Ovila Belgian-Style Abbey Quad: Ale Brewed With Plums | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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88
very good
225 Reviews
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Ovila Belgian-Style Abbey Quad: Ale Brewed With PlumsOvila Belgian-Style Abbey Quad: Ale Brewed With Plums
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style: Quadrupel (Quad)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Trilogy31 on 01-30-2013

BEER STATS
Reviews:
225
Ratings:
1,116
Avg:
3.94
pDev:
24.62%
 
 
Wants:
60
Gots:
254
For Trade:
12
User Reviews
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Reviews: 225 | Ratings: 1,116
Photo of bnes09
4.27/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Dark mahogany with ruby hues. Mostly opaque. Weak, soda-like head on the pour with minimal retention and no lacing.

Dark fruit and yeast aroma.

Sweet caramel, toffee and brown sugar. Dark fruits, raisins, dates and prominent plum complimenting the sweet qualities of the beer. Mild esters add a subtle tartness. Musky yeast. Excellent balance and complexity.

Full bodied. Well carbonated. Yeasty texture. Slick finish.

An excellent quad. Love the addition of plums.

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Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from interesting corked and caged into fluted snifter; very deep mahogany brown, showing deep garnet in light. Minimal brown head that fades after a bit into a thin ring of bubbles around the edge.
Smells of malt; dark bread, toffee, caramel. Dark fruit, raisins and plums. Not much booze present in the smell.
Taste is sweet bready malt, toffee. Some dark fruit, plum especially. Booze heat warms up the mouth and the aftertaste is very strong with yeasty bitterness and tart fruit.
Mouthfeel is good, fluffy and effervescent.
Overall, while this quad is a bit messy, I enjoy the plum flavor. I'm not sure if I'd try any of the other SN Ovila line, but I enjoyed this one.

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Photo of DIM
3.98/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

a: Dark chestnut brown; poured with a medium sized off-white head, no lace.

s: Very pleasant boozy stewed dark fruits, caramel, brown sugar, perfumed alcohol.

t: Sweet up front with the drier, semi-hot finish. Caramel and very pronounced, almost too much, plum notes. Floral and warm at the end with hints of cocoa.

m: Full bodied and silky, gently carbonated.

o: Really good stuff, much better than the saison.

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Photo of don1481
4.55/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12.7oz bottle poured into Mr. Pint Glass. Grabbed it on a whim at Woodman's tonight 3 minutes before the liquor section closed. Let's see what we got.

Appearance: This is fancy, with a cage and cork and all the good stuff! Pours a very dark brown with a hint of red and a rapidly-diminishing tan head. Almost dropped the glass on my head holding it up to the light to try and see through it! Yeah, really no light is getting through this.

Smell: Initially, it smells an awful lot like St. Bernardus Abt 12. Dark fruits, plums for sure, caramel, molasses, a little hint of hoppiness. Pretty complex. And intriguing. Keeps opening up more as I let it sit for a moment. Almost smells like a dry red wine when it's all put together. Definitely... interesting.

Taste: Yeah, this is... WOW. This is dry with a definite dry red wine theme to it. It's got a hint of sweetness up front, but that quickly gets spun into the aforementioned dryness. Really, really complex. This is way different from any other quad I've ever had.

Mouthfeel: Really, really clean and smooth. If I was blindfolded I probably would have guessed this to be a richer, thicker red wine. Unbelievable. This bottle is gonna go down WAY too easily.

Overall: I have not been this pleasantly surprised with a beer in a long time. At least with others that I've bought on a whim lately, there was a description of what to expect. Here... I didn't even look it up on BA or have anything to go off of other than the bottle's description. I am so glad I bought this - I suspect I may buy another 4 pack to age!

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Photo of puboflyons
3.99/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle with the cork and cage. I like the label. Sampled on March 8, 2014.

The pour is brown with red hues and a short-lived off-white head. Fairly attractive.

The aroma emits all of the punchy Belgian Quad characteristics I would expect including caramel malts, yeast, Belgian sugar, and dark fruit...in this case plums, and a slight hop bitterness.

The body is medium.

The taste has many of the same attributes as the aroma with a notable sweetness followed by a notable, sinus-clearing, bitterness. It is also on the dry side.

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Photo of Slagpile
4.49/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I bought the latest release of this beer about 5-6 weeks ago, and it is a wonderful, full bodied Quad. I didn't think I was going to like it when I saw "PLUMS", but it one of the better quads I have experienced. I have currently put a 4-pack back for aging and look forward to how it will mature over a year or two.I'll get back to you on that.

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
3.99/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Shade Tree on Central in Nob Hill, ABQ, NM.

A- Came with no head and I have to wonder if it's the tap at the bar. Either way, the beer is dark brown with hints of amber, is very opaque and looks thick in body.

