2 Turtle Doves
The Bruery

2 Turtle Doves2 Turtle Doves
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Strong Ale - Belgian Dark
4.06 | pDev: 11.08%
The Bruery
California, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
2 Turtle Doves2 Turtle Doves
Notes: 2 Turtle Doves is the second in the 12 Days/Years of Christmas Series. We decided to take our inspiration from the name and base the beer on the "turtle" candy, brewing it with cocoa nibs, toasted pecans, caramelized sugar and a lot of caramel malts. Somewhere between a Belgian-style Dark Strong Ale and an Imperial Porter, this beer is designed to take the journey through time until 12 Drummers Drumming.
Reviews: 260 | Ratings: 459 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of HattedClassic
HattedClassic from Virginia

4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a decent khaki colored head with a creamy texture. The beer itself is a hazy dark brown color that looks nice but the texture appears to be a little too slick and oily.

The smell is okay. Cold, the beer has a very strong and unappealing purple olive smell that ruins the beer. However, as it warms, the beer gives off more of a candi syrup smell to it. There are some light dark fruit notes and moderate cocoa nib notes in the finish.

The taste is decent and strongly improves as it warms up. It has a strong candi syrup note upfront and followed by a mixture of the dark fruit notes and the cocoa nibs. The cocoa nib notes are also a bit stronger in the taste than in the smell. As the beer warms up, more notes start to emerge. A burnt pecan comes out in the finish alongside a bitter cocoa note that wasn't there before.

The feel is good. It has a medium heavy body and silky feel to it. There is a slight burn in the finish.

Overall, a decent beer but is surprising since it seemed it would have been chocolatier looking at the description.

Dec 30, 2020
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michiganmatt from California

3.42/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Deep dark brown pour, with a small layer of light brown head
Aroma is honestly pretty metallic, which I am very sensitive to and so is quite a negative
Taste is a mix of light chocolate, dark fruit, metallic flavors, quite sweet.
Medium-heavy body. moderate-light carbonation.
Overall, not really quite what I was expecting (from the description was expecting something more chocolatety). This beer ended up very similar to the previous beer in the series, Partridge in a pear tree.

Dec 30, 2020
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Wetpaperbag from Washington

2.62/5  rDev -35.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

2009 version. Looks good, but the smell has notes of SATB, for those who know you know. There is a sweetness of some fruits, but this soy burnt malt taste is too much.

Mar 31, 2020
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IvoryFoxhole from Virginia

4.02/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

375 ml bottle from 2019 rebrew poured into Trillium The Six States glass and allowed to warm.

L: Small brown head, disappears quickly and leaves only a thin ring. Beer is a very dark brown.

S: Mostly get the cocoa nibs and roasted malts. Maybe a tad nuttiness.

T: Interesting. Has some Belgian quad qualities, but blessedly not oversweet. Some cocoa runs through the taste, some nuttiness. ABV pretty nicely hidden, but there is some warming on finish.

F: Pretty full-bodied. No carbonation to speak of. Construction and balance are decent. ABV well hidden.

O: Didn't really pick up what they were going for, but it's not bad for what it is.

Feb 19, 2020
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Ambiorix from Kentucky

3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Dark brown pour with a decent tan head.

Nose is sherry and cocoa powder. Ovaltine.

Sweet, malty, cocoa nibs. Sherry in the finish. A little oxidized but sherry and not wet cardboard. Stone fruit. Plums.

Not much hint if alcohol heat after 10 years. The oxidation isn’t surprising after this length of time with just a crown cap and no wax. I was really pleased it still tasted as good as it did.

Jan 05, 2020
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brycemc from California

4.11/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Day 2:

Look: Pours a deep dark brown, almost black in glass. Head is finely bubbled and moderately lacing.

Smell: get a lot of strong alcohol notes on the front of the nose (just out of cold fridge). As warms, starting to pick up the chocolate note, maybe a bit of candy. Pepper note as well here, and maybe some dry citrus peel.

