Turbodog | Abita Brewing Co.

1,010 Reviews

Brewed by:
Abita Brewing Co.
Louisiana, United States

Style: English Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Turbodog is a dark brown ale brewed with Willamette hops and a combination of pale, crystal and chocolate malts. This combination gives Turbodog its rich body and color and a sweet chocolate toffee-like flavor. Turbodog began as a specialty ale but has gained a huge loyal following and has become one of our flagship brews.

28 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-02-2001

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Reviews: 1,010 | Ratings: 2,872
Photo of osusullins
2.88/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance was unimpressive. Pours a dark brown with little head.

Not much of a nose on this beer. A little malt, some faint hints of tofee, but not much of an aroma at all.

Taste falls flat to me. It is cold and it is wet, but that is about it. Nothing exciting on the palate. Subtle toffee, subtle chocolate, finishes dry. Everything is there, but nothing steps up to take control of this beer.

I wouldn't order this again. It was ok. Not bad, but nothing that I would go seek out.

 488 characters

Photo of donniecuffs
2.88/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

At the Flying Saucer in Memphis, TN. Poured a carbonated cloudy dark brown, with one finger of beige head, and decent lacing. Smelled very malty, with small traces of milk chocolate. Tasted very bland, dominated by maltiness and again, only a touch of chocolate. Very thin for a brown ale, and very carbonated. Not a fan.

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Photo of Duhast500
2.88/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a 12oz. bottle into a pint glass.

The color is a dark black with some maroon highlights and a finger of brownish head and some nice thick lacing left on the glass.

The smell is a light roasty aroma with touch of coffee beans. There is some malty aroma that is hitting the nose and is met but some caramel that was slightly surprising.

The taste is malty and a bit roasty with some dark fruity flavor that is there but hard to place what fruits exactly are there. Some slight chocolate flavor is there coming out at times to make this beer a little earthy and sweet but has some bitterness that is just slight toward the end.

The feel of this beer is medium but can feel light from sip to sip. This is a drinkable beer but can leave you scratching your head trying to really understand where this beer is placed.

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Photo of beernut7
2.88/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

I had this brew in Boston from the bottle. It was harsh and not what I would call a quality brew. It might have been old considering the source and location, but the whole sixer had the same qualities.

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Photo of turbine2475
2.88/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours deep brown with some ruby hues and a small tan head that disipated quickly leaving a light lace.
S - Nuts, caramel, and some grainy hops.
T - Toffee, caramel, and sweet earthy hops.
M - Smooth with a good carbonation.
D - Not a bad beer but there are better beer out there within the style. Will finish this six pack off, but will probably not pick up again.

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Photo of mklinger
2.89/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

It's been a few years since I had a Turbodog. I liked it more in the past than I did now. It was served in a shaker pint glass in a NOLA watering hole. Very dark, nice creamy tan head. A good looking beer.

Aroma was pretty much non-existent. Nothing bad, just nothing there as far as aroma. Flavor was also extremely understated. Slight hint of roast (very slight) and a bit of mild hop bitterness. No sweetness & not much additional malt character. Surprisingly bland.

Mouthfeel was overly carbonated & and fairly thinl. I was underwhelmed. Drinkability was not great. Didn't seek another one out while in NOLA. Don't know that I will for another couple years.

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Photo of PeatReek
2.9/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Body pours a deep, near-opaque brown with a solid tan head. Smells clean, dry, a little metallic. Taste starts a little sweet but that's followed quickly by a sharp roasty bite. A little fuzzy and dry-toasty feeling towards the end of the sip, but that sharp roast really jumps out.

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Photo of aepb1
2.91/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Dark brown with a small white head that dissipates quickly

S- Very mild... a bit of malt I guess?

T- Sweet malts up front and a little hop bitterness in the finish. Again, pretty mild but nothing offensive

M- Decent carbonation, medium body, again, nothing offensive...

D- Overall a decent beer, just not too impressive

 326 characters

Photo of DogFood11
2.91/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a tulip it forms a solid finger of tan frothy goodness. Body is brown in the heart and ruby red around the edges. Ring lacing and some speckled DNA also left behind along the way.

Toasted malts with some depth. Depth includes some overly ripe fruits and a touch of espresso. Hops are well placed and give it just enough of a bitter edge to keep this in line. I get a bit of a smoked side bar as well initially but the toasty malts take over.

Notes: So far I believe this is their best offering of the 5 I've tried. Browns are not usually high on my list of favorite styles but when done well I can appreciate the quality. This is far from touching some of the better browns but its decent and worthy of a purchase.

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Photo of HappyHourHero
2.93/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Decent light brown head, disappeared after a minute. Dark cola brown colored beer with an amber glow. Lack of carbonation bubbles in the beer is evident in the first sip. A pretty light bodied beer, mildly creamy mouthfeel. The aroma is a little off, a little malted barley and caramel mixed with a cheap corn infused lager. The taste is pretty weak, some caramel, a bit of chocolate, with a flash of bitter hoppy coffee at the end. Get rid of the off corn flavor, add some carbonation, and you'd have a good drinkable brown ale.

