Fantôme Strange Ghost - Brasserie Fantôme

Not Rated.
Fantôme Strange GhostFantôme Strange Ghost

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BA SCORE
87
very good

121 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 121
Hads: 164
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 11.54%
Wants: 45
Gots: 12 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brasserie Fantôme visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: rastaman on 09-11-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 121 | Hads: 164
Photo of Metalmonk
4.07/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Don't even know what to call this color...dirty reddish/brown, sort of muddy looking, with a huge, fluffy, everlasting beige head.

Big herbal aroma, reminding of evergreen/spruce trees. Lots of succulent fruit character, especially young and nearly unripe berries of all sorts. A different sort of mineral tone, and a good one at that. Perfume-y and flowery as well. This is an incredibly enticing, enjoyable smell.

The taste doesn't come off quite as complex as the smell, but there's nothing to regret on the tongue. Mostly berry sweetness, big lemony citrus, a very earthy character (presumably the yeast) and very strong herbal tea. A slight pucker in the finish, also fairly dry and quite crisp. Maybe a tad over-carbonated/tingly for my liking, but not abrasive.

Yet another Fantome beer that is fully satisfying, unique, totally drinkable and, well, just plain wonderful. And delivered with the naturalness and old-school artisan craftsmanship they're known for. That's how they roll over there, apparently. (1,017 characters)

Photo of coryking
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed at the International Tap House in Soulard with ericstl6 from a recent batch that just made its way to St. Louis.

Pours with a big effervescent head that is thin and soapy and retains for just a bit. No lacing. Pours brown. I would have to say that this is the most brown beer I have ever seen. No other hues other than brown.

Its got the Fantome funk with an acetic back. The creates a very nice balance and lushness.

Wow, I really enjoy this one. The sour tartness is nicely offset and balanced by the slightly heavier malt and 8% abv. May be my favorite Fantome that I have had to date.

Slightly effervescent mouthfeel that turns into a light bodied, easy sipping beer. Drinkability is high with the tart, sweetness beautifully balanced by the malt. A solid light to medium body that begs me to take another sip. Nice change of pace off of the normal super tart, light, dryness of so many of the Fantomes that I have had. Very nice! (950 characters)

Photo of bluejacket74
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml capped and corked bottle, Lot "d", best before end of July 2013. Served in a tulip glass, the beer pours a hazy reddish/amber color with about an inch light tan head. Head retention is decent, and there's a good amount of lacing. Aroma is mostly sweet and fruity, the brew smells like strawberries, raspberries, caramel malt, various herbs, and some tart cherries. It tastes like raspberries, tart cherries, strawberries, lemon peel, herbs and a bit of vinegar and funk. The tart flavors are somewhat stronger compared to the sweet ones. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it's a bit slick and is well carbonated. It's smooth and very easy to drink. I think this is a good overall brew, I didn't know what to expect with this one before I tried it but I liked this beer a lot. I'd definitely buy this again. (811 characters)

Photo of SammyDavisJrJrJr
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Saison Dupont tumbler @ a bit under cellar temperature. Enjoyed with John Hiatt's Slow Turning (on vinyl!)

A - The body has a cloudy, rich amber color. The head is plentiful, with 2+ fingers of rocky head with tight bubble that really stick to the glass. Looks tasty, if that makes any sense...

S - Some underlying nutty, chocolatey and malty sweetness provides some complexity to the aroma, which is dominated by sourness. Alcohol is present the the aroma.

T - Lots of sourness with green apple-like tartness. The almond and chocolate sweetness again gives the taste buds something else to work with. There is a mineral presence in the finish, but almost no earthiness.

D - If I didn't know better, I never would have called that this was a Fantome product. Quite accessible actually, like some of the more exciting Alvinne products I've had (Cuvee Freddy... yum), with sourness meant to accent the other flavors of the beer. Part of me missed the earthiness that I expect from Fantome products, but at the same time, I'm not sure that would have worked at all in this beer. Short version... good beer, but don't expect this to taste like licking a mushroom and black-pepper coated horse-blanket. (1,216 characters)

