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Gulden Fraug Belgian Style Ale | Hoppin' Frog Brewery

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BA SCORE
81
good
52 Reviews
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Gulden Fraug Belgian Style AleGulden Fraug Belgian Style Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Hoppin' Frog Brewery
Ohio, United States
hoppinfrog.com

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by becktone on 11-24-2006

BEER STATS
Reviews:
52
Ratings:
74
Avg:
3.55
pDev:
16.34%
 
 
Wants:
1
Gots:
4
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 52 | Ratings: 74
Photo of adamette
4.45/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Live Review. Poured from a bomber into my Gulden Draak gold rimmed tulip glass. No observed "best by" date but I cannot imagine that it matters.

A Golden yellow orange translucent body under a one inch fluffy white head with some lacing even before I take a sip. Nice look. 4.0

S Sweet malt for sure. No hops smell. It reminds me a LOT of its likely inspiration, Gulden Draak. It may have a more sugary smell than Gulden Draak and maybe a bit less complex than Gulden Draak. 4.0

T Sweet malt explodes with flavor. There is a healthy dose of apple cider flavor that is not repulsive but it is certainly there. Belgian style yeast is noticeable and welcomed. Alcohol is very well hidden. 5.0

M Full with big ABV and big sweetness. Very appropriate to the style. 4.5

D I will drink and enjoy the bomber but nothing beyond that. 4.0

Notes: A fitting tribute to Gulden Draak. I am glad that I found this as Gulden Draak is one of my favorites. My first from this brewer, I have B.O.R.I.S. the crusher waiting for me next.

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Photo of albern
4.4/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an excellent Belgian style beer, and what a pleasure it was to experience it. The beer pours a clear amber color with some head, but nothing exceptional. The beer is medium bodied, a little syrupy, less so than I was expecting, and plenty carbonated. The taste is just wonderful florals, Belgian candied sugars in the fermentation, coriander, spice, clove, and a big orange bouquet. This is an eminently delicious beer and about the most well disguised 10% ABV beer you're likely to find. This is one that is well worth seeking out. L'Chaim.

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Photo of hustlesworth
4.33/5  rDev +22%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A- sweet cascading bubble action! nice ivory head with a layer of batter on top and fizzy active bubbles underneath. it's effervescent and alive and pretty noisy and leaves a patchwork of sticky lace that morph into drippy tiers like cake icing. color is a hazy warm tropical sunset against the light, kind of a dirty apricot.

S- banana, clove, cotton candy, and the smallest amount of bubblegum, peach/apricot, mango, and red plum. some alcohol is there in the form of a rose wine, but it's more like a supporting role that enhances the other players. very fruity and yeasty smelling and borderline tropical. the nice color seems to fit the aroma well.

T- one thing i really like about hoppin frog beers-- every one i've had so far is brewery fresh so maybe that has something to do with it BUT, the malt is so toasty and pronounced, layers deep, though it definitely does not overpower the other flavors, it tastes almost exactly like honey smacks or super golden crisp cereals. toasted puffed wheat that tastes like barley. amazing. another complex brew starts off with a bit of flowery spicy hops followed by a sort of metallic mineral water taste, almost like it was brewed in belgium. apricot/plum tartness comes next then WHAM you get blasted with hop bitterness and intense candy sugar sweetness simultaneously and it kinda sends a shiver down my spine. naturally the sweetness subdues the bitter, leaving it in the dust. the finish is light and dry and full of those toasted puffed barley cereal tastes that i mentioned above.

MF- feel is smooth and creamy. literally like a lightly carbonated whole milk thanks to the obvious amount of candy sugar added. despite its sweetness, this beer is never cloying. everything seems to balance out. it leaves the palate with a very neutral feeling, not grainy, but with the sense that grain has been there, not syrupy, not dry, just a perfect culmination of all things.

D- for such a big flavorful beer, it drinks smooth and easy, and the 10.5% alcohol is very well hidden. still within the style classification, the color taste and aroma for me seem to put it somewhere between a BSDA and a trippel. hats off again to the brewmaster, i see big things in the future.

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Photo of seangroves
4.14/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

Appearance:
Poured with about 1/4" white foamy head that dissipates quickly. Color is copper-orange and quite clear.

Smell:
Smell is fruity, similar to a banana.

Taste:
Slight bitterness at the beginning then quite malty yet the fruitiness of the hops and yeast used come through in a complementing manner.

Mouthfeel:
Medium bodied, very smooth and easy on the palate.

Drinkability:
This beer, despite its lack of head, is an excellently balanced beer and very easy to drink on casually. I would have another.

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Photo of discovolante65
4.12/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought this one because I just had the Crusher and liked it. The price on this one was where it should be for the ABV and the category.

