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Maharaja | Avery Brewing Company

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1,836 Reviews

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

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

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Reviews: 1,836 | Ratings: 5,523
Photo of Derek
4.68/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

1.085 OG, 9.78% ABV, 2007 vintage, relatively fresh.

A: Amber-orange with a fluffy, off-white head; great retention & lacing.

S: Big hop nose (Grapefruit, pine, grass and apricots), with hints of tropical fruit and a slight sulphery, mineral aroma.

T: Plenty of hop flavour (Pine, grapefruit, apricot & a little grassy spice). At over 100 IBU's, it's not harsh at all (must be the nobel, low cohumulone hops). Slight cotton-candy fruity esters from the yeast, with a little toffee sweetness and biscuity malt in the background. Alcohol is EXTREMELY well-hidden under all of these flavours! I love it. It really works well, but the magnum is a little untraditional for an American DIPA.

M: Full body is smooth and creamy, with a slight acidic finish.

D: Incredible considering its strength!

World class.

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Photo of PittBeerGirl
4.16/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A- beautiful beer. Bright amber body with thick foamy white head that has great retention. Plenty of lacing is left behind in the glass.

S- Big grapefruit smell. Some hops and malts noted.

T- This is a very well balanced DIPA. Initial taste of sweet caramel malt and tart grapefruit. Big hoppy aftertaste. The tart grapefruit lingers and covers the alcohol.

M- High carbonation and juicy body. Makes the beer somewhat smooth.

D- The high ABV is well hidden. This was a great brew that I would have again. One was enough for the night though.

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Photo of MiScusi
3.28/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

On tap at the Stone Bistro. Pours a cloudy orange with a thin eggshell white head. The aroma is lots of orange rind. The taste was highly hopped in the citrus variety. Orange comes through in the taste as well, the most of any beer I've tried, even the Craftsman Orange Grove Ale. Mouthfeel was in the double IPA syrupy sweet variety but still lots of citrus in there to balance out the sweetness. Pretty good DIPA overall.
4.5 out of 5

On tap at O'Brien's. Great looking IPA- orangish red and super clear. Smell is quite pungent with citrus hops, and heat. The alcohol is present everywhere in this beer. It comes across as a little harsh and very bitter, and the bitterness seems much more alcohol-derived than from hops. Can't or wouldn't really want to drink that much of this beer.

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Photo of BMoney575
4.6/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sampled on 6-9-07

Pours an awesome neon orange color with a huge off-white head that settles to a half inch with immense lacing.

Smell is super sweet piney hops, with an equally huge amount of malt to back it up.

Taste is all sweet hops, with flavors of citrus fruits and grassy pine. The malt character comes in next to lend a meatiness in the middle. The finish is bitter and dry and very good. No noticeable alcohol at all.

Mouthfeel is perfect, you can feel the hop flavors in the middle of your tongue and the bitterness on the sides.

Drinkability is surprisingly good, considering the huge flavors.

Overall an outstanding beer. One of the best double IPA's I've ever had. Ridiculously recommended.

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

Pours a bright slightly hazy gold color, with a nice white head.

Aroma is a citrus hop blast! Big time fruit... mostly a pungent grapefruit. Whoa! Maybe a bit much... but still quite nice.

Flavors are citrus forward hops. A nice clean crisp taste. Some creamy malts in the middle, and a solid biting bitter hops finish. Nice sipper for the warmer weather.

Beer has a nice big, full and supple mouthfeel.

A very drinkable DIPA. Alcohol is barely noticed. (Yikes!) This is a little bit overboard on the citrus flavors, but still well put together, and quite tasty. Certainly worth a try... a very solid beer.

Bottle courtesy of brandonman63... thanks again!

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Photo of jjayjaye
4.03/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy butterscotch color will less than a full finger off white head that fades quickly. 3D peaks of lacing observed.

A sweet malty smell mixed with a more timid pine and grapefruit nose.

Medium bodied, the mouth feel has an immediate tingle from the carbonation and an additional solid hop characteristic while swallowing. A nicely balanced, yet not overly sweet, malt presence.

The flavor is mirror image of the smell. Sweet and citrusy. An enjoyable interpretation of the style. Best when allowed to warm up some.

