Yeti Imperial Stout | Great Divide Brewing Company

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1,750 Reviews
Yeti Imperial StoutYeti Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company
Colorado, United States | website

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
An onslaught of the senses. It starts with big, roasty malt flavor that gives way to rich caramel and toffee notes. YETI gets its bold hop character from an enormous quantity of American hops.

Added by cokes on 08-09-2003

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Reviews: 1,750 | Ratings: 5,264
Photo of brewdub17
3.98/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Completely black with a tan head and some dark tan hues within the lacing and head.

Smell: Bold and great. This beer throws many flavors at you simultaneously.

Taste: Dark roasted malt flavors come and then settle with the bitterness of hops. Amazing amounts of flavor.

Mouthfeel: Very thick feeling but drinkable and definitely palatable.

Drinkability: Because it is so thick it might not be as drinkable as others. My senses would go numb if I were to drink a few more.

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Photo of MiguelMandingo
3.97/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Gingerman pint glass.

Appearance - This isn't a bad looking beer. Pours like thick, syrupy, coffee with a fingers worth of head. Lacing is minimal and the head disappears after several minutes.

Smell - I love the smell of a good RIS. Alcohol, vanilla, dark malts and maybe some dark chocolate, and some kind of spice...

Taste - Pretty delicious. Dark roasted malt, and quite a bit of hop spiciness. Sweet opening with a bitter finish. The bitter just makes me want to take another sip. There is a faint hint of bitter chocolate behind the hops that shows up in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Pretty good compared to some other RISs. Thick (as should be expected) and creamy with a bitter finish. A little more carbonation to balance with the bitterness would have been nice, but that just sounds like I am nitpicking.

Drinkability - This beer has very good drinkability when compared to some others in the same style. Drinkability is better if you just take frequent small sips as opposed to a few large gulps. I noticed some friends of mine who were not very experienced with such a stout beer trying to take it down in large gulps, while I took frequent tiny sips, and I actually finished my beer before they did.

This is a great beer. Try it if you haven't, but, I prefer the oaked version over this one. The oaked version has smoother edges when compared to the original. This is still a great beer, let alone a great RIS. Yummy.

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Photo of smulkowski
3.97/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, 3/11/11, poured into a shaker pint.

Mocha head very quickly receding to no head whatsoever. Some legs, but more of just a light brown smear left on the glass. Absolutely opaque.

The first smell that I notice is roasted, unmalted barley. Behind that, some cocoa and coffee.

Creamy mouthfeel, slightly burnt taste, nice hoppiness that compliments the burnt aroma, maybe too much, if this were my homebrew, I would probably drop the roastiness and see what happened. Very pleasant, a nice strong-tasting, thick stout to write this research journal article over. I like this...but I think Old Rasputin is better, more widely available, and cheaper.

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Photo of Chrisco88
3.96/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Extremely dark brown, some may say black. Thick, luxurious foamy head that lasts, chocolate brown in color.

Aroma: Coffee, dark malts and glorious chocolate! Closer sniffs revealed subtle hints of that noble hop goodness, not overpowering or pungent at all.

Taste: Chocolate and malts are predominant, aftertaste has some coffee/toffee tones and a good portion of hop bitterness but not out of balance at all.

Palate: Silky smooth and almost chewy. Noticeable aftertaste of alcohol which puts me off a bit, but the strong coffee/chocolate tastes keep it from burning or feeling hot.

Overall: On the whole a great tasting beer but the strong and lasting flavors combined with the high ABV keep it from being enjoyable on a regular basis. While slowing sipping my one glass kept me impressed throughout, about half way through I realized I wouldn't care for another glass of this anytime soon... one was good but it'll do for a while.

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Photo of chinchill
3.96/5  rDev -6.2%

12 oz bottle.
Thick and smooth with low carbonation; likely better if on nitro tap.
This is a big beer with a huge load of dark malts and plenty of hops as well. Enough coffee in the flavor to suggest there's actually some in here. Rich, very dark roast flavor.

