Rochester Mills Beer Co.

Rochester Mills Beer Co.Rochester Mills Beer Co.

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

310 Water St.
Rochester, Michigan, 48307
United States

(248) 650-5080 | map

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Reviews: 25 | Ratings: 61
Photo of mschultz88
4.76/5  rDev +19.6%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5 | food: 5

This is a historic building located in Downtown Rochester Hills. The open concept of the building makes for a fantastic time here, whether it be for lunch or dinner, or a quick get together. Some of the brewery is able to be seen from the restaurant floor. Out of the many time's I've been here, service is always fantastic, and the beers are always cold and crisp. There's a few taps that remain the same, but most do change, depending on the season.

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Photo of fern22
2.9/5  rDev -27.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 1.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 2 | food: 4.5

Is this real? Am I taking crazy pills? What's with these reviews? I cannot fathom why people think these guys serve good beer. The food is great, the people are great, the service is great, the atmosphere is actually pretty special here and there, but the beer is garbage. It's largely unclean and right off of their taps it has a distinctive "house taste" aka "why does it taste like I just drank molten pennies". There is no excuse for unsanitary beer. I have been there and had their beer on three separate occasions. They had plenty of chances to win me over. I don't know what kind of deranged taste buds or uppity-pseudointellectual brainwash you need to have to think this stuff is good. Just because it's in an opulent city doesn't mean it's automatically good. I know this place is dingus and all I end up hearing about is how the people go there all the time and drink that swill. Even Atwater and Arcadia make better beer. I love going here, but I can't drink the beer. More for everyone else I guess.

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Photo of bwood06
4.08/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Very large and wide open brewpub which seems to focus very heavily on the food that is offered. Both food and beer offerings are wide and varied. Food is very well prepared, great tasting, and well presented, but unfortunately the beer is not treated in the same way. The beer menu is wide and varied and well executed with good flavors, but the treatment of the beer by pouring off head and using chilled glasses is just no bueno. This place becomes rather loud quite quickly due to the amount of people. There are several pool tables to hang out and play with friends/acquaintances/strangers/whoever and there are a generous amount of tvs around to watch sports.

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Photo of BigRizz62
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

A great, historical place to drink a beer. Food and service very good. Nice beer selection. Beers are good, nothing really stood out from a taste perspective

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Photo of JasonR1975
3.84/5  rDev -3.5%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

Large space, felt more like a jockey club than a bar - beer is fine, just nothing mind blowing, prompt service, nice menu variety and my selections were very good. Beer selection a little pedestrian for the size of the place.

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Photo of TurboBrew
4.59/5  rDev +15.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

Drove out here from about an hour away tonight to have some brew and dinner. The parking lot/enterance are pretty odd, but its whats on the inside that counts right? haha once you open the door to the building its awesome.

It turned out to be happy hour... which included half off appetizers and 3$ Pints :0 This was a BONUS !

Very impressive. Absolutely loved the place.

Walk into a huge room with a ton of tables and with several pool tables in the middle. Also has big windows you can walk up to and check out the brewing equipment, lauter..mash tun.. and all the fermenters.

Impressive lineup of beer from light ale to red to a very very good Milkshake stout which I bought a 4 pack of after dinner!

Ordered a appetizer first, the fried macaroni with blue cheese dip, was outstanding. Crispy and cheesy. very good.

Had a turkey rueben for dinner, also amazing. Could have had more turkey on it though. We also had a cup of the beer cheese soup which was great.

Our service was TOP NOTCH. Not sure who Fietsam is, thats what the servers name was on the bill... was that his actaul name? I dont remember lol. Great service regardless. Will be back for sure!

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Photo of HisBoyElroy
3.98/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Recently went to this brewery for some birthday beer with my girlfriend. Tried 10 beers and 1 cider. They had a very good porter, and an excellent Barrel Aged Scotch Ale. The service was very good. The waitress was very friendly and seemed to be having a good time. Would have liked faster service, but it is a very busy and very big brewery. We had eaten dinner at home, so we only order appetizers. The spinach artichoke dip was amazing. For an all around good experience, I definitely recommend checking this place out.

