Celebration Stout | The Porterhouse Brewing Company

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Celebration StoutCelebration Stout

Brewed by:
The Porterhouse Brewing Company

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Originally 10.0% ABV but brought back at 7.0%.

Added by Morris729 on 11-20-2006

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Reviews: 26 | Ratings: 84
Photo of josanguapo
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From elcervecero. In Teku glass. Playing Magic 2015. Low ABV but still full of taste and aroma. Great balance between roastyness, sweetness and bitterness with some spicyness too. At the end of the glass yeast seem to concentrate spoiling the last 2 sips though

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Photo of beerinabottle
5/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

33cl bottle recently acquired from a Dublin off licence. BBD of Dec 2016. With abv of 7.5 and last reviews in 2013 this may be a new reincarnation. One of most enjoyable imperial stouts I have tasted.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.92/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

330ml bottle, right-handed as ever was, boyo (not to mention, that lawsuit-ready splitting metal cap top), and with some nicely appropriate cross-cultural tunes courtesy of Flogging Molly providing ample background ambiance.

This beer pours a veritably solid black, with attractively restrained cherry cola highlights, and three fingers of densely foamy, rather bubbly, and eventually chunky burnt tan head, which leaves some sudsy expansive tree limb lace around the glass as it gently subsides.

It smells of mixed orchard fruit - drupe and red alike, mild rainy-day ash, bready caramel malt, some saucy umami, soft bittersweet coffee grounds, and leafy, perfumed hops. The taste is more mildly astringent apple, pear, cherry, and plum fruitiness, chalky cocoa, dry caramel candy, an almond cookie nuttiness (mom's X-mas cookies represent!), a weird echo of grainy wood treatment, which may be better explained by the lingering leafy, boozy, and perfumed hops, perchance.

The bubbles are softly integrated, and little more, the body a tame medium weight, mostly smooth, and creamy like all Irish stouts, no stereotyping intended. It finishes on the sweet side, the chocolate, coffee, toffee, and perceived alcohol all large and in charge, while the astringent fruit and converse booze edginess fade accordingly.

A tasty enough RIS, in the traditional sense, so cheers, slainte, and na zdrovye to these sassy underdogs in the Irish brew scene. Unfortunately, to my American-dulled palate, this is a wee bit too underwhelming, more than a tad too weak (strangely), due to westward expansion, or something. Anyways, drinkable, enjoyable for what it is, and commendable all the same.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.5/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured in to snifter.

A - Poured dark brown, settled black with a small amount of light brown head.

S - Big whiskey, charred oak and vanilla notes dominate the nose with lighter chocolate and roast notes in the background.

T - The barrel qualities are dominant with charred oak, whiskey and vanilla coming through in the forefront. Chocolate, roast and a hint of smoke are present as well. The finish is dry and biter.

M 0 Medium body with very heavy carbonation for the style.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.99/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330 ml received in trade from mtbdonn... Big props goes out to Donn for an epic 2nd trade! Shared this one with the brother tonight.. the Lion's share goes into a HotD goblet. Spotty lacing.

Light brown head... the brew is inky black.. nice retention and cap.

The nose is roasty and a bit sweet.. a little bit of soy sauce makes me think this is higher ABV than 7%.. but I will trust the label. Not getting much in the way of hops except some possibly imaginary grassy notes. Nice rounded stout flavors as the glass approaches room temp.

Pretty good flavors across the board.. dark malt and some minor char... dark fruity elements are of the raisin and dark cherry element... cocoa (almost milk chocolate) shows with warmth..

Very surprising body for a 7% brew... medium and decent carbonation..


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Photo of StJamesGate
4.18/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Viscous black with oxblood highlights and creamy chocolate brown head that pits, rims, and sheets.
Coffee, meat juices, roasty sweetness, prune and a surprising deep floral perfume.
Brown sugar, soy sauce, charcoal, blackberries, a roasty hit with wood and some real orange peel hops.
Chocolate and marzipan finish and bitter wood pulp linger.
Medium, a bit chewy, round, a touch of oil, very smooth.