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Photo of IntriqKen
3.96/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A beautiful jet black fills the glass with a dark tan half finger head that melts to very sticky lacing which covers the top of the glass.
Aromas are dark fruits...I smell mostly raisins... caramel, dark brown sugar and a little alcohol.
Flavor is dark, dark, bittersweet chocolate with bakers chocolate thrown in. Dark, dark French roast coffee...just a hint. A little sweet chocolate keeps sticking it's presence out for brief instances, then just when you go looking for it, it's gone, only to peek out again later as you indulge yourself by playing with this elixir in your mouth before slowly swallowing.
Dry, bitter, hops make themselves known in the aftertaste mixed with the bakers chocolate and French roast coffee or espresso.
Alcohol is slow to warm you after you swallow making this a very dangerous brew.

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Photo of Rastacouere
3.96/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Black body with a very dark brown head that sticks like a rolemodel. Quite hoppy aroma comparable to a storm king with a deep maltiness of milk chocolate and light coffee notes. Taste is immensely balanced with a touch of everything required in a good imperial stout. Initially mild chocolate to start up and quickly fades into a very dry roastiness, hoppy finish. Body is thick, ultra-creamy, pretty carbonated. Very neat imperial with a stupendous balance and as much flavor as it should contain.

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Photo of ZimZamZoom
3.96/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle into a tulip glass.

Coal black with a cappuccino colored head that is frothy, big and bold. Lacing is amazing, as the head clings tightly to the inside of the glass.

This aroma is big on hops, with rich, creamy coffee and bitter chocolate lingering in the background. Probably one of the hoppiest smelling RIS's that I have had. I don't get any of the dark fruity notes that I enjoy so much.

Taste is again up-front with big hops, but creamy rich latte and milk chocolate are right there with it, along with some prune, raisin and alcohol. Interesting and complex. I look forward to each and every sip.

Big bodied, thick and creamy in the mouth. Enjoyable even on a hot summer day for sure.

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3.96/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is my first review, so bear with me here, guys (+feel free to critique my critique!). I just turned 21 eight months ago and have been working on my beer palate daily (trying roughly at least one new beer every day) until I now feel comfortable enough to review one. And this guy seems unique enough to pop my cherry.

So anyway, I've been wanting to try the Yeti for some time now after seeing variations of it all over the place. It must be damn good if its good enough to produce spin-offs, right?
Well, I bought the 22oz bottle and poured it into my Ommegang glass (not the right glass, I know, but I just got it and am super psyched to use it!!). Second pouring went into a standard pint glass.

Appearance - Deep, dark brown. Looks like 22 ounces of espresso. The head, once died down, even looks like espresso foam.

Smell - Milder smell than one would expect (or maybe that's just my stuffed-up nose talking). Smells like a bar of roasted caramel candy with an added oakiness.

Taste - Tastes like hugely over-roasted espresso with about a cup of caramel dumped in. I hate sweets, yet somehow this baby grows on me with every sip. It hits you with an immediate sweetness, but, quickly, the bitterness of the hops + roasted malt flavor hugely overpower the fleeting sweetness.

Mouthfeel - Standard stout feel: thick, creamy, filling. Though the intense flavor leaves your mouth in shock, feeling like you've just woken up after falling asleep with coffee beans in your mouth all night. You're forced to use the hair of the dog to quench this bitterness with more of it!

Overall - Yeti is a perfect name for this one. This guy is really the Sasquatch of beers! 22oz is just right and leaves me satisfied enough that I won't need another beer for at least six hours. To fully enjoy this mammoth, be sure to eat bland tasting food leading up to it and come on a light stomach. It'll kick you in the balls. High marks!

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Photo of darklordlager
3.96/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a solid black with an abundant head of very dark brown bubbles which show incredible retention--perhaps the best looking RIS I am yet to encounter.