Taste: Dry chocolate, some very minor fruit note, definite nuttiness on middle palate and finish, plenty of warm booziness, a bit of spice (clove?). Finish is dry and long, dry cocoa and spice, and warmth. Doesn't feel quite like 11.9%, but 10%+ at least to my tastes.

Feel: Dry, somewhat stout-like. Finish is very long. Mouthfeel is somewhat thin, but coating, getting Belgian yeast vibes. Warmth goes on forever.

Overall very very enjoyable. Would like to try this one after some age (maybe I'll keep my 2nd 12 pack for a dozen years...). Hybrid style description is accurate.

Dec 28, 2019
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REVZEB from Illinois

4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Dark brown opaque body with two fingers of mocha foam that eventually settles into a ring. Rich chocolate, with caramel, nuts, brown sugar, and booze. Big caramel with some nuttiness within waves of booze and chocolate, accenting toffee, roasted malts, and dark fruit make up the taste. Not as uniform as taste. Feel is boozy, creamy, and smooth. One of my favorites in the series, definitely sweeter, but hey this is Christmas, we can be a little sweet!

Dec 27, 2019
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CaptainHate from Ohio

4.46/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I haven't had a younger version of this to compare it to but to me this is what the epitome of a Belgian Strong Dark Ale is all about. It poured into a long stemmed tulip a very dark brown with a full dark tan head which dissipated quickly with almost no lacing. Smell is still pretty boozy with lots of dark fruit flavors and the taste almost perfectly reflects that although as it warms the interplay of flavors becomes more complex. Mouthfeel is what it is for a sipper like this. I don't detect any off tastes that sometime get associated with aging. I'm not aware of what The Bruery's game plan was for this was, like maybe I should've waited longer until all 12 days of Christmas had been released before drinking this. Or maybe today was the absolute optimum time to be drinking this bad boy. The only thing I regret is not sharing this 750 ml with someone who would likewise appreciate it. But I am definitely up to the task of seeing this through.

Feb 24, 2018
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Buck89 from Tennessee

3.69/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2009 version. Muddy brown color with a mild tan head. Funky aromas. Pecans, maple, Funk, caramel, booze. The taste was better. Raisiny quad with a nice pecan balance. No off notes.

Nov 25, 2017
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rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.83/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A very dark brown pour, 3/5" of head on the top. Aroma was a mixture of burnt sugar, chocolate, brown malt, yeast, caramel, toffee.

Taste gets even more complex as now you have some dark fruit bitterness, alcohol, caramel, brown sugar, brown malt, more roasted malt, cocao. Nuttiness in the mouth feel. Not gonna surprise anyone, but the more you let this warm up, the more complex and layered it is.

While far from my favorite style of beer, this one is actually pretty nice, very layered, nothing dominates and all seemlessly seems to meld together. Would bang again.

Feb 09, 2017
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arlo19 from Kentucky

4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Thanks again Tim, will miss you buddy! Aroma is dry, toasted, woody. Pecan comes through, similar to coconut. Very unique aroma and taste. Tastes barrel aged. Some oxidation. Aftertaste is dry, bittersweet cocoa and cherry. Great sipper

Jun 08, 2016
SPLITGRIN from Kentucky

3.96/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From notes taken 11/30/09.

A monster head rushing to four fingers has crazy active milk chocolate colored bubbles that fade in about 30 seconds. Body is the blackest of browns with really only a hint of brown when held to light. Nose is a nice mix of phelonic spices and creamy coco, with a hint of soured dark fruit. Enters the mouth with a strong alcohol presence and a bit of dark chocolate wrapped around ripe black fruits. Black cherries are truely there in the taste. Some spice adds to the profile nicely. Mouthfeel is slightly sweet and yields a pleasant bitter richness. Very nicely drinkable. Give this one time and I think it will be wonderful.

Mar 15, 2015
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dheldman from Minnesota

3.09/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Seems to have fallen off. Great cocoa aroma isn't matched by the taste. Instead it's very muted with touches of cardboard. Probably would have done well to open this a few years earlier.

