. An airy current of alcohol is more apparent here and further dries any residual malt presence. A bit of yeast crops up near the close, and the finish is a lingering bitter hop legacy. Refreshingly simple and full-flavored, it's quite a positive experience.

A bit more than medium bodied, the beefy malt is chewy and sinewy hops resinous, coating and flowing together sensually.

I'll steer clear of any cheesy Taj Mahal references and just say it's big and full and well balanced. Quite sweet to start, the hoppy backbone keeps things in check. It's a flavorful combo of elements that does nothing to disappoint. The ABV is substantial, quite apparent, warming, and limiting as well, if you're still thinking clearly after one. Because of its bigness, it's enjoyable in a big way. I will do this again, just on another day.

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Photo of libertygrails
3.85/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Everything about this DIPA is World Class-esque. Lovely floral resiny nose, rich amber orange in the pint glass, very complex piney/citrus/malty finish....

Definitely worth a try if it's available in your area. Was struck by how similiar to Stone's Arrogant Bastard it left me. Again a World Class DIPA.

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Photo of lflesh
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

wow, this is a big beer. im in awe after every sip. grapefruit and pine are all over this thing. maybe some red licorice. get some! if you like double ipa's you need to try this. this is an amazing beer. i wish it was a little less $$. $8 =for a 22oz. excuse me i want more.

music: thievery corporation-cosmic game- track 4 -Satyam Shivam Sundaram

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Photo of DaggerEyes
4.52/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bomber bottle labeled as "Batch 3, February 2006" poured into an oversized wine glass.

Pour with rowdy carbonation and a one finger head that fizzed down to about half that size. A beautiful amber color with a slight slight touch of haze. Resinous and sticky with lots of nice lacing this beer clings for dear life to the side of the glass.

Woah a total dried christmas pine and grapefruit hop explosion,very floral... Strong strong scent, a bit earthy and spicey, scents of pineapple, tangerine, very ripe fruit and Warm alcohol sent is present in the back of the nose.

Sweet and Very Tart Grapefruit and other cirtic flavors, like sweet little tangerines blast the pallete and mix lightly with a bit of pine. The alchohol is pretty well masked in the taste but can be detected in the after taste, and a subtle warm feeling. My only complaint with the taste holding it from being a 5 is that perhaps it is TOO SWEET at times

Wonderful viscous mouthfeel, light but not too thin, a bit syrupy. Carbonation tickles the tip of the tounge, a real smooth wet finsih.

A bit dangerous with it's high ABV and a bit of an intense hop beating on the pallette...but all in all very drinkable

(paired incredibly well with a creamy blue cheese)

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Photo of instrumentality
4.29/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Officially labeled "Maharaja Imperial India Pale Ale."

Bottled February 2006, batch 3.

This brew poured a transparant amber, nothing exciting, but with nice, dense, creamy white head.

The odor smelled almost purely of fresh pears. While it wasn't what I would expect from a beer, it was a pleasing scent in its own right.

At the first sip, the scent was transferred to my palate - it was like experiencing the crispness and tart sweetness of biting into a fresh pear. But this is no pear cider; immediately following the pear taste was a rush of heavy hops. The alcohol taste was present but relatively subtle. The aftertaste was primarily the lingering taste of hops, but a little of the pear sweetness remained on my lips.

Mild carbonation made for a mellow mouthfeel.

Drinkability...well...at first, this unique blend of pear and hop flavors was a pleasing shift from other IPAs I've tried, and I actually thought this might become my new favorite in this category. However, by the time I had finished about half a pint, the sweetness started to bother me a bit.

It's a tough call. My opinion changes from one sip to the next. Given that I enjoyed it more early on, and that I like the beer more when I take longer breaks to write, I think this is a beer best consumed in small doses to allow the palate to cleanse itself a bit such that each time you take a taste, it's like you're drinking it for the first time.

I'm curious to see where the flavor goes after some cellar time.

