Proprietor's Bourbon County Brand Stout (2013) | Goose Island Beer Co.

150 Reviews
Proprietor's Bourbon County Brand Stout (2013)Proprietor's Bourbon County Brand Stout (2013)

Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 14.10%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Proprietor’s Bourbon County Brand Stout is meant to show our immense gratitude to our neighbors here in Chicago – the loyal and adventurous fans whose support helped bring Bourbon County Brand Stout to towering new heights. Each year this release will differ from the previous year; a special variant created for Chicago and unique to the year it was released. Whether your first sip is today or was from that first batch in 1992, thank you for lifting us up on your big shoulders and joining us every year to celebrate the original bourbon barrel aged stout.

2013 variant - Rye Whiskey Barrels with Toasted Coconut

Added by MasterSki on 03-25-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 150 | Ratings: 1,623
Photo of tectactoe
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Finally! After weeks of searching, Proprietor's BCS falls right into my lap, courtesy of an
uber-generous beer geek at Dark Horse's 2013 4-Elf party. Despite the opaque, red Solo
cup that I have, I can see the sheer blackness of Proprietor's BCS; big enough to run a
knife right through it, and topped with a lavish, dark tan layer of creme on top.

This beer sends me into an instantaneous O-face upon bringing the cup to my face. The
olfactory is amazing here, it's like a liquid Almond Joy themed mixed drink; raw coconut,
dark chocolate, smooth bourbon, hinted with lighter amounts of wet oak, oats, nuts, and
deep seeded vanilla in the very background... Simply outstanding.

After minutes of sniffing Proprietor's BCS, I finally take a sip and am jettisoned into pure
nirvana for a few moments. I'll say it again; liquid Almond Joy. All the elements are there.
Dark chocolate, coconut shavings, brown sugar, nuttiness, roast, bourbon, oak. Wow.

Just the first few sips were enough for me to begin raving about how good this beer is.
After finishing off my entire pour, I had my campaign speech ready to go... This is quite
simply one of the finest beers I've had in a long time. It seems Americans have recently
opened up to the adjunct craze, adding many unique ingredients to their beers. It does
not always work; but it couldn't be better in this case - find this beer... ASAP.

RE-RATE: Luckily enough, I able to secure my very own bottle of this not too long after
I sampled it at 4-Elf. Huge thanks to a long time Chicago buddy of mine for being very
generous in giving me a bottle from his personal stash at face value. In this day and age,
hold on to a friend like that! Enough babbling about my friends (like I have any), It is
time to review this thing proper.

Indiscernible from my first comments, only now I can see all sides. Black, black, black as
night, just like every BCS variant. Small tan foam, like you expected any less.

The nose is standard BCS with a huge bruising of coconut shavings jumping forward and
hitting you right in the senses. Toasted Almond Joy candy. Fudge. Bourbon. Wood.
Everything I was getting before, full force & still just as incredible.

Probably the biggest difference for me here was the taste after letting the glass warm
up just a bit. I didn't have that luxury before, but now I do. After about 20 minutes or
so, things turn from excellent to near-perfection. Once more - toasted nuts, coconut
shavings, dark chocolate, roast, bourbon, wood, vanilla. Insanely smooth. I don't think
you could pick out a flaw if you tried. This is perfect, my friends.

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Photo of teamchevymxer
5/5  rDev +7.3%

On tap at Beer revolution in Oakland, CA.
Pours a dark black with a little bit of brown sugar head. Smell is chocolate, bourbon, caramel, faint coconut. Where this beer shined for me was the taste, it tasted like almond joys. So delicious.

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Photo of jegross2
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Reviewing the Proprietor’s Bourbon County Brand Stout (Coconut, 2013 Vintage) from the Goose Island Beer Co. out of Chicago, Illinois. This Chicagoland-only Bourbon County Brand Stout variant is aged Templeton Rye whiskey barrels with massive amounts of toasted coconut toasted added to the barrels. The 2013 release of Proprietor’s Bourbon County Brand Stout is the first release of an annual series of Chicago-only Bourbon County Brand Stout variants according to Goose Island: "Proprietor’s Bourbon County Brand Stout is meant to show our immense gratitude to our neighbors here in Chicago – the loyal and adventurous fans whose support helped bring Bourbon County Brand Stout to towering new heights. Each year this release will differ from the previous year; a special variant created for Chicago and unique to the year it was released."

