Sea Bass | Cigar City Brewing

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Sea BassSea Bass

Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing
Florida, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
According to the head brewer, this a "dark farmhouse ale".

Added by aepb1 on 09-29-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 194 |  Reviews: 107
Photo of Heatwave33
4.01/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml bottle to a Dogfish Head Head Snifter.

Color: Dark brown with a huge tan head that won't quit.

Smell: Spicy, Earth notes, hop and slighly pungent.

Taste: Lots of spice, some earth tones with hops, slightly sour.

Mouthfeel: Lots of carbonation, coarse with a dry feel.

Overall: Open over the sink! I didn't but it wasn't too messy. The was huge but awesome. I enjoyed but a bottle was too much for my brother and I to handle. It's a wild brew that I'm glad I tried. Cheers!

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Photo of kbutler1
3.12/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle. Opens up as a slight gusher. Poured into a tulip glass a dark tan brown color with a big, lively light tan head. The aroma is sour apple, pear, and slight roast. Light MF. Sour upfront, acetone, with slight coffee roast note that adds some bitterness. Hmm, this is an odd one and I am not so sure it is suppose to be sour. It works but struggles a bit. I’m just ok on this one. Some booze noticeable as it warms.

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Photo of robwestcott
3.4/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

big thanks to kirkpjr for this one !

poured cold from the bottle a deep dark mahogany brown to a dogfish head signature glass with a huge two+ finger long lasting head leaving a fair amount of spotty lace after each sip.

funky, near vinegar aroma.

very funky, dirty, farmhouse, vinegar, overripe fruit, tart and sour.

huge carbonation, medium bodied, tart and a dry finish.

overall - interesting, though not a favorite style, so perhaps not a fair review. very tart.

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Photo of mntlover
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep mahogany color with a big fluffy khaki head that falls slowly with lots of lace.

Aroma is nice big funky, sour lots of wine like notes. Light fruity grapes, lemon zest lots of spice on earthy/sugary malts.

Taste is tart fruits, lots of spice zesty fun on a nice sugary malt base with earthy notes. Very different saison really tart and fruity tries to override the sugary malt bass but its always there trying to peak through. Fun to keep sipping and enjoying.

Mouthfeel is nice medium lively carbonation but seems to go good with the style.

Overall a different brew but finding it enjoyable just sipping and trying to figure it out.

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Photo of ibbjamin
4.06/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received this 750ml bottle in a trade and I pour it into my Lost Abbey tulip to review.

Not quite what I'd call a gusher, but I'd certainly recommend opening it over the sink nonetheless. Huge tan colored pillowey head rests atop this dark brown beer that has carbonation bubbles rising constantly keeping the retention at an inch or greater. It takes some time for the retention to fall below this marker, but the next pour of this big beer puts it right back above that level. Thick, lasting lace lines the inside of the tulip.

Quite fizzy and citrusy on the nose with tons of lemon and some vinous qualities a la white and red grape. Citrusy and grassy hops in addition to hints of sour and oak help balance the fruity tones out.

Taste is even more vinous than my nose suggested with red grape dominating. The citrusy hops and lemon are still there, but they take a backseat to the sour red grape taste. I am even getting hints of chocolate malt in there.

Mouth is on the dry side with a medium body and massive prickly carbonation. Pretty smooth medium length finish of dry sour grape.

Certainly they get bonus points for this being quite a unique beer to me. Actually one of the better saisons I've had to date and I like the heavier body and sour grape notes that I usually do not find in the style. Wish I lived within their distribution limits so I could try some of their other beers.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a dark color ale with a huge dirty beige foamy head with excellent retention and some great lacing. Aroma of tart notes is more powerful then I had expected with some funky yeast and some light spices. Taste is a weird mix between light balsamic notes with some wood and a subtle vinous feel with strong tart notes and some funky yeast. Body is slightly above average with great carbonation. Very interesting beer with a mix between lightly roasted malt and balsamic vinegar.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lots of haze and cloudiness here with a large two finger high head of white foam that just would not receded. Lots of carbonation coming up from the bottom to reinforce it.

