Maharaja - Avery Brewing Company

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1,798 Reviews

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Reviews: 1,798
Hads: 5,231
Avg: 4.2
pDev: 17.86%
Wants: 345
Gots: 650 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,798 | Hads: 5,231
Photo of JoshuaMason
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Translucent Copper; Some Floaties; Bubbly, Off-White Head; Vigorous Carbonation; Great Lace
Smell: Dank; Catty; Citrus Rind; Herbal Hops; Over-Ripe Banana, but not in a wild-yeast way.
Taste: Dank; Crème Brule; Herbal Hops; Oniony?; Alcohol
Mouth-feel: Medium Body; Medium Carb, Resinous, Dry Alch Finish
Overall: Wonderful DIPA
Comments: If anything, I would like a little less Alcohol on the finish.

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Photo of beerviews2013
4.8/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pour: poured a nice light brown with a slight tan head that was pretty thick

Smell: piney with a sweetness

Taste: being 102 ibus this is a hoppy beer hops hops hops all over the pallet. The malts in this beer are pretty strong to ease the bitterness but its not enough everytime you take a drink the hops are kicking at your tongue making your taste buds tingle.

Overall: this is one bitter beer and i loved it. Just the way a imperial ipa is suppose to be.

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Photo of Dellpepper123
5/5  rDev +19%

I'm from Portland. Home of many fine beers. However, this is simply the finest brew in production today. If u can find it... Buy it... Drink it. Rejoice.

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Photo of Pray_For_Mojo
4.22/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a tulip.

Aroma: caramel-malt sweetness and hops. You know this will be a hop-bomb. Alcohol is noticeable.

Appearance: copper-orange and bright. No chill haze even right out of the frig. Head is 2-fingers thick and light tan that fades to a thin veil.

Flavor: caramel-sweetness dominates the aroma initially, so much so, as to suggest this beer will be cloyingly sweet. This is not the case, though. Malt Flavors are sweet biscuit/bread, which grow increasingly sweet as the beer warms. Eventually the beer becomes too sweet. Hops are certainly ever present which attempt to balance the sweetness. Nice, dank hops. The 10.2% abv is noticeable but contributes to this beer. Despite the 10%+ abv, the alcohol is not hot or over the top.

Mouthfeel: medium to med-heavy. Chewy.

Overall: this is a quality IIPA, one of the better ones widely distributed and readily available for me (Denver). Hops are at the forefront, but are balances well the with malt.

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Photo of wedge421
4.72/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Orange with a slight white head and full of hop haze goodness.

S - WOW! Tropical fruits and citrus scream out of the glass and tap. So Fresh!

T - The aroma was just the start of this one. Huge malts notes blend with the hops and bitterness to make this one amazing beer!

D - At almost 11% its not the most drinkable beer but man this is a great beer. I could definitely have more then one of these.

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Photo of AdamHart22
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

22oz bomber into a tulip. Purchased by my wife because "it has a cool bottle."

A - a nice, deep, copper color. Resembles amber when held to the light.

S - little bit of booze up front. Grapefruit, mango, and other citrusy goodness. The nose has some depth to it and is quite pleasant.

T - Excellent. Really high quality. There is a lack of malt balance in the nose but the beer is extremely balanced and for a high ABV IPA its not too hop forward. Very well done.

M - None of that unpleasant overtly pine after taste. A bit too syrupy but I am being picky here.

O - I'm glad my wife liked the bottle! You can't go wrong with this IPA.

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Photo of cfergusn
4.18/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

clear orange/amber color with a nice slightly off-white head.

Smells of earthy, oily, resinous hops, piney, with big citrus notes, definately some caramel hints also.

Lot of hops, but then a nice amount of malt.

Very flavorful.

Overall a nice combination, not too strong, yet full of body.