Poured this into the Duvel bulb aggressively. Amber, golden orange color with a half-inch, quickly dissolving head that becomes a thin off-white ring after 30 seconds. Tiny bubbles, but an ever-streaming flow of them in a funnel coming up from the bottom.

Smells very sweet and fruity. Bananas and malt and that strange bread/yeast smell that this style has. A little spice as well.

Taste doesn't hide the alcohol, but it doesn't burn too hot and its a steady, minimal presence as opposed to a finishing slap like most high abv's. Sugary-malt with a caramel, fruit-cocktail syrup to finish. Not at all bitter, and barely what I would consider pale ale, but delicious none the less. I don't taste any hops at all.

Medium almost syrupy, but not too heavy and doesn't linger too long or end up bitter.

Smooth throughout but gets a little hot as it gets warmer. I would definitely drink more than one of these. I'm glad I don't have to share this one tonight. It's 27 degrees, we're looking at 6-10 inches of snow and I just shoveled. Now if I only had a fireplace to cozy up to with this one.

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Photo of IBUnit63
4.02/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Surprisingly wispy head, but very active carbonation. For something in style saying "keep refrigerated" I expect more volume to the head. Amber, caramel apple body. Looks more like a barley wine w/x/o carbonation.

Very mild Granny Smith and muscat aroma. Clean, refreshing scent (not what's expected). Seems like it needs warmth. Cider tones.

Tastes like a cold, carbonated, mild Aussie sticky. Muscat and caramel apples with a staunch alcohol burn. Thoroughly out of style? Yes. Enjoyable? Sure. Needs warmth.

Even when cold it's thick and syrupy with that viscous sweet alcohol burn. Still enjoyable but a little disjointed. Not getting a lot of generic Belgian character here.

It's drinkable as a sipper but what the hell is it?

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Photo of zrab11
4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a nice yellow golden color, With a 1 finger head.with some nice lacing

S- Has a honey aroma to it with some malt notes and sugar mixed in

T- Has a really nice sweet honey taste to it with some other fruit flavors and some malty yeastyness to finish

M- Medium bodied with ok carbonation

D-OVerall i really liked this beer. Its flavors when nice and refreshing and all balanced well together. Would like to have this again, but as it being retired looks like i wont have that chance. Was glad i got to have this beer before it dissapered!

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Photo of Gehrig
4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Somewhat cloudy cider-orange body is capped with two fingers of off-white foam that don't linger long enough, but leave decent lacing on the good ol' DAB mug. Plenty of fruit and brown sugar greet the nose, with apricot and berry most prominently represented. I'd like the taste to be a little stickier, but it's rather good, smooth and fruity. The stickiness would enhance the texture, which is a bit thin. This holds up well and is nicely carbonated, and the smooth texture might be the nicest element of Gulden Fraug. The high ABV (10.5%) does catch up to the drinker soon enough, no question.

It's not an overwhelming BSDA and, in fact, would rank as just fairly good compared to top-notch BSDAs. However, this is still a good, solid BSDA worth ending a night with. Good.

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Photo of 4thoseabout2bock
4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a golden orange color, very clear, with about an inch of creamy head at first.

This was a decent american belgian-style (reminscent of a tripel). Sweet with a bit of spicing in both aroma and taste. No off flavors. Good mouthfeel. Very drinkable.

I would not call it a Belgian Strong Dark. It was not dark. The brewery calls it a golden belgian-style abbey ale. Either golden or triple is a better descriptor of this beer style-wise.

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Photo of merlin48
3.97/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazed copper body has a modest beige head that quickly falls to a film before completely vanishing. A few flecks of lace cling to the sides of the goblet. Aroma is mostly fruity, peaches and melons. A note of clove is in the background. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a nice soft carbonation. Taste has a smooth fruitiness. Apricots and nectarines. Slight yeast presence but virtually no hops. Some cotton candy notes. A pretty good effort but not in the same class as their imperial stout.

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Photo of neenerzig
3.95/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked a bomber of this up the other day. I had been anxious to try something from this new brewery. Poured into an oversized wine glass. This beer pours a hazy copper/orangish color with a very small head indeed that was all but totally gone about 1 or 2 minutes after being poured. It settled to a very thin film layer with a very thin white line going along the inside of my glass. The color reminded me of apple cidar. It has a sweet smell with aromas of malt, caramel, cirtus and candy. The flavors are the same as the smell along with a touch of spice and perhaps a bit of dark fruit as well. Quite flavorful indeed. No hops at all here. Nice and sweet, but not overly sweet. Has a good crisp and full bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Very easy to drink. Definetly worth a try. I would drink this again, but it could use some improvements too.

Eric

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.94/5  rDev +11%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy, deep amber body topped only by a thin ring of white bubbles.

Smell: Sweet-smelling, candylike nose with notes of sugar-coated fruits, mainly peach and plum. Also, there's some bready malts as well as light touches of spice and alcohol.