Drinkability - The 9.7% ABV is well hidden on the flavor, but it is present on the way down. Another lazyboy beverage or possibly the last one on the way out. Good drinker; Avery rocks!

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Photo of ByTor2112
4.87/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Mike's garage, thanks to Mike and Dale for sharing!
Well this is definitely one heckuva brew. Beautiful deep orange color, not quite amber to me. Thick lumpy clumpy head with lace that adheres to the glass like a champ!
Aroma-full on hop bomb that explodes with citus and a faint hint of sweet malty aroma is there as well.
Mouthfeel-thick resinous malt body that is so laden with hops I am in heaven. Grapefruit and numerous citrus characteristics that are like nothing I have ever had. This is what I was hoping my Dreadnaught would be, no offense, but this Imperial IPA is over the top and I like it. The finish stays the same. A froth on the palate only intensifies the flavors and gets some of the malt sweetness to get past the hops. Well worth the wait! I had eaten earlier and after two glasses, I was done for the night. Almost a 5....

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Photo of beersands
4.49/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - light burn orange with an off-white head. Head settles into a tall lumpy mass with nice lacing.

S - Mostly tropical fruit - at first it is sweet grapefruit which, after a rest, becomes mountains of ripe Mexican papaya, some mango and notes of gentle spiciness. Malt is not not a factor. The head sticks to the glass all the way down.

T - starts malty and finishes mango and grapefruit. finishes and lingers sweet grapefruit.

M - about the same as orange juice

D - one of the most drinkable IPA's I've ever had. It's a close call between this and Stone's IPA. I think Stone is more of an IPA, but the delicate fruit aroma of papaya is a big plus for me (brings back memories of childhood excursions into Mexico). The bitter sweet grapefruit finish begs another sip.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appears a hazed orange copper hue with orange tined cream head formed large and thick rising above the rim of my glass, leaves an evenflow of bands of lacing around my chalice. Aroma is heavy on grapefruit peal and cut grass balanced with a sugar coating of light biscuit malt character the sweetness and fruit aspects really come through in this one. Flvors of citrus peel, grass, and mild pine combine on the palate upfront with strong bitterness but are balanced out by the large dose of malts with just enough biscuit sweetnss from the pale malts evdient alcohol not overdone at all. Mouthfeel is medium to fuller bodied with enough oily girth from the herbaceous to be fuller but still really smooth with even carbonation. Drinkability is incredible much better than their barleywine, triple, or quad but I could definitely enjoy many more of these especially if that near 10% alcohol allowed it.

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Photo of PlaywrightSam
4.69/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Slightly hazy amber-gold, head that retains fairly well. S: I've had a lot of double IPA's, and this is really outstanding. Hops that slap you in the face offset by a wonderful apricot-citrus note that really balances well. T: The balance continues, a nice rich malt backbone painted thickly over with hops. The fruitiness is what really makes this beer interesting, the grapefruit/pine/apricot that permeates the whole experience. M: Thick and chewy, moderate carbonation. D: I could drink this all night long. A really outstanding beer.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.68/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A - A faint haze in an amber brew with a slight reddish tint. A frothy head that is long lived with thick clumps of lacing.

S - Floral (roses), grapefruit pulp and pine in the aroma. A touch of white pepper.

T - A lot of floral (roses and lillies) hops, grapefruit pulp with some faint smoky caramel maltiness that lingers to the aftertaste where it is joined by a pepper alcohol finish. The aftertaste is mostly a floral bittermess. There is a very faint medicinal presence throughout the beer.

M - Medium bodied and smooth. It isn't refreshing though.

D - No problem finishing this one. I might have it again if I find it on tap somewhere. Worth a try.

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Photo of markgugs
4.53/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

[bottled 2005 on label] poured from 22oz. bomber into a tulip snifter

A: A nice creamy beige head floats atop a gorgeously cloudy orange/amber-hued body. I can see already how much lacing this beer will leave stuck to the glass like ivy.

S: It's obvious right away this beer has been aging for some time, a delectable nutty roasty malt wafts upward, with only a hint of the resiny hops that existed. Thankfully...

