Dismiss Notice
Extreme Beer Fest:Los Angeles

Join us December 9th in Los Angeles for the ultimate throwdown of craft beer creativity!

Learn more...
Dismiss Notice
Introducing: Project Extreme Brewing (a Dogfish Head + BeerAdvocate project)

Maharaja | Avery Brewing Company

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
MaharajaMaharaja
BA SCORE
4.23/5
Exceptional
5,659 Ratings
MaharajaMaharaja
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
averybrewing.com

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

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.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-03-2005

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#860
Reviews:
1,872
Ratings:
5,659
pDev:
10.17%
Bros Score:
4.28
 
 
Wants:
395
Gots:
880
Trade:
7
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,659 |  Reviews: 1,872
Photo of smithj4
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.08/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes. Batch 13, bottled March 2011.

A: Pours a hazy amberish copper with a billowy white head which leaves a smeared lace.

S: Nose is citrus (grapefruit) and floral combined with a malty carmel sweetness.

T: Taste follows the nose but in reverse. Big sweet malts with a floral hop overload. Piney and bitter.

M: Oily, resinous and sticky sweet.

O: Not the best batch I've had. I recall others seemed much more hop forward in both the taste and smell. ABV is well hidden, but its presence is definitely felt by the end of the bottle.

 552 characters

Photo of atrocity
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of nathanmiller
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Gkruszewski
4.18/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of PhineasMcClintock
3.25/5  rDev -23.2%

Photo of paulish
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of smcolw
3.72/5  rDev -12.1%
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.

 810 characters

Photo of XmnwildX12
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%

Photo of mendvicdog
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of russpowell
4.65/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I figure I'll give this another review, had it since my original review. I believe I shorted it, we'll see...

Pours a light amber with 3 fingers of rocky offwhite head. Super lacing & head retention.

S: Huge hops potpurri! Pine & grapefruit

T: Grapefruit, pineyness & some lemmon notes up front. Malt & caramel sweetness sneak around the hops as this warms, but not for long. Also jammy & fruitty notes infiltrate before getting crushed by the hops (herbal & piney). Finishes warming, uber herbal hoppy & a little fruitty (dates & apricots). A great total DIPA taste package

MF: Medim bodied, slightlty oily, with medium carbonation, skews hoppy, duh

Drinks fairly easy, a little to intense to session on, but I could if forced too! Still a bit pricey @ $6.50 a bomber

 783 characters

Photo of ZEB89
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.88/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a hazy, caramel-colored body with a bubbly white head.

Smell: Pungent, heavily hopped aroma with sweet-smelling notes of ripe apricots, grapefruit, and pine oils. The fragrant hop scent overlays some hints of freshly made dough and candy sugar.

Taste: Initial biscuity, toffee maltiness drops off into a tangy, sweetened citrus flavor. Grapefruit, mainly. Maybe some oranges, too. Finishes with a middling, restrained bitterness and a touch of alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, although its especially oily, and syrupy on the palate.

Drinkability: This beer does a fitting job of balancing both the bitter and sweet elements to make for a fair Double IPA.

*4/19/08: Feb. '07 bottle. For me, a toned down citrus character and a dialed up peppery lemongrass character, both in aroma and taste. Otherwise, it's fairly similar and received a score consistent with the original review.

 904 characters

Photo of mdaschaf
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes 4/22/11.

A: The beer is a clear dark orange/amber color with a two finger off-white, foamy head. Slow dissipation with nice lacing down the sides.

S: Very nice aroma, a great combination of pine and citrus. Tons of grapefruit here. There is a some caramel and a little vanilla as well, but the hops dominate here.

T: Lots of pine up front, love how strong it comes through. This gives way to an explosion of tropical fruits - grapefruit, mango, and some papaya. The malt bill does a good job at balancing things out for a DIPA. The hops still dominate, but there a little bit of caramel to offset things.

M: Medium bodied, smooth and very crisp. Has a nice bitter/dry finish. Slight hint of alcohol.

O: A beer I would love to have stocked in the fridge. Have had it now on tap and bottle and it is fantastic. Certainly one of my favorites from Avery thus far.

 886 characters

Photo of duceswild
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.08/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Burnished orange-copper with golden butterscotch accents. Even though the pour wasn't overly aggressive, the head filled most of the pint glass. It's somewhere between palest caramel and ivory in color, with an upper surface that is occupied by thousands of fragile, glassy bubbles. A thick blanket of lace is currently visible.