Photo of dsa7783
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ML, corked bottle purchased from Super Saver in Somerville for $8.99... "2004 Edition - Belgian Ale Brewed With Spices and Herbs" on the logo sticker...
A rough pour yielded a murky, hazy, ruby-red colored hue with an enormous foamy and frothy head that exhibited impressive staying power before slowly receding...
Faint, subtle aroma replete with a strong, yet mellow earthiness, including grass, yeast, lemons, citrus, and herbs...
Mellowed-out taste included in this one with a small spike of carbonation present as well... Very earthy, citrus and lemon-like flavor... The herbs and spices seemed more apparent in the aroma, although there were some distinctly evident strange spices to be found on the tongue... Although the taste was more subtle than anything, the flavor was overall pretty appealing and refreshing without being cloying or overbearing...
Light, slightly carbonated mouthfeel with a pretty good level of drinkability without any alcohol detected at all...
Good stuff... (995 characters)

Photo of hopsbreath
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to sweemzander for the hookup here. I'm not sure if this one ever makes it out this way. Poured in a pair of Fantome tulips and shared with TulipSnifter. Lot d, best before July, 2013 according to the label.

A: Garnet hued body, good clarity, minimal beige head with a decent glass ring. No lacing, some legs. Appears to be one of the more viscous Fantome's I've come across. 4/5

S: Vinegar, aceitic acid, vanilla, stone fruits... smells like a Flanders (looks like one too). 4/5

T: Vanilla and cherry from the nose are not lost here. A nice dose of bleu cheese funk up front is exciting. Vinegar is not as strong in the taste as the smell, lemon acid notes, woody tannins could be from the use of some wood in the brew process, but of course I have no idea since this is Fantome. Some secrets are best unrevealed. 4/5

M: Light on the palate with fizzy biting carbonation. Slightly sticky finish doesn't get in the way of enjoyment. 4/5

O: Looks like a Flanders, smells like a Flanders, tastes like a Flanders. I'm calling this a Flanders. Not as complex and deep as Rodenbach, but better than most American examples of the style I've come across. 4/5 (1,164 characters)

Photo of blackie
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: westmalle chalice, medium amber in color, nice off-white head

s: mild bacterial aromas join with white grape and green apple to produce a tart/sour aroma - you might call it funk but it's more mild and yeasty than most, lightly caramelized malt sugars, pear, underripe strawberry and rhubarb, aged herbal hops

m: carbonation lively, moderate-high, but not rough, light and crisp in body

t: great green apple and white grape tartness brought on by a dose of bacteria, the swallow opens up more green fruit flavors, subtly toasted sugars, papery aged hops, rhubarb, green strawberry, stale dried herbs, yeasty, an interesting take on the style

d: easily drinkable, plenty of flavor and finishing crisp and refreshing

750 from Chuck's in Chagrin, OH (754 characters)

Photo of JamnesCameron
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Blue wax, and a "best before" date of July 2013. Batch d.

Poured into a New Belgium globe. Pours a hazy, deep amber with a light tan head of about three fingers. Head is mostly, tight, little bubbles. Head slowly drops.

Aromas of herbal (sage?), grassy, slightly medicinal.

Flavors of herbs (again with the sage), grassy, a tang of sourness, lemons and lemon zest. A hint of oakiness too. A bitterness on the fade, but not a hop bitterness, more pithy like citrus rind.

Mouthfeel is light, not watery. Mouthcoating light bitterness.

Overall very nice. I still don't care for spiced saisons, even from Fantome, but this one is pretty good. (645 characters)

Photo of OWSLEY069
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy copper color with a tan head. In the aroma, sour and a small maltiness, a touch fruity. In the taste, sour and spicey, hints of green apple, spruce and even lemon grass. A smooth sourness in the mouthfeel and a semidry sour aftertaste. A nice sourness and spice. (275 characters)

Photo of superspak
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, best before July 2013. Pours slightly hazy and cloudy ruby red color with a 2 finger fluffy off white head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Nice soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big cherry, strawberry, apple, pear, pepper, clove, hay, straw, grass, caramel, leather, light funk, and herbal earthiness; slight oxidized cardboard note, but not bad. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of fruity and spicy yeast esters. Taste of pear, apple, cherry, strawberry, pepper, clove, hay, straw, grass, floral, caramel, bread, light leather, light funk, and herbal earthiness. Lightly tart fruitiness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark and light fruits, pepper, clove, hay, straw, grass, floral, caramel, bread, light leather, light funk, and herbal earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice complexity of malt and fruity/spicy yeast ester flavors; with a nice malt/spicy ester balance; and zero cloying flavors present after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a slick, fairly crisp, and lightly syrupy mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with hardly any warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a damn nice farmhouse ale. Nice balance and complexity of malt and fruity/spicy yeast esters; very smooth to sip on. A very enjoyable offering. (1,369 characters)