T/M: ...this monster is as robust as ever! A massive wall of grapefruit dives headfirst in a creamy pool of sweetened, yeasty bread. Delicious! A perfectly bitter finish lingers just long enough, smacks the lips and demands to be fed again.

D: This regal beer's only drawback is that it only comes in 22oz. bombers, and the high ABV will knock you sideways if you're not careful. Not "drinkable" in the all night sense, but surely in the grab one whenever you can sense. Awesome beer!

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Photo of Frozensoul327
3/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Hazy orange color with hints of reddish yellow hues. Medium levels of carbonation, and a dense, rich head of orange/white foam. Lots of lacing.

S: Smooth, yet dense aromas of hops, citrus, pine, malty grain and a earthy grassy sweetness.

T: Strong hop presence that overpowers all the nuance flavors; grapefruit, pine, sweet & sour citrus notes. They're all washed away by a dry hop presence. Malty backbone quickly gets thrown to the back of the palate. Very hoppy, and a bit too much "one sided". Flavor doesn't really develop.

M: Oily, slightly sticky and dense. Otherwise, the carbonation remained in the glass and didn't translate to the palate.

D: One and done. This one was way too flat and boring for me. There are far better DIPA's out there. The abundance of alcohol didn't help things, either.

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Photo of jwff
4.6/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Batch #5. Nice looking beer. Rustic orange with a nice white head and lacing all the way down. Smell is a mix of citrus of pine hops. Mandarin oranges come through with a bit of bitter rind. Incredibly juicy and fresh. Taste follows suit to the smell except more intense, and sugary malts are present but they take a back seat to the hops. Just enough bread and caramel to calm things down, but the hops dominate. Very rindy, but I don't see that as a bad thing as it keeps it from being too sweet. Creamy mouthfeel that remains light despite the abv. If it weren't for the price this would be my go to.

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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 steamingheap
4.44/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy amber with a huge white frothy head. The aroma is primarily evergreen hops and a touch of sweet malt with underlying citrus just to add to the complexity. Citrus hops dominate the initial flavor before being backed by and blending with a substantial sweet malt background. The high alcohol content shows up after the malt and just before the dry hop bitterness finish. A hefty mouthfeel rounds everything out nicely.

Overall, this is a great double IPA. It is good for an hour of enjoying the smells and flavors. The flavor profile moves through 3 to 4 phases at every sip. I've had beers with this much alcohol that hide it completely. Given that this one gives a slight alcohol burn that interrupts the other flavors, I can't give it the "5". Still, this is a supurb beer.

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Photo of TheSarge
4.06/5  rDev -3.3%
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!

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

Another winner from Avery.

Very similar to Great Divides Hercules Double IPA. This one has slightly more hops and a little less on the sweet side, but the difference is minimal.

Appearance: Golden/Amber with a light but consistent lacing that sticks to the glass.

Smell: Very strong Hops with Citrus overtones. Grapefruit and pine are very strong.

Taste: Excellent! From start to finish this one impresses. It does have a strong lingering hop and alcohol taste and warmth, but this is not a bad thing.

Mouthfeel: Sticks to you a little, but not annoyingly so. Overall very good.

Drinkability: This one pint bottle is all I would want, but I enjoyed every sip!!!

Highly Recommended.

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

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber bottle.

Appearance - The beer poured out a hazy apricot with about a 1/4 inch off-white head. As I drank, the glass displayed lots of belgian lace.

Aroma - Wonderful - Pine, peaches, mango, grapefruit, and a little background biscuit.

Taste - Wow... Dreadnaught is my favorite beer, and this one is almost dead-on. Biscuits, pine, grapefruit, and lemons - all mixed together.

Mouthfeel - Full with a dry finish.

Drinkability - Excellent - I love it. The only thing that would limit the amount you would drink is the fairly high alcohol content. You wouldn't drink this all night - but I'd like too.

