Maharaja | Avery Brewing Company

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5,707 Ratings

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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,707 |  Reviews: 1,881
Photo of Boilermaker88
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Draft @ Sunset Grill & Tap

Served up as part of the Colorado beer-themed ABF post-party, I gravitated to this beer almost immediately. Maharaja had a hazy peach color, a blizzard of finely wrought carbonation, and a dense vanilla-hued head that gripped the glass and left chunks of sticky lace behind.

The aromas of sweet caramel malts and sappy pine hops just belt you in the nose before you even get close to the glass. Running behind its blockers is the note of slightly fusel alcohol. It’s actually pretty subdued, given Avery’s penchant for big-alcohol beers that don’t hide the alcohol aroma.
After a couple pulls my tongue was ravaged by a blast of thickly resinous pine-infused hops, clearly the dominant feature. Yes, there’s a nice sweet caramel malt and tropical fruit (think pineapple and mango) counterpoint but the argument is worn down by the overriding hops that embed themselves on the tongue. The feel was full and creamy.

Maharaja is in keeping with Avery’s “not hiding anything” approach with their beers. In this case, Avery has done a really good job crafting a big, bad, smash-mouth double IPA. No one aspect is insanely over the top (re: Beast’s alc. content); rather they all work well to produce a dangerously drinkable double IPA. Well worth trying out.

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Photo of Vancer
4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Excellent! Control one’s Avery expectations, and just sample the brew. It starts with the eye catching labeling, and progresses to an amber/orange pour with ivory head. PUNGENT floral, grassy, hoppy aroma. Dry (duh) hoppy taste, balanced out well with malts and citrus. Different mouth, very oily and slick, coats the tongue & throat. As it warms, the flavors increase accordingly. Sneaky 9.7% will give ya a poke by the end of the bomber.

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Photo of yemenmocha
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazy, rich orangey amer hue. Moderately thick white head with dallops of foam. Veeeery appetizing.

Hop aroma dominates, with a big steel-metallic quality. Also citrusy, maybe lime. Lime steel, yes.

Explosion of bitterness up front, with more metallic qualities. Literally a mouth full of hops with a suggestion of malt near the end. Moderately full bodied. Creamy.

Finish has is dry with a hint of sweetness and hop tang. Long lasting. Very good beer, not excellent, and questionably worth the high entrance price.

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Photo of granger10
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Great looking pour with a dark ruby, amber color. Medium sized white head, lots of lacing. Aroma explodes of hoppy piney citrus upon opening the bottle. Very aromatic and resinous right away. Kind of sweet too. Taste gives me a bit more syruppy sweetness than I would like but that helps out the biting piney hops which are in full force. The main flavor is citrus fruit which is sweet and tart and bitter all at the same time. The body is light for the alcohol strength and hop bitterness, I'd like it to be a bit fuller. Finish is piney, raw hoppiness. Good beer, almost great but not quite.

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Photo of AlexJ
4.12/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks gabe

The newest member of Avery's royal family pours darker than expected, a medium amber wearing a thick head of light beige.

The aroma is bold and hoppy, featuring sweet citrus and pine hops and a big juicey honey caramel malt presence.

The flavor is filled with notes of tangerine and grapefruit, floral and pine, and a very pronounced caramel malt backbone. Well balanced and hoppy, but really 112 ibu's???

The body is lacking for beer this big, weighing in on the lighter side of medium. Mouthfeel is oily and juicey slick with a looong citrus drenched hop finish.

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Photo of MarkBlackout
4.85/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Interesting brew. Pours nicely for the high ABV, with a consistent, thin head and nice lacing on the glass. Smell threw me off a little at first.. I got some citrusy hops right off the bat, then I was overwhelmed w/ sweet malt and a pleasant though foreboding alcohol presence. Tasting revealed a more balanced brew than the smell; the excessive alcohol fits quite well with the excessive malt and hops. Good shit. (2004)

edit: I tried this right around a year later, almost to the day. I adjusted the scores down a little bit; this isn't quite as good as I remembered. I don't quite remember just what i liked about it so much, but it ain't thrillin' me no more.. (2005)

edit #2: This is one of my favorite beers now. Huge, malty, hoppy DIPA. very balanced, pleasantly medicinal/herbal/citrus flavors. Nothing wrong with this beer at all, I get a bomber when I can afford to pay $8. Really it's a bargain I'm just poor (Dec. 2011).