The nose is the hop monster that was anticipated. However, two things keep me from being wildly enthusiastic. The citrus and spruce of Centennial and Simcoe aren't helped by what I assume is the contribution from Magnum. The second thing is that the almost double digit alcohol is incompletely buried.

The same faults apply to the flavor profile, although I hesitate to use that word in what is still a delicious beer. The bulwark-like maltiness practically oozes sweet, sticky caramel. I'm not sure about an 'insane quantity of malted barley', as the label claims, but it's at least mentally unbalanced. Maharaja is sweeter than most DIPAs. Probably too much so.

What would a DIPA be without hops? Relax, that's strictly a rhetorical question. While this DIPA has a massive amount of them, it doesn't have the 'deranged amount' that the label would have us believe. What is it with Avery and mental illness? (rhetorical again). Like the aroma, the flavor is dominated by candied citrus peel and pine sap, but the less desirable flavor qualities of the Magnum hops keep getting in the way.

Any beer with this much malt is bound to have a killer mouthfeel. It's expansive, smooth as heavy silk and some kinda likeable. It promotes sipping rather than gulping, which is a good thing since the beer tastes like a 12%'er and drinks like one too. Time and warming have smoothed some of the initial rough edges.

Maharaja Imperial India Pale Ale is the antithesis of a well-mannered DIPA. It's big, bold and bombastic. Avery has a penchant for brewing Big Beer, but they tend to forget that refinement is a necessary quality in even the biggest beer. The relatively high scores that I've granted are a testament to my love of all things hoppy. I'm guessing that those of you who don't belong to 'Hopheads For Life' won't feel so generous.

 2,165 characters

Photo of drewone
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

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".

 446 characters

Photo of mdfb79
3.93/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From 3/12/10 notes.

a - Pours an amber color

s - Smells of hops and sweet malts. A little citrus as well.

t - Smooth sweet malts, as well as some citrusy hops. Hints of fruit as well. Quite enjoyable.

m - Full body with moderate carbonation, pretty smooth. Easy to drink considering the high ABV.

d - I liked this DIPA a lot. I thought there was a nice combination of citrusy hops and sweet malts that created a nice smooth taste that's easy to drink. Would definitely try again.

 484 characters

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

The second beer of the sample I took last night. I was very excited to finally be able to try this one on tap. Consumed on 04/03/2009.

The pour was very nice with a rich light golden amber. Smooth and very cloudy, this thing looked like it was about to kick my ass, and as I was about to find out, it was defintley going to. Lots of ripe grapefruit and pineapple hops that just tore through the air as soon as I leaned in to it. Huge notes of hops dominated the entire flavor as well. Sharp flavor here as the resin like hops took all the moisture out of my mouth and left me parched, dry and looking for more. One of the best finishes I have had in a big IPA in a very, very long time. I would love to try this one again and will defitely be on the lookout to try it again.

 775 characters

Photo of Zaphog
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of Alieniloquium
4.07/5  rDev -3.8%
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.

 1,104 characters

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

I had this on tap at Shady McGrady's Downtown location - 1/2 price during happy hour, served chilled in a snifter.

A - A rust colored copper w/ good clarity and thick whipped light beige cap with a tiny bead. The color has accents of gold and crimson and lace clings well

S - the smell is rather pungent ad hoppy with both pine and citrus with a mild floral element. The nose is bolstered by a slightly sweet malt note and light alcohol ester

M - The feel is very good, it starts sweet with a gentle resinous texture from the hops with a bitterness that builds and spiced tinges with the alcohol moderate in the feel. There is a drying effect from both the alcohol and hop resins on the palate with mellow malt sweetness and hop acidity

T - A flavorful blend of hop goodness! The slightly piney hops have a light spice and rind flavor with a mellow bit of fruit acidity and light astringency. The resinous texture leads to a mild malt which balances the almost hot alcohol flavor and high bitterness. The taste is well nuanced with hop flavor utilized above the bitterness factor, it comes off as a really juicy sweet hop taste first and bitter spicy and warm taste next with alcohol only noted after the swallow

D - This is a seriously well made Imperial IPA, I commend the talented folks at Avery for the fact that malt presence and yet still an abundance of hop flavor and long finishing with only a very mild alcohol influence on the taste - you definitely know it is there after the first glass which is whey I gave a 4, but very smooth for the strength of 10.3%

 1,573 characters

Photo of orangesol
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of atlbravsrno1
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.23 out of 5 with 5,659 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.