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Loser Pale Ale - Elysian Brewing Company

Loser Pale AleLoser Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

296 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 296
Reviews: 113
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 11.44%


Brewed by:
Elysian Brewing Company visit their website
Washington, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: bbothen on 08-28-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 296 | Reviews: 113 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.48/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Unusually bitter tasting beer with odd yeasty hoppy odour golden yellow with lots of head, lace. Smooth drinking pale. Alcohol is there, and its drinkable. . Bittered with Sorachi Ace and finished with crystal hops. Bitter aftertaste.Refreshes. Had on tap 3 years later and decent enough interesting.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2008 02:44:38 | More by Sammy
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

"When you're a winner you're always happy, but if you're happy as a loser you'll always be a loser."

Mark 'The Bird' Fidrych

Rich Halloween pumpkin orange with Sunkist highlights when sunshine is allowed entry. The sandstone colored crown is both creamy and firm, with hundreds of glassine bubbles on its superior surface. BB-shot sheets of lace are beginning to decorate the glass in fine fashion.

Elysian has never been a brewery to go easy on the hops, which is why I like their beer so much. This APA features a background of lightly toasted malts and a foreground awash in musky-fruity hoppiness. Although Sorachi Ace and Crystal might not have been my first choices, they work very well together.

Just as the hop bill is a sure-fire hit, the grain bill is a miss. Loser has too much Munich malt flavor, which comes across as a nutty, woody earthiness that is common in most marzens. In a pale ale, it only succeeds in partially masking what ought to be the focus... which is hops. Thankfully, there are enough of those to (barely) earn the higher flavor score.

Sorachi Ace was developed in Japan by Sapporo and is a Brewer's Gold and Saaz cross. It's supposed to be lemony... and is a little. I'm also getting orange rind and ripe apricot. The beer's floral spiciness is probably due to Crystal. One simple change (subtract the Munich) would turn Loser into even more of a winner.

The mouthfeel is fine and dandy. It has plenty of heft for the style and the ABV (7.0% on the label) and has just the right amount of zesty bubbles. Resinous hop burps are always welcome.

Elysian is one of the great unheralded breweries of the Pacific Northwest. Most everything they release is outstanding, including Dragonstooth Stout, Night Owl Pumpkin Ale, Jasmine Avatar IPA, The Immortal IPA and The Wise ESB. Ironically enough, the Sup Pop motto is appropriate when describing Loser... "We're not the best, but we're pretty good".

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2009 14:24:11 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

3.71/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is hazy orange amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin off white head that quickly died down, leaving some lacing on the surface and a collar consisting of large bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of citrusy hops are present in the nose—tropical fruits and tangerines seem to stand out in particular—along with some hints of caramel malts.
T: Like the smell, the taste has lots of flavors of citrus and tropical fruits hops but doesn't have much in the way of associated bitterness. Hints of caramel malts are also perceptible.
M: It feels a bit shy of medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer goes down rather easily and has some interesting aromas and flavors of hops. I would have no problem drinking a couple of these in succession.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2013 23:33:59 | More by metter98
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16oz pint, another hard to resist offering at the Capitol Hill location - Sub Pop Records still exists? One of the better marketing tags - "Corporate Beer Still Sucks" - that I have yet to encounter.

This beer appears a slightly hazy medium golden amber colour, with one finger densely foamy, rocky, and mildly soapy off-white head, which leaves some layered rings of wheel cog lace around the glass as it genially settles.

It smells of bready caramel cream, lemon pie, mild unripe melon notes, and bitterly peppy citrus and leafy hops. The taste is more caramel/toffee, grapefruit and passionfruit salad, buttery Chardonnay, aged lemon peel, and floral, perfumed hops (a sneaky way of saying that the elevated ABV is agreeably masked by the other inherent flavours).

The carbonation is frothy enough, and basically moderate in its bearing, the body a decent medium weight, and skewed just beyond smooth, with a struggling ode to creaminess. It finishes with an herbal hoppiness, waning lemon fruitiness, and sturdy buttery maltiness.