Jan 01, 2015
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buschbeer from Ohio

4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ML bottle
Served in an oversized wine glass

L - This beer is very dark brown with ruby highlights. An inch of tan heads rests atop.

S - It has developed a fruity smell over the years. I get a chocolate covered cherry aroma. It could be plum, but who has heard of a chocolate covered plum.

T - The cocoa is quite evident. It comes through nicely along with some roasted malt. a little dark fruit translate from the nose to the taste.

F - Full

O - I remember liking this more last year. It is good. but I was expecting a big chocolate forward beer that I recalled. I did have a tasting with a fellow BA that day. It could have something to do with the distorted memory.

Dec 27, 2014
Photo of Lucnifter
Lucnifter from California

4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a good beer. Glad I finally got to taste it. Cacao is present in the nose and in the taste. Pecans are more present in the taste than the nose. Overall, pretty nice. Didn't get to taste fresh, so no idea how it's ageing.

2017 update
On tap @ Bruery Terreux tasting room 11/2017
It's still a mostly lovely dark strong ale.
Oxidation is definitely present. It's probably well past it's prime and only declining, but the cacao and pecans are still there, and it's a fairly pleasant beer to drink.

Dec 17, 2014
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trippytbta from California

4.75/5  rDev +17%

Poured from bottle into snifter

A: very dark brown khaki head

S: sweet and nutty

T: tastes like turtle candy. Chocolate covered pecans and carmel.

M: great

Overall: I hope I can hunt a bottle of this down. But probaby won't be able too. Insane beer

Nov 10, 2014
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Alieniloquium from Florida

3.38/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Deep brown. Small khaki head.

Smell - Chocolate. Some fruitiness. A little nutty. Lots of caramel. A little oxidation.

Taste - Very sweet. Caramel. A bit of tart cherry flavor. Oxidized. Some chocolate.

Mouthfeel - Medium low carbonation. Kinda oxidized.

Overall - Old, but good.

Sep 21, 2014
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alaimoa from Connecticut

3.79/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle popped at 55 degrees in a wine glass. Smell was unimpressed with some mild candy, brown sugar and leather notes that weren't very strong in either direction. Poured with a tiny bit of dirty brown ring head but had a cappuccino type of swirling which was impressive. Taste had a nice Belgian dark base to it with some caramel,
Cocoa, sugars, nice depth and would love the barreled version I think.
Would easily get this again

Dec 26, 2013
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wordemupg from Canada (AB)

3.86/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle poured into tulip 11/7/13 cheers alpineclimber for the bottle

A dark brown and looks just a little murky, lots of little bubbles sticking to the side but only a thin light brown foam after an angry pour that leaves just a few specks of lace

S fruit leather is strong, brown sugar, plum, rum raisin, faint molasses and teriyaki, I'm getting some faint nutty notes but I'd never guess pecans but I do get some coco and a hint of coffee

T a little christmas spice I can't place and some booze that was very well hidden on the nose, still lots of brown sugar and fruit leather and it had some dark bread almost to the point of christmas cake, the nose had more going for it but it still tastes pretty good

M quite thick and syrupy but it could use a few extra bubble, heavy liquid with the booze hitting my chest, fruity caramel lingers on the finish

O It's mellowed out and the flavors are blending together but the nose didn't quite follow through in other areas, solid beer but I was hoping for just a little more

If I had a second I might sit on it for a while but I'm happy just getting to try it, one of those beers I'd like to try fresh and with a decade behind it, easy enough to drink for a 12% monster

Jul 12, 2013
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UCLABrewN84 from California

4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Bottle pour for the Bruery Initiation Celebration held at The Phoenix Club in Anaheim, CA.

Pours a clear crimson-brown with a foamy beige head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of malt, brown sugar, and a really unique peanut butter and jelly combo. Taste is much the same with a fruity flavor on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with a great smell and some tasty flavors.