Score: 100

2013 vintage bottle served in a Bourbon County Brand Stout snifter and enjoyed on 11/29/13.

Appearance: Pours the traditional inky black Bourbon Count Brand Stout color with minimal khaki head, but this variant also comes with splotches of coconut oil and tiny coconut flakes floating on top. While the lacing and retention of the head are minimal, the beer leaves nice oily legs behind and the coconut oil and coconut residuals stick to the sides of the glass. 5/5

Smell: Huge, bold notes of coconut and milk chocolate. Vanilla too. Light brown sugar and whiskey character. Rich and dessert-y nose; these qualities are perfectly integrated. 5/5

Taste: Like the nose, the taste is big, bold, dessert-y and marvelously integrated! Toasted coconut, vanilla, macaroons, brown sugar/molasses, and a nice whiskey finish with a very faint spice note on the midpalate. While not the most complex beer in the Bourbon County portfolio, this one delivers big on the taste and possesses a nice, rich sweetness without being as sweet as regular Bourbon County Brand Stout. Fans of coconut flavors will absolutely adore this creamy coconut-vanilla bomb! There is a hint of alcohol heat, but nothing like you would normally expect from a 14+% ABV beer. 5/5

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with spot on low carbonation, unlike the 2013 vintage of regular Bourbon County Brand Stout, which I found to be uncharacteristically "thin" by Bourbon County standards (particular when compared side-by-side with the 2011 vintage). Viscous, creamy mouthfeel. Sweet, but without a layering sweetness that cloys or overwhelms the palate. 5/5

Overall: Not just another home run Bourbon County Brand Stout variant for Goose Island; the 2013 release of Proprietor’s Bourbon County Brand Stout might be their best Bourbon County variant yet! Huge notes of toasted coconut and creamy vanilla, with whiskey undertones, this one drinks akin to how Vanilla Bourbon County Brand Stout is currently drinking plus a huge dose of fresh, toasted coconut. While this beer is not the most complex in Goose Island's lineup of Bourbon County Brand Stout variants, it is surely one of the tastiest. Seek out with confidence!

Cost: $24.99 for a 22 oz (bomber) bottle, though I have seen prices range from $19.99 to $39.99 around town.

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Photo of ThePaleRider
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Here's a brew that has lived up to the hype surrounding it.

A - Pitch black and looks very thick. Thin head that doesn't hang around and lots of boozy legs on the glass. Really decadent looking beer.

S - Smells like dessert. Lots of coffee, big chocolate, oak, vanilla, and then the coconut. I know some people said they didn't get a lot of the coconut flavor, but our bottle was really nice.

T - Starts off like regular bourbon county. Lots of smooth oak, vanilla, and chocolate. Once the aftertaste kicks in and the beer warms up a little is when the coconut really comes in. Very sweet, but not overly sugary. Really enjoyable and the longer the bottle was open the better it tasted.

M - Very smooth and very heavy body. Slight alcohol burn but that's exactly what I'm looking for in a 14% brew.

O - If you can find it, get it. I split it with a friend to offset the high price. Really good variation to the Bourbon County line-up.

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Photo of chefbrady
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Perfect blend of coconut flavor, doesn't hurt that this was an exceptional year for BCBS too. Nice thick -slick mouth feel, vanilla, toasted nut not too marshmallow-y for me

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Photo of DemoniChris
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - blacker than the thickest, most used up motor oil.

S - sensory overload. caramel, vanilla, coconut, milk chocolate. Perfection.

T - ...... unbelievable.

M - so rich and viscous. absolutely stellar

O - best stout I'll likely ever have. Simply perfection.