The aroma was loaded with spices. Hints of lemon and cinnamon where abound here, with a rich earthy mix to it. Lots of almost a nutmeg I am picking up here. The flavor took off right where that left off. A rich mixture of lemon, fresh grass, light fruit flavors and a ton of spice. Nice hints of allspice, cinnamon and pepper here. Nice light to medium body feel capped it off very well and the overall drinkability was very nice,

Overall not half bad. Not the best in the style I had ever had, but definitely worth seeking out to try again

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Photo of merlin48
4.12/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle thanks to mntlover. Pours a mahogany body with a large beige head. Good retention with lots of clumpy lacing.

Aroma has barnyard funk, dark fruits, earthy hops, and a pronounced spicy component of clove, nutmeg, coriander, and "burn your nose" black peppercorns.

Creamy carbonation with a medium body.

Taste is very complex. Dark fruits, clove, coriander, pepper,earthy hops, sour cherries,grapes, brown sugar, and even a hint of chocolate. Lots of different elements competing for your attention here but it all comes together somehow.

Don't really know what to make of these dark saisons but this one is very drinkable even with so much going on. Very interesting experience.

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Photo of JayS2629
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This went over well at a beer tasting with everyone. Mainly the taste. People talked about reducing it down for a steak or salad.

Poured a cola color with a gigantic tan head that had good rentention and lacing.

The aroma was of malt vinegar, green apple roasted malt and earthy hops. Nothing complex, but dominantly funky and sour with vinegar ruling.

The taste was of balsamic vineagar, hints of citrus, and earthy hops with a backbone of roasted malt, a touch of chocolate, green apple and sour cherry. quite complex and delicious.

Overall a very interesting and good beear. A definite sipper that takes a little getting used to.

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Photo of Chaney
3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I bought some of these at Knightly Spirits in Orlando. The rep told me that they probably won't be brewing this again. Bullshit.

A: Since this is a dark saison, the dark color was appropriate. Dark brown, with a mildly cloudy reddish tint. The mocha head just sat there, and sat there, and sat there.

S: Big sour funk. I can't believe this didn't have Brett in it actually. Once I put my mind to it, I got some farmhouse.

T: Like an intense brown sugary saison. Does that even make sense? There was very much a dark fruit element in the mid section of this brew. Dates perhaps? The finish was pretty bitter, especially considering this was a farmhouse brew.

M: HIGHLY carbonated, with a bit of chocolatey, farmhouse lingering. The lacing was moderate.

O: Not one of Cigar City's best efforts, however, I still found this one worthy... especially considering I only bought my bottles for around $7-8.

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Photo of ShrinerMcBitey
1.83/5  rDev -50%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

A - Poured a nice rich brown / black into chalice

S - sour fruit , tart, background malt

T - Sour, nasty, vinegary - tastes like a bad beer - Bad OJ, tomato and yeasts.

M- Nothing special or bad to report. Medium body.

O - Umm, I wont ever have it again. Just not to my liking at all. To me this was like some mutant cocktail of bad orange juice taste extract mixed with a flat malt beer body and just plain bad.

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Photo of jsanford
3.92/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a CCB Snifter.

A - Pours a dark mahogany with a huge head of fluffy white that just will not lie down! Leaves big chunks of lacing as it (slowly) recedes.
S - Wow, this is some tart-smelling stuff! Smells almost like a Flanders Oud Bruin (reminds me of Marron Acidifie a bit, which makes sense given the CCB connection), big aromas of cranberry, red wine vinegar, brown sugar, and leather. Very nice!
T - OK, that was a very misleading nose. The tart Oud Bruin flavors aren't nearly as dominant as I'd expected, instead I'm getting a lot of dark roasted malt mixed with a bit of sweet cherry and a definite earthy funkiness (funky, but not particularly tart). Not exactly a bad thing (though I do love Oud Bruins), but this really threw me for a flavor loop.
M - Pretty smooth, with a medium body and fairly sharp carbonation. Finish is very dry, almost like a tannin-laden red wine.
O - This was a very interesting beer. I think I'm still a bit disappointed that this wasn't more sour, but I liked it nonetheless.