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Photo of bigbubba
4.17/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer is a nice clear, dark amber with a quarter inch of off-white head. The smell is filled with the promise of lots of hops, there is also a sweet fruity aroma. The taste is very hoppy but well balanced. At first it tastes a litle too sweet, but that doesn't last long. The hops kick in quickly. Overall it is a little too sweet, or more correctly it could use more hops. There is not much of an aftertaste. The mouthfeel is very good. It is smooth and juicy with alcohol evident as well. While I would say the drinkability is good for this kind of beer, it is definitely not a session beer.

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Photo of assurbanipaul
3.37/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a hazy orange with a thin head. Aroma is sweet and juicy hops, nicely malty without being too bitter or pungent.

Taste is a rich, oily pungent hop base. Not a friendly, chirpy citrus hop -- this has some seriously dark and strong bitterness, like the time your first wife met your new wife. Some mandarin oranges macerated in syrup, a decent caramel malt backbone, reminds me of a good rye beer.

Mouthfeel is heavy, resiny, can't drink this too fast. No trace of alcohol, just a thick, juicy bitterness keeping it in check. It has a really raw quality that puts me off just a little, maybe just a bit too sweet. Nice, but I prefer my hop-bombs with just a little more lightness…. like a Bigfoot.

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Photo of CRJMellor
4.12/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very clear, light amber color with gold streaks. Big and fluffy large bubbled bright white head that leaves a very thcik layer of pillowy lace on the pint.
Aroma of citrus, pine, resins overpowering a sweet caramel base.
Flavor of caramel with some bread tones is the base and layered on top is a heavy resin hop note. Real gritty and ripping with hop oil and pine cone.
Mouthfeel has a teeth numbing bittering hidden and cut by citrus sweetness and a big time resin hit and a large dry finish. Just a hint of alcohol appears.
Drinkability is relatively high. Little bit over the top but a real solid hop lovers delight.

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Photo of hustlemuscle
3.88/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a glorious amber with golden highlights. Thick, pillowy head, with thick lace marking each sip as it receeds. Nice piney hops blast when you give it a sniff. A very nice brew, taste-wise, but not particularly extraordinary. Unfortunatly. Good hops, but enough to make it an 2IPA? What is there tastes good, but more like a slightly larger IPA than it's bigger brother.

A real smooth drink though. Creamy, with the hop oils being barely noticable. An easy sipper, but still not hoppy enough.

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Photo of kmo1030
4.37/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

hazy orange almost pumpkin ale colored, with thin tan sticky head. grassy citrusy hops aroma with a good caramel malt base that holds its own against the hops. a candied aroma develops as it warms. big hop bitterness and flavor. citrusy herbal hops, with lots of caramel sweetness. some more subtle juicy fruit flavors underneath, mostly pear. the bitter hop aftertaste is nearly perfect with just the right amount of bitterness. it walks the fine line between excellent and too bitter. verysilky smooth full body with mild carbonation. an excellent imp IPA, i regret not getting this on tap the last time i saw it. a must try if you're a fan of the style.

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Photo of tgbljb
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

part of sampler tray at Kclingers. Amber color with slight white head. Smell is of fruitiness and citrusy undertones.Taste is of hoppiness with a continuation of the citrusy fruitiness. Mouthfeel leaves a slight dryness. Extremely enjoyable beer. I was amazed when I found out it was 9.7%