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Photo of king75
3.57/5  rDev -10.3%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

Atmosphere- This place has a cool atmosphere being located in an old mill. The architecture of the building is really nice and this brewery is pretty big. Beautiful hardwood floors and wood beams throughout almost feels like an old railway station. Beautiful building. There is always a descent crowd here being near a university there is always a college crowd but there are also a lot of regulars that go there after work.

Quality/ selection- They have a solid selection of at least 10-15 beers on tap and they always have taps that are rotating/changing regularly. The quality of the beer is not going to blow you away better than some breweries worst than most. Their ESB, Red, and milkshake stout all have decent flavor but lack body and complexity. I would rate these three beers around a B-.

Service- is not too bad. The bartenders I have dealt with have been friendly and have allowed me to try numerous samples before deciding what I want to fill a growler with.

Overall, this brewery is worth the visit if you are in the area but is not worth traveling from out of town for. IF you want to try their beer try a good beer shop in Michigan and pick up some of the beers that they can if you like it go to the brewery. On the plus side they do offer growler fills for $6 on Tuesdays and Thursdays. This place is great if your just starting to dabble into craft beer or if you have a friend that has not tried craft beer yet. This place was a jumping off place for me getting more into craft beer.

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3.76/5  rDev -5.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 3 | food: 4.25

Food is good. Clam Chowder is excellent. Beer...nothing special. As an artist for over 10yrs and homebrewer/home chef, I expect a bit more from my brews. They lack creativity and complex flavor profiles. I'm sure Ill get trashed from this review but I would rather be honest and no one is paying me to write this lol. Right Brain, Founders, New Holland, DBC, Grizzly Peak ect... are far better choices when it comes to pleasing the palate.

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Photo of Kerrie
4.44/5  rDev +11.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

One of my favorite places to go when I'm in the area. I've always liked the atmosphere of the place; it's very large and very open, and sometimes they have live music. You can see the brew tanks (forgive me if that's not the proper term), too.

The quality has always been top-notch. I've never had a bad beer or meal here. The service is also great considering how large it is. My glass never stayed empty for long.

The selection is quite large. Lots of food options (all of which I've tried have been great) and a lot of beer options. They usually have a rotating stout, their Water Street Wheat (amazing after a bike ride, you're the type to bike the trails nearby and then stop in for a pint) an IPA, a red, and a few more that I've yet to have the opportunity to try at this point.

The food is always delicious and the portions are huge. I love the garlic bread that comes with the pasta dishes- it's the size of half the plate.

Overall, very good and well worth the price. I can't wait to bike the trails again this summer and stop in again.

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Photo of RobWilson
4.58/5  rDev +15.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

I spent a few weeks working near Troy and this was by far my favorite place to eat. It helps that they have good beer and friendly bartenders!

They do samples and you get to pick your beers from the menu. They did not provide any sort of reminder of what I ordered. All of the beers I have had there were done to style and very tasty.

The food is good and the menu suggests beer pairings. The bar is full of locals who are very friendly with each other.

You can buy some swag at the bar, I could not find a specific shop. I managed to get a pint glass and that was my goal.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
4/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Reviewed on 6/20/2010.

An interesting little brewpub based in a historical old mill. I came here on a Sunday afternoon and got to sit outside, which was very pleasant. The service was great. There were ~10 beers on tap and the ones I tried were quite tasty. The food was ok (the descriptions make the food sound better than it is...I got the Shepherd's pie which was actually pretty good but my boyfriend got the sesame chicken which was not good at it is hit or miss). A low key, chill kind of atmosphere and good beer to boot. I had a great time here!

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Photo of beerguru15
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

I've gone to Rochester Mills a few times while in the area, most recently past weekend. The overall atmosphere is enjoyable, with quite a few tv's, a nice view of the brewing equipment and a perfect place to go and have a beer while visiting with friends, coworkers or others at the bar.

I've had quite a few types of beer from Rochester Mills including a Cream ale, their wit, porter, milkshake stout and Oktoberfest. All were enjoyable and recommended.

Each time I've been there, I've had good service, the waitresses have all been attentive, had knowledge of the beer they were serving and always helpful. You can't go wrong there.

