Lips Of Faith - Yuzu Imperial Berliner Weisse | New Belgium Brewing

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Lips Of Faith - Yuzu Imperial Berliner WeisseLips Of Faith - Yuzu Imperial Berliner Weisse
Lips Of Faith - Yuzu Imperial Berliner WeisseLips Of Faith - Yuzu Imperial Berliner Weisse

Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing
Colorado, United States

Style: Berliner Weisse

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 80 | Ratings: 496
Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The appearance has a super light golden yellow colored body with a thin half fingered white foamy head that dies within less than a minute. Lacing is somewhat light and clings in a speckled sort of a messiness around. The smell is basically soured grapefruit and light orange coming through in a sour/somewhat tart kind of way, yes my nose is bothered by this and though I’m not entirely into this style, I understand that my nose is supposed to be bothered or at least "annoyed" (sorry for lack of better words) by the style. The taste has a strong sour/tartness thing going on with a decent sweet fruity backing coming in to balance it a bit. There is a dry grapefruit/orange aftertaste with a super dry finish. On the palate, it sits light, fairly sessionable, with a nice refreshing quality to it. Sour harshness levels are a bit restrained. Overall, great time of the year to have and that's what helped.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.5/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sample at Industry Night at HomeBrewCon.
Slightly hazy deep straw color with a tight bubbly white head.
Big citrus with bits of tart lactic sourness.

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Photo of brewandbbq
3.57/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle.

Pours hazy yellow with zero head or retention.

Lemon pith and candied lemons in the nose. Sour and funky.

Light bodied and barely carbonated. Limp and slickish.

Lemony sour up front on the palate with lingering sourness throughout.

Finishes with a lengthy sour bite and tart citrus. Zero malt or bitterness.

Interesting beer but it will take some effort to finish the bottle.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
2.88/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

An 8% berliner, already all the bjcp cicerone homies are ready to pounce. Pours out cloudy yellow and antifreeze color, still a bit of intensity away from magic ghost levels of antifreeze appearance.

Aroma was neutral, almost like it had some lime. Taste, weird, ok even for me, this is just too far astray from even touching any of the style guidelines. Tartness isn't anything special for the beer. Drinkable, sure, no off flavors, just not what I'm looking for in a berliner experience, too intense of an alcohol presence and minimal body to not be irritating.

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Photo of GarrettB
3.37/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

December 27th, 2013 - Yuzu is one of my favorite Japanese flavors, and so much so that it might trump the usual gaijin's obsession with green tea and matcha. My favorite manifestation is in ramen (served near Harajuku station) but I can see where it might play well with beer. Optimism high, I poured out this next brew in the Lips of Faith series, kicking up a huge corky head over hovering over a slowly circulating golden body. Once that wall of bubbles died down I began to sense a smell like a Berlinerweisse, composed of lemon, butter, dandelion, pear, and pastry dough. It's sweet, but dry at the same time, like a Prosecco, with a more pointed citrus character. True to form, the palate is light and fluffy, and the first crash of the flavor reminds me of ponzu, or other kinds of gyoza dipping sauce. This couldn't be more spot on with my expectations, and while I'm sure this falls short on technical points, that curious Zuzu taste of lemon and orange with a short aftertaste and a touch of booze is exactly how I imagined a yuzu beer would come to be.

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Photo of GrahamDN
3.09/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

"Packaged June 2013. Delicious now and differently delicious later." Drunk 10.16.15.

Hazy straw-gold in the glass, with a thin but fluffy white cap. Deeper in color than a typical Berliner, but that's to be expected from an "imperial" interpretation.

First impression is a little like sawdust, though a swirl of the glass presents the yuzu clearly. Thankfully, the sawdust note completely disappears, and after a minute in the glass the smell is much more appetizing. Citric, floral, tart-smelling.

Not tart, however. A savory attack on the palate with rather little acidity. Rather than a fresh, bright citrus character, the yuzu tastes more like a preserve alongside a light pastry note, creating an impression of a yuzu tart. Modest earthy-funky flavor, and a bit grassy with a hint of lemon oil.