Photo of albern
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The words that come to mind after having this are raw, untamed, tart, prickly on the tongue, and slightly vinegary. This is an unpasteurized, unfiltered Wild Ale, less a Belgian Strong as the BA style guide states. The beer pours a very cloudy, dirty water amber brown with lots of particulates floating about. The nose at first reminded me of a Flemish Red, with some wild yeasts. There is a touch of vinegar in the nose maybe a bit of ginger too.

The taste is very prickly, slightly fruity, very untamed, yeasty, with a fairly full bodied musty apple cider like vinegary flavor, maybe a little bit of ginger underneath. The beer is reasonably complex, but not over the top. It is an interesting beer well worth trying if you can find it. (740 characters)

Photo of Huhzubendah
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared by drabmuh. Thanks Matt.

Sampled alongside twenty other Fantôme beers.

The beer appears a rusty, orange brown color. Mild haze with a small tan head after a careful pour. The aroma offers herbal, floral, funk, fruit, vegetable, and yeast scents. A lot of stimulus for the olfactory senses. The taste brings some apple notes, along with a light spice, though not with the same intensity as La Gillmoir or BBB Dark White. Candied apples and a fruity sweetness are balanced by a light funk. Medium to light bodied. Good feel. I would definitely have this again. (568 characters)

Photo of jjanega08
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A= The pour is a nice deep amber or brown color. The head is a nice tan color and rises up to about a finger high and holds pretty steady. Great lacing on the side of the glass.

S= It gets strange here. Nice herbal smell. Reminds me a lot of a gruit. Loads of spice and some cola sweetness to keep it in hold. Almost smells like a good root beer. There's a nice cinnimon note in there as well as some eucalyptus manybe. Again a lot of cola in it.

T= The taste is similar to the smell only there is that subtle lemon sourness you get with Fantome beers. It tastes like the cola I got in the nose as well as the abundance of herbs in it. This beer is sort of unexplainable. Baffling in the variety of herbs. It strays more from the gruit sort of smell in that it is quite tart with the lemon.

M= Lower carbonation than most "Belgian" beers which isn't a concern because Fantome isn't most Belgian beers.

D= I enjoy the hell out of this. Fantome beers are some of my favorites. This is unique and strange. Again I reference this being similar to a gruit. I like gruits. This isn't gonna be everyones favorite but it is one of mine. (1,133 characters)

Photo of Patrick999
3.99/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a darkish amber into my tulip glass - little head, not much retention. I noticed this with the regular Fantome as well...slightly disappointing.

Sour musty attic aroma up front, with some mint and unripe apples and pears. Not mouth-wateringly appetizing, but highly novel...you want to keep dipping your nose into the glass for a whiff.

Taste is citric sourness over a clean malt bill, a little medicinal hop, also a definite spiced cooked veggie overtone. It's herbal, even - who knows what they put in here? It tastes a little like they raided the herbal tea section at Whole Foods.

Feels really light on the palate...perhaps the strongest point of this beer.

It goes down easily - odd taste, but you want to keep swigging it in an attempt to figure out what's in it. An oddball, for sure, but I actually didn't find this any more odd than the regular Fantome. (874 characters)

Photo of Orrshow
3.97/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Goldorak for passing this on in CanBif 2006. Much appreciated.

Appearance – Pours a nice reddish color reminding me of the inside of a grapefruit. It’s quite cloudy and has a lot of off white head on top. The head dissipates some and about half a centimeter retains throughout leaving some lacing.

Smell – Lots of ginger and apple cider aromas. There is lemon spice, coriander, grapefruits, sugar, and cinnamon. I smell herbs as well as pine trees. Extremely pleasant.

Taste – Apple cider is very prevalent to start. I taste some sourness, lots of ginger, coriander, and herbs. It tastes just as it smells leaving me somewhat confused as there are other flavors I cannot pinpoint. Although its nice, it is somewhat faint compared to the smell.

Mouthfeel – A little thin with a very appropriate carbonation. Not bad.

Drinkability – Very good. I enjoyed drinking this a ton and downed the bomber fast. Hid its 8.0% ABV well. Now I’m near drunk.

