St-Ambroise Oatmeal Stout | McAuslan Brewing

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St-Ambroise Oatmeal StoutSt-Ambroise Oatmeal Stout
1,267 Ratings
St-Ambroise Oatmeal StoutSt-Ambroise Oatmeal Stout

Brewed by:
McAuslan Brewing
Quebec, Canada

Style: Oatmeal Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed from 40 percent dark malts and roasted barley, this intensely black ale carries strong hints of espresso and chocolate. Oatmeal contributes body and a long-lasting mocha-colored head to this well-hopped beer.
• Dense mocha-coloured head
• Chocolate/espresso flavour, medium sweet with a distinct floral aroma
• Ideal accompaniment to chocolate desserts

Added by kbub6f on 09-18-2001

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 1,267 |  Reviews: 635
Photo of jdhilt
3.83/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a two finger brown head that fades slowly leaving some lace. Black with no highlights. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Roasted chocolate nose. Flavor is a smoky, roasted chocolate. $3.45 for a 11.5oz bottle from Beverage Warehouse Winooski, VT.

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Photo of Otterburn
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pitched black with a moderate moka heAD foam that laces pretty good

smell roast malt, cacao

it taste smoky, malty and chocolate with some hop, flavors are dancing togheterm there is a long aftertaste of coffee/cocoa

mouthfeel is enjoyable, nice body, full flavors
texture is quite dense and theres a fine but active carbonation. the brew is smooth and creamy even with the strong flavors to it.

drinkability is good. for me, this is a automn beer, its not very refreshing like a blond,
but the taste everything is very good

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Photo of StephenRich
4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The St. Ambroise Oatmeal Stout by McAuslan Brewing is proof that beer does not have to be the stereotyped fizzy yellow drink that too many people assume that it is. This is an Oatmeal Stout. To some this may seem very appealing, and to others, not. This is richly black beer with flavors of cocoa, espresso, roast and rich malt. But is is smooth, creamy, and surprisingly refreshing.

In 1994 at the World Beer Championship this Oatmeal Stout received the second highest rating of over 200 beers at the festival, it was awarded a platinum medal, and has been brewed with passion and expertise ever since. Today is has spread across all of Canada, and is making its way into the United States. It is at every well stocked LCBO in 6 packs of 341ml bottles, and is also available relatively widely on draught - and that is where this beer really shines. Or, maybe not shines, but you get the idea

It called an oatmeal stout because it has been brewed with oatmeal. Oatmeal is used typically to add smooth creamy body characteristics, aid in head retention, and it also imparts a nutty and cereal like flavor to beer. This is a smooth and creamy stout that proves all this, but shows magnificent refreshing capabilities at the same time, so serving temperature is an interesting question. It is 5% abv, so you could easily serve is cool at 8C (45F) to enjoy the creamy and silky waves of cooling roasty beer. But at the same time you could enjoy it at cellar temperature around 14C (57) where is becomes creamy and lush. So essentially what you should so is pour it cool and enjoy it as it warms in your glass to cellar temperature - may as well enjoy the best of both worlds.

The pour from the bottle is terrifically smooth and silky. It will pour out as black as the night with an unassuming gentle flow building a richly back beverage in my stemmed beer glass. Zero light gets through, and only the slightest hints of amber brown will peer in the sides. With a slow and tall pour a nice two inch frothy, and generously dense medium brown, almost almond colored head will build proudly atop the beer. It is resilient and has great strength - the creamy and milk chocolaty foam will remain there until you drink it.

The nose is smooth roast with a complex range of dark malt flavors. You get everything here from biscuit, roast coffee beans, espresso and toast to bakers dark chocolate, cocoa powder, and dark fruits. It is smooth and elegant with rich aromas but no trace of booze or alcohol. So far the smooth and creamy appearance of the beer is reflected in its nose perfectly.