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Photo of ultralarry2006
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22 oz. bomber. Two finger tan head recedes to surface skim that lingered. Some scant lacing, but not a lot. Color was a clear orange-copper-amber.

Aroma - piney hops, and piney hops ! Hint of bready malt. Some alcohol astringency.

Taste - as promised by aroma. Piney hops upfront and center, they dominate this whole thing. The middle gives a slight taste of the malt , bready and tea-like. Alcohol warmth. Finishing with of course, piney hops. Aftertaste of lemony tea.

Mouthfeel - full, alcohol warm, with moderate carbonation.

Drinkabilty - goes down fairly easy. This is a very good beer, but high abv limits it to one 22 oz. bomber ( 2 x 12 oz. equivalent ) per session ( maybe two 22 oz 'ers, if you're not driving, or do not have to get up early ).

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Photo of tattooedtolley
3.99/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber

Appearance: Poured a very orangish, slightly amber color.

Smell: I shared this one with my dad and we both caught a strong aroma of grapefruit. The alcohol is subtle in the smell but has me thinking it will show up in the taste. The hops over-ride the malts in the aroma department but they are detectable.

Taste: The hops are up front and have that same fruity, grapefruit type taste along with a distinct hop piney-ness. The malt backbone is big enough to make it through in taste and helps give some balance. I don't believe I have ever had a double IPA with this same fruitiness before. The alcohol is present in taste but not harsh.

Mouthfeel: Medium to heavy body. Fairly dry on the finish.

Drinkability: I drank this one slow, I don't think there's another way to enjoy it. I would not venture past just one of these.

Overall I thought this beer was a good change up and a nice treat. It did make the following IPAs seem not so hoppy, so save this one for the end of your tastings.

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Photo of acrawf6
3.98/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out a dark rich orangish amber with a dense slightly tan head. Great lacing

Smell. Of course, lots of hops, but i'm surprised to smell a nice maltiness to it. scents of brown sugar and a slight hickory wood aroma.

Taste. Very earthy. Bottle says 112 IBUs, and though it is quite bitter, it's not as bitter as i thought it would be. small smokiness to the taste too. It has a syrupy dark fruit preservative taste, like dehydrated fruits. aftertaste has a small citrus hoppiness to it.

Mouthfeel. Carbonation is low in this one. Full body and nice balance. But i just wish it had more carbonation, seems flat.

Overall a good double ipa, but not my favorite. A fine beer, but when i'm in the mood for a beer of it's style, i'll be seeking out others.

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Photo of silver0rlead
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours into the glass an intense and slightly cloudy amber color with an excellent tan head that retains impressively and leaves nice lacing. The aroma is massive, with a huge citrus (grapefruit, orange, lemon) hops character as well as resinous piney hops, caramel, fruity esters, toasted bread and alcohol. The flavor also starts off with giant citrus hops (grapefruity, lemon and orange), as well as some piney and resinous hops, caramel and honey malt sweetness, fruity esters, toasted bread and some alcohol. The mouthfeel is thick and almost syrupy, and drinkability is descent. A very nice IIPA, a bit thick but very tasty and packed with flavor.

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Photo of smcolw
3.72/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours an orange, slightly dark amber. Some chill haze, but still able to read through it. Impressive large-bubbled head that dies off slowly. Thick large lace, which with the popped bubbles looks a little like polluted water scum.

Lots of fresh, green hops; very fresh smelling. Highly dry-hopped. Low malt and surprisingly low alcohol aromas

Too bitter? This may be the one. Even as a hop head, the bite here is quite strong. Still, this beer is multidimensional--lots of malt up front which quickly gives way to the bitterness. The aftertaste is like sucking a hop pellet. Full bodied with higher carbonation, which I think cuts the high alcohol content flavors.

An interesting beer to try. I'd be fascinated to try this against other double IPAs. Could be summed up: Love your hops, love this beer.