S- Sweet malt, plums and dark fruit, raisins.

T- This beer is very heavy on the plums and dark fruit, almost more so than any quad I've had. There's also some peppery spice and sweet malt to make things interesting.

M- Ovila is thick and creamy, perhaps even viscous would be a better word, although there's some carbonation and yeasty tingle. I get some slightly syrupy sweetness as well as a mild heat from the alcohol.

I'd argue that this holds its own against other quads, but it may have a bit more astringency than the best of the best. Still,very good.

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Photo of jman005
4.26/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Served from bottle into goblet.

A - A dark and murky look, with some reddish tints in the light. Not bad but nothing exceptional about the appearance.

S - Of many dark fruits; dark cherry, fig, currant, plum, golden raisin. Little bit of a yeasty spice and a little bit of a candied smell. Very nice aroma.

T - Getting all that dark fruitiness in the taste with a bit of spice and sweetness. Great plum/cherry flavors coming through and residing on the palate.

M - Meduim- full, pretty smooth but a kind of sticky on the tounge. To be somewhat excpected from this strong malty style.

Overall this beer is one of the more enjoyable Quads I've had to date. Really liked it and would pick up again, especially for the price.

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Photo of SuperbikeShaun
4.39/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A very interesting take on a Belgian quad. Pours a very murky, imposing dark brown/black, very little head and almost no head retention. Smells of dark fruits, plums, dried black raspberry, some of the spiciness from the yeast comes through. Taste follows suit, tons of dark fruits and floral/spicy yeast. Mouthfeel is superb, extremely smooth with a great finish. This is closer to a good Syrah than to most beers.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.04/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.7 oz. Bottle
Caged/Corked

Poured into a Westy chalice a very nice grapey color, very nice carbonation, with a very nice one-finger creamy off-white head, with some very nice thick sticky lacing with some nice big oil slicks. The nose is malty, with some nice yeast notes, plums, grapes, raisins, figs. The taste is malty, yeasty, with lot's of dark fruits. Medium body, ABV is hidden very well with this one. Overall a pleasure to drink, surprised to see this one in Utah.

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Photo of garymuchow
3.93/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from a 4-pack. Poured into my Boulevard tulip.
Kind of a spicy phenolic at first. Whiffs of sweet fruity and malt with alcohol. The plums show in time and add a nice character.
Really quite dark with a clear garnet in the light. Slow building but eventually large full and dense darkish head. Good looking.
Sweet perfume alcohol flavor. Richer malts show a little later. Tasty fruit flavor, but can't say I'm getting a strong plum flavor. More of hints of the plum. But the fruits are complex and enjoyable.
Full and rich and reasonable heavy for style. Interesting drying on the front of the drink and in the front of the tongue with drying on the sides and back later.
This is big and rich. Definitely a slower drinker and a 12 oz is the right size, especially if I don't add any food to the experience. Not great but really solid. Would have like more plum in the flavor but is was a nice addition to the aroma.

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Photo of SD-Alefan
4.34/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Sierra Nevada Luettich Balloon.

This beer pours a very, very dark plum color. It's nearly black with spots of plum purple showing up in the light. There's very little foam from an aggressive center pour, perhaps a half a finger that quickly dissipates to traceries of a head.

The smell? Initially it was booze. Straight up. Then hints of fruit gather in your nostrils. Plum? I think so. There's also just a trace of yeast in the background.

The first taste to hit my tongue was the sharp bite of alcohol, then maybe a little smack of chocolate and roast coffee, maybe even some good black tea. Then the fruit. Plum, raisin, maybe some fig. There is a very nice, lingering tartness and the finishing bubbly, boozy dryness. As the beer warms a bit, I'm getting more of the plum.

The mouthfeel is warm and boozy, smooth and slick, followed by the bubbly carb and a alcohol bite the back of the throat. there is a pleasant, lingering tingle.

All in all, a very enjoyable experience and a great sipping brew. I was expecting more plum very but I find I'm enjoying the subtlety here,. Quite nice. It would be interesting to age a couple of these.

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Photo of KYGunner
3.84/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This almost gives off a dark grape juice or purple like opaqueness with a compact head of tiny bubbles.

The nose is full of plums and candied fruits. Slightly sweet with a thick and hearty raisin, prune and fruit cake like malt aroma.

First sip is a wave of booziness, overwhelming and harsh. As the palate settles in the plums are at the forefront. Sugary sweet the plum is supported by raisin and a fruit cake malt. The booze continues but it becomes underlining.

The booze is tangy on the tongue and will make you wince but it starts to wear off and becomes easier to enjoy.

Perhaps the plums add additional sugars that amp up the ABV and therefore cause the boozy face of this ale. The plums really make this but on the other hand may be its deterrent too.

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Photo of reebtaerG
3.99/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on draft at Lures in a pint

A-Pours out a decent brownish color with a small tan head.