For anything called a Berliner weisse, this LoF misses the mark for mouthfeel--even if it is imperialized. The acidity isn't there, and the bolder alcoholic body overwhelms the relatively delicate flavors.

Overall, it's a pretty tasty brew, but it strikes out on some critical points for me.

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Photo of Extol
2.84/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 1.5

Appearance - hazy gold in color, good head retention. Smell - smells like a hefeweizen. Gross. Taste - gross. Not a Berliner at all. Overall - gross. No thanks.

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Photo of pat61
4/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had from a 22 oz. bottle poured into a chalice (from notes). L: Its hazy gold with a thin white foam collar. S: Wheaty nose with fruit. T: Grapefruit orange flavors with lemon tartness tamed by rich wheat malt with a mild bitter finish and a hint of pepper. F:Medium light body, medium high to high carbonation. O: The rich malts and the yuzu juice tame down the Berliner Weiss tartness for a refreshing summer drink.

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Photo of jlindros
3.73/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

June 2013, thanks to HanksBeard (reddit) for this one. Held onto it for a bit too long, but still good thankfully.

Pours light fizzy head disappears quickly, no real head, lots of bubbles rising, clear pear tan colored.

Nose brings nice Berliner, wheat, tart sour fruit, toasted wheat and grain, lemon rind funk, weird citrus and tree mixed fruit thing.

Taste brings sweet tasting fruity flavor despite being quite dry, but somehow sticky, weird tree fruit and tart flemmy, lemon tartness, mild grainy wheat and creamy tart wheat, grassy, with mild grassy hop thing, lemons perhaps, cereal, big lemon like cereal.

Mouth is med to lighter bod no booze at least, nice carb.

Overall interesting.

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Photo of Jadjunk
3.65/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

"Who zu yuzu? It's a friendly fruit with grapefruit-meets-orange flavor that got involved with the souring side of New Belgium in this bottle conditioned wheat beer. They got on well enough to make this imperial Berliner Weiss style ale a smooth, delightfully tart sipper with a dry finish." Brewed in the style of a German Berliner Weissbier. Available as a one-off release in 22 oz. bottles and on limited draft.

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle to a New Belgium Globe glass. Served above 54 degrees Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a foamy crisp head of a pearl white color over a mildly hazy golden straw yellow body with ample lively carbonation. Retention is average and lacing is light and spotty. 3.75

(Smell) The yuzu comes through strongly in the aroma as a hybrid between grapefruit, a lemon and a tangerine, altogether pithy, tart and bordering on mildly sour. Other aromatic notes include a soft cereal wheat base with a moderate sweetness and a mild acidity, but far from sour. Very clean with a nice emphasis on the Yuzu fruit. Potency is moderate. 3.75

(Taste) Mildly sweet wheat and pale malts generate a clean and simple malt base. Equally evident as the aroma suggests is the distinctive flavor of yuzu fruits, distinctively tart and curiously citrusy, front-and-center in this beer. Any inclusion of salt and bright spice such as coriander in this beer are fairly underwhelming in comparison to the yuzu fruit and malt selection. Thus, it could be far more tart, sour and refreshing than it is, however I enjoyed it primarily for how different the Yuzu fruit itself makes this beer. 3.5

(Mouthfeel) The texture is smooth, lightly chewy, mildly dry. Carbonation is medium, generating a moderate/high frothiness and moderate crispness. Body is medium+ for the style, and light/medium overall. Balance is very slightly tart and bitter over sweet. Alcohol presence is very low and there are no notable off-characters. 3.75