Taste: Plenty of maltiness with a mixture of simple syrup and caramel sweetness. Perhaps a pinch of toasted grain in there as well. Dash of spices. All of the fruitiness from the nose. Hmm, there's no real hop character or bitterness, leaving this to finish sweet, candyish, and decidedly warming.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Well, that's that. And about that, I must say: it's yummy. An instant classic Belgian-style brew? It's doubtful. But it's tasty and surely that's gotta still count for something these days.

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Photo of weeare138
3.92/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appears a semi-transparent, slightly hazed, deep gold with a small, off-white head that quickly fades out. Spotty lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is of yeasty, sugary, lightly spiced Belgian yeast with some coriander and pepper jumping out of the glass.
Taste is of yeasty, Belgian goodness with light notes of banana, citrus, and melon.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, sugary with citrus resounding. There is also a spice that blankets the entire tongue. Pretty decent Belgian style out of Ohio.

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Photo of Wasatch
3.85/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jpm30 for this one.

Poured into a chalice a nice clean/clear dark golden orange color, nice carbonation, tiny fizzy head, not much sticky lacing afterwards. The nose is malty, yeasty, spicy, and some caramel. The taste is sweet, malty/yeasty, warm from the spices and alcohol, and some caramel. Medium body. Drinkable, I like this one, not bad at all, recommended.

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Photo of superspak
3.84/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass; no bottle dating, but was recently released. Pours fairly crystal clear deep orange/amber color with a small foamy light khaki head with poor retention, that reduces to a ring of lacing fairly quickly. Slight spotty lacing on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big apricot, plum, pear, apple, melon, light banana, clove, pepper, honey, candi sugar, bread, herbal, grass, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast. earthy hops, and pale malt sweetness; with good strength. Taste of big apricot, plum, pear, apple, melon, light banana, clove, pepper, honey, candi sugar, bread, herbal, grass, and yeast earthiness. Fair amount of earthy yeast spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of apricot, plum, pear, apple, melon, light banana, clove, honey, candi sugar, bread, herbal, grass, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a while. Very nice complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast, earthy hops, and pale malt sweetness; with a nice malt/yeast balance and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a smooth and fairly slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with only a light warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very nice Belgian strong pale. All around good complexity and balance of fruity/spicy yeast, earthy hops, and pale malt sweetness; and very smooth to sip on for the big ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,514 characters

Photo of ONUMello
3.8/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle poured into a goblet
A: orange-ish/goldenrod in color with no head
S: Candied orange, sweet malt, Belgian yeast and cherry
T: Lots of Belgian yeast, florals, cherry, apricot, a hint of banana/clove
M: Full-bodied, a touch sweet, a bit of alcohol
O: Initially I had plugged in lower ratings since it had something weird on the finish, but that blew off by midway through the bottle and this turned out to be a decent Belgian-style ale. Not my favorite in the style and not my favorite from Hoppin' Frog, but a decent beer and worth a try

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Photo of mhewes
3.8/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A : Pours a dark golden color with a small white head which disappears real quickly

S : Not much of a smell but there is a nice sweet malt smell along with some fruits and sugar.

T : A nice smooth taste, hints of caramel, fruits, and a nice malt flavor. The alcohol makes it's presence known at the finish.

M : Syrupy and sticky

D : Way too sweet. If it was turned down some more, it would be really good.

 410 characters

Photo of SPLITGRIN
3.77/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Body is a pale shade of amber with a honey gold glow at the edges. Head stands at an inch of quick fading off white foam. Nose is very sweet with floral bursts. Smells of mellon and Pez also are there. Super sweet and syrupy solky on first sip. Hints of malty yeast are well balanced with the spicey mouthfeel. The mouthfeel it leaves is actually very nice but super thick. Alchol is well hidden but definitely ther as it warms the belly well. Based on its strength you couldnt drink more than one. A little rough around the edges but a very good beer.

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Photo of PBRstreetgang
3.7/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cellared for 1 year. Pours a pale garnet hue with a dull haze from the yeast pour. Dense and fizzy one finger head shows decent retention given the ABV and shows spotty lacing. The aroma is on the simple side but well executed albiet somewhat mild; Pilsener malt and beet sugar nose with appropriate level or spicy alcohol and ester/phenol scent. Lightly toasted and dextrinous malt flavor upfront (Aromatic or Caravienna?), followed by abundant sharp Pils and a wave of candi sugar and booze. A sweet touch of honey and light caramel in the aftertaste are coupled with a low but perciveable hop bitterness and tart belgian phenols and a rum raisin taste.. The alcohol, the suggestion of Czech or German hops and the tangy ester are the balancing factors here that keep this sweet beer from cloying. The medium body and mild carbonation actually increase the perceived sweetness due to thier being lower than tradional Tripels and BSPA's. It seems apparent that the body was lightened with some kind of simple sugar, but the mouthfeel is slightly more viscous than one expects of the style. However, the beer holds a respectable drinkability because the residual sweetness is not overpowering. Finishes easy with the ester and phenolics showing a little as more as it warms; but still at a restrained level. Incidentally, I am scoring this as a Tripel because the label says "golden abbey ale" and it sure doesn't look like any BSDA I've ever seen.