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Photo of abeerwiseguy
4.51/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I found a bottle of this brew in a local grocery store with a reasonable release date of No. 17 2013. The bottle was labeled 10.4% ABV and 1 pint 6 oz. (22 oz.). I had read about this Imperial Pale Ale from Avery Brewing Co. and considered it a lucky opportunity just to give it a test flight.

Poured into a 22 ounce glass the color was amber with a thick head that left substantial lacing. The aroma was very busy with hops, citrus, and malty sweetness dominating.

The taste was thick and rich with the malt balanced simultaneously with the bitter hops along with grapefruit and floral flavors. The flavor profile was solid all the way through to the long, lingering finish.

The beer has a rich, luscious mouth feel throughout all the way past the light to medium carbonation and lovely lingering finish.

Overall this beer adds new and welcome taste dimensions to the Imperial IPA battle ground and I highly recommend it. While this is my first beer from Avery Brewing, it won’t be my last.

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Photo of mykie73
4.09/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

reviewed in April 2009

A) bright orange/amber lacing. looks smooth and nicely carbonated. two inch head.

S) best part of this beer. nice hop profile.

T) nice bitterness, reminds me of a love child between pliny the younger and white knuckle .

F) smooth and then hop/alch burn on the end of the throat.

D) worth the $8. could drink a lot of this.

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Photo of Cunningham26
4.06/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Amazing, a clean white head that left layers of intricate lacing throughout. Color was a really great orange, like a hazy sunset, clarified as it settled into a great looking imperial beer.

S- big hops. big grassy, citrusy, earthy hops. big time. one of the best smells out there

T- again, big hops, but to be expected. great, refreshing, full hop flavor. Delivers on its promise of 103 IBUs. after the rush, it settles a bit into a really great IPA maltiness that pervades for the second act. the hops are the first flourish, and remain a backbone throughout, but they give way to a delicious maltiness that rounds out the brew. hop flavor not as well rounded as stone ruination (the only other iipa i can compare with) but does a really great job, getting almost all the way there

M- wonderful. maltiness became sticky at moments, but nothing a BA can't handle.

D- I was very nervous about this because I was handling a bombing mission solo, getting my 22oz hop fix in soliloquy. the reviews made mention of the 10%, so i expected this to be one hot hop bomb, but honestly the booze masks itself extremely well and though I knew it was there, it didn't take anything away overall.

really great brew, would possibly get again, but only if ruination wasn't available.

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Photo of mjgooner13
4.18/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

March 2011 Batch

A- hazy burnt orange color 2 finger cream colored head w/ small bubbles...ok head retention left some good lacing..great looking beer....bubbles streaming from the bottom

S- a mostly malty nose but still some balance...getting slight citrus plus some fantastic toffee malts

T- Same as the nose, mostly malt up front with the sweet toffee bready getting the hop bitterness at the the i get further into the beer a flavor (maybe vanilla) as well as some booziness emerges between the malt and hop bitterness at the end...delicious!

M- Real smooth bodied for sure and flavors glide over the tongue nicely...after a few sips there is some dryness that kicks in and stays at the top of the mouth for a bit...not too dry though

O- Great beer from the look to the smell and the taste matches the smell...sweet toffee malt and hop bitterness...different from some of the other dipa i have had recently and it certainly a class beer and love to try this fresh

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Photo of DesertRat
4.91/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A very unique DIPA. Very piney. Not very hop forward. Finishes smooth and surprising. I am currently under the influence of this 10.5+ abv masterpiece and WOW, I could not tell the alcohol while I was drinking it. Not a hop forward DIPA, which is what made this such a surprising beer. Very happy to have this beer. Will buy in a bomber soon.

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Photo of chefnash51
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Feb 2008 Batch. Bomber was refrigerated since the first day it was in my beer store.

I had doubts that it wouldn't be as fresh as I wanted and I really wanted to find the May batch.

I was not disappointed at all.

A: Beautiful amber color with a thick, creamy white head. Tons of sticky lacing the whole way down the glass.

S: All the sweet notes I love in DIPAs were here. This one smells exceptional to me. Sweet grapefruit, floral, hints of pine.