Titles itself an "Imperial Irish Stout" and that actually is an appropriate label: creamy, lighter-bodied than you'd expect for the flavors, and no burn add up to a remarkably easy drinker. Hoppy ending makes a big difference - I'm guessing a big whack of EKG. Why do I feel like the US market is in mind with this one?

The closest thing to a session RIS you'll ever find, which is a bit of miracle in itself.

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Photo of drabmuh
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Irish oddity brought back by my parents as a gift. Beer served in a shaker pint. Beer is black with a tan head, low carbonation, nice retention, some lacing. Looks good.

Aroma is roasty and a little sweet.

Beer is medium in body, relatively roasty / bitter from the grains. Decent finish, sort of an odd imperial stout but I'd have it again.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
3.96/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Max's in Baltimore. A 7% ABV russian imperial stout? Hmm interesting. Pours a jet black color with a nice tan head, very appealing look. Medium to full bodied, nice creamy mouthfeel. Not overpowering by any means, tastes almost like a hopper up, thicker Guinness. Pretty solid beer, especially for one I have never really heard of. Turned out to be one of the best of the night with a well balanced great taste and delicious finish.

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Photo of spdyfire83
4.18/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

205th Review
Poured into Guinness half pint glass

Enjoyed side-by-side with the Barrel Aged Celebration Stout. Good mini-tasting - nice surprise here!

A: Deep brown. Half (mocha) fingernail head on medium pour.

S: Roasted dark malt, chocolate, espresso, and touch of vanilla. Deep, rich, and complex.

T: Dark chocolate, roasted espresso, and brunt dark malt. Touch of caramel/toffee with dark fruit overtones. Would never guess this is only 7% as it drinks a lot bigger.

M: Full bodied with gentle carbonation.

O: Robust, smooth, and bold. Very nice! A big beer that drinks extremely easy and smooth. Finally...a proper, fantastic stout here in Ireland (other than Guinness). Good job here!

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Photo of vande
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a - dark, moonless night kinda pour... tannish foam atop

s - light vanilla note amongst the otherwise, dark roasted stout possessing a nice bit of coffee

t - dark roasted malts, coffee, bit of vanilla, a little bitter.

m - mediumish in body, smooth sipper though

o - pretty good. another bottle a buddy brought back stateside from his travels afar...

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4.2/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle served into an Snifter glass.Enjoyed on may´11.Pours black in color.Large bubble beige lasting foam.Lacing rings left.Toasted coffee, yeast & toasted malt aromas.Low hoppy tasting but gentle bitterness on palate.Dry nut hints.Full body & average carbonation.Prune & coffee notes on the aftertaste.Drinkable.

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Photo of thierrynantes
4.2/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer bottle (33 cl., BB 3/2012) bought from "Le souffleur de bières" in Nantes and tasted in 2011.

Appearance : black color, with tan foamy head (w nice lacing).
Smell : roasted malts, dark chocolate and licorice aromas.
Taste and mouthfeel : roasted flavour of dark chocolat, bitter and dry finish with a long duration.
Drinkability : a very good beer in the style Russian Imperial Stout.

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Photo of Eramen
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Sits in the glass a deep brown, if I hold it up to strong light it brightens very slightly about the edges. Heads is quite fluffy and holds up nicely.

S - Smells of light coffee beans, a pungent vanilla, malts, black chocolate.

T - Very much the same as the smell, but deepened and more pronounced. Tastes more like black coffee on the palate, the tiniest hint of alcohol, and a nicely fulfilled bitterness topping it off.

MF - A smooth, silky mouthfeel; it is a quite light stout with very low carbination.

O - Overall this is an excellent imperial stout, much recommended.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.43/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Bottle into An Brainblasta goblet in the porterhouse Dublin. Reviewed from notes.

A: 2.5 finger tan head with lovely cream and thickness, somwhat remarkable for the high ABV. Black colour.