S: I can feel it luring me in before I am even near it. Even 1.5 feet away it oozes chocolatey roasted malt goodness. Sweet, and a little bit smoky/roasty. Rich dark chocolate and an acidity that makes one think of coffee even though this isn't the espresso-aged version. Light floral element in the nose as well, courtesy of the hops.

Taste: Rich dark chocolate and coffee envelop the mouth, with the roasted malt and light smokiness coming through in the finish. Nice warming feeling pops up to provide company. A bit of dark fruit in there as well. Citrus note throughout, with a bitterness that matches the dark grains' acidity fairly well. The bitterness seems to accumulate with each sip.

M: Medium-high carbonation, a bit more than I prefer in a RIS. Still a pleasant creaminess though.

D: A fine offering from Great Divide. The citrus and bitterness seem to dominate after sitting with it for a while--I think I would prefer this aged a bit to mellow out the hops. Nice complexity of mlats and hops, just not exactly in the proportions I prefer.

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Photo of rawfish
3.96/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black, moonless night in the forest. Incredible cascading effect on the pour nets a 3 finger high coffee brown head with incredible retention and all sorts of sticky lacing.

Smell highlights coffee and bittersweet chocolate as well as some sweet syrupy cherry, citrus hoppiness and noticable alcohol.

Bold yet boozy, coffee and chocolate malt follows the nose, there is also some dark fruit that detracts from the overall flavor. Earthy and citrus hops are faded but provide some balancing effect. Notes of tobacco, smoke and bing cherries come up near the end of the drink.

Creamy, chewy yet somewhat smooth drink. Finishes bittering but with a mouth coating of syrup that holds the bitterness and coffee flavors. Average body for a stout not too viscous despite the pour but the carbonation is a little low, sits heavy on the palate and you need to work to get the flavors out from the middling alcohol background.

I get the hype but this stout seems to be more about being bold then balance. Benchmark imperial stout, rather affordable and readily available.

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Photo of RattleheadKV2
3.96/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bomber into Unibroue tulip.

Appearance: Pours an almost pitch black, with about a fingersworth of dark burnt caramel colored head that disipated rapidly. Not much lacing to speak of.

Smell: Lots of chocolate, and roasted malt tones everywhere, with hints of coffee. A faint hint of alcohol.

Taste: Dark chocolate, roasty notes, coffee. A nice bready malt base here.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy, as any RIS should be.

Overall: Very good brew, especially for the price.

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Photo of Scotchboy
3.96/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Great Divide Oak Aged Yeti

12oz bottle, Sam Adams Perfect Pint

A: Pours darker than night, jet black and opaque. Viscous and well carbonated with a creamy dark brown head that shows good staying power and excellent legs.

S: Hops and dark malt, chocolate, a little booze. I don't detect a lot of roasted or coffee character.

T: Hops and dark malts, bittersweet chocolate, some grapefruit on the finish mixed with coffee and coffee bitterness. Alcohol burn on the way out.

MF: Viscous and full bodied. Pretty bitter for a stout, and very drying.

O: Liked it. It's a good RIS that doesn't try to do too much. I liked the hop presence but I can see how it turns some people off.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.96/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark borwn beer with a big frothy head that coats the glass in lacing. The head takes forever to subside at that.

S - Coffee, chocolate, molasses, alcohol and burnt malt.

T - A lot of slightly sweet chocolatey malt with a touch of coffee and alcohol. The aftertaste is a faint coffee bitterness.

M - Smooth, thick, pretty refreshing. No complaints.

D - Good. I think I prefer the oak aged, but this isn't far behind. I will certainly have one of them again sometime.

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Photo of TuckerCarlson
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Lost Dog Lounge in Ithaca, NY, inexplicably served in a plastic pint glass (whose shockingly effective insulation made it really, really hard to warm up).