Feb 25, 2013
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twiggamortis420 from Texas

3.95/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle pours a very dark brown color with a thin, bubbly off-white head. Spotty lace and not much retention.

Nose is raisins, plums, brown sugar and allspice. The cocoa nibs and nuttiness come out more as it warms, but I am not sure I would have picked them out had I not read the label.

Taste is sweet and boozy with lots of dark fruit. Yeast flavors abound, doughy even. This is a perfect example of a beer being much better as it approaches room temperature. When cold, this beer is a wreck but it really opens up and the cocoa flows with the dark fruit very well after a bit. Good beer, Id love to have another bottle of this…it seemed like it could benefit from a few more years still.

Feb 05, 2013
Photo of AlexFields
AlexFields from Tennessee

4.36/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Drank at Jackie O's 3/1/2013.

Pours a rich chocolate dark brown with a thick coffee head.

Smells of cocoa, nuts, complex and rich dark malt.

Taste is similar but even better. So rich and creamy, loads of chocolate, nuts, maybe some faint fruit, rich and complex and delicious

Mouthfeel is insanely light and creamy. Amazing.

This is a fantastic beer, even better than I remembered!


Jan 11, 2013
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stakem from Pennsylvania

3.83/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to eagles22 for the random sharing of this brew. Thanks Ed! 750ml into a matching Bruery snifter. It appears black in color with a big brown head 4 fingers strong and khaki in color. It leaves thick patchy lace sticking to the glass and a light swirl revives a finger easily. Light brown clarity is noted around the edges when held to the light.

The smell is nutty with roasty grain and raisins. There is a touch of something reminescent of oxidation but it blends nicely with hints of dry cocoa and the nutty aspects. There is a dark fruity alcohol element also present across the back.

The taste is bitter with cocoa. Lots of nutty flavors almost like walnuts and a bit of oxidative cardboard character blended with raisins. Some dark candy sugar mixes with hints of citrus. Fruity alcohol esters become increasingly noticeable as it warms.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. Still a bit boozy but well integrated and very warming. The unique ingrediants really blend together here with an interesting mix of character. I really enjoyed this and would certainly be entertained having it again around the holidays.

Nov 05, 2012
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johnnnniee from New Hampshire

3.8/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark brown/black color with a huge bubbly tan head that persists for a while before capping the top. Smells of chocolate, dark fruits like raisins and plums, a bit of caramel and burnt sugar, and a touch of earth and alcohol. The flavor is caramel and dark fruity with a solid shot of chocolate and a surprising amount of alcohol. The pecans come out in the flavor, but they seem a bit bitter if that's possible. Medium to thick body with a moderate level of carbonation and a sweet bubbly slick mouthfeel. I tried this on tap when it first came out and loved it although I thought it was quite hot. I was hoping that some age had tamed the heat but it is still quite present in the flavor. Its still a nice beer though, I wish I could have gotten a BA bottle, but oh well.

Oct 28, 2012
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Treebs from Illinois

3.68/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle served in a Deschutes tulip. Big thanks to Kevin (khumbard) for the share.

A: Pours a dark brown color with a frothy light tan head forming on the pour. Sticky sheets of lace are left around the glass.

S: Nice belgian yeast with some buggle gum and sweet, fruity esters. Nice spices in the periphery with a big bready and doughy malt body.

T: A touch of oxidation is showing itself with the age. Nice spices (nutmeg mostly) and fruity esters are still present along with some sweet yeasty notes. The malts are pretty amped up here comparitively to the nose. Very heavy, almost meaty in nature. Like meat casing for a sausage. Odd, but it works here.

M: Medium bodied with a medium to low carbonation. Would have a like a touch more carbonation at this point, but with it being over two years old I can't really complain too much.

O: The nose still had some great life to it, but the taste had unfortunately began to be taken over by the malts and slight oxidation. Drink 'em if got 'em, or just hold on to them until it's undrinkable if you plan on waiting for the 8 other beers to be released.

Aug 15, 2012
2 Turtle Doves from The Bruery
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 459 ratings