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Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) | Steel Brewing Company

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551 Reviews
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Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity)Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity)

Brewed by:
Steel Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Malt Liquor

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed in different abv. versions: 6.0%, 7.3%, 8.1%, & reports of a 8.9%. In a few counties/states, a 3.2% version is also available.

Added by Todd on 09-13-2001

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Reviews: 551 | Ratings: 1,186
Photo of guitarmage
3.04/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Intimidating, huge, it's a 40oz. It looks like trouble. It's actually a apple juice color, few bubbles, no lacing.

Smell: Alcohol, steely grain, a bready sweetness.

Taste: An whiskey like sweetness upfront, alcohol warms your face, finishes semi dry, leaves a biscuity flavor in your mouth. Hops are nearly undetectable.

Mouthfeel: An even fizziness, fairly low carbonation, dry in the finish.

Drinkability: It depends. It's all about your mood on this one, it's 2/11 today so I thought what the hell. If you want some stress relief it can be as drinkable as anything. It doesn't have a lot going for it in terms of flavor, but it also doesn't have some of the awful flavors from other cheap overproofed beers.

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Photo of blitheringidiot
2.15/5  rDev -13%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Once upon a time there was a malt liquor called steel reserve...it pours golden straw with drippy lace

smelled like popcorn adjuncts

tastes like a popcorn cocktail with some rice grain

feel is an awl-kee-hawl sizzler!

last swigs: 8.1% ABV shows up to THIS! party. Had to try a new "scrod beer"

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Photo of TheSarge
2.77/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not a huge fan of the malt liquors, but heck my brother had me try this one. Pours with a moderate amount of carbination, which forms a light white head, and leaves behind a lacing all the way throuhg. Not too bad for a cheap brew. Gives off aromas of sweet malt with a hint of corn, which is shared in the taste as well. Finishes with a mild warmness.

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Photo of Bobikel
2.76/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a clear pale gold with a nice two 1 1/2" head. Retention is minimal, slight lacing.

Smell - Funky soap dominates with a little malt bitterness. Slight hopping.

Taste - Mostly sweet malt with hints of lager yeast, very little hop bitterness lingers.

Mouthfeel - As expected, thin and watery with medium carbonation.

Drinkability - A very quaffible lager. Easy drinking.

Overall - For it's price, you get what you expect: A decent lager with 8%.

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Photo of scarletfire79
3.1/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

it's been a long time since i've had malt liquor. i guess molon xxx must have been the last. overall this beer isn't that bad for the style. i'd still put it behind colt 45. no real bad aftertaste and warming doesn't seem to hurt as much as other 40 oz. beers. and for $.99 a 40 oz. who can deny it's a good pick me up when you're low on cash.

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Photo of jettjon
2.49/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

From the 24 oz. can, pours a bright, pale yellow-gold clear color with many bubbles beneath a 2-finger head of heavy white foam. Head fades at a moderate-fast rate, leaving minor lacing. Nose of malt and grass. Yes, believe it or not, there’s definitely malt in there. A bit of “bad malt liquor” scent as well, but not much. Some sort of chemical odor as well. Taste is sweet with a definite malt character, and not in a bad way. However, it’s muddled with lactose-like over-sweetness. There’s some alcohol toward the middle, and it ends with a hint of bitterness and some sticky-sweetness. Mouth is watery and mildly carbonated, wet but not too thin. Drinkability: it’s acceptable to accomplish the mission, but the nose and flavor definitely detract from the experience.

Overall: A good cheap one to get your freak on. One 24 oz. can = 4 regular beers. If you’re looking to get hammered with a semi-acceptable beer for the lowest possible cost, this is the way to go. A completely acceptable buzz beer in my opinion. Take it for what it’s worth.

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Photo of nicksta
2.66/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

I bought this beer for my friends 21st. I wanted some good stuff, but I was broke. Hell, at 7 bucks for a 12 pack I thought I couldn't go wrong. Oh, how wrong I was.

The appearance is not all that bad. It is a nice gold and the head does not die that easily. It also gives nice lacing. I have just seen this before. The smell is a lot worse. It is very adjunctly sweet and it does not hide its alcohol very well.
The taste is not as bad as it was the first time. It must be because I put it into a glass this time. Anyway, it has a little bit of malt sweetness and a burn from the alcohol that is not to bad, but your typical cheap-beer corn taste rounds it out. I must be losing it because throughout the taste I also detected some hints of fruit sweetness. It kind of reminded me of banana sweetness and spice typically found in a wheat beer. Yeah, you can feel free to disregard that last part.
The mouthfeel is also quite good. The drinkability ain't great; you will need to get past the burn from the 8.1% that can effect your mouth to your gut..
The bottom line is that this was meant for "chug-chug-chug" but if you pour it into a glass and take you time you can still get drunk and enjoy it. I probably just ruined my credibility as a beer drinker...

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Photo of xtremejammn
1.93/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Well it's another cheap high gravity lager, bleugh. But not completely bleaugh.

A: Pours a faded yellow and has a quickly fading head, nothing special.