(Overall) I think that this style itself has grown tremendously in popularity since this beer's release, so I'm cautious as to be among the little positive praise for this beer, one that was generally received as average or worse at the time of its release. My few gripes come from the underwhelming use of salt and spice, which keep the beer from being quite as dry and quenching as I think it should be. The sourness isn't quite puckering, but I feel it could be much worse- perhaps the age on this bottle did improve the intensity of the tartness for my experience. Ultimately, the Yuzu is the star of the show, as the flavors seem an ideal candidate for amplifying tart, sour beer styles. I'm rather fond of this Lips of Faith release, and would love to see it re-brewed in a smaller bottle format with its small kinks worked out. 3.75

New Belgium Brewing's
Yuzu Imperial Berliner Weissbier

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Photo of Pencible
3.82/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

A: This poured a hazy straw with a bit of white head.
S: It smelled like orange zest and wheat bread, with some grapefruit.
T: It tasted like sweet tangerine and tart grapefruit, with some wheat bread. It had a clean sweet aftertaste.
M: It was watery with some carbonation. Light body.
D: This was a really interesting and enjoyable brew. The scent and taste were unique and enjoyable, while the body was a little weak. The finish was smooth, so it was easy to drink. Curious how it was fresh, probably won't get any better with further age. Wish it was more sour, but otherwise a solid experimental beer.

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Photo of ghengisflan
3.1/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Look: Cloudy apple juice.

Smell: Sweet, yet metallic.

Taste: The front taste is very much a sour beer. The beer finishes fruity, with a little bit of citrus rind (and still a little bit metallic).

Feel: Light.

Overall: It's an unremarkable beer, although the concept is interesting.

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Photo of infinitebruner
3.89/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

November 19, 2014

22 oz. bomber, pilsner glass

A – Medium straw to light yellow/gold, slightly hazy. Thin white head with low retention, leaving milky lace behind.

S – Lactic acid, sweet doughy malt, some strong fruit that I assume is the titular yuzu (nectarine?). Perhaps some green/white grapes. I get some pineapple and banana as well. The tart acidity is very up front though.

T – The lactobacillus is prominent but not particularly assertive, relatively mild for the style. Slightly puckering on the finish / in the aftertaste. Lemon-lime, banana, uncooked sourdough bread.

M – Slightly tart, a creamy, lightly milky feel to the body, presumably from the lactic acid. Enough carbonation to help clear the palate, with a lightly dry, barely puckery finish.

O – An Americanized version of Berliner weisse, so a relatively easy drinker. Interesting build, but in the end a bit unremarkable.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.36/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

as a berliner this is terrible, it has very little tartness, and where it is tart, its more from the yuzu fruit than it is from any sort of lacto mashing or fermenting, it just doesnt fit the bill. the imperial part is also out of place, sort of goes against what the style stands for, at least in my head, limiting drinkability to the bare minimum, although that doesnt bother me because it doesnt really taste all that good. the yuzu fruit is nice, fits in a berliner, and is zesty and well dosed. the base beer just doesnt stack up for me though. i know this came out awhile ago in bottles, but i am only now seeing it around town on tap. they either believed in it enough to brew it again, which is a mistake i think, or saved some kegs hoping it would pucker up a bit, which it must not have. overall a great idea but i just didnt work out this time. not a bad beer, not weird or gross, just not what it says it is.

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Photo of TappaKeggaBrew
3.6/5  rDev +5.6%

A: Hazy, light golden-amber, with a 2 finger head of nearly white foam that quickly descipated to leave just a few wisps of lace.

S: Fruity notes dominate, including Chardonnay grapes, apple, apricot, and maybe some grapefruit. There's a bit of yeast aroma as well.

T: Mildly bready malt is there, followed by tart fruit (again I taste white wine grapes) but not the level of sour I was expecting for the advertised style. Yeasty notes are there, but hops bitterness is minimal.

M: Crisp and well carbonated. Booziness is present, but not distracting. Fairly dry finish.

O: When I think Berliner Weissbier, I'm expecting a sour beer, which this is not. I'm not saying it was bad - it was very drinkable in its own right - but more aggressive use of souring Lactobacilli and some more time to develop in the cask would have helped it be true to the advertised style.

