Welcome to BeerAdvocate!

Looking to talk, rate or trade beer? Join today by creating your free account.

Dismiss Notice
Curious about recent updates to the site and app? Check the Announcements forum for updates.
Dismiss Notice
Love Belgian Beer?

Join us Sep 17 in Portland, Maine for Return of the Belgian Beer Fest, featuring hundreds of authentic Belgian beers and Belgian-inspired offerings.

Tickets + more: beeradvocate.com/belgian

Aged Avery Maharaja

Discussion in 'Cellaring / Aging Beer' started by RichD, Feb 18, 2013.

  1. RichD

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2012
    Posts:
    2,614
    Likes Received:
    18,182
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    So I was patrolling my local liquor store today and happened to stumble upon some Avery Maharaja (like 4-5 bottles.) The issue with these bottles are that they were bottles from 2008. Has anyone ever had this brew aged, and if so was it worth it? I didn't buy any because I wasn't really sure how they would hold up.
     
  2. lsummers

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    Posts:
    827
    Likes Received:
    1,279
    Location:
    California
    One of my favorites
     
  3. YogiBeer

    Joined:
    May 10, 2012
    Posts:
    961
    Likes Received:
    1,425
    Location:
    Illinois
    You probably dont know how they were stored, right? I wouldnt pull the trigger on.. any of them, since theyre SO old... but hey, screw it? Try one and report back... it's your duty.
     
  4. TheBrewViking

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2010
    Posts:
    119
    Likes Received:
    244
    Location:
    Alaska
    I made this mistake a couple years ago. It was right around the time of the release and I saw some bottles at a shop I didnt frequent very often. Turns out they were 2008 or 2009 I can't remember but I drank it anyway and....no I would not recommend it.
     
    RichD likes this.
  5. beerman4

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2009
    Posts:
    141
    Likes Received:
    41
    Location:
    California
    I've had Maharaja that I purposely aged around 2 years. I thought that it tasted like a really hoppy barleywine. I would buy one, and see if you like it.
     
    paytonpowell and RichD like this.
  6. FosterJM

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2009
    Posts:
    2,201
    Likes Received:
    1,512
    Location:
    California
    Depends on the cost?
    Is it worth it to YOU?

    Cheers!
     
  7. sukwonee

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2011
    Posts:
    1,076
    Likes Received:
    1,305
    Location:
    Washington
    I have a bottle being aged right now. It's been about a year. I am planning to lay it down for another couple more years to see how it turns out.
     
    RichD likes this.
  8. Catchy_Name

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2011
    Posts:
    1,914
    Likes Received:
    2,369
    Location:
    California
    As beerman said, at this stage of the game, it probably drinks like a real hoppy American Barleywine. Which in and of itself is usually worth the purchase. Cheers!
     
    RichD likes this.
  9. yamar68

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2011
    Posts:
    3,823
    Likes Received:
    19,565
    Location:
    Minnesota
    Maharaja is an IPA.

    I hope that helps.
     
    Tony412, djs467, GRG1313 and 5 others like this.
  10. AlaskanYoung

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2011
    Posts:
    80
    Likes Received:
    62
    Location:
    Arkansas
    Just bought 2 bottles at the taproom in boulder last week.
     
  11. RichD

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2012
    Posts:
    2,614
    Likes Received:
    18,182
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    Well, I know that it's an IPA, but I wasn't sure if there was a specific reason why there were 4-5 5 year old bottles just sitting on a shelf in a liquor store. Other than the fact that the liquor store is extremely small, I just don't think there would be a reason (unless these beers can be aged) why they're still on the shelf. I've heard about how quickly these usually sell and I just don't want to pull the trigger on these knowing that it's supposed to be an IPA. The only thing that may lead to me buying it, is if I want to do a side by side of the 2008 and this years bottle.
     
    paytonpowell likes this.
  12. jtmartino

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2010
    Posts:
    1,494
    Likes Received:
    1,060
    Location:
    California
    Maharaja doesn't age well. The spicy/grassy character of the hops don't fade like the other aromatics, and you're left with a mild version of an American barleywine that tastes like it has vegetables in it.

    Unless it's very cheap, or you are really curious, I'd avoid. FWIW I had a bottle from 2009 or 2010 last fall and it didn't taste very good.
     
    YogiBeer and RichD like this.
  13. RichD

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2012
    Posts:
    2,614
    Likes Received:
    18,182
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    5 bucks a bomber isn't cheap enough for me to pull the trigger on this one. I'll find a new bottle and try one of those.