Tilt the glass to you and let a generous and smooth rush of roasted black beer flow into your mouth and fill your palate. Keep in mind that this is not an 8% imperial, it is 5% with much to show you. The overwhelming sensation here is creamy and silky roast - it flows through in the way of espresso beans, cocoa powder, and gentle milk chocolate. This is an alluring beer with amazing qualities.

Malts are easily noticeable and provide every inch of this beers flavor. Dark, roast and chocolate malts come though in a perfectly harmonious and sublime complexity - notes of brown sugar, dried cherries, plums and vanilla softly flow through your cheeks, under your tongue, and glide off the back of your throat. The oatmeal used in the brewing process not only gives this beer its remarkable creamy and silky mouthfeel, but also adds a cookie like flavor and soft earthy notes that balance in with only soft herbal touches of hops.

Now the Oatmeal Stout is warmer, and softer creamier flavors of nuts, chocolate and coffee are pouring out of it. Vanilla becomes cleaner and softer in the center of the beer as it gets even smoother and silkier. This beer shows are great balance between smooth dry roast and silky soft sweetness. The finish is dry and roasty with an earthy and lightly hopped end. It has gentle bitterness gliding in the back, but is absolutely satisfying.

On draught it is probably the best oatmeal stout I have ever had. The head is so lush and creamy that you could scoop it with a fork. But bottle or tap, this beer rocks. Try it with sausages, roast beef, smooth cheeses, cheesecake, chocolates, or fruit deserts.

Pics at

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Photo of bamadog
3.97/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review is from notes taken on 8/17/2010 and poured from the bottle to a snifter glass.

Appearance: Pour is deep dark brown/near black; starts with a full and creamy tan head with decent retention; body is entirely opaque; nice washes and trails of lacing are left behind.

Smell: Quite a nice smell that is wonderfully robust and potent -- full of robust roastiness that mixes with a sweet oatiness and dark bittersweet chocolate and cocoa; al;most a dark cherry scent as well.

Taste: Really nice with the exception of a slightly coppery/metallic bite to it, but beyond that, there is a lot of the burnt roasty malts and oatiness with the bittersweet chocolate -- overall it's kind of reminiscent of no-bake cookies; as it continues to warm there is a bit of a nutty (possibly walnut?) flavor to the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Mouth is actually pretty smooth and creamy with moderate carbonation, but it could really be thicker; a semi-dry coating is left all over the palate and the belly is even left a little warm, which is kind of odd since it's only 5%.

Drinkability: Not to shabby for a style that I don't really care all that much for, but I feel that this one is pretty well done, and really has an excellent scent to it; flavors are nice with the exception of the metallic bite -- definitely worth trying, like I said, even if you're not a fan of the style.

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Photo of Mamerong
4.67/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured into a tulip pint glass with a 2.5 finger mocca head. (it was kinda an aggressive pour.) has pretty good lacing. very dark in colour just barley red on edges.

smells slightly earthy. strong burnt malts and roasted coffey and finishes with a nice sweet note.

tastes amazing. nice earthy undertone to start, moves into a roasted coffee and sweet roast maults and finishes nice and dry.

has a full mouth feel that coats the walls of your mouth yet is surprisingly drinkable. it has a really well balanced carbonation that compliments the taste.

one of my all time favourites. nothing bad to say.

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Photo of ZeroSignal
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from an 11.5 oz bottle, no date

A - Pours dark as night with about a half inch of tight, dark mocha head. Retention settles to a thin layer across the top of the beer, sticky lacing

S - Probably one of the more earthy smelling beers I've had with notes of tobacco, ash, coffee and heavily roasted malts. There is a sweetness in the nose that I can't quite put my finger on.

T&M - Full bodied and earthy. Very smooth in the feel with an ashy roasted malt flavor and a good dose of roasted coffee beans. There is a subtle sweetness behind the earthiness. A very mellow but flavorful stout, finish is dry.

D - A pretty impressive amount of flavor for what I would consider to be a very sessionable beer. Smooth and easy to drink.