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Photo of orfeu
4.12/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

"Bottled in Feb. 2006, Batch 3" 9.9% ABV. Damn! Avery beers are available in Buffalo now! Picked this up today at Consumer's on Eggert. Pours golden amber with fast-rising carbonation and a moderate off-white head. Thick webs of lacing all around the glass. Nose of sprucey-cannabis and sweet blood orange sections -- 102 IBUs, and nostril-stinging is in full effect. Wow, taste is much sweeter and far less bitter than expected: corn syrup-enhanced orange-grapefruit juice and sugary caramel maltiness almost all the way through yields to a distinctly cannabinoid pine-flavored finish. Mouthfeel is astringent and juicy but becomes thicker, more syrupy as the beer warms. Ridiculously delicious piney hop burps. Actually, I'd say that the aftertaste is the best aspect of this generally good DIPA. I think it's more drinkable when well-chilled. Welcome to WNY, Avery!

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Photo of SilentSabre
4.67/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Delicious, and what a wonderful smell!! It poured a clear dark orange colour with a thick, snow white fluffy head that dissolved in approximately 20 secondes into a thick ring about the edges of the glass. The smell was tremendous!! Big grapefruit - citrus smell that contacted my nose before I even brought the glass up to my face to smell it. The taste is packed with citrus like hops, as well, with the grapefruit being quite pronounced and right up front. It finished with a lovely hop biterness and is very refreshing. Mouthfeel is smooth and carbonated to a level condusive to the style. This is everything I hoped it would be and more, quite honestly. Great Divide's Hercules was my favourite of the style until about 6 minutes ago!! Anyone who fancies that, should definitely try this!! Smashing!!

Blessed Be


Ah yes! The label on mine says, "Bottled in Feb. of 2006. Batch No.3" 9.9% alc/vol (versus the 9.7 as stated here).

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Photo of Naes
3.8/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This is a very clear light amber colored IPA with hues of orange around the edges. Its head is a tall layer of white that laces and retains quite well.
The aroma is full of citrus (grapefruit and orange rinds) and has a slight piney presence.
The flavor has a surprising amount of malt to it, but it is still dominated by the hops. Grapefruit and pine are very distinctive but it does remain balanced. The alcohol is noticeable, but does not take away from the flavor.
Mouth feel is medium in body and nicely carbonated, but the drinkability is hindered by its strong alcohol content.

Overall verdict: this is a very good beer, but the alcohol content mixed with the bottle size will keep me from getting this brew again.

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Photo of johnniemarg
3.92/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber marked "Bottled in Feb. 2006, Batch 3". Honey color, slightly amber. Crystal clear with lazy carbonation. Very little head when poured. Very little lacing.

Smell is crisp, clean piney hops. I can just make out some sweetness underneath the hops.

The hops are very pleasant tasting and not overdone...not a hop bomb. Actually I can't believe this has 102 IBUs. The malt is there, but fairly well hidden as I swish it around my mouth. At first I just barely make out some orangey sweetness. The faster I drink it, the sweeter it tastes, especially in the finish. This is a pretty good beer, but there's one thing that bothers me a little - there is a soapy flavor in there I notice now and then.

Medium/Light bodied and oily with noticable carbonation sharpness on the tongue.

Overall, this is a pretty drinkable IIPA. I really like the hop blend they've used (not sure what it is) and the overall balance. Definitely give this a try.

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Photo of Gavage
3.4/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled in 2005.

Appearance: cloudy yellow / orange in color with a short 1/4" head. A spot or two of lace develops. A few carbonation bubbles are seen rising from the bottom of the glass.

Smell: tons of alcohol, citrus, and a piney bitterness that is overwhelming and not very enjoyable.

Taste: huge malt backbone, loads of grapefruit slices and piney bitterness. Alcohol is quite evident. Nicely balanced but an overload for the tastebuds.

Mouthfeel: lightly crisp at the start. The finish is dry and smooth. Medium heavy in body. The aftertaste is very long on the bitterness and alcohol tones.

Drinkability: a true slow sipper, and an over the top version of a double IPA. There are better ones out there that aren't so in your face.