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Photo of isaac
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. to pint glass.

bright copper/orange/reddish body sits hazily under a long-lasting 1.5 fingers of creamy foam. when i opened the bottle (and note that i was at work, after hours - a coffeeshop with VERY strong smelling, and quite delicious, coffee) the room was instantly full of piney, riseny, fresh-outta-the-woods-still-wet-from-morning-dew hoppiness, but also slight sweetness, and i mean SLIGHT, from the malts. taste is much expected from a DIPA, with a big (background of) toffee-ish, caramelly-sweet malts, and, yup, you guessed it, boat-loads of hops: juicy, resiny, piney, and finishes somewhat fruity. nice big, smooth moutfeel and well concealed ABV, but, this took me an hour or two to finish as i cleaned up behind the counter and in the shop... man, this ain't no lawn-mower beer!

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Photo of PhiloPsych
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

According to the label, this beer was bottled in February 2007 (batch 5). Yellowish orange out of the bottle and hazy orange in the glass. A quarter inch head bubbled up from the pour, but dissipated pretty quickly leaving just a bit of foam around the edge. Aroma was strongly hoppy, floral, and a bit piney. Wow, what a hop profile! Tasted like it was freshly dry-hopped--I had an IPA on cask once with hops added directly into the cask, and Maharaja reminded of that. The mouthfeel was pretty clean (maybe a little bit of stickiness in the finish), not syrupy like Stone Ruination, but not thin or watery either. When the beer was cold, the hops completely dominated the malt (unlike AleSmith's and Sierra Nevada's IPAs); as it warmed, though, a bit more of the malty sweetness showed up. I liked it, but it was almost overpowering. I needed some Indian food to eat with it.

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

22oz bomber -> goblet
Bottled in Feb 2007
Batch 5

Pours a clear ambered orange in the light, but appears murky rust color out of the light. A huge clumpy slightly oft white head rest on top and stays put. Spiderwebbed clumped lace all over. After the last pour,.huge cliffs of lace make me want to use my finger and just get a taste. Carbonation appears medium and persistant.

Nose: Wow, hop blast. Dried whole hop scent, very earthy. Pine, orange juice, peach, mango.

Thick and juicy mouth. Smooth even flavor. Hops dominate flavor, but a supberb malt back balances this beer and keeps things in check. Some good fruity flavors on top of the malt, than a mellowed bitterness that finishes, simply smooth.

A smooth ride for sure. One bomber is probably just about right for a warm spring Sunday afternoon.

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Photo of jasonjlewis
4.63/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

torn between 4.5 and 5.0 on appearance and taste.

This is one hell of a dipa. Great head and lacing. Nice hoppy smell. Not as malty as some other dipas.

Taste is malty with a malt backbone that doesn't get in the way of a hopfix. Alcohol is deceptive at 9.7%.

Mouthfeel is crisp and refreshing. Not too thick like other dipas.

This is one hell of a dipa. It is one of the most sessionable that I have ever had. I highly recommend this beer.

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Photo of Hibernator
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Avery Maharaja
22 oz brown bottle
Bottled in Feb. 2007 - Batch 5
Served in an Allagash tulip glass

Pours a dark amber with a hazed-induced peach tint. Awesome head on top that leaves marvelous trails of sticky lace all over the glassware. This one looks good from the start.

Whoa...powerful nose up front. A tad floral, piney and fruity sweet. Lemon citrus twang meets power after a couple of whiffs.

Sweet and juicy flavors dominate the palate. Grainy backbone with a syrupy malt presence.

The hop profile is off the charts. WTF !?! We're talking fresh orange slices, pineapple, mango, pine resin & black pepper. Incredibly smooth, a tad spicy and super enjoyable overall. A monster brew and incredible Double IPA offering from Avery.


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Photo of jkaufman
3.91/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a 22oz. bottle into a tankard.

A: Pours slightly cloudy and amber, with a thick, frothy, krausen-like head. Excellent lacing and head retention. Looks spectacular.

S: Initially Cascade hops dominate, but once things settle down after the pour, it smells very malty with a bit of aromatic hops. Somewhat surprising for something called an "imperial IPA".

T and M: Bittering hops are not as overwhelming as expected. Instead, this ale is fairly balanced with the scales tipped in favor of hops. The head (which is practically guaranteed to stick around until the end) tastes very hoppy but is welcome in this context. Goes down bubbly and syrupy, finishes syrupy and sweet with a hop bite.

D: Very drinkable for such a big ale, but one bomber is enough.


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Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
4.2 out of 5 based on 5,523 ratings.
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