Sm: Chocolate, caramel, toffee, and alcohol. Nice but not overbearing, and exciting for its implied complexity.

T: Caramel and toffee are pronounced. Some cream in the finish. Some chocolate on the climax. Nicely balanced yet complex. Suits the style. Built very well, and with the demands and norms of the style in mind. Thank YHWH this isn't like O'hara's.

Mf: Too coarse and wet. Dry enough anyways.

Dr: Hides its 7% very well, but suffers from a 5.10 euro price.


2nd impressions from a bottle with a pull-tab cap purchased in Tallinn, Estonia and reviewed live on 08.03.15. Label is gorgeous, with a classy ornate design.

7.5% ABV. Imperial stout. Best before 29.09.15.

A: Gorgeous creamy soft head of khaki colour. Sticky and full, with an ideal even fluffy consistency and a great complexion. Retention is stellar - ~9 minutes.

Body colour is an opaque ruby-black with cola-like hues about the bottom of the glass.

Sm: Chocolate, dark fruit (plum, date, maybe fig), chocolate malts, faint roast, crystal malt, caramel, and hints of burnt sugars.

Aromatic intensity is average.

T & Mf: Chalky and dry, with evident harsh burnt characteristics (almost to the point that it's acrid). Has a coarse rough presence the palate; dragging. Hints of reticent dark fruit blend oddly with the dominant chocolate malt to awkward effect; this build lacks cohesion. Not a gestalt flavour profile, but elements of it are enjoyable.

I remembered liking this a lot more, but now I find it shallow compared to other beers in the style.

O: Drinkability is on par with its high ABV. The oddly coarse unrefreshing texture coupled with the sweet taste makes this a pretty hum-ho middle of the road imperial stout, and I'd like both richer chocolate notes and more of a roasted barley backbone. It's not unbalanced, though, and it'll probably scratch one's imperial stout itch. Not a unique or special imperial stout, but I'm glad this is available in the Irish market.


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Photo of JohnnyChicago
4.42/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 11.2oz bottle into a tulip pint.

A: Pours a deep brown with a soft latte head and good lacing.

S: Nose is full of deep roasted malts and booziness. It smells much bigger than the ABV implies.

T: Taste just knocks you down with crisp, dry malts and bitter hops. There is a black coffee taste and a bit of booze, but in a good way.

D: This is hefty, but the alcohol is well hidden and compliments the other flavours. A very complex and original brew.

Overall: This is, as the Porterhouse claims, not an RIS, but an Imperial Dry Stout. It has the hop kick you find in an RIS, but there is the undeniable roasted dryness that is key in an Irish stout. Extremely tasty and flavourful brew, one of Porterhouse's best.

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Photo of LukeK1231
4.15/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into an O'hara pint glass.

A- Jet black, with a mocha 1/2 finger head.

S- Strong chocolate and light coffe notes.

T- The initial taste is strong chocolate and blackberry/blackcurrent like.

M- There is light carbonation that is balanced well with the tastes.

D- The finish comes across as coffee and is pleasing. There is also a bitter taste that prevents me from making the rating higher. Overall a great Russian Imperial Stout from a Irish microbrewery.

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

Poured from a 33cL bottle into a cervoise glass at the Brewpub in Dublin.

A: A nice finger-and-a-half of rich head, pitted with good retention. The body is pitch-black and opaque except for reddish edges. Good-looking stout.

S: Great! Rich, complex roasted mlats with heavy coffee and alcohol notes. Sweet toffee/caramel scents with hops fighting to be heard (they are). Layered and delicious. Nice chocolatiness.

T: Light in body, but not in flavour. Initially roasted and strong, it segues into a fruity, alcoholic (more so than its 7% would suggest) maintaste. The aftertaste is drying and lies somewhere between bitter coffee and overripe sweet fruit (with a sour edge to it...persimmons?). A solid imperial stout, roundly alcoholic and a good beer.