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Photo of sposter4
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Half of a bottle poured into a snifter.
L- Pours jet black work no head. Bits of toasted coconut floating around in there? Leaves a motor oil lace on the glass.
S- The nose is mellow for a bourbon county beer. Some coconut and chocolate with barrel in the rear.
T- coconut is much more present in the taste. Huge fudge notes, burnt sugar and dark fruit similar to the base. The rye barrel adds a nice finish.
F- very think and syrupy. Definitely stick around awhile un your mouth.
O- This beer did not disappoint even with some age on it. However, I'm glad I did not wait to drink it.

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Photo of beardown2489
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle poured into snifter

A- flecks of coconut lay atop the pour. Looks just like the original with the addition of the oil floating in top from the coconut.

S- SWEET! The bourbon is there but it's tamed by the coconut. Such a beautiful pairing. Don't understand how some are missing this. The bourbon is so much more refined with this addition. It smells incredibly inviting. If you aren't a whiskey lover you can't say the same about BCBS. Anyone would say this scent is sweet and rich.

T- Coconut right away. Smooth and refined, yet exploding with flavor, covering the entire mouth. Bourbon, molasses, coconut, milk chocolate. Can't really imagine a better combination of flavors working together.

M- Syrupy, viscous, thick as hell. Perfect for the style.

O- Anyone saying they didn't get the coconut missed out. Seems we have lots of folks out there having troubles with this lately. This beer uses coconut perfectly. BCBS is perfect to begin with and this somehow improved it. G.I. putting on a master class. Thank you!

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Photo of MrShake
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Great Coconut Flavor, with bits of coconut in the beer itself.

Not much of a head, pours DARK brown and thick. Good malt with lots of sweetness to offset the nutty coconut flavor. I've had this beer twice, and it didn't change much in 6 month. This is an outstanding beer and a jewel of my cellar!

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a Bourbon County snifter from a 22oz bottle.

Pours a oily dark black viscous liquid with a thin tan head that rises up briefly and then just dissipates into nothingness. There are notes of flakey oily coconut floating around the brew.

Aroma is exquisite! Notes of fresh coconut, coconut cream with notes of molasses and bourbon to back everything up. Slight boozy heat with some nice notes of rye grain. There is some slight roast to the nose like some dark chocolate/bakers chocolate but its quickly covered up by awesome coconut sweetness.

Flavor is out of this world. Beer starts off with notes of sweet coconut with some spicy rye notes. Notes of mild chocolate fudge is present as well. The flavor is just rich and complex with the great notes of chocolate and coconut underlain be boozy heat notes. Absolutely delicious. Nice notes of chocolate can be perceived as well as notes of mild almond with some nice coconut roast. This brew is truly amazing. Just a delight to delve into the amazing sweetness with chocolate notes and mild roast. The mouthfeel is delicious, oily, slick with some nice heat on the backend.

Its hard to say truly but right now this has to be one of my favorite variants. I thought Cherry rye was terrific but this really blew my mind. Amazing.

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Photo of mrn1ceguy
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The smoothness of RARE with the extra enjoyable taste of coconut (In most bottles, some bottle variation). It was either a very tasty, fudgy mound bar, or a tasty fudgy BA stout.

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Photo of victorleyerprieto
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Drinking this beer is like finding Kate Upton naked suntanning on the beach of a deserted island. After you smell her you have to take a step back and admire her, so nice and it pours so oily. And when you taste her, you have to stop because you dont wanna finish her, which is good because the warmer the better, the coconut kick it gives you at the end of every drink is a little orgasm, yes this beer is that good. One of the best I've ever had.

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Photo of HOPSareKey
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Adding toasted coconut to a barrel aged stout is perfect harmony in a glass. Add it to the game changing stout that is bcbs and you have a work of art. The already present coconut from the barrel is amplified beautifully.

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Photo of beerforme55
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into Snifter

Drank this delicious stout on 11/26/16 with friends. The coconut was still noticeable in smell and very soft on the taste but noticeable! This variation of Bourbon County was delicious and very smooth! The bottle was in a wine cellar and stored properly since the bottle was purchased on Black Friday of 2013. Would gladly enjoy again!