S: Smells very malty, with somewhat of a grainy scent.

T: Ugh, off sweet with a cheap malt taste and some hop pressence, with a bit of a bitter aftertaste.

M: A little acidy and the bad taste make for a lousy mouthfeel.

D: A bit acidy and a little rough going down.

Bottom Line: It's pretty obvious why this is so cheap, but hey if your in need of a pick me up and low on cash you should give this one a shot...Good luck

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Photo of wavz
1.86/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

I have to start out by first saying I would never buy this beer on my own. I was at a friends house and they happened to have a few of these and the high gravity things caught my eye.

A- Poured out of the can with a nice straw/wheat color. And that was the best part of the experience.

S- Like the morning after a keg party.

T- Like the morning after a keg party.

M- Not much lacing on the glass and plenty of carbination.

D- If your MO is getting [email protected] up then this is the cruddy beer that will do the job.


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Photo of pmcadamis
1.51/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

Go this big ass 24 oz can at the gas station. I have to admit, I was a bit embarrased to buy this (along with a 24 oz can of Hurricane), but I feel the need to review beer in all of it's various incarnations. Alas, the unfortunate among us may not be able to afford a bomber of some fine Belgian ale, so I shall make do with what I have and walk amongst the comman man as Tolstoy did over a hundred years ago. This is my epic journey into the world of cheapo ghetto beer.

"According to a study by Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science in California, malt liquor is the alcohol of choice of the homeless and unemployed." The study appears in the March 2005 issue of the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research.

A - Actually looks pretty good once poured into my 0.5L big-ass pint glass. Bronze-gold with lots of champagne bubbles and a nice 1/2 finger white head that sticks around for quite some time. When swirled, sheets of foam don't stick to the glass

S - OK, this one started out looking pretty, but just took a huge nose-dive in the smell department. Stale and musty...smells like my beer-stained carpet when I was in college. Loads of corny adjuncts, overripe fruit, and alcohol whiffs, but somewhat sweet and actually not as bad as I would have expected. Plus, it's got big balls....I'll give it that. It's really boozy and assertive.

T - Very malty and sweet like sugary ceral with milk. Cornbread with molasses. Very noticable alcohol profile...but then again I guess that the point of this brew is to just get you drunk. I must say that I like this better than bud light or miller light...and for $1.19 per 24 oz can? Damn.

M - Very thick and cloyingly sweet. Rich and very soupy. Somehow feels warm on the tongue even though I bought it ice cold and drank it within a few minutes of getting home. The alcohol is very apparent, and there are some unexpectedly nice drying hop notes on the finish, but it's still way to syrupy and unbalanced.

D - Pretty low. This is so thick and syrupy that after downing half the can I already feel very full, and the sickening sweetness is very overwhelming. Honestly, for a buck a 24oz can (50 cents per beer ...really) this stuff is not that bad. If I felt like drinking one pint of something cheap I would pick this over a regular "low-gravity" macro lager, but if I wanted to drink a few beers with or without a meal, I would go with the less interesting but easier drinking regular macro.

As much as I want too, I can say that this is as bad as I thought it woudld be. It pretty much tastes like shit, but hey...at least it has character, and that is something that most BMC brews can't claim. I now lay me down to sleep under the freeway overpass while wrapping the newspaper a little tighter around my cardboard box enclosed frame. Good night moon. Good night stars. Goodnight sense of self respect.

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Photo of bostoneo
1.75/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

From 6pack pints for 3.89 USD

The appeance is dark yellow with tons of head
Smell: of tons of grains sadly
Taste: Stronge alchol taste beyond all
Mouthfeel: thin and short shortlasting
drinkablility: don't drink this unless you plan to get boomed off your rocker!

All in all a awful beer taste (chase with an orange flavor soda) to get wasted! I don't recommend as a regular but as a low budget drunkards beer! Have fun!

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Photo of mnesporov
2.63/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Presentation: 24oz can with freshness date on can. 6%ABV

Appearance: The beer poured a light golden straw color with a white head that did not last long at all. The Lace stuck around until the end.

Smell: Very crisp malty smell to it with a hint of alcohol also.

Taste: A little sweet with a slightly malty taste. I’m not sure if it was the NC Lower alcohol laws or what, but it tasted very watered down.

Mouth-Feel: Strong crisp somewhat smooth with a watery mouth-feel.

Drink-Ability: For .99 Cents for a 24oz its okay, but there is just better beer for a little more, Not one of my Top cheap beer choices.

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Photo of ski271
1.67/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Pours a medium-dark yellow with a slightly off-white, frothy, slowly diminishing head. Some light lacing. Not bad looking for a malt liquor. The smell? That’s another story. Stinks of harsh alcohol and husky corn. Taste isn’t much better. All about the corn, with a liquor-like alcohol burn to it. On the finish it feels like you should not exhale near an open flame. It has a medium body, lightly syrupy texture and moderate-lively carbonation. This was not a pleasant experience, and I would definitely not recommend this to anybody. There are better malt liquors out there. Nothing more to this than a cheap, quick buzz.