S-Aroma is of dried fruits, plum, light hard candy, earth, bitter berries.

T-Taste is complex, full bodied with sweet dried plums, dark cherries, layers of earthy notes, spice and some lingering alcohol burn.

M-Mouthfeel is medium to full body, semi-syrupy feel, low carbonation.

O-Overall a great rich fruity Quad. Solid.

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Photo of jhawth
3.77/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Poured from beautiful corked and caged 12oz bottle into tulip. Pours an almost solid very dark brown, slightly lighter around the edges. Finger-width, off-white head.

Aroma: Plums and other dark fruits, sweet sugary/caramel-y malt notes, and a noticeable, isopropyl-like alcohol character. Alcohol character fades as it warms.

Taste: Follows nose, with added layer of spiciness from Belgian yeast.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, very lively carbonation. Almost overly carbonated.

Overall: Not a bad brew, but not quite as complex or nuanced as I would like a quad to be. Hopefully some age will mellow the booziness and promote the development of some different malt flavors.

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Photo of DrinkMoreBigBeers
4.04/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A - Pours out a dark reddish brown with a dark khaki head that dissipates rather fast. Nice bubbles streaming up, with great lacing and legs.

S - The nose is all sweet malts with plum, raisins, fig, sugar candy, caramel and some of the classic Belgium yeast notes. Smells smooth.

T - Plum, raisins, roast, cherry,roasty breadiness, cinnamon, salty, spicy-alcohol, lingering fig flavor.

M - Soft and pillowy with a medium to full body, sweet in the beginning and drys out toward the end with good carbonation. The spicy alcohol bite of this beer gets to your tongue after a while to the point which I believe it hinders my ability to taste all the flavors.

O - A very nice offering by Sierra Nevada in collaboration with Abbey of New Clairvaux. Solid Quad worth seeking out if you like this style. Only complaint is I wish the finish did not mess with my palate so much, other then that its a winner, cheers!

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Photo of TeamMathis
3.94/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Almost black. Deep brown. Not much of a head remains.
Smell: Roasted something. Coffee.
Taste: Roasted coffee, chocolate, alcohol, fruit.

Great! The drink looks so deep and inviting. The smell is pretty good, but rather simple; mainly a roasted malt and coffee hint. The taste has more components. The best to me was the chocolate. It had a delicious, creamy chocolate taste. The alcohol is certainly noticeable, but not over the top for this ABV. All around, this is one to get and try. I would get it again.

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Photo of damndirtyape
3.77/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12.7 oz corked and caged bottle poured into a Karmeliet tulip glass. No date on the bottle.

Appearance: Clear dark brown, with a deep coppery color when held up to the light. Thin tan foam across the top with occasional islands of lacing - not very persistent lacing. A few bubbles here and there very slowly coming up through the beer.

Smell: When first poured, quite metallic. As it warmed up the metallic is still there, but toffee notes come out. A hint of something fruity every now and then.

Taste: Rich toasted malt, caramel, toffee, some cocoa notes (but these disappeared as the beer warmed up), dark fruits, some spiciness. Definitely on the sweet side. Some tiny hints of warming alcohol as the beer warmed up.

Mouthfeel: Sticky, slick, some lingering alcohol bite and spiciness, but a bit flat as well.

Overall / Drinkability: I don't know if this was supposed to have yeast sediment in it or not, but when I pulled the cork and there was practically no noise I was concerned that something was off with this bottle. No bad tastes, but I wonder if something is missing in this beer given that I'm not picking up the aromas as described on the bottle. Tasty, but not an amazing quad. If there are plums in this, they are well hidden. For the price I cannot see getting it again when there are better quads available.

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Photo of NYR2
4.24/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - Dark with no head but a little bit of foam(poured into a goblet) which is creating just a bit of lacing.

S - Smells of a Belgian ale...this may be a ridiculous description, but my brain tells me when I am smelling a Belgian ale and that's what it's telling me now.

T - Mildly spicy and a little fruity but very smooth. Deliciously hiding the alcohol content. IMO Sierra Nevada should remove their name from this because this beer is entirely too good to not be a stand alone brand.

M - Smooth, slight carbonation on the tongue and throat.

O - I am glad I got my hands on this before my local liquor stores ran out of it as it seems to be in low quantity and high demand. If I can grab another 4 pack I will and I suggest you do the same if you enjoy dark Belgian ales.

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Photo of larryi86
3.69/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

375 mL bottle poured into a goblet

A- A deep ruby red with a small off-white head.

S- Dark fruits, plum, sweet malts, caramel malts, very mild for a quad.

T- Dark fruits, slightly tart plums, caramel malts, earthy slightly bitter spices, again mild for a quad.

M- Medium body, lots of carbonation.