Very thin dark tan head (par for the course on a Russian Imperial Stout with this much alcohol), but it definitely stuck around, even as I held my beer for twenty minutes or so to warm it up. Very nice lacing on the glass (well, plastic), and a dark, inky, opaque near-black.

Nice toffee and caramel aroma with some darker coffee and chocolate hiding back there. A little bit of herbal hops back there, too, and some nonspecific fruitiness. A big, pleasing smell overall.

Huge malty, toffee flavor, secondary on the chocolate and coffee flavors. The finish is beautiful; the alcohol and hops take it from an incredibly sweet brew to a nice, crisp dryness that lingers with some herbal flavors. Definitely a big, thick brew that coats the mouth and the tongue; very satisfying.

Big, tasty, and gets a lot right as far as I'm concerned. I would, however, definitely consider this a food beer. The first time I had it (from a bottle, not on tap), it was with barbecued spare ribs, and it was just about the best beer/food combination ever. On its own, it's a little harder to down, especially because it's not as much of a dessert beer as something like Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours thick and black with a dark cocoa colored 2 finger head. Good retention gives way to a thin layer of suds across the surface. Fair lacing around the glass, with good stick.

Smell - Chocolate and a touch of roast sitting behind it. Really distant caramel.

Taste - Milk chocolate hits first, then lesser notes of roasted malt and coffee spring to life and provide an edge to the chocolatey sweetness. Light coffee astringency rides into the aftertaste, then gives way to a faint earthy/nutty character and a light caramel sweetness. Certainly not the strongest of Impy stouts, but a nicely balanced flavor when all's said and done.

Mouthfeel - Full-bodied with low carbonation. Velvety smooth. Goes down stupid easy.

Overall - I wouldn't call this an RIS. To me it's more along the lines of an American Impy... And I'll be honest, I really like this beer, but I don't love it. I'm a sucker for brutality in my Impies, and this thing just doesn't have it. It's incredibly smooth, balanced and delicious, but it lacks that kick-in-the-teeth depth of flavor and bitterness that makes Impys so damn delicious. In summary: if you like smooth, well-balanced stouts, you can't go wrong with this one. If you like 'em rough and punchy and you're looking for a fight tonight, move along.

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Yeti pours impenetrable black. The head is good for an impy with good lace. The nose has more vanilla than the oaked version suprisingly. The taste is of vanilla, dark malt, and some slight fruit flavor. Nice subtle hop bitterness on the finish. Good kind of stoneish creamy flavor. Mouthfeel is a little bit thinner than i would like for an impy, but thick enough. drinkability is real high for an impy. Good brew, should age well.

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Photo of DrinkSlurm
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass. Pours a jet black color - oil looking, very slight tan head.
Smells of intense roasted coffee malts. Taste is of bitter roasted coffee and malts. Slightly sweet notes, like chocolate or dried/candied fruit, and slight hops.
Slightly bitter mouthfeel, but very easy to drink.
Overall its a great and enjoyable brew. A bit overly sweet...and bitter for my palate, but very enjoyable nonetheless.
I have my eye on the espresso yeti and think it would be great.

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Photo of vkv822
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle into pint glass.

It is dark chocolate, almost black in color. With a thick foamy tan head with great retention and very nice lacing.

It has a roasty caramel and chocolate malt smell, with a nice hint of hops. The flavor is of chocolate and roast malts.

A medium to full body with fairly active carbonation, though it does subside as it warms.

Overall a nice imperial stout, though it is a bit hoppier than I'd expect and I'd like to see the mouthfeel a bit creamier.

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Photo of ABCJiugui
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

bomber into tulip

A- dark, opaque blackish/brown, no light gets thru. Head pours 2 fingers mocha colored, creamy smooth look, retains fairly decent, if thin. No real lacing to speak of- few bubbly bits of foam stick to the sides, but minimal and spotty at best.

S- Chocolate, some dried fruit/rum soaked dates-figs. Can really sense the alcohol as well on the exhale.