 1,448 characters

Photo of giblet
3.7/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This was a pretty good local beer. I had not heard of this so when I saw it was local I had to try it. Had good body and feel. Not my favorite, but certainly worth a try. Rich in flavor with a nice creamy head. Not likely to be easily found, but I recomend that you try.

I also get a kick out of the label.

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
3.67/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to mcallister for the trade.

Pours a cloudy murky dark peach/nectarine color. head dissipates fast. Nose is very similar to a witbier. Taste is very wheaty and slightly overspiced. There is a certain element of a triple here but it is weak, it tastes very much more wheaty. The mouthfeel is interestingly thick, but a little akward. Great drinkability for the abv, but what it makes up for in drinkability it lacks in taste and truth to style. Good beer, just a funky classification.

 491 characters

Photo of Sammy
3.65/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A decent smooth drinking Belgian, sweet and above average mouthfeel.Not complex, merely a yeast play. A whole lot of alcohol, minerally, still very drinkable. Nothing especially spicy or tasty. Lots of caramel with secondary fruit like apple and pear

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.58/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a tulip glass)

A- This beer pours a reddish-brown body with lots of strands of tiny bubbles. The thick ring of light tan foam sticks to the glass with each sip.

S- This beer has a light smooth dry perfumed hint of hops with a light raw grain note when it warms a bit.

T- This beer has a dry spiced hops note with hints of smooth white sugar. The finish has a soft alcohol taste. As it warms there is a raw grain and toasted malt note but it is very light. As it warms there is a light apple juice note to the malt.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a dry finish. This beer has a light alcohol warmth in the finish but it is pretty smooth.

D- This beer has some nice smooth flavors especially for a 10.5% ABV but there is not a lot of complexity or yeast qualities to contribute to the flavor.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.58/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Rustic orange with a dark bronze-like glow. This one looks darker than a BSPA and lighter than a BSDA. In fact, it looks like a barleywine. Up top is an orange creamsicle cap that is firm rather than creamy and is beginning to leave a fair amount of lace in a 'king's crown' pattern.

The nose is different and is really nothing like most BSDAs that I've run across. I'll have to go with general impressions since specifics escape me. The beer is fruity (ripe apricots and red apples perhaps), spicy and mildly phenolic. No alcohol is evident. This could go either way on the taste buds... and I can't predict which way it'll be.

If I was to judge Gulden Fraug alongside most world-class BSDAs, it wouldn't fare very well. If I was to judge it in isolation, as a big, sweet, Belgian-style ale that tries very hard to please and (mostly) succeeds, it isn't too bad. Damning with faint praise? Well, let's see what the beer at mid-bomber has to say for itself.

It's still golden fruity (apricots soaked in apricot brandy, sugar syrup and Laphroaig Scotch whisky) and has more of a clovey, Belgian yeast character than I initially gave it credit for. The Laphroaig comparison was meant to describe the phenolic undercurrent that probably isn't prominent enough to turn off the casual drinker (assuming the casual drinker would buy it). There's no shortage of different flavors, it's just that they could fit together a little better.

Anyone who likes big beer should like the mouthfeel. All that malt and all that candi sugar make sure that things are as plush as can be. I like the stickiness that accumulates on the tongue and the lips as the ounces disappear.

Gulden Fraug Belgian Style Ale won't put even a minor scare into the most accomplished BSDAs and is probably my least favorite Hoppin' Frog beer so far. That doesn't mean that it isn't a worthwhile purchase. This is a recipe that Mr. Karm should tweak until he comes up with something that can stand shoulder to shoulder with the rest of his excellent lineup.

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Photo of davey101
3.53/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bomber into a tulip glass. Guess this is from 2011?

Pours a hazy burnt amber body with no real foam. Some light edging and minimal lacing. Plenty of sediment on the last pour. Smell is oxidized malts, caramel, and some spices. Taste is also of caramel, oxidation and some Belgian yeast spice. Drinkable enough, but most certainly over the hill. Medium mouth feel with nice carbonation. Feels a bit boozy but doesn't taste like it. Probably a former shell of itself but if you enjoy oxidation this has a really pleasant level of that which works quite well off of the light spice of the Belgian yeast.

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Gulden Fraug Belgian Style Ale from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
3.55 out of 5 based on 74 ratings.
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