Hope I can taste more from this brewery some day. This was a very nice beer. (1,062 characters)

Photo of yen157
3.97/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Clear, orange-red body, medium-fine soft head. Nose is quite intriguing. Coriander, orange peel, something like basil, and another herb or two. Rosemary maybe. Smells like heavily herbed pasta sauce. Light tartness lingers behind it all. Taste is bigtime spice rack. Lots of sage and white pepper. (Perhaps that wasn‘t rosemary after all.) Bitterness is very delicate and doesn’t really seem to be from hops. Nice moderate body and carbonation is appropriate. Good stuff. Flavors really build, so I don't know how "drinkable" this is. Beer may even age well. (560 characters)

Photo of DefenCorps
3.96/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle, best by July 2013. I picked this up at State Line a while back and am finally getting around to drinking it on this pleasant, rainy night.

Decanted into my Duvel tulip, this beer is a clear, ruby red with a dense, off-white head with excellent retention. Plenty of carbonation is visible. The nose is, uh, a strange beast. Herbal and spicy, this really does smell like a mild berbere spice blend (think Ethiopian food). There's a mild paprika-like heat, with some cinnamon and mace. In addition, there's some floral character and some honey. Sweetness is mild, and the tartness is unique, mildly sourdough-like and again, I am really reminded of Ethiopian food.

The palate opens tart, quite herbal and tea-like. There's flavors of cinnamon, mace and a raw, rustic rising bread-like character. A little cocoa, a little fruit (plums, prunes), this is endlessly complex. A little grape-like, mildly musky. The tartness is mildly fruity (grapefruit?) and mildly lemony and lactic. Drying on the finish with some herbs and moderate tannins, there's the spice and fruit that linger on into the finish. Medium-light in body with a medium-high level of carbonation that still remains smooth and creamy, this is a pleasure on the palate. While this isn't my favorite Fantome, this is still a very unique and very enjoyable beer. (1,329 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sample at the Mondiale 2005: Poured an extremely cloudy color ale with big thick head with good retention. Aroma of juniper and rosemary are extremely easy to detect. Taste is a mix between the rosemary and the Belgian yeast with a real farmhouse taste behind it. I really enjoyed this non-conventional beer. (308 characters)

Photo of ryan1788a5
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle poured into a Duvel tulip.

A: Hazy, deep ruby red. Creamy off white head initially stands at a three finger height, but eventually settles to about half an inch. Patches of foamy lacing remain.

S: Tart green apple skin. Candy apple, caramel. Musty and funky. Toast and brown bread. Orange peel. Baseline of herbs and spices. Very herbal, actually. Like thyme or oregano or something of that ilk.

T: Sour, slightly puckering green apple and lemon up front. Crusty brown bread and toast contributions from the malt. Caramel also. Musty and funky on the mid-palate. Herbs and spices are not as apparent as they were on the nose, and they support nicely. Garden herbs. Mint. Orange peel. Finishes a bit subtly with lingering herbs and a receding sourness.

M: Medium bodied. Creamy and smooth enough. Very mild carbonation. could use just a little bit more dimension, but it isn't bad.

O: Strange indeed. Not quite sure what they have in here for spices, but it's interesting. It works well enough, but it's nothing mind blowing. A good food beer for sure, it could make for some more esoteric pairings. (1,118 characters)

Photo of scruffwhor
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Muddy and ruddy tea and cola color with a nice head trhat recedes to a ring of foam after the pour and first half hour of sipping.

The aroma is viney, soft barnyard, leather, and the herbal, earthy equivalent that gives Red Bull its disctinct aroma. Very cool mix of smells.

The taste is even more in-depth and multi-faceted than the smell. Herbal, toasted mnalts, grass, earth, and viney all roll around the mouth and interact well with one another. The palate is a dry, and a little chalky, but does not take too much fom the overall interesting nature of this beer. (572 characters)

Photo of Parrotbeak
3.93/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly murky amber. Quarter-inch, tan head that dissolves quickly. Moderate lacing that falls quickly.

Smell is strange indeed--quite unlike any beer I have ever had. Very interesting and intriguing. I definitely get some spice, but there is also a minty tobacco aroma that my nose regards with a certain level of ambivalence. Perhaps some fig in there as well.