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Photo of macrosmatic
3.47/5  rDev +1.8%

Reviewed from notes. Poured from bomber into a Russian River pint glass.

A: Pours a hazy light gold. Forms just over a finger's worth of white head over medium visible carbonation. 4/5

S: Some fruity tartness, lactic sour, cracker malts. Reminiscent of a saison yeastiness as well. 13/20

T: Fruit (yuzu), somewhat tart but less than the aroma suggested. Pilsner and light cracker malts, some yeast breadiness and a hint of dishwater soapiness. Saison pepperiness and a touch of barnyard funk near the swallow. A bit acidic and residual fruit in the finish. 29/45

M: A light body overall, but a little heavier than typical for a berliner-weisse. Low alcohol presence, carbonation sensation somewhat low for style as well. 6/10

O: Not a standout berliner by any stretch. I don't suspect the base beer was great, and the yuzu fruit just didn't play as nicely as I might have expected. Not anything to recommend, but not offensive. 14/20

Estimated final score: 3.47
Calculated final score: 66/100
Old BA score: 3.30

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.29/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Served in a snifter at Tap House - Des Plaines.

Finally reached the end of the list of LoF beers I hadn't yet sampled with Yuzu. Yet the line to meet Svengoolie remains rather long. Nice. Anyway, this stuff pours a mostly clear sunrise brass topped by a finger of white foam. The nose comprises sweet lemon zest (gotta be the yuzu, but I'm not well-enough versed in the fruit to say so with much conviction), light biscuit, and a touch of Belgian candi sugar. The taste brings in more of the same, a general tidal wave of sweet lemon-drop-style lemon zest, light greens/grass, and even lighter bread. Not much tartness at all, frankly. The body is a lithe medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a dry finish. Overall, a decent enough brew, but the lack of any real tartness (my assumption is that they scrapped that aspect in favor of a higher ABV) and the inability of the yuzu to actually wow me in any appreciable manner hold it back in my book. Meh.

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Photo of Cylinsier
3.79/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22 oz

Pours a hazy lemon gold with white suds for a head, retains indefinitely.

Smells of coriander, sweet citrus, and biscuit malt.

Tastes of sweet citrus fruits and light grassy malt with some mild spice like coriander and lemongrass.

Medium body with soft tingly carbonation.

A nice interesting fruity ale, but I wish it was more tart. Worth a try, drinks easy and hides its strength.

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Photo of patre_tim
3.32/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Golden yellow with a light haze, very little fine bubbled carbonation, 2 fingers of bright white head with large and small bubbles that fades relatively fast.

S: Musty Biere de Guarde quality, acidic lemony quality, very Belgian quality like some strain of Belgian yeast, almost a stinky breath quality at times.

T: Very light, low flavor profile, really hides the alcohol, light and almost no flavor except for a very light essence of the scent, then all the sudden at the end, a lemony, burst of dry lemon and lemon rind quality comes in.

M: Light and dry, but weighty in the mouth feel perhaps due to the alcohol. Medium low carbonation that is fine bubbled and spritzy, like Kombucha. Very smooth.

O: Really light in flavor and in the mouth feel, even though its got such high alcohol content. Light and lemony. Still, its feat to have accomplished the lightness covering the alcohol.

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Photo of Mnigro
2.95/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was expecting a LOT more from this beer. I've had much better Berliners that represented the style more appropriately. Knowing that this was an interpretation of a Berliner, I didn't go into it looking for a pure BW. However...

The smell was pretty good and it had some nice funk going on but the taste was just a complete let down. It was barely sour, more of a slight tart flavor on the initial taste of each sip. That quickly faded to an earthy, straw funkiness which would have actually been very nice but was interrupted with a malty sweetness that didn't fit in the least and ruined an otherwise OK beer. More sour and eliminate the sweet and they'd have a decent beer.