M: Carbonation is delicate and omnipresent. The body is very light and smooth, but the beer nonetheless feels substantial.

D: Heftier than its ABV implies -- truly an imperial stout. A good sipping beer. It's quite filling; I couldn't have many. Recommended -- one of Porterhouse's best.

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Photo of richmof
4.26/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

33cl bottle (also from Redmonds)...finally got taste: it has been out of stock the last few times I was at the Porterhouse.

Poured a midnight black into a Porterhouse tulip. Gray bubbly-slightly creamy head with not much retention.

On the nose I get bitter chocolate, earthy spice, some alcohol, dark fruits...
The palate is very good. Intense flavours: espresso, liquorice, treacle, dark fruits, smokey malt. I get a bit of an alcohol kick at the end but not offputting.

Not too dry and not too sweet: this is exactly how I would want an imperial stout to be. At 7%, not sure I would have more than two or three but I am delighted to find this. The best Irish porter or stout I have ever tasted.

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Photo of mdagnew
4.2/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle bought from Redmonds, Dublin about 3/4 years ago... Best before date of Christmas 2008

Poured almost completely black with just some brown hints when held up to the light. Creamy brown head poured quite thick and fizzy then faded fairly quickly to almost nothing... very faint lacing...

Aroma - Strong roasted malts, lots of rich chocolate, some blackcurrent/blackberry notes, leathery, woody, light liquorice, some vanilla traces, very earthy, some tar, spicy hops, treacle/burnt sugar, some alcohol traces...

Taste - Strong roasted malt bitterness followed by nice vanilla, some smokey notes, nutmeg, some black coffee, creamy dark chocolate, peppery hops, faint liquorice, some nutty sweetness, treacle, slight sourness coming through..

Feel - Very smooth and creamy with just a little sharpness after... full bodied... very drinkable for 7.00% as there is no real hint of the alcohol

Overall - An excellent porter and one i wish i'd bought more of to age.. reminded me a little of Brooklyn BCS which is no bad thing... recommended..

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Photo of kcbaby
4.28/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 330ml bottle into a snifter, best before April 2011. Has a unique label, with "Right-handed beer from Ireland" with a thumb print on it. Got this one at the Porterhouse in Dublin and the bartender was particularly proud of it, so I was excited.

It poured a nice tan head, but it didn't last long. It's nearly black in color, but the deep brown appearance it has looks good. It both tastes and smells like chocolate and malt roastiness, with some sweet fruits in the back. Lacing is good, trailing all the way down the glass. Mouthfeel is excellent, very smooth with little trace of alcohol. I'd like to try the 10% version to compare, but I will be more than happy with this one for now.

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Photo of wl0307
4.62/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This bottle was purchased at the Covent Garden branch of Porterhouse around three years ago, during a pub trail with fellow BAs Rick, Rob Beer, Simon, etc. in central London. BB "Xmas 2008", served cool in Hapkin's tulip-shaped bowl sniffer.

A: coming in a pitch-black hue, topped with a semi-creamy tan froth with good retention, settling slowing to a thin cap to last throughout the drink. Despite being a bottle-conditioned beer, I can't find any trace of yeas sediments in the empty bottle, by the way...
S: ringing a bell of an American take on the RIS, as the aroma is deeply, oily malty but underlined by a pronounced touch of flowery hops... In the malty department, a dense and rich flow of dark chocolates, treacle-ish walnuts, coffee-flavoured toffee, and syrupy dried golden prunes is laced with a subdued black prune-ish and winey sourness (not dissimilar to a semi-stale traditional example of English RIS), together rendering a balanced structure. On the side of fruitiness and hops, my limited experience of US RIS tells me the vanilla-ish sweet notes and juicy flowery hops have certainly found their way into this brew. Overall, to me the aroma is... "breezy" even; only after a good swirl is the underlying alc. elevated a bit. Complex, extremely nice, and highly approachable as all's well balanced.
T: heavenly... the superbly-textured, juicy, semi-sweet flowery hop-malt mixture takes the lead, showing just about everything one'd dream of for a marvellous RIS - the roast/black malts expand with vanilla notes of bitter chocolates, deeply-scented tobacco-ish smoky malts, dry/burned walnuts, old-woody but rough tannins (ringing a bell of mixed Chinese herb medicine!), a mildly sour-sweet input of black prune tea and sour raisins, plus a tongue-plucking-ly dry effect as of late-hopping that elevates the overall weight skilfully in the long finish. I might have been misguided (on the nose) for thinking US hops are used as it's not so apparent on the flavour characters, but, on the balance, hops do play a crucial role to round off the sharper stale edge as much as the syrupy maltiness, prolonging the aftertaste with the 3D bitterness, considerably!
M&D: if I could, I would've given the mouthfeel 5.5 out of 5, as (an opinion also shared by several fellow reviewers here) it's simply heavenly on the palate - silky/velvety smooth, with very little (if not none) trace of alc., full-bodied yet feeling deceptively light... I feel highly-rewarded for my dogged patience in the last three years actually, although I haven't tried a slightly "younger" bottle anyway. At the price of 5 quid (if I remember it correctly), it's a bit (too) expensive but I'd say I'd pay the same for it again for this level of satisfaction. A truly top-notch ale from an excellent brewpub company of Dublin - this beer should've been made a regular, I say!

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Photo of Onslow
4.64/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

"Pours a struck match black .-.

has some delicious and flavourful complexities , some magic for sure: too many to list! .-.

the head is quite low for an imp stout but lacing is decent .-.

the alcohol is absolutely masked! .-.

For a Imperial stout, this stuff is amazingly smooth and just way to easy to drink! .-.

one of the greatest pleasures was to drink this beer. Slainte Ireland!!!

--A BIG thank you goes out to Garthicus for helping me obtain a couple of bottles!! and thanks to my uncle for driving and getting it!! and thanks to my mum for bringing it all the way to america!!!--"

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Photo of Naerhu
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - jet black body with small, tiny (almost no) tan head.
S - lovely fresh expresso and roasted malt.
T - Slightly sweet, and extremely deep roasted malt and long lasting flavor. Mildly bitter and amazingly integrated.
M - Super silky, with very little carbonation. I cant believe its 10% abv, being so well integrated.
D - This was simply amazing. I loved every drop of it.

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Photo of allengarvin
4.37/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Richard who brought this back from Ireland. Poured into a pint glass, this is jet black beer with a thin film of foam across the top. The nose features appetizing notes of roasted coffee, sweet caramel, and fruitiness. The flavor mirrors the aroma, but with the addition of a pleasant smokiness and a lightly acidic tartness. The finish lingers with a smoky roast malt note. The body is a full but carbonation is a bit light, leaving a watery texture.

Very nice, interesting beer.

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Photo of JohnfromDublin
4.07/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Taste this 500ml bottle Decemver 2006, label says best by Christmas 2008.
First off, the label itself is a lovely gold-rimmed white label with Celebration STOUT boldly proclaimed. Also: 100% Irish, 0% chemicals, Bottled and labelled by hand, drank by mouth.

I poured it into a wine glass, giving it some air to bring on a tan head. The head did not last all that well, moderate lacing on the glass.

Very nice smell, definitely chocolate, also malty (no coffee).
Taste roast malts, and a bitterness with a touch of nutmeg (?), alcohol well masked.
Just the smoothest mouthfeel ever, talk about an angel crying on your tongue!
Considering the alcohol, this is quite an excellent brew. It is the best stout I have tasted and I have some reserved for Christmas Day 06. Available in the Porterhouse and the Porterhouse Central, Dublin at present (Dec 06). Expensive enough at €6, but well worth it. I think I paid €.6.60 in Redmonds off-licence.
Brewed in small batches to celebrate 10 years of the Porterhouse.

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Celebration Stout from The Porterhouse Brewing Company
4.17 out of 5 based on 84 ratings.
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