Yet another pale ale well affected by the exotic Sorachi Ace hop. While I can't seem to get barrel treated white wine off of my mind (sorry, Georgia!), in this case, it's not actually such a bad thing. Still pretty strong for a pale ale, though, IMHO, and obviously leagues and leagues above and beyond the whipping boys of label lore.

Serving type: on-tap

07-05-2011 06:37:32 | More by biboergosum
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WesWes

New York

3.35/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a beautiful gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a dry and grainy, pale malt scent along with a bit of Munich malt sweetness and some grassy hop bitterness. The taste is average. It has a complex malt flavor that's grainy with a hint of Munich malt sweetness. The hops are up front and provide a grassy character that doesn't seem to meld well with the malt bill. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is an interesting beer. It's complex. It's flavorful. It's not that great.

Serving type: bottle

06-28-2011 20:51:42 | More by WesWes
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer is yellow and hazy with a thin white soft head of small bubbles, some lacing, spotty carbonation, looks fine.

The aroma is grassy and lemony...I smell sorachi ace hops.

Yep, beer is medium to light in body and quite sorachi in the palate. Lemony, almost a coconut style bitterness, decent, a familiar flavor, decent APA, but I'd skip it next time.

Serving type: on-tap

08-22-2011 03:32:09 | More by drabmuh
Photo of jlindros
jlindros

Massachusetts

3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to juliusseizure (Reddit) for this one.

Pours a light fizzy head covering that barely even makes a head, over very hazy nectar orange red colored beer.

Nose light citrus and floral hops, candied orange peel, a light sweet caramel and toasty reddish malts, and even a light grassy hop.

Taste starts with a light sweet malt, caramel and toasty reddish malts, little toffee. Then hops, faint bitterness, little grassy and citrus hop, again candied orange peel but light. The finish dries a bit and brings a light spicy but quite bitter hop finish, long lingering bitterness and hint of caramel at the end.

Mouth is med bodied, decent carb.

Overall meh, nothing special, too much malt, hops are Ok but not great, not very drinkable either with the big spicy hop bitter lingering finish.

Serving type: bottle

08-26-2012 23:06:40 | More by jlindros
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jwc215

Wisconsin

4.33/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours amber with an off-white head that leaves thin lines of lacing.

The smell is of caramel, some citrus with a hint of mild pine, with toast/bread and some wood.

The taste is of caramel and bready notes with woody,herba/leafy bitter hops standing out above the firm, sweet malt backbone.

The feel is on the full side of medium and pretty chewy.

Alcohol is well-covered with a firm, though not puckering, lingering bitterness.

This sample was contract brewed at New Belgium for Elysian - brewed with pale, Munich, crystal and cara malts and bittered with Sorachi Ace and finished with crystal hops, according to label.
Unique, interesting and enjoyable.

I'm not a fan of Sub Pop Records, I have to admit, but am a fan of this hoppy Pale Ale!

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2009 23:11:36 | More by jwc215
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer has a heavy malt presence with an odd kind of alcohol burn to it, along several lines. Something seems out of order with the whole thing, though it is drinkable. I suppose it strikes me as muddled. And the burn to it masks any other character that might be trying to show. Overall, a mediocre showing.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2012 02:57:23 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: clear orange in color with a large 3"+ fluffy head that has big bubbles and lasts. Moderate lace paints the glass.

Smell: bread and caramel are easily detectable.

Taste: grainy malt, bread, mild citrus tones, soft ripe fruit flavors, and a decent bitterness makes up a tasty APA.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Crisp throughout with a light dryness arriving late. Aftertaste is brief.

Drinkability: sessionable pale ale that is easy to quaff. Nice straight-forward offering from Elysian.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2009 20:33:05 | More by Gavage
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

California

3.18/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

What is this anyway? Reading the description for German Alt, I'd say it's a lot closer. If you're a Pale Ale fan, no way is this a pale. Call it a wierd fruity amber.