 529 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
2.93/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Sitting on the coaster, it's simple dark brown with red-orange highlights (Shoeshine Boy). When held up to the late afternoon sunlight, it becomes a fantastic shade of polished black cherry (Underdog). Okay, so maybe you prefer Clark Kent and Superman, but I wanted to stay with the dog theme. The head is a humdinger as well; creamystiff golden ecru with rockiness to spare. Turbo Dog has a great look if you have sunshine handy, and is pretty decent even if you don't. A lack of lace is the only downer.

The nose is par for the brown ale course and isn't quite the equal of the appearance. It smells more like dark caramel and toasted nuts than it does of roasted malt, chocolate, etc. In other words, the aroma doesn't have designs on porter territory like some browns do. I'm okay with the fact that there's very little hoppiness.

Feh. This one has to be classified as a letdown. There's a shortage of flavor and a way too light body. The Dog needs a significant infusion of malt. Then, and only then, will I be able to take it seriously. I can appreciate caramel and chocolate flavors, but there's so little substance that it seems as if malt extract was used rather than barley.

The nutty flavor is a little harsh, as if pecans were toasted too long and started to char. There's also a little bitter hoppiness that wouldn't be nearly as noticeable if the malt content was adequate. Brown ales should be malt-dominant, shouldn't they? All kinds of mildy unpleasant flavors are permitted to have their say because of the grain shortage.

The flavor profile sorts itself out a little better on the finish, but it's too little, too late. The body is as thin as an anorexic chihuahua (dog theme again) and the relative lack of carbonation contributes to the lackluster mouthfeel, keeping this beer solidly in the 'below average' category.

I had heard good things about Turbo Dog. Even though I haven't been impressed with Abita beer in the past, I was willing to believe that this was their flagship, their pride and joy, and was therefore a cut above. Then I drank this bottle. Far from a snarling, vicious hellhound, it's more of a toothless old pooch. I'm still waiting to be impressed Abita. What else you got?

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Photo of bmills1608
2.93/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Color was a murky brown, quite dark. Nose was pretty good and ripe with a touch of smoke maybe.

Taste was full, rich, rounded but had a bit of a harsh quality I did not particularly care for. Tasted dead on though to what I consider to be the American brown style. Has a creamy mouthfeel and was mildly complex. A solid beer that could stand to be slightly more smoothed out overall.

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Photo of Slaterlovesbeer
2.95/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Foirth bottle from my Abita party pack. Pours a dark coca cola color into a pint glass. Thick cream head recedes quickly. Smells only of malt, heavy malt. Taste has a few notes of bitter hops but mostly just malt. Feel is a tad watery. Overall decent. Coukd have mirw flavor. Ill stick ti a nice stout for my dark bitter fix.

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Photo of rickyleepotts
2.96/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I have had this beer before, and all I can remember is the label (the name rather) and the coffee at the finish. I really dig dark beers that have a chocolate and a coffee flavor… and this one has both! It's cheap, too. I have had a few beers from Abita, but this one stand out among them all. Let's start drinking, shall we?

In the Glass: It's dark in the glass. Looks more like a porter than an American brown ale. It has a nice head, too, and produces a thin lace when I swirl it around in the glass. Based on the tasting notes, I can't wait to smell this thing!

Nose: The nose is just loaded with malty notes. It doesn't have an impressive nose, and for as dark as this beer is, you expect more. You do get some toffee-like notes in the aroma, and the dark chocolate is definitely there. Not smelling the coffee… but you just wait!

Flavor: You start with some dark chocolate notes, then the bubbles take over and turn your palate upside down. Then you get hit with the coffee flavors that leak into the aftertaste. After a few swallows all you can taste is coffee. Imagine taking a pile of coffee beans, grinding them up, and tossing that on your tongue. That is this aftertaste. I like it… not bitter, but just a nice balanced coffee flavor.

Mouthfeel: It starts almost flat, but as you swallow the bubbles overtake the middle of the tongue. Then it ends with a smooth and balanced malt character. I would like this beer, based on the aftertaste, to be a bit thicker… but it will do.

Aftertaste: Can you say, "coffee"? Holy cow is that a crazy coffee aftertaste. It doesn't hit you at first… you have to swallow a few times before the coffee notes start to stick out. But once you do, man… what a flavor. The aftertaste is really the best part of the beer.

Not a huge fan of this beer, but I really dig that aftertaste. That, and I like the name. I don't like dogs though… go figure. This is the only Abita Brewing beer in the book, but this is their most well known. If you like an easy drinking malty beer that packs a punch (pretty decent ABV, too) then grab a six pack of Turbodog. Bottoms up, people!