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Photo of W_Des
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle share pour was nice and dark. Coconut is very forward in the nose and is just awesome. I love coconut. It has a wonderful rich taste of chocolate and coconut, like an Almond Joy but not as sweet. Smooth mouth feel with some great warmth from the bourbon makes for a fantastic beer.

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Photo of SeanBond
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I don't do a lot of reviews, because it's not really my forte; I prefer not to dissect my beers too much. With that being said, I've had this beer a few times, and it's my current (as of 5/23/14) all-time favorite, so it deserves at least a few words.

I had this out of the bottle in December, and on tap a couple weeks ago at Goose Island Clybourn. It pours thick, like any BCBS, but is slightly thinner than the original. Oils and flecks of coconut sit on top, and the head is thin, but beautifully brown. Not everyone likes the coconut floaties, but I think they make the beer look that much more appetizing (I love coconut). The smell is like a slightly creamier BCBS (which will be a trend).

Taste - This is where the magic really happens. Do you like BCBS? No? Well, this probably won't change your mind, as the base beer is still there. However, the combination of Rye whiskey and coconut combined with BCBS's thick, syrupy mouthfeel make this one of the creamiest beers I've ever had. The beer starts out like BCBS but midway through your mouth turns into a coconutty, creamy wonderbeer, and ends with a sweet and again creamy aftertaste on the back of your tongue. So good.

I was initially mildly disappointed as this didn't explode with the fake coconut flavor that you get with a lot of candies and ice cream, but once you realize that the effect is going to be more subtle, you appreciate the beauty of it.

Is it the most complex beer in the world? No. The most complex of the BCBS variants? Nope. What it is, is a version of BCBS for people who'd like something slightly smoother, with a coconut twist.

I've come back to this beer multiple times, and each time I expect to be disappointed, assuming my memory of it will be greater than it is. And each time, I'm blown away by how good this is. I understand and respect that not everyone thinks this beer is worth freaking out over (much like how I don't get the hype around KBS), but to me, this is about as good as a BA stout gets. Amazing.

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Photo of peacemakers48
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is the best stout I have ever had. Goose island know how to do this. This is so dark in color, may be the darkest stout ever. The smell is interesting and different. The taste is amazing. I taste sown thing like vanilla bean oatmeal. It's sweet but not too much. Just a perfect stout.

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Photo of KnowYourCraft
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Pours thick and oily, pitch black, leaves a small espresso colored head that fizzes aggressively but disappears rather quickly, the typical but exceptional common bourbon county stout look to it!

S: Instantly after opening the room filled with an amazing combination of bourbon, chocolate, and toasted coconut. While pouring the smell of the previous flavors only got stronger and stronger. Up front you get an intense amount of toasted coconut followed but a warming sensation of booze and rye barrels. In the middle you get this awesome blend of the initial smell mixed with chocolate and caramel, then finishes with a little vanilla. The smell of this beer is so rich, decadent, complex, and yet it is so well balanced it is almost unbelievable. This beer smells so damn good! It smells better than BCBS Rare!

T: Oh. My. God. The amount of coconut in this beer is absolutely amazing. Up front you get the most amazing rush of toasted coconut (it almost tastes like you are eating toasted coconut) mixed with chocolate and the perfect amount of booze, in the middle you start to get that slight warmth from the booze mixed with a generous amount of vanilla and rye barrels, on the finish you get a wonderful coffee, milk chocolate, and caramel mix with your primary and middle flavors. The flavor lingers for an almost absurd amount of time, but it is fantastic that it does because the flavor of this beer is so decadent you don’t ever want it to go away. Coconut is by far my favorite food so this beer rating is probably a little biased, but I’ll be damned, this beer is better than Rare, Rare used to be my number one but this beer edges it out!

M: Again so characteristic with the entire BCBS’s line up, thick and syrupy at first but finishes dry and smooth, the flavor lingers so long but it is so amazing that it does!

O: I am so glad that I went through all the hassle to get this beer, it is so worth and I honestly need to try and get more! This is a beer for the ages and is my new favorite!