O- Not a bad beer, but again this is a very mild quad. Plums work in the beer and are enjoyable. I like a lot of beers from Sierra Nevada, but this is one the few I wouldn't pick up again.

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Photo of richj1970
3.96/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into snifter glass. I have to say the packaging on this one is very nice. I love the caged and corked bottle. I love the artwork, and the nice heavy glass bottle. All top notch.

A: Very dark brown with an almost purple tone. Smallish one finger tan head with some decent retention but very little lacing.

S: Plum, raisin, dates, Belgian yeast. Perhaps a bit more fruit forward than I was expecting.

T: Again the plum flavors are quite strong. Other dark fruits mixed with that familiar Belgian yeast. A bit boozy but not in a bad way. It lacks a little of the complexity I was hoping for.

M: Full bodied, coating the tongue nicely. Perhaps a bit sweet.

O: A nice American interpretation of a quad and an enjoyable brew but not my favorite of the group.

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Photo of Mongrel
3.49/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I had high hopes for this one, but I gotta say I'm not a big fan. I love the packaging - a heavy 375 ml bottle with great artwork and a cork n cage topper - but it's all a bit downhill from there.

Its appearance in the glass is pretty good I guess - dark brown with ruby and purple highlights, but no lasting head or lace.

Smell is mild for a quad, with some definite fruit and some definite booze. And maybe some toffee/caramel. Not unpleasant, just not overly inviting.

The most dominant flavor on the palate is tart, fizzy plums. Now, I understand that this is a beer that is brewed with plums, but I do not expect to experience "tart" or "fizzy" in a quad. It never delivers on a quad's deep, luxurious sweetness and complex Belgian spice. Instead, it seems overly dry and actually somewhat bitter and sulphuric, like underripe fruit. As the beer warms, some berries and caramel emerge, but not enough to overcome its tart dryness.

Mouthfeel is, as mentioned, a bit fizzy and watered down for a quad. Booze is definitely perceptible.

Overall, I don't mean to totally rip apart this beer but I am disappointed in it both as a quad and as a Sierra Nevada product. SN offerings are usually top notch. Perhaps if it was labeled as a Belgian strong ale or something else, it would have been more successful.

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Photo of StaveHooks
3.09/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle served in a Duvel tulip

A - A hard pour reveals, dark ruby/brown body, nice clarity with a finger of tan head. Beautiful beer.

S - Roasted ashy malt, smoked molasses, very spicy aroma, rich and acidic fruit comes out with grapes, cherries, tobacco, burnt candy sugar. The fruit takes on a cooked character once warmed.

T - Spicy fruit, scorched cherries, acidic grapes, there's an odd smokiness to the malt, an alcohol sharpness that cuts through the sweet malt. Finishes astringent with flat cola, spicy alcohol and charred malt.

M - Medium to full body, semi-syrupy feel, low carbonation.

This is some odd flavors going on. Definitely a unique Quad...or beer for that matter. Grapes and cherries seemed to dominate the fruit profile especially when warm. There was a burnt charred character running through the entire beer and the heavy handed alcohol seemed to disrupt rather than add to the flavors. Not my cup of tea.

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Photo of ThaneMcC
4.48/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: long neck bottle, poured into tulip glass

Appearance- deep dark brown bordering on black, fine effervescent

Smell: dark fruit, raisin leather, molasses, cocoa, brown sugar

Taste: so malty! sweet with complex medley of contrasting malty, smokey sweet, not syrupy, clean finish

Notes: overall a very complex, sweet and malty beverage - enjoyable sipper, especially great on a cold winter night!

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of elmore
4.77/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a caged and corked 12.7oz bottle into a Chimay chalice. Picked this up from Woodmans on the West Side of Madison, WI. I think a steal at $11.99 for a four pack, but I am partial to this style. Bought a pack about a week ago and went back to get 2 more a few days later after my first taste.

I usually don't comment on packaging, but this could be the coolest product packaging I have come across. Heavy duty caged and corked bottle with a bowing, hooded monk on the front. Perfect.

A very dark pour. Only a shade off of a stout. Thin tan head that hangs around for a while. Almost no lacing.

Brown sugar, sweet dark fruit with almost a grape-like taste in the middle, which maybe the plums. Nice slightly bitter cocoa aftertaste. Alcohol is hidden well, but there is a nice little alcohol burn if you concentrate

Small bubbles. Nice champagne like carbonation, which lasts throughout. Thick full and creamy.

I am very partial to this style so I tend to rate this type of beer highly. But this is a really great American made Quad. Thank you Sierra Nevada for this wonderful beer at such a great price. I would compare this to Abt 12 or Chimay blue. If you can get a hold of this one give it a try. You won't be disappointed.

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Ovila Belgian-Style Abbey Quad: Ale Brewed With Plums from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 225 ratings.
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