Beer Name: The Maharaja
Brewery: Avery Brewing Co. (Boulder, CO)
How sold: 22 oz. bottles
Where bought: Bought online from Craft City (San Diego, CA)
Date Purchased: June 2, 2015
Date Opened/Drank: June 11, 2015
When brewed? Limited-time beer. This was part of their December 2014 Release (No. 20)
Where distributed: Avery Brewing ships to several states. While Avery ships their beer to the Pacific NW, The Maharaja is NOT one of them.
****UPDATE November 2015: I have seen The Maharaja at Belmont Station in Portland, OR. Hopefully that means we will start getting this beer on a more regular basis.
What's on the Bottle/Website: "Maharaja is derived from the Sanskrit words 'mahat' (great) and 'rajan' (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. This newest Avery Dictator completes the 'Dictator Series' joining the likes of The Kaiser & The Czar. Be aware that The Maharaja is a limited release only available for the summer. Welcome to his kingdom!"
REVIEW:Appearance (5%): Poured a hazy orange-amber into a pint glass. A few millimeters of frothy off-white/tan head. Wonderful lacing on the glass. 4.75/5
Smell (25%): Mostly sweet-malty with citrus notes. It's what I would expect of a beer over 10%, but the alcohol masking scores even more points. 4.5/5
Taste (40%): Sweet-malty up front, but such a smooth, flavorful finish that includes grapefruit. Nice citrus aftertaste. Very little alcohol detected...probably only from the third sip. Seriously...10.2% with great flavor and masking the alcohol?! This is a dangerous beer, folks. 4.75/5
Mouthfeel (10%): Full-bodied malty experience. Coats the tongue very well; velvety. Not highly carbonated but tickles the tongue, which could mean I drink this faster. Impressive that this still retains such a refreshing quality for this ABV. 4.5/5
Overall (20%): A world-class Double IPA. After reading the rave reviews online (94 to 97 on BeerAdvocate, 100 on RateBeer), I was initially disappointed at not being able to find this locally, so I pounced on the chance to have it shipped to me for a very reasonable price. Turns out I made a wise investment. I'm still surprised at how easily this drinks. The lacing left on the glass is such a beautiful sight to see. The higher alcohol content makes me shy away just slightly from drinking this all the time -- not to mention the required shipping to obtain this beer -- but it's still well worth the buy. And considering that it's only available at certain times, I'm even more excited that I obtained this. Great job, Avery Brewing! 4.75/5
(Again, I have seen The Maharaja in Portland, Oregon, as of November 2015, but still unknown as to whether it will regularly be seen)
Final Weighted Rating: 4.663/5