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Photo of tavernjef
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chill hazed fiery amber. Delicate cap of medium stature. Hued in newspaper yellow. Keeps a misty haze with a bit more at the collar. Fine petri dish microorganismish lacing.
Dull tangerine pineapple nose commencement. Orange oil musk. Deep earthy hop pine. Unfouled yet a smidgeon greasy and waxy with a skimming of ink tannin. Piney alcohol gnarls its teeth in time.
Slippery front with a brazen burntness to the overall grain contour. Dark melted orange slides in quickly there after. Blackened toffee caramel undertow. Sweet but grainifiedily peppery. Many eluding after effects of scorched and burnt beer items. Dark piney hops yield to scrappy burnt offerings of tangerine and lime. Strangely acceptable hints to tin appear late as it cinders with burnt grain and fruit skins.
Medium body with a tinge of both burnt and metalic tinges along its route and barking at the bit. Smatteringly rough and grainy. Back-ended heat sifts through the burnt fruits late. Neither aggressive or bashful hopping. Mostly introverted hop flavor and no big bittered thorniness. Mild but stern. Warming temperature tenderizes its tone. Opens creamy, flips over fast, narrowly escaping itself with harsh, salty, burnt subsistings into fruity lime alcoholic heat. Weirdly the D.IPA weird if there ever was one.
Mentor Encomium.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.49/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Lightly hazed coppery crimson hue, under an adequate layer of beigish foam.
Nose reeks of hops. Piney and citric, yeah, ripe and luscious, a refreshingly lively aroma, very raw, like steeping ones senses in the freshest form of hops.
Taste: thick with hoppiness, again, rich and full of flavor, not the least bit timid....hops and bitterness hang on the palate, dig in deep, stay a spell...
this is a menacing monster of an IPA, and I want to make it my friend!
A challenging ale, but exactly the challenge we hopheads require...each sip releases a succor which enacts a sublime kind of pleasure... (that means I liked it! ;^)...
Full-bodied, intensely flavored, long, bitter, fruity finish...
The Maharaja is a mighty ruler and commands the palate in full, it's reign lasts long beyond the length of the 22 ounce bottle...if you love the homulus lupus, he has you in his sway, no questions asked...damned good stuff. Ranks among the best IIPAs I've had, somewhere in there, anyway...blessedly hoppy, leaving hop trails all along the palate...goodness, they're coming out of my burps, now, too...may I say? a very nice drink, for those of us on the hoppy side...oh, yeah!!!

enormous thanks to mentor for the bottle!

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Photo of clvand0
4.12/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light amber color with a tall head that falls slowly and leaves some lacing on the glass. The aroma has a lot of citrus hops with a subtle caramel malt sweetness in the back. The flavor isn't nearly as hoppy as I expected it to be. Very well balanced, nice malt character and bitterness profile, but could use more hop flavor. Drinkability is great for the alcohol level and the body is moderate.

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Photo of kmpitz2
4.07/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled tonight, but from notes. It poured a sligtly coppered golden color with a 2 finger head that fell slowly to a finger over the brew. I liked the retention. The nose was very nice, with a good caramel malt base under tinges of oranges, grapefruit hops, land ight bready notes. Overall, fairly good. The flavor was not as nice as the nose. The caramel was big and thick, but the hops didn't hold up. They were there, but not in force. The feel was thick and rich, almost syrupy on my tongue. Overall dinkability was great for the size of this beer. It was refreshing and quaffable. A very nice brew.

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Photo of cubedbee
4.38/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear dark amber with a huge cream-colored heads and tons of excellent lacing. Nose is both fruity and floral--pine, grapefruit, oranges, lemon, smells very appealing. Taste is full sweet caramel malts upfront which give way to an explosion of citrisy hops. Very little bitterness in the aftertaste for the amount of hop flavor that is present. Mouthfeel is extremely smooth and creamy for this beer. And the 9.7% alcohol is hidden extremely well---I could easily drink several of these in a session. Great beer to go along with a great bottle from Avery.

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Photo of Pegasus
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear tarnished copper color with a large white head, which retains superbly; lots of scattered broken lace.

Aroma: Opens with a strong pine tar hop note, which lingers on and on. Beneath this there is a solid sweet malt backbone.

Taste: Rich and full sweet malt presence throughout the taste, beneath this there is a pronounced but restrained pine tar hop note, which lingers on well past the finish.

Mouth feel: Smooth, rich and quite full, very pleasant.

Drinkability/notes: Surprisingly good, an excelelnt example of a style that I do not usually find much favor with.

