Brewtus Maximus

Brewtus Maximus Pale Ale, 5.7% ABV
A Pint for $5.50

Poured at Max Burger, West Hartford

[October 2012 Update: So I wrote this whole page a month ago – a month before Hooker and the Max Restaurant Group decided to bottle this beer. I don’t feel like rewording the whole thing though.]

As far as I know, Hooker’s Brewtus Maximus is the only private label branded beer made by a local brewery in Connecticut. I’d be happy to be corrected on this, so feel free to comment or email me if you know of any others.

Most people in north central Connecticut are familiar with the Max Restaurant group. (If you’re not, you sure should be.) Rich Rosenthal’s ever-growing stable of restaurants are almost always packed and with good reason; the food almost always rocks. Be it the burgers at Max Burger or the fish at Max Fish or the oysters at Max’s Oyster Bar, it’s always good. (Not to mention Trumbull Kitchen, Max-a-Mia, Max-Amore and Max Downtown.)

So it made sense to team up with the area’s biggest and most well-known brewery in Thomas Hooker. I remember when Brewtus Maximus was released, there was some fanfare about it and the partnership, and I remember thinking it was pretty cool. I do know there is a lot of charitable giving through Brewtus purchases as well. It even has its own webpage, from which you can learn this:

The Max Restaurant Group and Connecticut’s own Thomas Hooker Brewing Company have collaborated to create and promote a new and noble beer, which will soon be your favorite beer – Brewtus Maximus. Made from the finest, freshest and richest ingredients, Brewtus Maximus is a genuine and unique pale ale.

This collective effort, using only the best in local ingredients, has produced characteristics that make Brewtus Maximus remarkable and distinctive. Brewtus Maximus is a perfectly balanced pale ale with an unsurpassed taste, which delivers in the warmth of the summer sun and on a cold winter’s day.

Visit your favorite Max Restaurant and ask for the noblest beer of them all, Brewtus Maximus.

The Maximus is a bit higher in alcohol and a bit darker than the Hooker pale ale to my eye. And it tastes better, as I believe there are more hops and it packs a little bit more of bite as well. And you can only get it at the Max Restaurant Group restaurants, which is pretty cool in a way. (It’s also available at the Bushnell.)

I am left curious though at the claim that it’s brewed “with local ingredients.” Really? That’s pretty darn difficult to do other than water.

Poking around online, I found another Brewtus Maximus (okay, Bruticus Maximus) – a wholly different thing:

Regarding the Transformers… The Combaticons are so named for their military vehicle alternate modes, and their proficiency in combat, working together as a smooth unit. They are viewed as the counterparts to the Autobots’ Protectobots, a team composed of rescue vehicles. In addition to their individual abilities the team can combine their bodies and minds together to create the giant warrior, Bruticus.


The team’s combined form of Bruticus Maximus is a successful merging of the minds of the Combaticons. He is perhaps the most successful combiner, in that he is not slow and awkward like some other combiners, and will follow commands instantly and without question, with terrifying efficiency and awesome strength. Megatron is pleased with his prowess, and wishes that he had an army of Bruticuses. The only problem is that without someone to tell him what to do, Bruticus will do nothing.

More awesome. And while the beer is pretty good, it can’t combine forces with other Hooker beers to create a mega-kickass beer. Get to working on that, Rosenthal.

Quite frankly, if I’m at Max Burger where I had this beer, there are some rather incredible choices on tap that I’d opt for before this one.

Overall Rating: A-
Rating vs. Similar style: B+
My Beautiful Wife’s One Sentence Review: n/a

Beer Advocate’s Reviews of Hooker’s Brewtus Maximus Pale Ale
Thomas Hooker Brewing Company
Back to CTMQ’s Reviews of Hooker beers
Back to CTMQ’s Connecticut Beer Page
Back to CT Breweries page

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