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
3.87/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass from a 750ml bottle.

A - Pours a very nice rich mahogany with a HUGE! pillowy head that is about 4 inches tall. The head is quite sticky and dense and there is a nice ecru color to it.

S - Starts off funky with some tart notes and some slight sweet notes and some slight toasty bread. Strong yeast notes. There is some slight chocolate notes as well as some mild caramel as well. Definitely some tart notes.

T & M - Starts off funky, dry and tart and mixed in with a very nice caramel and slightly dark fruit notes. Some plum and some toasty bread mixed in. There is some nice strong funk to the beer so much so that it almost overwhelmed me with a sip. The nice tart notes balance well with the malty backbone and it gives it a really nice dry finish. The mouthfeel is light but the flavors are complex and there is a nice refreshing dry finish.

O - This is a nice beer and was a very surprising and delicious Saison. The flavors are well crafted and the tartness is tamed and fresh.

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Photo of byrdman16
3.69/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

So I tried to fit this thing into a big ass mug that my friend "borrowed" from Ruby Tuesday's. It did not come close to containing this fizzy monster! Pours reddish/dark brown with a huge tan head. Smells of dried fruit, cherries and a slight hint of vinegar. Very tart and fruity taste which balances each other well. Slightly boozy at the end. Not my favorite style of beer but decent for what it is.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.61/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A solid pour yields a four finger thick head initially that fills my Lost Abbey Teku glass that then grows two fingers more in height above the rim of my glass. The beer looks incredibly viscous as the head is produced, surprisingly so. The head is an amber tinged, tan color. The beer is a dark amber / brown color that shows a lightly hazed ruby-amber hue when held up to the light. The aroma smells of sweet caramelized and sour plums with lots of spicy, woody oak. The oak leans towards buttery oak notes, and dusty wood after some time and there are other aromas that produce some musty notes and even a touch of strawberry like aromatics. This last is brought out by an acetic acid character, in fact I really don’t smell any real lactic acidity in the nose; the acetic character is at a low enough level to be supporting / accentuating of the other notes though. When you really dig long and deep the acetic seems to disappear and the most dominant note becomes that of cut, oxidized apples that are backed by a toasted, slightly spicy, whole grain character. There is a distinct note of clove towards the finish that took me a while to notice. There also a touch of acetone character in the nose as well.

This is sweet tasting and fruity as the beer first hits my tongue, the acidity is not really aggressive but adds a nice counterpoint to the chewy malt character. The sweetness of the first sip disappears pretty quickly and the acetic acid provides an almost sweet sensation. The beer finishes with an oaky astringency that lingers a bit in the back of the mouth along with a crystal malt like toasted grain character. The acetic acid definitely adds a spiciness to this brew and it also accentuates a fruitiness that leans towards strawberries, but there are also notes of sweet-tart plums, oxidized apples, and perhaps even some fermented dried fig notes. Some of the spiciness is contributed by the oak flavors and perhaps a hint from the darker grain notes. This beer is actually quite thick and viscous (especially when you consider the typical sour), but it actually isn’t nearly as thick and viscous as I expected from the visual of pouring the beer. A hint of green, almost vegetal character is noticeable as a hint on the palate every once in a while, but nominally I can’t taste it. As the beer warms up some of the sweetness starts to come back and accentuates some flavors of caramelized grain and a bit more of the fruitiness. More, underlying, whole-grain flavors start to come out as well with brown bread notes, generally sweet bread notes, and perhaps even a hint of toasted bread character is noticeable.