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Photo of MrSeth
3.96/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into an Xlarge tulip with a dark red-gold color and an impressive carbonation rushing to the surface forming a 1/2" head that settles just a bit to leave a creamy froth that hangs drapes inside that glass. A constant stream of bubbly can be seen dead-center in the glass, very attractive.

The nose is pretty tame. Some toastiness and orange zest.. a little hoppy.

Heavy bodied, feels like a barley wine. The taste is no less impressive. But it isn't as complex in malt or hops as IPA can be. This one is a sipper. You can sit, relax and enjoy the excellent balance between the sweet toasty malt and the bitter citrusy hops in all their glory with The Maharaja.

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Photo of MuddyFeet
3.65/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Beer seems kind of of for a DIPA. Not as strong in flavor or aroma as I expected. And the ABV is really 9.7%? Huh?

Poured a nice red-tinged brown in color. Slightest of heads that disappeared altogether. No lace. Very little carbonation. Aroma is malts and green hops. Taste is pretty straightforward. Malts at first, followed up with a decent hop balance. The hops linger in the mouth late into the beer. Bit of a piney tang to the beer, not unpleasant though. Mouthfeel is at first flat and then kind of fizzes for a second. Medium body. I found this beer fairly drinjable, but was kind of put off by the mouthfeel.

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

Pours a hazy light copper color, with a long-lasting head of fluffy white foam. A fine coating covers the glass as it is drunk. Nose is, naturally, full of hop aroma, noticibly flowery and citrusy. Taste is very sharply bitter, and even though there's obviously a lot of residual sugar, you have to hunt around the forcibly dry bitterness to find it. Hop flavor is very full, ranging from grapefruit citrus to piney to peppermint-like. The finish is dry and lingers around forever. Quite full-bodied, this is a big beer in every sense of the word. Yet, there are a lot of other very big IPA's out there currently, and this one doesn't quite stand out the very crowded field.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.6/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz bottle purchased at Julio's, Westboro, MA. Silver foiled cap.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1" beige head over the clear orangey amber brew. Head lasts, and laces delicately yet plentifully. Aroma is juicy fruit hops. Taste starts with a light malt sweetness, and quickly morphs into fruity hops which tantalyze, yet do not overpower. We're talking hops flavor here, not just the bitter hammer over the taste buds. Mouthfeel and drinkability are both great for the style, which can sometimes be daunting. An almost subtle yet effective brew, surprised by this one (still fearing The Beast)...

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Photo of kbub6f
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

The head is small, still, bumpy and thick. The beer is a clear, still, copper-amber. Runny sheets of lacing. Nose is sweet: sugar, grass, pine, citrus. Nice, hoppy. Huge hoppy pine in the front with major pepper and spice. Some roasty nuts. The middle is very thick, sweet and malty. But the hops are never far from sight. Huge alcohol finish (a little rubbing alcohol) and more mountains of hop. Bitter aftertaste with loads of pepper. It's not bad. The alcohol is pretty raw, but the hops are fresh and juicy. And there's enough malt. Quite nutty with temperature. It's a decent drink.

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

This was a rich clear amber beer with a 2 finger rocky head. Very inviting, as this is my favorite style.

The aroma was of strong pine, with hints of grapefruit and orange, over a subdued malt backbone.

The taste was of slightly sweetish malt, overlaid by a strong citrus hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel was nice, strong and a little chewy, and a bit puckering.

Drinkability is good, but I would have a hard time putting down more than two of these at a sitting. Especially at the price.

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Photo of JohnnyDuvel
4.55/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Well, as advertised. A seriously bitter double IPA. Great appearance (deep amber, large foamy head), and the fruity hop aroma busts out of the bomber. The bitterness leads to a somewhat dry finish, and the malts (although providing a sturdy backbone) are not as prominent as in the Hercules from GD. The 9.7 ABV is felt by the end, and it was an enjoyable drinking experience. I would say that I would do a head-to-head taste test with Hercules, but then I would be drunk! Recommended for all the hop-heads (myself included!), for sure. Great brew.

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Maharaja from Avery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.23 out of 5 with 5,707 ratings