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Photo of cdkrenz
4.26/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A - This brew is a black as I've ever seen any beer. It is the perfect black. The head is just as spectacular. Frothy, three inches thick and stamina that could last for days. This has the looks by which all other stouts should be measured.

S - Anise, long roasted malts and ever so subtle spices.

T - Rich coffee with a spectacularly soft burnt flavor that transitions away before returning in a robust finish. There is a slight sweetness to it amidst the crisp burnt toast flavor. I love the flavors here. They are very well thoughtout and move with one another in perfect form.

M - Watery soft in the feel which is surprising when I consider it looks like motor oil in the pour.

~ This is a stellar example of what a stout should be. I will absolutely recommend this beer to my friends.

On a final note. I purchased this bttle along with three others from the Cellar 70 in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. They were on clearance for $.99 a bottle!

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Photo of WHROO
4.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from stubbie into a handled pot...

Great look, black, with a dark roasty big head...good lacing - let the journey begineth.

The smell was sweet dark fruits with a honey dominance, some sweet biscuit & a little coffee, & cocoa - very inviting.

Taste was beautiful & multi-layered: big burst of honey biscuity sweetness up front, then the typical dark roasty & bitter finish.
VERY nice!!!

Mouthfeel was creamy & a little expected for a stout.

Drinkability is great tooo...not too sweet, not too bitter &'s a very interesting stout with a honeyish twist...loved it!!!

Give this a crack - very affordable for us aussies too!!!


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Photo of AdamGarcia
3.7/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle served in Hoegaarden tumbler.

A: Pours near black with a dark, rootbeer float-like head. A forceful pour yields two fingers of head, which quickly dwindles to one finger. Leaves excellent lacing.

S: Toasty malt. Sweet fruits. Cocoa powder and coffee beans. Just a hint of ash.

T: Mirrors aroma. Slightly dryer than expected. Mostly roasty flavors. Slightly tannic. Just a bit of char in the finish. Not complex, just straight forward good beer.

M: Nice, slick feel. Could be more viscous for my preference, but for the style it is accurate.

D: Pretty high. The flavors of this beer are tremendous and at no point will this bore anyone. I deducted a bit here because of the charred flavor that, to me, lingers and makes it difficult for me to want more than one in a sitting.

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Photo of thekanna
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A: Gorgeous dark brown with an off-white head that's thin and leaves almost no lacing.

S: Strong roasted, dark malts with a good bit of chewiness and slightly iron-like smell. A nice heaping helping of molasses and coffee round out the aroma.

T/M: Huge roasted malt taste, with slight sweetness encased in a medicinal bitterness. Somewhat watery with lax carbonation.

D: Great cold; but less appealing when it warmed up. Still, a nice and complex brew.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
4.18/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours deep brown with a dark tan foamy head and some good lacing - sticky.

Smells of cocoa, coffee, and some sweetness (chocolate?). A bit mild, but that's ok.

Coffee and some sour twinges, nice charred malt and dark and grainy bread. Clean bitterness (not overdone or cloying), with little hints of vanilla, charcoal, etc. Smooth and balanced. Not over-hopped.

Decent carbonation is prickly on the tongue. Good palate cleaner. Medium body, which is just enough to coat the tongue.

Overall, I could drink this all night. Not as intense as others, but better balanced with cleaner flavors. This is terrific oatmael stout.

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Photo of BretSikkink
3.73/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Opaque brown color with a sticky brown cap. Great stick on this draft beer. Nose is somewhat roasted, but dominated by dark fruit. A little vanilla sneaks in amongst the more powerful notes. Really good so far - strong and assertive.

The flavor is similarly fruity and assertive. Roasted notes abound as well, but don't impede the drinkability. Body is firm and smooth - I guess the oatmeal comes through nicely. All the same, there's a metallic overtone that makes this one hard to drink compared to the outstanding bottled version.