Rochester Mills has a nice selection of different styles of beers, and it seems like each time I've gone there are always something new. They have a few quest tap and do well with seasonals also, making just about beer drinker happy.

The food is also quite good. This past saturday we had their pepperoni pizza, and I've had their goulash plus various sandwiches before. Always enjoyed eating there.

Overall, a great place to go and is one of the sure stops my friends and I make when in the area.

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Photo of gotweid
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

Located in downtown Rochester. This place is converted from an old warehouse. It has brick walls and wood floors, a high ceiling and is very large. They have a wide variety of good food, great service, pool tables located down some steps in the middle of the establishment. The tables surround the pool table area and they have a very long bar. The best part is the beer. They have a huge selection of many makers and varieties. I always order the breer the Rochester Mills brews and have enjoyed and recommend them all. The only drawback is when the place gets full it holds a lot of people so it can get loud. Recommend it and enjoy taking the family or meeting friends there.

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Photo of berserker256
4/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This joint is owned and operated by the same people who own Royal Oak Brewery. And as soon as I walked in the place with my wife I could see a lot of similarities. It looks and feels very much like the Royal Oak Brewery but it's up in Rochester.

There's a warehouse-converted-to-a-brewery-bar type of feel to it. I like that. It spacious. Great atmosphere and location. Feels upscale but is actually quite reasonable. As far as I can tell, the menu is exactly the same as the Royal Oak brewery. Large variety at reasonable prices. Very friendly and good-looking waitresses.
The beer menu was similar to ROB's as well. So I asked the waitress if the beers had the same recipes with different names. She asked the brewmaster and he said NO.

I thought the Paint Creek Porter tasted like the Pappy's Porter at ROB and that's why I asked. But then I had the I.P.A. and it was WAY different from the Pleasure's I.P.A. at the ROB. The wheats are different as well.

I like Rochester Mills but there's not much reason for me to go there seeing that the very similar Royal Oak Brewery is about a mile and a half from my house.

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Photo of DackAchan
4.6/5  rDev +15.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5

The "Mills" is an excellent place. I have frequented the establishment multiple times. I think I enjoyed it when I had my 21st birthday there. I've attended a couple other parties there as well and remember them. They have a nice private room in the back that doubles as the cigar room when not in use. There is a stage that is framed by the beer vats that also includes a large projection screen for sporting events. You can't look anywhere in the bar without seeing at least one tv. The sit down area is a little more modest. A good place to sit down and chat, without the noise of the bar. If you want the bar atmosphere there are the pool tables which are kept up pretty well.

Last but not least is the beer. They have at any one time 6-8 microbrews on tap as well as other mass marketed beers. I haven't found a Rochester Mills Beer that I've disliked. Their Sacriligous stout is very good, as well as their Paint Creek Porter, Milkshake Stout and Oktoberfest. I like dark beers and if you do too, this is the place to go.

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Photo of CoSMoSYS
3.56/5  rDev -10.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4

I visited this establishment for the first time last Saturday for my girlfriend's friends birthday. It's sort of in a tucked away part of beautiful downtown Rochester. There are various amounts of parking options, so you are not limited. While walking up to the building I had to stop and take a look at the architecture of the place. It reminded me of a old factory/mill they had restored. Very unique and made me feel comfortable when I went in. The brewery seems to occupy just a third of the building, even though the brewery is huge! I enjoy a small, cozy and somewhat quiet setting to enjoy a drink and have conversations but this place was hoppin with people and music.

When you walk in the first thing you notice is the pool tables, flat screen TVs and a very long bar. Not only do they have their own brews but they also sell the typical beers: Labatts, Guinness, etc etc. I had three beers when I was there, The Lazy Daze, A Raspberry type beer (sorry, I can't remember the name!) and the Hard Cider.

If cigars are your thing, they have their own smoking room and humidor for your convenience.

They also had a decent sized kitchen and the food that our party ordered was met by various, "mmmm's" and orders for more food.

The wait staff was friendly but the service seemed just ok. They had us move literally 3 different times to different tables and that was somewhat annoying and they were sometimes slow to get over to you. They were busy however, so I attribute it to that.