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Photo of kmcnair
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had Avery's Maharaja a few times and I have always enjoyed it as it is one of the most well balanced double IPAs that I have tried. I was pleased to find it at a local bottle shop.

Pours a clean copper hue that has great clarity. There's a cream colored head that stands about a half an inch that fades into a ring of thick bubbles. Lots of very thick creamed long lasting lace on the glass.

Aroma is fragrant and hoppy, strong notes of resinous Simcoe and piney Centennial. Citric grapefruit like esters. A hint of sweet malts.

Clean malty sweetness that is just right, very even. Hop bittering is strong, assertive and mildly astringent. Hops offer a blend of citrus fruit and pine. Slight vegetal flavor. Bitter and spicy alcoholic bite in the finish.

Medium body that is smooth and creamy, carbonation is clean and balanced, warming as it goes down from the high level of alcohol, dry and astringent finish.

Nice offering from Avery, definitely meets the criteria for a west coast American double IPA. Overall, a very pleasant, enjoyable offering that is sure to please most any hop head out there. While at times the alcohol is visible, this brew is very easy to drink and it will creep up on you. Drink with caution. Maharaja is welcome at my place anytime.

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Photo of bigdeuce
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice hoppy, grassy taste. A little too syrupy, but terrific smell and leaves lacing down the glass. Can be tough to drink too many, as alcohol is prevalent and high. However, if you love IPA's, this is an awesome offering. Just hard to make a session brew, but that's just cause of the style. And nice hoppy grapefruit, kick the backend.

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Photo of jameaterblues
5/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Hop Devil Grill (nyc). I like Avery's Hog Heaven and I had never seen their beer on tap before and I got a wonderful surprise.
A- The beer was a dark golden amber hue(there was definitely some light that could get through, but not much), with a 1/4 inch creamy white head....the head left a really thick lace.
S- the smell was of herbal/floral hops, some carmel malt, but it had a wonderful strong peach and apricot nose. The peach and apricot was the predominant smell.
T- The body had a good hop/malt balance. Early on in the body the carmel malt was easily detectable, some of the peach and apricot came though in the middle of the body, but there was a predominance of spicy herbal hops. The hops really hit as the beer finished and left a strong hopy bitterness for the after taste.
M/D- This beer was really surprising and one of the best that I have ever had. The alcohol was disguised very well for being so high(9.7-9.9abv), and although the hops were very big in the finish the beer felt very well balanced between the carmel malts, the fruity flavors, and the hops. I think what did it for me was the smell of the apricot/peach every time you lifted the glass up to your mouth, it really just hit me, and to be followed by such flavor was just wonderful. This was really drinkable for the high alcohol level, so be careful it creeps up on you. I enjoyed it so much I picked up a bottle and brought it back with me on the plane. I'll find out soon if it is as good out of the bottle as it is on tap.

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Photo of phisig137
3.69/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a nice amber color, but I had to work a bit to get any head out of this one. Nice lacing

Aroma is pleasantly, and aggressively hoppy. Very piney hops, with some cirtus balance.

Flavor is rather malty up from, with huge hop flavors, and finished solidly bitter. Quite enjoyable. Mouthfeel is full, but I feel it's slightly overcarbonated. Drinkability is decent, but the bittering hops begin to take thier toll on your tongue after 1/2 a glass.

Quite a nice beer overall, as are most of Avery's offerings.

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Photo of briman
4.04/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served from bottle into standard pint glass.

Pours a somewhat light amber....crystal clear, with maybe a quarter inch white head that dissipated quickly. Some lacing.

Aroma is strong...hoppy, notes of pine & citrus. The citrus notes seems to lean more towards a tangerine smell in this beer.

Taste has some malt sweetness upfront, hoppy front to back. Citrus notes throughout. Finish is mildly bitter, doesn't quite give that nice grapefruit rind bitterness that I would have expected. Bitterness in the finish doesn't seem to linger as long as in other examples. To some degree, it's almost like a hop explosion everywhere BUT the finish. It seems a little out of balance, not too much so, but it is obviously overcharged a little on the hop side.