I still enjoyed it, but the drinkability wasn't quite there.

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Photo of abass
4.63/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at Novare Res in Portland, ME. Poured almost pitch black and completely opaque with a gorgeous 1 inch chocolate-milk looking head. This beer tasted absolutely fantastic, basically the taste is as if one took the darkest chocolate imaginable and melted it into a beer, with very very slight tart undernotes. Mouthfeel was thick and wonderfully rich and creamy. Some might say it's a bit heavy, but this is one beer I could drink all night. I should note that is the first example of this style I've tasted so I may be a bit biased in my review due to lack of comparison, but in the grand and majestic scheme of what beer tastes good this nails it for me, really just an outstanding offering in my opinion!

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Photo of mcdevster
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

st ambroise is one of the best oatmeal stouts available in the united states.. via canada of course.
I bought the bottled version and poured it into a pint glass..
It pours like a stout, it looks thicker than most almost a syrup like texture.. the head develops normally for a stout - with careful pouring a two finger head will last for quite awhile as you enjoy the beer.
the smell is somewhat dry to me.. sweet tangy dark dates and raisins mixed with roasted chocolate and almonds.. very subtle and pleasant.. the taste is changes as it goes down it starts out smooth and rich then develops into a sharp malty fruity blast which fades on the finnish back to smooth chocolate with a hint of nuts and fruit lingering.. for the thickness of the beer it doesn't coat the mouth too much nor was it as dry as i anticipated.. it goes down easy for a stout and has a dull sweetness along with a pleasant tartness.. not quite as amazing a flavor profile as samuel smith's oatmeal stout.. but something closer to an irish dry stout.. and for me that isn't bad. it has a nice balance and it is light enough so it doesn't fatigue you.. mouthfeel and drinkability are just fine.. just what you want in a stout.

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Photo of nickdago
4.32/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark black pour with a large yellowish head

Smells of sweet malt and hints of the oatmeal

Tastes fantastic. Malty stout taste with a sweet finish. The oatmeal sweetness is definitely present

I don't know what the bottle version is like but the nitro tap was very silky and smooth on the palate.

Very easier drinker as far as stouts are concerned

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Photo of joemcgrath27
4.19/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: a fairly hearty looking black, short but fluffy caramel coloured head.

Smell: immediate strong hints of expresso & chocolate, along with a nice roasty malt aroma.

Taste: as opposed to the smell, i found the roasty-nutty malt to be the dominant characteristic up front, with the coffee & chocolate a little more subtle on the finish. A classic stout but unique in its own right.

Mouthfeel: a little lighter feeling than the colour might suggest, with a bubbly aspect, but still the hearty oatmeal chewy feel on the finish you would expect.

Drinkability: in terms of a stout it is nicely drinkable, but i wouldn't want to have more than a few in a session. That said I am cracking #2 right now.

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Photo of DIM
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: This was an extremely dark brown color. It poured with a huge, uneven, thick frothy cap.

s: Big toasty malt aromas with hints of cocoa and dark fruits.

t: Gently roasty malt with some vanilla up front. Toffee flavors with a bit of cherry come before the dry, moderately bitter dark chocolate finish.

m: Robust, chewy, creamy, and incredibly smooth all at the same time.

d: Could very well be the benchmark oatmeal stout for me. Just fantastic.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.45/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Comes out of the tap a warm opaque sable with a fine-bubbled creamy tan head. The smoky, malty aroma has a hint of mocha and spices. Smoky flavor has malty and yeasty tones as well as hints of cloves and cinnamon. Creamy smooth texture is a little fizzy and leaves a nice tingle.

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Photo of samie85
4.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on nitro-tap at The Twisted Spoke on 5/21; reviewed from notes.

A-Pours black with a thick two finger, brown head. As it sits, the beer has that cascading nitro tap foam effect(a la Guinness) where the brown foam slowly rises to the top of the glass. Leaves very thick lacing behind.