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Photo of NewGlarusFan
5/5  rDev +7.3%

I seldom rate at a perfect 5, but this is a perfect 5. I had 2014 at FoBAB dark as midnight and thick as nectar. Tasted like French toast or cinnamon toast crunch cereal. I will seek out this beer and so should you.

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Photo of MarriedAtGI
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This may be the best BCS variant I have had. Bottle shared with two colleagues at Stout in Chicago.

A: Deep dark opaque brown with coffee brown edges. Little head. Scattered particles of coconut oil across the surface.
S: Coconut, plus hints of toffee and leather. The rye is present but subtle
T: Delicious. Follows the nose with coconut leading.
M: Heavenly. The coconut provides extra richness over the already rich BCS.
O: We walked a mile in sub 20 degree weather to get this, and it was well worth it.

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Photo of JonathanC
4.99/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

COCONUT!(8oz pour)

Poured a very bourbon county

Smelled of bourbon sweet bcbs with coconut

Taste- Sweet bourbon molasses, with a SMACK in the face coconut.

Overall- This is very drinkable and I found the coconut to be to darn good. Between this and rare it was a toss up.

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Photo of TheDDO
4.99/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Enjoyed a 22 oz bottle on Easter Sunday. 4-20-14. Poured into my KBS glass.

Apperance- This beer was as dark as a moonless night as it was poured. A half finger mocha colored head quickly dissipated to a thin film, which brought forth small flakes of coconut to the surface. Time to dip this bad boy to the nose!

Smell- Awesome! That's all I can say! Very unique, definitely cococut, chocolate, dark fruit. It has the signature Bourbon County smell. A bit of campfire roasted marshmallow in the background.

Taste- Oh my! This is a perfect BA stout for me! At first sip, dark fruit comes to the forefront, and finishs with a smooth coconut taste. It reminds me of a mounds bar. This beer is in a class of its own, it does not taste like a 14% beer, super smooth!

Mouthfeel- Think and silky, this beer flows great and allows you to take in all of its complexities! Perfect! There's not much more to say here!

Overall- To me this is a perfect stout, Goose Island really knocked it out of the park with this one. I feel as though I'm running out if adjectives to describe this beer, I was seriously speechless while savioring the first sips. My suggestion to you is, do whatever you can to try this beer! Don't let it pass you by!

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Photo of Ready4aHeady
4.98/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Pours black, slight khaki head, smell is all chocolate, coconut, and bourbon, ....taste is thick, creamy coconut and bittersweet chocolate with just the right amount of bourbon to enhance it all, and not too sweet like backyard and others...... A crazy good liquid mounds bar!

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Photo of BRami127
4.98/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

I actually 1st had this on tap on "Black Friday" 2013 and then several times over both on tap and in bottle all served in a snifter. Special thanks to the Beer Bistro, Goose Island Clybourn, Paddy Long's, and Kelly's Pub for having this beer either on tap or bottle.

A: Jet black with very little brown head, just like a normal BCS beer. Almost like a thick cola consistency. Some flecks of coconut can be found in the beer as well.

S-: Boozy like a BCS, but also with cocoa and coconut intertwined

T: SWEET. Coconut is pronounced within the Templeton Rye BCS base (which was the base for all the 2013 BCS variants). Other tastes of cocoa and trace vanilla flavor coats the back of the throat. I actually tried it with a coconut chocolate chip cookie at one event...changed my life.

M: Thick mouthfeel. Full bodied.

O: I thought nothing would beat Cherry Rye until I met Proprietor's. It's my new #1 beer from the Goose Island Brewery. I'm curious to know how will it will age.

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Photo of ricknelson
4.96/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Proprietor's came out on top in my recent 9 beer tasting, beating out 8 of Firestone Walker's top beers. Out of the seven BA guys we had at the tasting, Proprietor got all 5's for look, smell, taste, mouthfeel and overall from 4 out of the 7 judges. I've never seen so much excitement as I did when I placed this one in front of the guys. Where'd you get that??? Not easy here in Vermont.

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Proprietor's Bourbon County Brand Stout (2013) from Goose Island Beer Co.
4.66 out of 5 based on 1,623 ratings.
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