Okay, this is the first time I can reference the band-aid taste I have seen in some of the beer reviews I have read on this site. I can't necessarily say it's a bad thing though. A minty, spiciness comes in at the rear end. Again, there's a vague fig presence...and a nice tartness that is quite appealing.

Mouthfeel is crisp, tingly and dry. Very nice.

Despite the peculiarities of this beer, I find it quite drinkable. It is indeed quite a different beer, in my opinion, but quite a good one.

I recommend trying this one, and I will certainly be enjoying this one sometime in the future. (966 characters)

Photo of Verecund
3.92/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage 2010. Opened on 12.30.2010.

Pours a red-hued umber, like the color of clay, with a slightly vanilla head. There's some lacing, but it's thin and recedes down the side of the glass quickly. Second pour is cloudy, like muddy water.

Lovely nose. Some lemon acidity, a strong aroma of green apples, some light fruitier notes, and some herbal spiciness. Surprisingly sour on the nose.

Some acetic character in the mouth, but a stranger mixture meets the tongue; I get some ginger, pepper, old mint, grassiness, muted muskiness, and other earthy notes. The sourness is more muted than on the nose, but I do pick up on some maraschino cherry and apple. Medicinal bitterness runs throughout the palate, which can be off-putting, especially early on, but the tongue grows accustomed to it. An interesting combination.

Herbal, slightly dry finish.

Just a little thin on the tongue, but it drinks easily for its ABV. I like this, particularly in the nose, but the odd bitterness distracts, and the spicy, herbal notes are indiscriminate and run together. It tastes a bit like the kitchen sink; though this was partly my expectation, I wish the clean sourness in the nose came through more in the mouth. Still, very different and worth a try. (1,243 characters)

Photo of Onibubba
3.91/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Opens with a louder pop than I am used to for a Fantome beer - no complaints here. Light cola brown pour with a nice off beige head - creamy and inviting. Leaves spotty lacing. Slight medicinal/herby aromas, and the taste, seems to be veering into oud bruin territory? Again, no complaints here. A bit lactic, no hint of barnyard. Not vinegary or balsamic touched at all, but still, I am reminded of a Flanders Bruin. Body is very smooth, and alcohol is a non-issue. A very nice, and unexpected taste from a favorite brewer. (524 characters)

Photo of PittBeerGirl
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Body is a very murky, translucent brown hue. Pours with a 2-3 finger soapy off-white head. Head retains very well at 1-2 fingers.

S- Nose is tart and funky. An acidic tartness-like in a lambic or gueze hits the nose first. Behind this is a good amount of lemon and barnyard funk. A hint of breadiness is there as well.

T- Flavor is good-but not as interesting as the nose. Upfront is a very mild tartness with a muddy-slightly funky and slightly bready backbone. The finish adds some yeasty funk and left to linger is a slight metallic note a hint of bitterness and a light funky note.

M- Low carbonation and full thick, slightly bready, slightly gritty, slightly metallic body.

D- Overall this is a very well done brew by fantome. The main downful is that the flavor isn't nearly as colorful and intersting as the nose. The 8.0% ABV goes by virtually unnoticed. Very well done and very interesting, slightly tart brew. (926 characters)

Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.87/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pale? I think not. Pours a dark, hazed brown, with flashes of amber lighter colours. Head is full and robust, a slightly creamy off-white crown. Lacing is present, but a bit transient. I do like the colour, the haze, the creaminess of the head. Looks a good beer.

Nose is pleasantly flavoured, with notes of oak and spice, mixed with a heady aroma of cherry carnival candy. Slight aromas that suggest sourness, with a sweetness to ground it. It's really quite a lovely aroma. I could smell it all night, but I must push forward.

Taste is also good, but slightly less full-flavoured than I expected. On the front, there are pleasant notes of light acidity and a woody oak character, but the back drops off a lot, leaving a milky white chocolate aftertaste mingled with a touch of organics. Feel is light, with a slight crispness, which is pleasant enough, but strike me as slightly odd with the darker flavours on the palate.

Nice brew. Very light on the palate for 8%, and there's very little hint of this. Flavours are pleasant and reasonably well integrated. I feel like there should be a touch more of them, but it's still a very nicely crafted beer from Fantome, who genuinely have a habit of making beers I enjoy. (1,223 characters)

Fantôme Strange Ghost from Brasserie Fantôme
87 out of 100 based on 121 ratings.