T: This one drinks with very little bitterness to me, at least not in the pucker yur lips sense. Lots of citrus.

M: A delight in my mouth. Not too thin, or too think.. perfect carbonation.

D: This was a refreshing DIPA, I loved every sip of it and I want more. This was one of my first DIPAs years ago and I don't know why I waited so long to revisit. Very easy to drink.. I could do 2 bombers, but one laid a nice buzz on me.

Paired this with (don't laugh I was hungry and getting a bit drunk) Cracked Peppercorn Triscuits - American cheese - and roasted turkey breast. It tasted great to me!

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Photo of TheViceBlog
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful amber cherry pour. Frothy, fruity, sugary, tons of hops, and very alcoholic. Complex, a terrific finish, and very drinkable. I could have these until I fell off the barstool.

I liked it so much the next day I went to Whole Foods and snagged a bomber of it which I found equally tasty. I'm gonna put this one into my regular IPA rotation.

A pretty damn perfect double IPA. I think it's probably Avery's best beer too.


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Photo of vdoz3
4.46/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber poured into a Coca Cola bell glass ( - hey, it's sorta shaped like an imperial pint glass...

A - extremely cloudy, deep amber/orange body; small <1 finger head builds but instantly dies. The lacing is incredible; spots and trails follow the beverage level down the glass, and the foamy remnants of the head are taking forever to die away completely

S - orangey, citrusy inviting hops dominate but the unmistakable presence of a malt blanket is there even in the nose

T - oh my god...hoppiness everywhere, bright, sharp hops ring out even as the malt backbone quickly follows along, quelling some of the brighter hops and leaving a more balanced aftertaste

M - smooth and silky; the aftereffect (thanks to the malt) is not a depraved, post-hop drymouth, it is instead a very subtle bitterness, one that leaves this reviewer's thirst well quenched and ready for another sip

D - Beautiful...let's have another. Too bad I only bought one.

Picked this up on a recommendation, REALLY glad I did. Got the duganA while I was there, but it was even sharper and brighter with less of a quenching aftertaste (my tasting notes call it "the granny smith of IPAs"). They warned me that Maharaja > duganA...I guess they know their stuff!

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Photo of TheNapkin
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A strong contender for the best Imperial IPA available. The best thing about this beer is that as it warms up the hop bouquet really becomes more and more complex: wild, grassy, dare I say wild oniony/garlicky? Weird, I know, but somehow it works. Pineapple and syrup mix with honeyed grapefruit. A must have for any hophead.

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Photo of bpfishback
4.92/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22 oz bomber into DFH snifter. Bottled about a month ago. Batch 11.

a- reddish copper orange, 1/2 inch of head that fades quickly

s- Dank resiny citrus mango. Hop riot. AMAZING. PTE look out.

t - Follows the nose. Citrus, sweet mango, some malt then bitter on the finish.

m- Mouthfeel is good but nothing amazing. Maybe it needs more carbonation???

d- I love it me. So easy to drink.

I feel that Maharaja gives PTE a run for its money. It is an amazing DIPA. PTE is enamel destroying but it just doesn't have the aromatics that Maharaja does. DIPA/IPA's do not get much better than this.

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Photo of milehighhop
4.34/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Really enjoyed this one, nice cloudy copper color with a light tan head. Good balance between sweet & bitter. Over 10%, but went down nice and smooth. Great stuff, will purchase again for sure.

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Photo of Hemi
4.43/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Golden in color, with a nice creamy head comprised of very small bubbles with great retention. Dense lacing that sticks around.
S - Piney mixed with orange scent. Very pleasant nose.
T - Citrus and pine taste with a nice hoppy bite.
M - Nice mouthfeel, not heavy or thick but definitely not thin.
D - I can drink quite a few of these bombers. Very drinkable although one that keeps you from drinking too quickly enabling the ability to savor the flavor.