Visually this beer was quite interesting with how thick and viscous it looked with its slowly cascading carbonation, but I must admit I was a little worried about how thick and chew this would end up being; it is thick and chewy, but nearly as much as I had feared and the extra dimension of the body works here as this beer really isn’t that sweet. I was hoping that the sourness in this would be lactic, but it is completely dominated by acetic acidity; luckily this is fairly restrained and actually is at the right level to help counteract the thick, chewy maltiness without being overly harsh or distracting.

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Photo of SFLpunk
4.17/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL brown glass pry-top champagne bottle. Purchased at Knightly Spirits, OBT, Orlando FL.

Pours super dark for what i was expecting with some thin tan head. Nose is surprisingly tart smelling...didn't know this was funked...smells like rum-soaked raisins and cranberries.

Palate is super tart and very reminiscent of an oude bruin. Acetic acid is prevelant and Brett too. Super tart with lots of dark fruits.

Lovely and delicious. Under-rated and mis-categorized. Should be Wild Ale.

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Photo of UDbeernut
3.68/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

"puglistic dark bodied farmhouse ale" bottle poured into a tulip glass.

a: muttled brown amber, gushing foamy head. This one has very active yeast.

s: brett, lemongrass

t: This is NOT a saison. Slightly puckering sourness. Cherry and lemon are noticable.

m: light mouth, slightly slick going down.

Good beer, needs to be reclassified as a sourbeer or Bruin


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Photo of PittBeerGirl
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Body is a quite murky translucent dark brownish hue. Pours with a massive 3 finger + foamy light tan head. Lots of lacing left all the way down the glass.

S- Pretty awesome. Saison mets Flanders Oud Bruin type nose. Lots of yeasty funk, apple, maybe a hint of Brett, a hint of tart sourness, lemon, and a hint of vinegar. Nose is both funky and sour.

T- Flavor is decent but the nose is quite misleading. Initially the flavor is quite tannic and metallic, a mild to moderate sour tartness and kemon flavor is upfront as well with a quite mild funky yeast backbone as well as a faint hint of both cherries and wood. The initial tartness wears off for the finish but the metallic character lingers a mild spiciness also emerges for the finish.

M- Medium to high carbonation and a full somewhat chalky body.

D- Overall this is a pretty good brew-but the nose is very misleading. The initial tartness seems to be a teaser but if its the tartness and not the underlying characters of this beer that you seek (which is the case for me) this is not a slow sipper. The alcohol is well hidden and this reminds me of one of those off the wall hit or miss brews from the Fantome lineup. Not bad for a brewery that doesn't specialize in the style.

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Photo of Bendurgin
3.37/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle courtesy of Andrewinski1. Poured into a tulip. This beer turns out to be a gusher. Took a while to pour because it was mostly foam to start. It eventually settles down to a brown bodied beer with a thick residing off white head. When it's all said and done, this one doesn't look bad, but too much is too much.

The nose is kind of weak on this one. Just faint sour cherry aromas. Honestly, this doesn't resemble to much a saison so far. Really a dry flavor on this. Toasty malts with a bit of pepper to it. Slightly lemon grass flavor to it but there's not a heck of a lot going on.

Rough carbonation on this, with a relatively light body. Nice dry finish. Overall this doesn't seem to hit the mark for a saison in my opinion. Not the worst beer I've ever had but nothing special here.

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Photo of tbrown4
3.38/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this bottle from my friend Greg in a trade about a month ago. It's been in the fridge in the on-deck status since then.

750ml -> Duvel Tulip

A - Brown, slightly translucent, mega foamy off-white-almost-tan head. Constant carb streams coming from sediment for about 20 minutes.

S - Not too much aroma. Was expecting more of a spice presence. Light sour fruit notes.

T - Whoa. Crazy funky tart. Definitely not expecting that. Tart cherries, bitter grapefruit. The citrusy note surprised me as well. As it warms it's got kind of a creamy smooth middle. Finish is long and sour tart.