T- Sweet up front with some chocolate flavor, moves into some citric hop and bitterness, with some burnt coffee at the end along with some more sweetness (malt?). Surprised by the lingering bitterness- not a sharp bitterness, but a slow, astringent one (tannic from the hops perhaps).

M- full bodied, fairly thick, not the most viscous stout I've ever had, but it's not the lightest either! Definite feeling of chew with the alcohol volume.

D- overall, it's a good stout to drink. If not for the harsh alcohol which tended to come thru more than I'd like, this would rate as one of the better american imperial stouts I've had. Sweet, but not too sweet, bitter, but not insanely so, a good balance and overall, very drinkable.

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Photo of AwYeh
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours pitch black, with a thin, dark brown head on top.

S: Tons of chocolate, alongside roasted malts, marshmallow, wood, and smoke- almost like being next to a fireplace in the wintertime.

T: Huge kick of charred and roasted malts to start things off, with some caramel coming out of those, and a good deal of chocolate as well. Light vanilla tones as it warms. A moderate bitterness helps balance everything out.

M: Medium-thick bodied; very creamy and sticky. Light carbonation.

D: A sipper due to its strength; however, something about the flavor (while still very enjoyable) didn't keep me coming back to it with as much desire as I have done with many other imperial stouts. I liked this glass, but probably won't be having another for a while.

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Photo of Hopstout
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Black in color with a little dark tan head

Aroma - Molasses with the tiniest hint of smoked wood

Taste - Backwoods malt, vintage, dark grains, dry roast with a drop of coffee

Mouthfeel - Full flavored and bodied with low carbonation and a nice perfect balance of malt and hops

Overall - Will be purchasing this again. Great flavor!

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Photo of Ineedabeerhere
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Wow- Why haven't I had this before? I always see it- and now I'm glad that I finally picked it up one day on a whim.

Pours dead black, and after an agressive pour I find the mocha colored head overflowing my tulip glass. Oops!

Some chocolate in the aroma along with roasted malt and just a twinge of alcohol present. Time could only help this brew. The taste follows with a full bodied, borderline creamy mouthfeel. Some chocolate flavors and roasted, almost burnt malt. Some alcohol plays though as well- which is odd because I wasn't noticing it as much when I first poured it- it's becoming much more present as it warms. (as expected)

Overall a solid brew, I can't wait for the espresso version to come out.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
3.95/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours very thick and pitch black. Absolutely no light penetration. Head starts off big, brown, bubbly and beautiful. It dies off to a thin skin of foam and leaves swirls of lacing.

S-Thick Hershey's syrup. Burnt coffee and burnt caramel. Light leather and light anise. A lick of alcohol as well. A rumble of bitter hops too surprisingly enough.

T-The mix of chocolate, coffee and hops makes this a bitter, roasty brute. Dutch chocolate and espresso. Burnt maltiness. Finishes bitter. Light notes of dark fruitiness and black licorice. A bit leathery too. Has a pretty unique flavor.

M-Creamy and full. Boozy but far from offensive. Fudgy and chewy with tons of body. Soft carbonation.

O/D-I can see why this is a classic. Its been around for quite a while but it is definitely a pretty unique RIS. Shocked that I haven't had this until now.

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Photo of jmd1978
3.94/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Jet black color thick like motor oil. Dark brown lingering head. Nose roasted coffee, toffee, notes of chocolate and vanilla, piney hops. Taste is espresso, molasses, bitter chocolate, brown sugar, pine, and raisin. Finish is strong with feel of strong espresso and a hoppy IPA. This beer is very bitter because of the coffee and hop notes which isn't a bad thing. It's complex enough for the novice drinker but may be a bit intense for the rookies. Overall a very good imperial stout but not a great one. Great Divide is new to my area so looking forward to trying more.

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Yeti Imperial Stout from Great Divide Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 1,750 ratings.
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