Turbodog - The bottle says: "Turbodog is a dark brown ale brewed with pale, caramel, and chocolate malts and Willamette hops. This combination gives Turbodog its rich body and color and a sweet chocolate, toffee-like flavor.

 2,361 characters

Photo of anon
2.97/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Darker version of a Newcastle, in my opinion. Smells of cereal, grains and malt. Hops aren't too present in the taste or smell, but they are there, faintly. Easy drinking. Smooth with a lingering taste. Not picking up much chocolate at all, but definitely toffee.

Not bad for the price, although nothing special. An easy session brew.

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Photo of jneiswender
2.98/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured out of a 12oz bottle into a standard pint glass. Served cold.

A-thick tan head, dark brown/garnet body

S-smoky and malty, biscuit

T-smoky front, some toffee, light hop finish

M-very thin

D-the mouthfeel really throws me off. Some good flavors are there but I really am looking for something that stays on the tongue longer. I would likely pass on this in the future.

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Photo of Phelps
2.98/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours a deep purple-orange, clear and almost dark enough to completely obscure the light behind it. A sudsy two-finger head the color of ground nutmeg builds to bubbly craters that explode and leaves spattered lacing.

Nose is good, yet subdued. Loads of coagulated chocolate and peanut oil, along with wheat and rye bread.

Dry. Very, very dry. Bitter dark roast coffee and mellow chocolate malts waltz coolly onto the palate, displaying a quick blast of sweetness that's quickly replaced with a very dry and slightly bitter finish.

The mouthfeel is where this beer really falls short. Thin, watery, and with a high carbonation.

What's a Turbodog? You'd maybe imagine bulldogs on choppers or beagles piloting prop planes. This beer, however, is such a let-down I instead see images of Droopy dog, muffled and depressed. Boohoo.

 834 characters

Photo of Stonebreaker
3/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: The beer looks like a perhaps slightly darker flat coke, tiny head recedes to nothing almost immediately.

Smell: The smell is weak, with no head that's not surprising I suppose. Very faint dark malt aroma.

Taste and mouthfeel: Pretty drinkable, though short on flavor. It has the feel and taste of a flat cola without the sugar and all the acid. This is my first tasting of an Abita beer and it will no doubt be the last time I buy a beer from them.

 463 characters

Photo of Cresant
3/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured this 12 oz. brown bottle into a Samuel Adams glass. Dated best before: 04/12/09. (from the Abita Party Pack). The body was dark brown but clear of sediment. Tan head faded to a film.

Smell was damp grain. Nuts, maybe walnut-like.

Taste was roasty bitterness. Short finish.

Mouthfeel was medium bodied and in carbonation. Not a favorite style but it seems like a solid choice.

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Photo of hopdog
3/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tasted from a 12oz bottle.

Poured a deeper reddish / brown color with an averaged sized off white head. Aromas of toasted and burnt malts, caramel, and light chocolate. Tastes of caramel, chocolate, and had a burnt graininess to it.

Notes from 12/28/07

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This one has some auburn color going with it. Highly carbonated. Aroma has a bit of brown and chocolate malt vibe.

Some tea and toffee taste, mildly sweet. Smooth enough I guess, brown sugar, caramel and cinnamon. I like that it is heartier than the more popular Newcastle ale. This is about the viscosity and heft if you took a standard brown ale and mixed it like a black and tan with a porter. A tan and brown if you will.

 432 characters

Photo of CuriousMonk
3/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown with a bit of reddish translucence and a quickly fading head. Aromas are of nuts, stale coffee, chocolate, wet cardboard and slightly rotten potatoes. Coffee comes through strongly as a flavor and there is a bit of a sourness to it that compliments the earthy flavors. Still, it is a bit thin and doesn't really go anywhere.

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Photo of bort11
3/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into an Imperial pint glass. Color is a dark reddish brown. Light comes through as ruby red. Minimal tan head, quickly recedes Smell is a mixture of cocoa sweet and hops bitter. Taste is nutty and malt up front, but finishes with some hops. Mouthfeel is light, with a well balanced carbonation. This is a pretty OK beer, but doesn't really grab me.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Probably the best beer that Abita makes. It's a medium brown hue with promising head retention. Aromas are lightly malty, toasty, nutty, and caramelly. Though flavors are modest, they are clean and of same characteristics in the nose. The beer waters significantly into the body and finish. It looses the creaminess and maltiness. Finishes a tacky sweet and a little less than clean. Though not great, it's fair.

 412 characters

Photo of IchLiebeBier
3/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Dark chestnut; medium frothy tan head, long lasting, good lacing

Aroma: Malty; roasted grains; very slight hop notes

Taste: Roasted grains up front; slight hop bites in the middle with a slightly dry, metallic flavor in the end; not particularly noteworthy, but not too bad overall

Remarks: Did not score A, T, S, M at that time; disregard those scores

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Turbodog from Abita Brewing Co.
3.64 out of 5 based on 2,872 ratings.
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