Beautiful in the glass, nice amber color and loads of lacing. Fruity with a hint of the barnyard. Not quite tart enough for a Saison, but in that vein. Fairly malty with a biscuit taste and touch of mince meat pie.

Not bad and quite drinkable, but approach without expectations.

Serving type: bottle

05-14-2011 05:17:04 | More by mactrail
Photo of barleywinefiend
barleywinefiend

Washington

3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a clear, deep orange with a small white head and good carbonation

S: Caramel and a tangyness

T: Plenty of malts, Crystal and Munich, balanced perhaps even more malts. Some deep tang and citrus

M: Malty and light booze feel

D: Ok but not one I would recommend, not bad but overly exciting either

Serving type: bottle

06-22-2010 04:22:37 | More by barleywinefiend
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin

Colorado

3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

a nicely hopped american pale ale, with maybe a little more alcohol than the style usually brings, a nice touch for winter i think. cool labels too, very hip. the color is light copper, radiant and clean looking, with just under an inch of white head with okay retention. i smell citrusy hops that still bring some bitterness too. the malt is a little darker than some pales, not dominant flavor wise like the english ones, but it definitely is a bit sturdier than other american pales. still light drinking through because of the fruity hops, lemons and oranges on the finish, with some rustic grain backing, well balanced and very enjoyable. gets a little weird as it warms up, but so do most hoppy beers. good carbonation and medium on the body, a very good winter drinking pale ale, might be a bit much for summer, but i liked this a lot.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2014 18:55:19 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

3.38/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From 05/28/11 notes. Had on tap at Monk's Cafe in Philly. Served in a pint glass.

a - Pours a clear reddish amber color with one finger of white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of pale malts light fruity malts, bready malts, and wheat. Not bad at all, but a little bland to me.

t - Tastes of sweet fruit, caramel malts, bready malts, wheat, and toffee. Definitely a step up from the nose and more going on here.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation.

o - Overall an average pale ale. Nothing offensive about it at all, but the nose is pretty bland and just there. Taste is a step up with some sweet fruit and caramel. Wouldn't seek out again but glad to have tried it.

Serving type: on-tap

05-29-2011 19:50:20 | More by mdfb79
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Monk's, Philly, PA

Poured a clear copper with a large, fluffy, tan head that receded after a few minutes to a thin layer, lacing nicely. Crisp aroma, mainly of malts, with some sensations of herbs and nuts. Smelled more like an amber ale than a pale ale. Very toasty taste, malty, burnt sugar; some hop bitterness coming through, but not much. A bit of orange taste in there as the flavors settled on my taste buds. Pretty smooth mouthfeel, finished pretty dry, and was quite drinkable in its own right, though lacking some of the bright flavors I'd typically expect from an APA.

Serving type: on-tap

05-31-2011 14:39:59 | More by Rifugium
Photo of Billolick
Billolick

New York

3.93/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growlers being filled in Ardsley, NY @ DeCiccio's market. Pours lighter amber, light khaki head and then the emergence of world class sheeting and lace on the glass. Tiny bubble and fully developed, slowly sliding down the sides of the glass then staying in place. Nose here is underwhelming, just a hint of some piney hops and dull maltyness. Quite tasty ale, on the hoppy side. Light mintyness, a touch of pine, light bran infused malt. Enjoyable sessioner. I have not seen bottles of this one, so a nice treat to have a growler pour option available. Well worth a try.

Serving type: growler

09-13-2009 02:02:17 | More by Billolick
Photo of lacqueredmouse
lacqueredmouse

Australia

3.98/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this beer on-tap at the brewery in Seattle.

Pours a coppery golden colour, with no visible hazing. Body is light, with streaming carbonation forming in patches. Head is white and filmy, with a fine ring leaving inconsistent lace. Not bad, but not that exciting overall.

Nose is pleasant and oddly savoury. Some light crisp lemon is forwards, along with crushed celery and leaves. It's slightly vegetative and bright. Nice stuff.