My bottle reflects differently from above stated ABV showing 10.54% with an OG of 1.090. Batch 7 Bottled in Feb. 2008.

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Photo of TuckerCarlson
4.07/5  rDev -3.1%
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.

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Photo of keith712
4.68/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Poured from a 22oz bomber bottle into a slightly chilled pint glass. Beautiful light amber head, 2-3" thick from an agressive pour. Medium amber in color and cloudy, you can tell this is going to be a substantial beer! Lacing that lasts and lasts in layers as the beer level drops.

Nose: Citrus, pine, sweet malty-ness, BOOM! HOPS! Very crisp and sharp. Pungent and prominent IPA.

Taste: HOPS assault, sharp and bitter, immediately followed by an awesome malt smoothness that is mildly sweet and really smooths out the flavor!The after taste is piney and crisp, still mildly sweet and hoppy all at the same time. My tastebuds are excited! A very surprising IPA, I was expecting more bitter.

Mouthfeel: Medium thick, leaves a nice coating on the tongue and cheeks. Still can "feel" the hops and malts distinct from each other but combined to make it unique.

Drinkability: VERY much so! At 10.4% abv, it is quite well hidden, but you can feel the warmness from it. Very pungent and exciting! This is what I would call a strong IPA, but for a non-experienced IPA drinker, it is rather well done. Most IPA's hit me too hard, this doesn't, but leaves me knowing it's a "hot" IPA. The malts that Avery brags about are very smooth and powerful to combat the bitter/strong hops.

Overall, I give this a PHAT 9 of 10. Very surprised at the wonderful compliment of flavors.

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Photo of tyamhydrogen
4.29/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Small white head with decent lacing. Definitely pretty red for a DIPA.

S- Caramel, mango, grapefruit, guava, some apple. Lots of sweet citrus here. A little booze but not it does not detract from the aroma. Very enjoyable.

T- More fruit, not a ton of bitterness. The sweet hops shine through very well with just enough bitterness on the back end to keep things in check. Really nice.

M- Rather thin, good low/medium carbonation. The smallest bit of residual hop resin.

O- I'm definitely a fan of this beer. It's big on the tropical citrus hops and that tends to be what I look for in a DIPA. Would definitely buy again.

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Photo of notyourdadsbeer
4.83/5  rDev +15%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On-tap poured into a tulip at Euclid Hall.

A: Bright orange to copper with amber hues, great lacing and a thick of white head.

S: Big massive piney hops, resinous almost and very chronic like. Touch of tropical fruit sweetness and stick thick malt.

T: Surprisingly very well balanced! While the hops are present and seductive with intense bitter quality, the malts thicken up this brew with perfect balance making this a sipper. Tropical fruits- pineapple and mango are present but only sweeten out the hops.

M: Full bodied with a an even coat across the palate. Great carbonation and a finish that's to die for.

D: Fantastic beer! This is a staple for hop heads and IPA's across the board. The alcohol is very well masked and the hops are seductive and balanced with a solid malt backbone. Great beer for winter or summer.

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Photo of smulkowski
4.07/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, Batch 9, bottled in Feb. 2009

A- Orangey-oak color. Low carbonation, one finger head very quickly dissipating.

S- Grapefruit rind and conifer, classic west coast IPA aroma. Warm fragrances of spicecake in the malt.

T- Relatively inconspicuous malt profile opens to an explosion of bitterness. Good hop flavor, highly resinous and floral, but as complex as expected.

M- Somewhat light, relatively silky.

D- For 102 IBU, pretty drinkable.

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Photo of danrodrigue
4.47/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle from BevMo.

Pours an orange, light copper color.

I am new to this but I smell citrus and specifically pineapple.

The taste is similar with big citrus, pineapple taste upfront and a lingering hoppy aftertaste.

It has a medium body mouthfeel, not too heavy.

It is very drinkable. Overall, one of my favorite IPA's. Worth trying at least once!

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Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 1,798 ratings.