This was bottled in June 2013 and consumed June 2014 so I'm sure the profile had changed. The bottle did state that it could be aged... Wonder how a fresh batch would compare.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
2.18/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

It took quite a bit of courage to order this beer. Man, I must really enjoy ticking beers. I typically loathe New Belgium beers, and this one is no exception. At least it's overpriced. The beer is pale yellow with a small white head. Aromas of lemon, hay, sweet lemon cookies, alcohol, grain. The flavor and the feel are poor. Out of balance, overly sweet, artificial tasting. Too much alcohol for a Berliner, lacking all of the qualities that can make this style so delectable. Another gimicky, bullshit beer from New Belgium, where sales take precedence over quality.

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Photo of Resuin
4.14/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a willibecher. Consumed on 5/4/14 - reviewed from notes.

Appearance: Pours a very pale gold/yellow and leaves a couple fingers of white head that sticks around for a while. Carbonation bubbles can be seen floating to the surface.

Smell: Delicious berries, slight funk, lemon, citrus zest.

Taste: Big citrus zest, bready malts, slight funk.

Mouth-feel: Medium carbonation with a light to medium, slightly creamy body. Finishes a tad dry.

Overall: Definitely a solid big Berliner Weisse, terrific aroma, solid beer overall.

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Photo of dogfishandi
3.38/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

22oz bottle at fridge temp poured into a snifter. Bottled in June 2013. (11 months old)

Pours a hazy pale yellow color. A thick, full white head off the pour, fades to a retentive layer with some fine carbonation bubbles. Bits of lacing.

A very effervescent, zesty aroma. Lemon zest, some grapefruit. Definatly some kind of yeasty or wheat esters.

Nowhere near as tart as I'd like a Berliner to be. Not sour at all. Tart fruits, lemon peel, orange peel, maybe some grapefruit peel. A light yeast ester. Wheat malt kind of rounds things out in the finish.

Medium to light in body. Somewhat refreshing. I was really hoping for a lingering sourness, but nothing...

Not super flavorful or complex. A bit disappointing, I expected more from new Belgium.

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Photo of TruePerception
3.44/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

New Belgium's Lips of Faith's Yuzu. This is an imperial Berliner Weisse brewed with Yuzu juice. 8% ABV. I've never had a Berliner Weiss (this is the first I've come across), and this is clearly not to style (typically, they are 2.5%-3.5%, from what I've gleaned), but it's a start. :shrug

A: Just over a finger of fairly active head. Fades to nothing, pretty shortly. Color is a cross between a filtered hef and bright lemonade. Yellowish-white in the dimple.

S: Grapefruit and lemon in the nose. A touch of a wheat beer smell. Apparent acidity is light.

T/MF: Hmm. I wouldn't call this a sour beer. There is a bit of acidity, but more of a slightly tart hef, than a sour (less tart than the Tart Lychee). Notes of dry lemon peel and wheat. Not much to it, really. A good one for wheat beer fans, but a pass for sour fans, I would say. Still, worth a try, in general.

Poured into a Belgian tulip glass, from a 22 oz. bottle.

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Photo of zimm421
2.89/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a Unibroue tulip. Appears a very clear, light yellow color, with a thin, fluffy white head. The head has some decent staying power, and leaves some decent lacing.

The nose isn't overly powerful, but the notes that do come through aren't overly inviting. The juiciness is there, but isn't tempting. There is a touch of tartness, but not much else going on. The taste is also very laid back, with the tartness coming through a bit more this time. The juice, and tartness are there, along with the wheat expected out of a berliner. However, nothing really stands out, and in the end, it's the most bland version of a berliner I've yet to experience.

The mouthfeel is medium to heavy bodied. I get that this is intended to be an "imperial" berliner weiss, but I don't think it works. This is a beer that you want to be light, refreshing and drinkable, and this is none of those, largely due to the mouthfeel. Overall, it's a below average beer, and not something worth seeking out. The yuzu juice is evident, but doesn't star, and the tartness isn't what I was looking for here.

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Lips Of Faith - Yuzu Imperial Berliner Weisse from New Belgium Brewing
Beer rating: 3.41 out of 5 with 496 ratings