Clean light entry on the palate with a touch of lemon. Bright but empty palate gives a refreshing aspect, but adds only minimal interest. Finish has a clean bitterness which underlines this. It's soft all over, and in real terms, a little dull. But it really does work.

Overall, yeah, it's not bad. It has a smoothness, a lightness, and it's really very drinkable. I've seen Sorachi Ace put to better use though—here it's extremely subtle.

Serving type: on-tap

07-25-2012 04:30:12 | More by lacqueredmouse
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

3.48/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz. Bomber

Pours a nice hazy golden orange color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger plus creamy off-white head, with some nice sticky lacing left behind. The nose is hoppy, with some malts, slight citrus note. The taste is slightly hoppy, sweet, malty, slight citrus note. Medium body. Drinkable, a tasty brew.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2009 01:05:04 | More by Wasatch
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

4.08/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark mahogany amber color with dark golden burnt orange hues when held to a light source and a .5 finger off-white head that quickly settles into a lasting ring. Minimal spots of lacing.

Floral hop aroma with hints of dry pine and subtle citrus notes. Hints of grapefruit and citrus peel, subtle spice and sweet caramel malt.

Medium bodied with a lot of crisp dry hops up front that linger throughout over a sweet caramel malt body into a long crisp dry finish. The flavor of the hops are sweet, dry and piny at the same time. I'm not very familiar with Sorachi Ace hops but they are very unique and I hope that more brewers decide to start using them. Nice balance of caramel biscuit malt with a sight toasty character. Although the malts are prominent mid palate but they don't take away from the wonderfully fresh hops that dominate the flavor. It's hard to call this beer a pale ale but it's very complex and flavorful.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2009 06:35:40 | More by corby112
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler

Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The bottle inventory in my house has been undergoing a serious reduction of late, but it is back to work tomorrow, so I am trying to get in a couple/few more while the opportunity still exists.

From the bottle: "Corporate Beer Still Sucks."; "Loser Pale Ale Celebrating over 20 years of celebrating Sub Pop Records with beer. Specifically, this beer. Brewed with Pale, Munich, Crystal and Cara-Hell malts. Bittered with Sorachi Ace and finished with Crystal hops."; "Brewhouse Elysian Brewing Company is an award-winning Northwest brewery operating three distinct Seattle brewpubs."; "Cheers! [undersigned] Dick Cantwell, Head Brewer"; "The name Sub Pop is used with the permission of Sub Pop Records."

My initial pour resulted in a finger-and-a-half of foamy, tawny head with good retention. Color was a deep-amber, coppery, even, with NE-quality clarity. Nose was grapefruit with some caramel thrown in to reduce the intensity. I would even say oranges or tangerines to go with the caramel. Brach's Candies used to make flavored caramels that I would eat while visiting my maternal grandmother and this reminds me somewhat of them. Mouthfeel was medium and the citrusy hops seemed to pop on the tongue, initially, giving 'way to a wash of caramel maltiness. Finish was semi-dry with the hops lingering well past the swallow. It really was not, as some reviewers have remarked, what I would consider an IPA, but it was on the upper end of the scale in terms of both hop profile and ABV for an APA. I have drank this beer repeatedly, but this was my first opportunity to sit and write a review. Would I drink it again? Heck, yes!

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2013 20:31:39 | More by woodychandler
Photo of beerthulhu
beerthulhu

New Jersey

3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a medium-burnt orange with a compact 1 finger tan colored head that was short lived. Visible carbonation was light, while the clarity was semi-hazy. The lacing was spotty, weak, and sudsy failing to cling nor impress with much regard.

S: The nose delivered a spicy hopping of dried pineapple backed by a toasted caramel malting. Spicy citrusy flowerys also add nice accents here.