M - Feels medium bodied.

O - This one really threw me for a loop. I haven't had many from Cigar City. I'm a long time fan of the loose style of the saison. From the very beginning of the pour through the end of the last sip I struggled to find any obvious saison characteristics. If you go in to this tasting with the same mind set that you would an American wile ale, you will love it. For that style I thought it was very good. I know nothing on the background of this specific brew, but was something wild let loose inside?

It's a mistake to drink this one any colder than 50 degrees.

Being categorized as a saison is a mistake in my opinion, but I will rate it as one.

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Photo of Wisconsinality
2.09/5  rDev -42.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Bottle poured into Duvel tulip.

Thanks to McDiddypop for this one.

A- Pours a deep cola brown with no light let in. A huge head, four fingers at least, sticks around forever and leaves gobby lacing on the side of the glass.

S- A little worry sets in. Lots of sourness right off the bat. I am having a hard time picking up anything else. Maybe some cherry but that kind of plays with the sourness.

T- Big sourness just like the nose predicted. Maybe infected? I can barely detect some roasted malt and that is about it.

M- Medium to lighter bodied with crisp carbonation and a biting sour. Dry on the finish.

O- Pretty disappointed that this one is infected. Lets hope Cigar City can get some of these QC issues under control.

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Photo of andrewinski1
3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip. This one is a gusher! It took quite a while to pour this one because of the large amount of foam. The body is dark amber and can bee seen through very lightly.

The aroma has pineapple and musty lemon.

The taste is a lot like a sweet tart. The start is sweet and fruity. The finish is very dry and sour.

The body is light to medium. The carbonation is heavy. I rather enjoy the sharp carbonation in a sour.

This is very enjoyable for me. The sourness in the finish is a little harsh, but it's enjoyable.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.4/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Victor for opening this up at the Hulmeille, i'll get you back.

A few pours into a goblet shows that this saison is quite dark, not black, but a muddy ruby red with some big not so tight bubbles up above. It was quite foamy after a bit and it looked infected, I know that look.

smells fruity and like it's going to be slightly acidic. Don't know if this is supposed to be infected but something is there, not in a bad way though, yet. Some berries with a strange yeast. Smells like strange fruit juice.

Taste is quite strange. a mix of red and blue berry slightly tart. Sea bass is mostly fruity. I cant really pick up on anything else. My head is wrapped around, trying to dicypher this.

feel is less than medium goes in tart and finishes slightly acidic. It's carbed up nice and is a little bitey roughing up the tounge a bit. A little big in body for your typical saison, yet Sea Bass is not your typical beer.

Overall, a decent beer worthy of a go if you get the chance, Not one I would recommend aging, who knows where this will go, it;s all over the place now.

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Photo of brewandbbq
4.13/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle.

Pours dark brown with a massive, glass-filling eruption of beige, dense froth. After aproximately five minutes the head sank to an inch and the beer was accessible. Tons of lacing and a solid foam cap for the duration.

Aromatics lead off with tart, vineous fruit, acid-laced wine, and shades of raisins, toffee, and horsestall. Fairly funky with a tart, fruity promise.

Medium bodied with a crisp, sharp mouthfeel.

Tart cherries, bright acid, balsamic and cider vinegar, and soured apples start the palate.
Tannic, musty notes follow through and hint at red wine barrels.

Finishes with lingering tart fruit, vinous funk, and bright acid.

Nice beer, but certainly more tart that expected for the style. I dig it.

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Photo of THECPJ
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes:

appearance: dark amber brown with a 2 finger off white head

smell: sour, dark fruits, apple, cherry

taste: sour, tart, dark fruits

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body

overall: very interesting take on a saison / farmhouse ale. I'll have to say I liked it and would try it again.


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Sea Bass from Cigar City Brewing
3.66 out of 5 based on 194 ratings.
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