They had a band that night, Reggie Smith and the After Party, which helped bring the night to a great end before we left. There were a lot of people dancing it up to the great tunes.

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Photo of adams82
4.33/5  rDev +8.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Located just outside of downtown Rochester, "The Mills" is truly a great find. The historic knitting mill lends a unique character to a brewpub and really helps make the dining/drinking experience as enjoyable as possible.

There's plenty of space, so getting sat quickly has never been a problem and you're not bumping elbows with the people next to you. Once seated, take a minute to observe the unique layout and you'll see four or five pool tables in the middle of the dining area, a rather large bar lined with stainless serving tanks and nestled in a corner behind a glass wall is the brewhouse. It's always cool to see where your beer comes from! Oh, and like others have said, the yuppie crowd does tend to find its way in, but come on... it's Rochester! They have to go somewhere and they might as well try out some good beer while they're at it.

The staff have always been friendly and attentive and have had at the very least, a little knowledge of beer. The menu seems to change on a semi regular basis and it's fairly diverse with pasta, sandwiches, (awesome!) pizzas, unique appetizers and some really excellent desserts.

The beer list has 8 mainstays, but you may only see 7of 8 on tap at certain times as they rotate between their dry and sweet stouts. All are very good offerings and range from lighter lagers for the masses to enjoy to a really good IPA and a killer porter. Beyond the usual suspects, there are usually one or two seasonal (sometimes more!) which always end up being more than exceptional. From an Amarillo Pale Ale to Belgian Tripple, they tend to cover a wide range of styles in small batches.

While Rochester Mills is a part of a chain, they are not franchised and really deliver excellent food and beer time and again. Prices are more than reasonable (especially when you take into consideration where they are located) and the quality service is paired nicely with quality food and drink.

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Photo of sinstaineddemon
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

I love this restaurant/pub. This is where my girlfriends parents first took me out to dinner. A great establishment with GREAT beer, well of what ive had so far. The servers are friendly, accurate, and best of all knowledgeable about there beer.

They have a great selection of beers and great food, their palamino pasta sauces are great, and their cheese soup is even better. Worth a trip, well maybe not for me from Ct, but when I am out here i make it a point to stop.

The prices are pretty good too, 3.75 for the pints, but maybe those were lunch prices?

Worth the trip!!

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Photo of beerjournl
4.58/5  rDev +15.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Just made a trip to Auburn Hills, down the road from Rochester, and decided to stop in here to compare them to the other fine offerings in the area. Good Choice!

The place is set in a historic knitting mill which adds to the atmosphere. The brewery equipment is displayed prominently behind glass walls and is quite impressive. I didn't expect to see such capacity in this place. It's a huge space, but was not packed and loud when we showed up after work at about 6pm. We sat at a table in the bar area on the first night and the service was very attentive.

I think they had at least 8 or 9 of their beers available, and we sampled 7 of them, eventually settling on an exceptional Double IPA which was a special offering. All the beers were very good, with a few exceptional brews such as the stout. They also had a huge assortment of outside brands, some on tap and some in bottle.

Food was flawless as well. First night I had the huge shephard's pie which was baked just right. It was so much I couldn't come near finishing it. My friends had various items and were equally satisfied. Good menu with everything from bar food to some exceptional entres.

If I wasn't with a group from work I'd have written down more detail, but trust me this place is worth a visit if you are in the area. If it's a choice between this and Big Buck, go to Rochester Mills. I went to both in the same evening, and everyone in the group voted to return to Rochster Mills for a second evening.

Don't believe what the older previous reviews say about this place. If it seems a bit yuppie it must be because you are not accustomed to well maintained places with a decent mixed crowd. Maybe they have read the reviews and changed their approach? If so that shows good management. Many brewpubs have closed down, and not for the lack of a good beer! If this were closer to home in Florida it would be one of my first picks. I'll proudly wear the t-shirt I picked up there!

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Photo of bozebus17
3.03/5  rDev -23.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 2 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3

This was my first experience with this brewery. When you walk in you are amazed, the place is huge. There are many tables around the edges, pool tables in the middle, and a very long bar up front.
I had gotten mixed reviews of the place so I was curious to find out what it was like for myself. I went up to the bar and ordered my first brew, a Rochester Red. At $3.75 a pint their beers are very reasonably priced. I was not, however, impressed by the beer I drank there. It was good beer, don't get me wrong, but not of the quality I expected. The styles seemed to be dumbed down a little, you can tell that the place has a regular after work crowd. As for the beer, it was above macro-swill, but I'd honestly rather have something by Samuel Adams (if that tells you anything). I guess their beers weren't very unique.
The selection was decent, although I wouldn't call it good. You could choose from a couple of lagers, a wheat, a stout, a porter, and an IPA. They even had a lite beer on tap. They did actually have Chimay in bottles, which is fine by me.
All I had foodwise were buffalo wings, and they were pretty good, but just your typical bar food. The atmosphere was loud, a live band was playing, kind of hard to have a conversation. The service at our table was not very good--The place was not crowded and they seemed overstaffed, so that really turned me off. All in all I'd say it's a good place to grab a brew, but there are many places in the area I'd choose first.

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Photo of jsolack
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Nice atmosphere... slightly upscale but still maintains a casual feel. Has music on some nights. Good place to go and hang out or to go and have a dinner. Also has a nice cigar room, but bring your own smokes becuase theirs (as with most places) are overpriced.

Both food and beer seem to be of high quality. Everything there is nice... they have couches in cigar room and they were nice as well.

Good selection of beers they brew and of other beers. They don't have a quite as large of a selection as some other local restaurants... but they have enough to please most.

Food we had was good... but we didn't eat a full meal... just snack/bar food and everything was good.

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Photo of inebrius
3.68/5  rDev -7.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 2

Big place. Set in an old textile mill the interior is all brick and wood and cozy in an open, airy way. 12 x 12 solid pine posts hold up the ceiling while billiard balls slap each other in the background. Bar back is lined by stainless storage tanks waiting to dispense one of the 11 offerings. Pretty mellow on a Tuesday happy hour. Beer is good. Their beer is good.

Update: After about four meals in the past couple months I've come to the conclusion that Rochester Mills is a place to go for a few beers and perhaps an appetizer. From a blackened catfish shingle to slimy overcooked pasta. Nuh-uh. If you plan on eating here go with standard fare like a burger or fish and chips, or better yet, lay down some coin at Andiamo across the street and come here for after dinner brews. Thoroughly mediocre chow!

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Photo of marburg
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I love this place -- been there a few times.

The layout is a little odd, and the crowd is a tad more "yuppie" (as another reviewer put it) than I normally like. But the beer is really quite good, and once it gets a little later, the crowd is a pretty ecclectic mix.

I've had about 6 of their beers, and they were all above average quite good. The pizzas are all good, especially the BBQ Chicken and Cajun pizzas. And they've got pool and occasional live entertainment. The place is huge, so there's generally not too long of a wait.

Really, no complaints. Just a solid bar in a decent location with good beer. Definately recommend it.

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Photo of mjohn27603
4/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This is one of the better brewpubs in Oakland County that I have tried. The food is pretty good with a wide selection. They spent quite a bit of time on the interior styling. The brewery is gleaming with exposed shiny tanks. There is lots of exposed duct work, brick, and televisions tuned to CNBC. They also have several pool tables. The only knock is that it is a little bit on the yuppie side. You might expect this in the Oakland County area. However, despite the almost too pretty interior, the beer list is still pretty credible. There are some more advanced styles and not just a selection of lite lagers. Growlers are available for $10 with $7 refills. The place seemed pretty family friendly as I saw several tables with children.

A list of beers when I was recently there (11/5/02):
Harvest Lite
Lazy Daze Lager
Water Street Wheat
Rochester Red
Cornerstone IPA
Brickshot ESB
Paint Creek Porter
Sacri-Licious Stout
Milk Shake Stout
Barley Wine 2002

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Rochester Mills Beer Co. in Rochester, MI
3.79 out of 5 based on 1,187 ratings.
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