T: The flavor had a spicy hop bite of fresh citrus and fresh grapefruit pulp. A dry toasted munich offering adds a dry toasty feel and subtle dry sweet notes form the grains. Hints of dried fruitiness (pineapple) and lemons add a spicy brightness amongst the dry toasted palate. Im unfamiliar with Sorachi hops which were used so im guessing they provided the fruity yet citrusy (lemony) hopping that im deriving from the taste. The beer finishes up with a creamy maltiness and a light dry alcohol warming.Overall a pretty big experience especially for one labeled as a pale that drinks on the level of most ipas. Not that im complaining but im starting to miss the days of the traditional pale ales, you know when they were actually composed of pale grains, crisp with a moderate bitterness (SNPA and Samuel Smiths come to mind) instead of this one up on the bitterness and loaded with specialty grain movement that has been occurring of late. Though I didn't find it particular to my expectations I still find it hard to say that the flavor was less then good, maybe just not particular to style, but I find it hard to punish such offenses of pushing the envelope of style.

M: The mouthful was medium-ful with a soft bubbly sensation that allows this to turn to a thick luscious creamy feel on the hold. Dry citrus flowers and toasted grain grace the tongue upon the swallow.

D: A big drinking experience, much more so on ipa standards then pale with a nice addition of hop flavors that were like, but also unlike your typical west coast hopping, which im sure is compliments of the Sorachi. Good level of enjoyment though a bomber suited me well. Expect to drink an ipa when you meet up with this one, not your typical quench thristing, session pale.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2009 23:40:25 | More by beerthulhu
Photo of smakawhat
smakawhat

Maryland

4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

A real nice amber hue from light brown chestnut at the top to red and then orange at the bottom. Opaque. Head forms slowly makes barely two figners and is off white with a uniform appearance, and some creamy faint lacing.

Biscuity malt and chewy cookie sweetness on the nose. Faint hop action, but some sweet alcohol like rush also. Not bad quite inviting, hints at English Bitter...

Taste seems to be a simple malt graham and milk sweetness. Sugar sweet with a faint pine like hop in aftertaste. Good solid thick body with out a lot of syrup. Some nice herbal tea like hop tastes as well.

Overall kind of basic, reminds me more of an English bitter than anything, but easily drinkable even at 7%. Would have again.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2012 19:27:02 | More by smakawhat
Photo of HopHead84
HopHead84

California

3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received as an extra in a trade with cannabanaceae. The beer pours a dark copper color with a reddish tint to it. The head is about an inch high and there's some nice lacing clinging to the sides of my pint glass. There is a mild citrus hop aroma and the malt smells of freshly baked bread and some caramel. The taste is initially bready, nutty malt, which segues into a surprising (and much welcome) hop bitterness. The alcohol is present but the 6.5% is understated. The finish is dry. Loser is well carbonated and medium bodied.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2008 03:50:59 | More by HopHead84
Photo of Derek
Derek

British Columbia (Canada)

4.24/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Clear bronze with an off-white head, good retention, really nice rings of lace.

S: Great fruity hop aroma, hints of pine and sweet toffee malts.

T: Quite fruity with plenty of resiny hop bitterness. Sponge toffee, light alcohol warmth.

M: Moderate body is smooth with a light hop acidity and a drying alcohol finish.

O: Rather large for a pale ale, but an excellent drinker.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2013 01:36:02 | More by Derek
Photo of ccrida
ccrida

Oregon

4.18/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber poured into an impy pint, Loser is a murky dark copper with a large, orange tinged off-white, very dense, slow settling head, leaving heavy lace.

Smell is sweeter, caramel and toffee malts, skunky hops. Served at fridge temp, it wasn't too strong.

Taste is pretty nicely balanced, almost in brown ale territory with the maltiness, semi-sweet, clean and smooth, just enough hop bitterness, pretty clean finish. Wow, this is pretty damn nice!

Mouthfeel is slick, and even though the beer is on the chewy side, it's light bodied and highly digestible.

Drinkability is good, this is a damn fine pale ale, a shame it's a one off, cause it sure ain't no loser!

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2008 04:16:58 | More by ccrida
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Loser Pale Ale from Elysian Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 296 ratings.