S-Sweet milky notes(lactose?) with a very large note of chocolate and just a hint of roasted barley.

T-Mostly sweet chocolate with some roasted malt/coffee notes, very subdued taste, finishes with maybe the slightest bit of bitter chocolate.

M-Thick bodied with a velvety smoothness , while remaining pretty light on the palate.

D-Wow, this could be the easiest drinking oatmeal stout I've had. I've found that a lot of breweries tend to overdo it with the roasted barley in oatmeal stouts, but this is nicely balanced. I'll look out for this one again.

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Photo of andrenaline
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark tar colour, almost impermeable to the light. Light fluffy thumb of dark head which slowly settles leaving the slightest amount of lacing.

S - Sweet chocolate and leather scent, which is not overpowering, but not subtle either.

T - Dark cocoa with a bit of a metallic finish. Almost the faintest minty flavour present as well. Dark roast coffee is also noticeable in the aftertaste.

M - Given it's opaque colour I was expecting something much thicker, but was delighted at how light and bubbly this was on the palette. Quite smooth.

D - If you're in the mood for a dark beer which isn't overpowering yet still packs a punch of flavour this is highly recommended. Perfect for one of those cool autumn evenings, though just as enjoyable on a summer afternoon.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass. Beer is black and forms a thin brown head that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. Carbonation is a mystery. Looks pretty good.

Aroma is malty with a lot of sweetness and slight hints of coffee.

Beer is pretty thick and has a nice flavor to it. I don't get any oatmeal but I get a lot of body and some roast in the back. Sweetness is up front and the whole thing is well balanced. Second, carbonation is nice, overall a really enjoyable beer.

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Photo of lackenhauser
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jet black with a tight, cocoa colored head. Big aroma-smells like just baked brownies to me. Dark grainy flavor-hints of vanilla and a mild espresso taste. Moderate roasted malt flavor with a mild hop presence. Very solid mouthfeel for the low abv. Used to have this constantly years ago when it first came out-very glad to see it back in my area. Top notch oatmeal stout.

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Photo of GeezLynn
3.96/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Black, with a healthy beige head that clumps up rather quickly.

S: Roasted black malt, with as much sweetness in the nose as I have gotten from the last couple of milk stouts I have had. Not much in the way of oat smell.

T: Flavor is very heavy on the roasted malt and slightly bitter. Licorice and char are also apparent with a bitter chocolate/coffee ground finish that is dry and lengthy.

M: Thick and chewy, with ample carbonation.

I was long overdue to try this classic oatmeal stout. Very flavorful, although the intensity of roasted malt would limit how many of these I would put down.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

MacAuslan St. Ambroise OatmealStout, or "Biere Noire A L'avoine"

Dense, inky apppearance, lush, rugged rocky brown head, slowly crumbling down froma proud crown. Looks great.

Nicely toasted nose, some hints of coffee, molasses, anise. Good and roasty. Liking it.

Mmmm. Smooth, silky, rich, flush with flavor, and a joy on the palate. Wow. I haven't had this in so long, I forgot how it really takes oatmeal stout to a new level. Some cocoa flavor shines through, too, and the taste never abates.
Many enthusiastic thumbs up.

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Photo of Infamous7100
4.24/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured into a snifter a rich and deep dark brown but a very thin, tan head. Nothing spectacular.
S: All kinds of maltiness and dark chocolate up front. Buried underneath is some peaty, smokienss. Smells delicious.
T: Much the same as the smell. The bitter chocolate and roasted malts balance well together. Toward the back, the smokiness and alcohol burn comes through. It's not harsh though.
M: Medium to high carbonation, but very smooth.
D: Extremely quaffable. For a stout of this ilk, it's not filling at all. The great taste and high drinkability make this extremely enjoyable!

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St-Ambroise Oatmeal Stout from McAuslan Brewing
Beer rating: 4.07 out of 5 with 1,267 ratings
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