Medium body....low carbonation. Very drinkable, but probably not sessionable due to the high ABV. Warming effect is there, but it's not in your face...kind of slowly works it's way in.

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Photo of IntriqKen
1.64/5  rDev -61%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

First off, I love Avery Beers and their IPA is among my favorites..that said....
Pours a clear golden orange amber with a single finger head that melts to a very small lace for this type of beer.
Aroma is....aroma is...aroma is a mistake. Bitter hops with nothing piney or citrusy...just sort of nasty bitter.
Taste is also a mistake...something I can't identify...bitter hops with strong alcohol...maybe medicinal alcohol. Sweetness that can't really be identified with the malts...just extremely unbalanced...the flavors don't seem to belong together.
Aftertaste and mouthfeel is creamy with an alcohol burn afterwards.
Drinkablility? Sorry...I'm not even going to finish this one.

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Photo of bashiba
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Since this beer was last brewed in August I am assuming this beer has had some time to mellow.

Poured a nice thick orange with small amounts of head, but tons of retentention and lacing.

Smell is full of the usual suspects - Grapefruit and Lemon, but also contains a nice butteryness that sets apart from the usual DIPA smell.

Taste is has a nice thick malt backbone for a DIPA, with that creamy buttery smell coming through, after a bit the hops do kick in, but not in an overwhelming way, with a nice bit of floral grapefruit flavor. I would assume that the hops would be stronger if this beer was fresher.

Mouthfeel is very creamy and full with lots of carbonation.

Overall a very drinkable and enjoyable beer, I can't wait to try a fresh one when it hits the store this summer.

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Photo of Bitterbill
3.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 22oz bottle(room temp) a deep gold with a medium sized head of foam that dissipates quickly into a fine layer with some lacing.

The smell is lemon and grapefruit hoppiness...lots of it.

The taste reflects the smell to the letter. Lots of bitter lemon and grapefruit with just the barest of malt presence *near* the finish and even that is overwhelmed again with a bitter finish. And then, the warming from the alcohol moves in..hmmm....this one is not for the weak at heart.

Bottom line: This is a hop *monster*...look yee not for any malt balance because it just isn't there. I recommend it for occasional useage.

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Photo of hanco005
4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

1 pint 6fl oz bottle, bottled in February 2006, Batch 3, 102 IBUs, 1.085 Original Gravity, 9.9% ABV….a lot of information on the bottle. Poured into a nonic pint glass

A—deep amber orange, very clear, with a 1 ½ inch off white foamy head that has lots of staying power, in fact there is still about ¼ inch of head left when I finished the bottle, full lacing shadows every inch of the inside and slowly fades away

S—extreme grapefruit fragrance, a little floral, bitter, of course, a touch of malty sweetness is hidden in there as well

T—grapefruit first, then pepper, some other citrus fruits, stays bitter the whole way through and the aftertaste lingers for a long time. Finishes very dry This is very tasty

M—sharp and dry, light/medium bodied, perfect carbonation

D—excellent. A hop bomb for sure, but definitely drinkable. The almost 10% ABV prevents it from being a session beer, but another bottle of this would be welcomed.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

22 oz. bomber purchased at Hollingshead Deli in Orange, CA. for $6.49 in early April, 2006.

Pours a nice, clear, orange-amber with a moderate off-white head that collapses, but a solid cover lasts through the session. The sides of the glass show lacing from top to bottom.

Aroma is quite pleasant, aromatic hops, grassy and fruity (grapefruit) and solidly in the DIPA style. Flavor follows through- quite tasty. Sharp evergreen oils mix with oranges with a solid malt background.

The amazing part of this beer (and the reason for its highest praise, in my mind) is that this high ABV DIPA only has the slightest alcohol burn at the back of the mouth, and it is highly drinkable. I almost didn't open this tonight because of the alcohol content, but it is highly drinkable for the style. There are some that do it better for me in the flavor profile, but I can easily drink this one and enjoy it.

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Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 1,810 ratings.