    Thanks everyone, Cheers!
     
  14. vthippie

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2012
    Posts:
    131
    Likes Received:
    89
    Location:
    Vermont
    If you draw the retailers attention to the age perhaps they will cut you a break on this price, in which case it may be a worthwhile gamble.
     
  15. burgundysmoke

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2012
    Posts:
    127
    Likes Received:
    46
    Location:
    California
    I dont remember the specifics, but last february I found of Maharaja mixed into my cellar that was 2-3 years old. It was drinkable but not good. I'm not sure a beer with that amount of hops can go bad, but i wouldn't drink one over a year old again
     
  16. milo_leon

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2012
    Posts:
    88
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    New York
    I did a 2008/2012 tasting of Maharaja. 2008 was definitely one of the more interesting brews I tasted. After a few sips, I got tired of the 2008 and preferred it fresh.
     
  17. paytonpowell

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2011
    Posts:
    15
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Minnesota
    I have toyed around with aging ImpIPA's and DIPAs and I actually find them quite pleasant, it is like the difference between young and old Chablis, the structure comes forward revealing all the pleasant malt characteristics that are hidden by the outrageous amount of hops. Instead of all the crazy fresh fruit or pine/weed notes you get rich warm tones, and as the hops break down they leave wonderfully underscored spiciness and hints of dead pine needles or dried pine cones. I found the few I have tried (Maharaja, Devil Dancer, the Oracle) to be actually very nice especially since I usually have popped them open in winter making them very unique winter warmers. I say go for it as a beer stability has more to do with its alcohol and storage than anything else, if anything the hops stabilized its descent (after all that is why the English invented the damn style anyways) into malty goodness.
     
  18. Hanzo

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2012
    Posts:
    4,795
    Likes Received:
    13,125
    Location:
    Virginia
    If they are really that old I'd casually bring it up with the worker there and see if I could score a decent discount. If not I'd pass.
     
  19. SeanS

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2013
    Posts:
    58
    Likes Received:
    56
    Location:
    New York
    I really never got to drink the 2012 fresh so will be anxious to try the bottle I have in my fridge vs. 2013.
     
  20. M1A2

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2012
    Posts:
    187
    Likes Received:
    434
    Location:
    Ohio
    I bought an old bottle once and it was awful but that's just my opinion.....
     
    Tony412 likes this.
  21. olfolxholme

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2011
    Posts:
    102
    Likes Received:
    57
    Location:
    California
    I searched for this thread because I opened a two year old bottle of Maharaja last night and thought it was incredible.

    The bottle was well stored the entire time. It actually came in a bottle club with the advice that it is very interesting to try aged. At that point, it was about a year old and I've kept it in cool/cold storage for about another year, until last night when I finally cracked it open...

    Oh man it was like a great barleywine with tons of bitterness still lingering. The malt base for that beer is incredible. I loved it.

    To answer the OP... I think it's worth trying one of those bottles, depending on the cost. After the great experience I had with the 2011 bottle, I know I would give a 2008 a chance. Hopefully they are still available, since you started this thread back in February!
     
  22. Kevlee722

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2011
    Posts:
    3
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Washington
    I recently drank a 2013 and I think its quite good. A hopped up American barley wine. This beer has a big malt backbone so it stands up to time. That being said, this is such an awesome DIPA fresh with so much hop character that I prefer it fresh. I just bought like 6 bottles last year I ended up with a stragglers. Not sure I would want to drink it with any more age on it.
     
  23. tx_beer_man

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Posts:
    1,254
    Likes Received:
    687
    Location:
    Texas
    I've had a year old Maharaja before kept cold for the full year. Waste of cellar space IMO.
     
  24. rynegne

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2014
    Posts:
    356
    Likes Received:
    1,034
    Location:
    Illinois
    I just bought a bottle of Maharaja on Tuesday...didn't read the bottling date which was a huge mistake. Turns out the bottle was nearly a year old and absolutely disgusting. I would not suggest purchasing older bottles of this stuff. The beer was completely stripped of all hop characteristics, malt tuned up to intolerable levels and denatured alcohol finish. Needless to say I'm a little pissed I wasted $9 unknowingly on an older bottle of this crap. Glad I stumbled upon this thread...if anyone stumbles upon this...don't purchase older bottles unless you love malt and denatured alcohol.
     
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe