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E. | Hill Farmstead Brewery

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Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
E is definitely not a Belgian IPA - it's a funky version of Edward (american pale ale) - fermented with brettanomyces, dry hopped with galaxy, and aged on stainless for four months. Basically, we refer to it as a farmhouse pale ale - a cross between a saison and an american pale.

2012 Release: Aged in Mimosa barrels.
2014 Release: Aged in wine barrels with resident yeast and microfloa for 1.5 years.

Added by flipper2gv on 04-24-2011

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Reviews: 75 | Ratings: 516
Photo of Alieniloquium
4.4/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

750 mL bottle poured into a tumbler.

Appearance - Not sure if I should rate its appearance well. It's a hazy orange with a huge off white head. It slowly oozes out of the bottle pushing gunky crap with it. Sticky lacing.

Smell - Extremely bretty, but lots of flavor behind it. Still some hops there. Lots of citrus.

Taste - Earthy and very bretty. Mimics the nose almost identically. Citrus more prominent. Lots of earthiness in the finish. Slight bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Well carbonated but not overly so.

Overall - Arguably better than Mimosa. Has more complexity than Mimosa because of the fresh hop character.

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Photo of AlexFields
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Opened 2/16/2013.

This is a bit of a gusher, and pours with a massive head. Head sticks around forever and leaves huge sticky lacing all over the glass. Looks awesome.

Smells of bright citrus, orange and grapefruit, some bretty funk. Really great, complex aroma.

Taste is similar but a little more tame. Wish I could've tried this when it was really fresh, probably would have been even better with a more pronounced hop character.

Great beer, one of the best of the HF beers we opened.


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Photo of MasterSki
4.12/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Todd for sharing both batches of this beer at various events. Served in various taster glasses.

A - A finger of white foam settles to a ring, haze, and spotty lace. Murky and cloudy orange body.

S - Tons of earthy, peppery, and spicy yeast flavors, with appleskins and fruity notes as well. The second batch seemed to have a bit more malt sweetness and tropical brett character to it. Galaxy hops seem a tad understated, although when I had Batch 1 the bottle was 5-6 months old.

T - The taste is again quite earthy and bready, with some phenolic, pepper and spicy yeast character. Light sour lemon note in the finish. Batch 2 is sweeter and fruitier, with mild and fairly restrained oak presence.

M - Smooth texture, lower carbonation, medium body, lightly dry, with a touch of acidity to it.

D - I prefer Batch 2, probably because it was fresher. The tropical and fruity notes seem to help offset the aggressively spicy yeast that I didn't love in Batch 1. Also, I think I had the dregs of Batch 1, which is partially why I didn't post my review until now. An interesting beer from Hill Farmstead, but doesn't totally work for my tastes.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

At the time of this review, this is the #3 Belgian IPA on the best of beeradvocate lists on beeradvocate.com. Bottle shared by Thorpe on a football game day, thanks. Served in a snifter.

Beer is yellow and hazy with a nice head of small white bubbles, some lacing, moderate carbonation, looks good.

Aroma is pretty complex, fruitiness from the galaxy hops and a nice nose of Brett b I assume.

Beer is light and effervescent on the palate, strong through, nice funk, strong yeast character, almost spicy at times, tastes great, the finish is mildly dry, good hop character throughout. The yeast on the palate are the clear winner to me but overall it is a good beer. I'd have it again.

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Photo of aasher
4.03/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This bottle was shared by muskabeatz, thanks Evan!

E. pours a light bodied, very, very cloudy tangerine orange witha three finger, root beer esque foamy bright white head. The nose is very dry, full of Brett, with a moderate fruitiness. It drinks really dry with loads of Brett and almost a grapefruit like fruit presence. Its funky and has plenty of barnyard characteristics. It's interesting, just very dry. It drinks light and smooth. I like it but not nearly as much as I like Anna.

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Photo of yourefragile
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First beer of the day (like most other people it seemed) at the anniversary party.

Light golden colored, hazy body with a massive, dense rocky bone white head. Head takes forever to die down and leaves behind airy clumps of lacing throughout the glass. Aroma is light and delicate blend of barnyard and fruit. Initially muted earthy notes of grass, hay and brett subtly mix with apple, orange and citrus peel. Flavor takes a similar route, initially grassy and subtly funky before light citrus and spice clean up the finish. Trace bitterness or alcohol, this was very refreshing and almost sleight to a fault. Oops, tastes like someone got some Orval in my Dupont.

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Photo of John_M
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

At Capone's today...

The beer pours a golden amber color with very good head retention and lacing. The nose is very impressive and complex, showcasing citrus, light clove, considerable funk and slight sour. The flavor profile replicates the nose in this dry, hoppy, Belgian IPA, and I'm impressed by the melange of flavor I get. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, with a hoppy, bitter, funk infused finish. The alcohol is barely noticeable in this excellent beer.


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Photo of HopHead84
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


Bottle opened with Carlos (Seaoflament) and a few others.

A: Bright orange with great clarity and an enormous sea foam head that recedes in a cavernous fashion. Excellent retention.

S: Floral notes with a little mineral and wet leather. Fruit is vibrant, with notes of orange, peach, and tangerine. Malt is restrained, reminding me of toasted bread.

T: Leather, mineral, and earth, with orange, grapefruit, pear, and stone fruit. Bitterness is at an upper low level. Sulfur is faint. Malt is light and bready. This is fantastic.

M: Upper light in body with high carbonation. Mouthfeel is light, dry, and crisp.

Overall: An outstanding Saison. Highly recommended.

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Photo of rudzud
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bottle of this at Hill Farmstead last month. Poured into a Duvel tulip. Its worth noting this years was aged in the Mimosa barrels!

A - This one was a slow gusher, resulting in both glasses I poured into but after some time I got enough to pour into my Duvel tulip. The pour was a hazy, murky golden dandelion yellow with a nice two finger rocky fluffy head that leaves enormous side lacing.

S - Nice typical Hill Farmstead saison aromas here with good yeast and light funk. There is a slight, gentle orange note in the background along with some barrel note. Super faint and light. Some slight sourness there too.

T - Taste is awesome. Great saison yeast notes and barnyard type funk. That is immediately overtaken by sharp orange peel type acidity. That background is orangejuicey, much like Mimosa. Such a different quality in a saison. Juicey, acidic, with a heavy funk/yeast background.

M - Mouthfeel isnt bad, some carbonation loss due to the fact it was a slow gusher. Still, lowerish carbonation with that tart, acidic backing. Nice mouthfeel though, would like a little more carbonation.

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Photo of Axnjxn
4.26/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

750ml 2014 bottle into a teku glass

dark murky golden color with a finger and half foamy head. smell of farmhouse yeast... you can definitely tell this was aged in wine barrels. funky funky funky! taste starts out with a lot of brett and then progresses into that funky farmhouse taste and ends with a slight bitterness. wine barrel is again apparent. i think this would just get better with more age. real complex and interesting. body is much lighter than i was expecting and i love it. carbonation is pretty high.

over interesting and great! thanks tommy.

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Photo of Davepoolesque
4.05/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lemon, crisp, earthy. Very light Guezue like flavor on the back end. Super short, dry finish. Really wish I drank this fresh. Getting no hops except in the aroma.

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Photo of jzeilinger
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a cloudy, opaque, cloudy golden tan color and a massive three fingered, creamy head that sticks to the glass like glue and cotton candy. The head eventually subsides but stays rocky and creamy across the top.

S - Bready, light earthiness, light fruitiness, sweet floral with lemon bitterness.

T - Brett, barnyard funk, earthy, sour, funky lemon, light grass, bready, tart.

M - Medium body.

O - Tastes far better than it looks!

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Photo of Stevedore
4.36/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle poured into a Hill Farmstead stemmed glass 5/31/2014.

A- Hazy bright copper-orange body, half finger white head with good retention, lots of sticky lacing. Looks a lot like Edward. And I find it interesting that the colour of the body even matches the colour on the label.

S- Lots of fruity Galaxy hops and a nice lemony brett presence. Grapefruit, citrus, tangerines and lemons. Smells great. A bit of bready pale ale presence, and I definitely recognize the nose of Edward here.

F- More of the bready base pale malt with citrus, tangerines and a floral presence reminding me a lot of Edward, but accompanied by quite a bit of lemony brett flavours, a bit of funk, mixed in with a nice dry hop presence bringing more juicy citrus. Not tart at all like the other saisons that Shaun brews. There is a nice white wine barrel presence throughout as well. Nice and delicious, but again, not tart or sour.

M- Medium body, just about right in terms of body and carbonation. A lot similar to Edward in that the mouthfeel is soft with a nice citrus lemony presence, presumably from the brett. Nice and dry, refreshing.

O- If this is a Belgian IPA, this kills anything else of the style. As a saison, I prefer the likes of Arthur and Anna to this, but I'm very glad to have tried this one. Whatever it may be, it's certainly a nice creation from Hill and Co.

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.39/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle with silver pressure cap. Vintage 2014.

poured into a pair of HF wine stems.

Appearance: light orange bodied beer with 3 fingers of white head that slowely drops down to thick cap. Great staying power on the head with thick yet spotty lacing left on the glass.

Smell: This one is modertely funky. Lots of white wine barrel notes that are overpowered by the funk. Fruity hops with low bitter aroma.

Taste: Moderate funkiness. Surprisingly enough the white wine notes are not very strong compared to the nose. Light tannins and white grape. Lite bitterness from the hops. Musty and rotten hay.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation. As this beer warms up it seems to get watery, but still pretty solid mouthfeel.

Overall: This is my first wine barrel aged pale ale. It was done in true HF style and its a great beer. Unique and different!

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batches 1 & 2 side by side. Thanks to Joe for trading me the bottle of batch 1 and Mike for sharing a bottle of batch 2. The scores are for batch 2.

**Batch 1**

Moderately orange with a dense, off-white head with good retention and nice lacing. The nose is excellent. A nice Brett character is present, but as it warms up, it grows increasingly clove and plastic-like, along with some herbal character (cilantro stalks). The dry hop character has fallen off. Still, this is nice. The palate is significantly better than the nose would suggest. Opening grassy with some clove and a little plastic, there's plenty of Brett flavor. Mildly fruity as well, and a touch spicy too. Drying, yeasty, mildly cheesy, this is nice.

**Batch 2**

Orange with a thin, white head with excellent retention and lacing. The nose has more of a fruit character than batch 1 did, with an aroma of cantaloupe and mango, along with some dry hops. Faintly clove and plastic like, with a little bit of sea breeze, this smells excellent. The palate is a little less complex, a little more watery and a fantastic balance and blend of flavors. Nice dry hop character. Drying, long finish with mild clove and citrus, this is excellent.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.08/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle opened on 7.11.12.

A - Pours a pale, cloudy light orange with an explosive fine-bubbled, near-white head that takes forever to fade down.

S - Funky, citrusy-lemons mostly.

T - Lemons, funk, slight wood.

D - Great carbonation and a light body.

O - A funky, lemony farmhouse pale ale. It's been awhile since I have had a HF brew, and man do I miss them.

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Photo of claspada
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aromas begin with a substantial amount of tropical fruit and other lighter fruits like green apple and grape skin. Next I get the yeast induced aromas of earth and light spice along with a clean light crackery, pilsner malt base. The Bretty must and funk emerges more and more as it warms.

The tastes follow the nose with light crackery breadiness and then some earthy, slightly musty and funky yeast flavors. The tropical and citrus fruit hops pop next with some passionfruit and lemon and orange peel. Some phenolic spiciness with light sour citrus and other non-discript fruitiness. The oak and rustic funk emerges more as it warms as well.

The mouthfeel is medium boided with medium carbonation. Finish is lighly dry and oaky but mainly clean for the most part with balanced funk and hop bitterness as well.

Overall I really enjoyed this beer, I wonder what it was like when it was released fresh as the hops were probably super aromatic where here they are more of a complement to the Bretty and funk but now the Brett is probably better than it was earlier this year. A fine line for sure but regardless this was a super solid beer from Hill Farmstead and would gladly revisit if it was more readily available or even easier to trade for.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.87/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a murky golden-orange with a rocky, one-inch, off-white head embedded with tiny craters. Big brett nose on this beer - horse blanket, bandaids and a hint of citrus. Taste follows nose; however, there's less of a brett character in the flavor profile. There's also a bit more citrus as well as what I perceive to be chamomile. Mouthfeel is light-medium in body with a soft carbonation and some astringency. Overall, a decent beer; however, the brett is a bit too much on the palate.

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Photo of cbutova
4.85/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

A- Birthday boy pour from the 750ml into a H.F. wine glass. Cascades out with an ever so slightly hazy golden body and a thick, tall puffy cap. Good head retention as a wide belt and a general haze remain atop the brew. A mix of plentiful sheets and webs of lacing.

S- Even after almost six months in the barrels the Galaxy hops pop off the top and combine with Brett tropical funk and lactic acid bugs to really create something special. Lemon juice tartness, vinous woody barrels, underripe apricots, a massive push of passionfruit and a bit of horsey funk really come to mind.

T- Juicy, sour and vinous. The tropical aspect of the brew comes from both the seemingly massive portion of Galaxy hops and the resident Brett strains as passionfruit, tangerine, mandarin orange, mango, sour apricot, lemony lactic acid and even peach come to mind. The barrel is smoothed out and drops a touch of vanilla sweetness to almost give the brew a masterful pie element marrying the fruits and the funk. A slight hint of freshly mashed pale barley and also some woody oak tannins comes to mind.

MF- Body drops towards the light side of the scale but a very high end carbonation brings on creaminess and some foamy texture. Finishes with a medium, perhaps a shade below that lactic acid tartness.

Sean Hill brews with consistency of Tiger Woods in his prime era. His masterful brews are the best in the world and his misses are still better than almost anything else out there; this one is another excellently crafted beverage. The use of dry hops after aging a hoppy pale on oak allows the brew to come full circle as lactic tartness marries funk, hops and wild buggy flavors.

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Photo of trxxpaxxs
4.54/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I can't thank you enough, leschkie... I owe you for this one...

A: Pours a hazy golden peach with a massive, foamy, pure white head. It takes forever for the head to dissipate, but it's just building suspense. This beer looks delicious.

S: It also smells super delicious. The nose is packed full of earthy grains, Beglian yeasts, roses, camomile, oranges, lemons, and clove. It's unreal. I don't know if this beer is brett based, but it sure smells like it.

T: Damn. It starts off with huge hits of juicy orange, and other various citrus. The spice picks up in the middle where the clove and floral notes begin to really shine. Once the beer hits the back of the palate it's full-on yeasty funk and bitters. I'm actually a little blown away by how bitter it is in the back end.

M: Medium bodied beer. It's wet and juicy to start, but it ends extremely dry. I don't think I've ever had a beer with such a huge transition in mouthfeel. This is a highly drinkable beer, but it's something you'll be sipping and savoring.

O: Excellent brew. The nose is my favorite part of the beer, and it's damn delicious. I would drink this again in a heartbeat.

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Photo of rlee1390
4.25/5  rDev 0%

A-Cloudy pale orange, two finger head that leaves nice lacing.

S-Oak, white wine, lemon and grass. tart notes yeast and wheat.

T-Very white wine flavor, oak as well, nice tart notes, oranges, lemon and grass.

M-Lighter drier finish, nice carbonation.

O-Didn't get much of the hop flavor but still a good beer.

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Photo of cpetrone84
3.22/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pour is extremely cloudy orange with tons of bubbly white head. Nose is lemony, notes of Saison yeast, a touch dusty and citrusy. Taste is a bit bland, some lemon, maybe faint yeast. Fairly celtzery and leathery, thin finish. Overly bretted, body is decent, high carb and drinkable, faintly dry.

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Photo of tectactoe
3.88/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours out a compilation of golden and yellow tones with some lighters straw hints around the edges. Super volatile pour, even being somewhat conservative creates a head that grows thicker than the amount of beer that's been poured already; eggshell-white, cloudy, and foamy, leaving huge chunks of lacing as it slowly recedes.

I bring E. up to my face and I'm met with a huge bouquet of roses; the aroma is largely floral, comprised of fresh, wet roses and bitter grassy notes. The hops are clearly the key component in this one. Successive whiffs reveal a more refined hop character, rounded out with tones of earth, dirt, and musk. Light hints of funk and wet wood (as well as some of the musk) is probably from the brett yeast used. There isn't much to be said in terms of malt, at least as far as the aroma is concerned. The hop profile here is certainly different - one of the most purely, raw, floral things I've smelled in quite some time. Very, very light tropical fruit and citrus peek in more and more with each sniff - maybe apple skins and/or pears?

I take my first swig of E. and I'm not sure if I just drank a beer or if I ate a flower and a handful of grass. There should be no surprise, however, as the aroma was largely floral and grassy. The vegetal notes are pretty huge on this one; grass, roses, and perfume. The hops are raw and dirty, giving off a very weedy, grassy, and bitter tone. They must have used a ton of bittering hops on this one - the bitterness charges in, rides the wave hard, and doesn't come close to being settled by the end. I would have like more aromatics to accompany this dry, leafy bitterness. A mild citrus zest sits quiet in the background, but never jumps out and strong as I was hoping for. There's a heavy bit of funk and wet oak in the aftertaste - hard to pick it up throughout the sip, as the hop notes are so profound. Medium bodied, heavily carbonated.

Hm... I don't love E. like the scores and reviews said I would. Listening to others describe it, it definitely sounds like something right up my alley. Don't get me wrong - it was a good beer, but I guess from the way people talk about HF, I was possibly expecting a bit too much. I like the funk and oak in the end, but the bittering hops just don't make my palate dance like they should. Either way, still a solid brew, but likely nothing I'll seek out again.

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Photo of AgentZero
4.03/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Some fine sir shared this at Zwanze Day, but I don't remember who. But thanks!

A - Orangish yellow colored beer with a really big head that foamed up for a long time. Lot of stick on the sides.

S - I really didn't know what this beer was when I smelled it, for some reason I was thinking saison. There was quite a bit of syrupy fruit and a heavy dose of yeast.

T - Very heavy taste, it's kind of a yeast explosion with a lot of syrupy tropical fruit. Not particularly bitter. It tastes good, but the yeast is a little too much for me.

M - Lighter bodied with a lot of carbonation. Fairly dry.

O - This is a good beer for something that is a bastard style. It's just not a style I think is particularly good, and the phenolic quality of the yeast makes it hard for me to drink in large doses. Would like to try this one again though.

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Photo of EgadBananas
4.32/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a huge and hazy dark orange color. Huge fluffy head. Nice retention. The aroma is nearly brilliant. Bubble gum, yeast, citrus, nuts lemon, and sweet orange. Sweet citrus on the taste, some lemon, citrus hops, light malts, bubblegum, and some breads. The feel is lik, crisp and carbonated.

This is an epicly enigue farmhouse ale. Lovein' it!

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E. from Hill Farmstead Brewery
4.25 out of 5 based on 516 ratings.
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