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Photo of jpkoch1962
1.36/5  rDev -44.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

My father brought me home a few cans of this beer from upstate NY.

Poured from a 24 oz can into pint glass. Hazy yellow/orange color with bready, adjunct aroma. Full head was gone after a few minutes.

This beer is simply awful. The taste of mouldy vegtables dominated this lager. Spit the beer back into the glass, and sewered the remainder. Gotta have a talk with my Dad. He was only a few miles from Vermont, yet he got me this crap.

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Photo of ReebShorts
3.03/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Silver 24 oz can, .99 cents. Poured a slightly cloudy orangish yellow. Not nearly as much carbonation eviden as the Black canned version of this I just reviewed. Decent chunky head with some lacing.

Aroma of Sweet corn, wet grass, mildewed malt.

The alcohol is more noticeable here, than on the special edition (black can) version. This actually helps to kill some of the over the top sweetness, but also has a more raw, unrefined flavor. This is not great by any means, but for the class of beers it's in it's one of the better ones i've tried.

The can states this is a lager, but this one screams malt liquor to me.

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Photo of TechMyst
1.12/5  rDev -54.7%
look: 1 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

FRESH: I guess so
PURCHASED @: Wally-World
COST: $5.87/12pk
HEAD: thin foamy; disapated to sheen (small bubbles in center; and large on outer rim of glass)
LACE: evenly soapy, actually laced heavely
TRANSMITTED- yellow with slight hint of orange
AROMA: malts (faint)
MOUTHFEEL: light soapy unharsh fizzy-ness
PALATE: soapy
TASTE: sweet malts give way to bitterness; corn syrup and gasoline. I forced myself to drink 4 cans; if you can do better, you’re a stronger man than I. This beer is an alcoholics wet dream and a beer (snob) connoisseurs hellish nightmare. This is why I need to invent the Beer-Condom (TM). Put it on and it’ll protect your tastebuds from drainpours...

COMMENTS: cheap buzz; have a couple of heavily salted peanuts after each long pull; careful though, if you don’t know your limits puking peanut chunks is not pretty. The EXTRA may not apply to the "Select Hops" and what is one’s definition of select hops anyway?
WITH FRIENDS- only if they’re winos
GET MY BUZZ ON- If I’m w/ my wino friends under the viaduct while living in a cardboard box...maybe...

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Photo of Neehan
2.13/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Stopped by convenience store on the way home, very limited number of choices so I had a what-the-hell moment and grabbed a bottle of this-- hadn't had one of these in about 5 years or so.

Pros: dirt cheap-- about a buck for a 22, and if it's a buzz that you are after, this won't let you down with the high yet failry well hidden alcohol content. You can find this about anywhere. Somewhat drinkable unless you prefer less alcohol and can tolerate the sweetness.

Cons: nothing too good here including the yellowish appearance, weak mouthfeel, and an overly sweet taste. It tastes better than a lot of other brews in this category, but if you are a BA, this is one to avoid.

It will be at least 5 more years before I have this again.

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Photo of stephendr
2.12/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Gold color – white thin head – corn, rice, melon nose - cereal , over sweetened yeast – medium body – aftertaste slightly dry and sweet (garbage but for the bang for buck not horrible, I have had worst)Gold color – white thin head – corn, rice, melon nose - cereal , over sweetened yeast – medium body – aftertaste slightly dry and sweet (garbage but for the bang for buck not horrible, I have had worst)

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Photo of gmfessen
1.89/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

This beer poured a light golden color with minimal head and lacing. The appearance of the beer was probably it's best quality. The smell was not impressive; heavily of malt and alcohol. The taste is not very good, and the high alcohol overpowers everything. Leaves the mouth feeling like you were drinking whiskey, and overall is not a drinkable beer due to the high alcohol and total lack of hop character. Only drink if desperate.

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Photo of MLegendre
2.56/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Well... it wasn't supposed to be like this. My original plan was an Arrogant Bastard and a six pack of Blue Heron, but as I was at the checkout stand feeling like a badass because the guy behind me was getting a case of Busch Light, I realized I gave my debit card to my girlfriend and have no cash on me. So... here I am, after searching couch cushions, I managed to find the 1.34, to get me this... Steel Reserve... Since I'm on this site religiously, I figured, fuck it, I'm giving it a review. Wooo!!!!

A: Light yellow, tons and tons of bubbles. 1/2in (if that) white head, disapates very quickly, slight bit of lacing.

S: Definatly not intended to be smelled, grainy, sweet, alcohol... smells like what it is.

T: Very, very sweet, reminds me of when I was a little kid and put tons of sugar packets in my water when I was at a restaurant. Well instead of water, picture adding a ton of sugar to cheap vodka. Midtaste alcohol is very noticable, aftertaste is sweet... really goddamn sweet. The can mentions EXTRA (in big bold caps) malted barley & select hops... where the hell are the hops? I really could use just a bit of bitterness to help calm down the sweetness. I've currently finished half the can and can already feel the buzz... I'm starting to not mind the sickly sweet taste of the beer. In fact the more I drink, the more I like it. Afterwards I think I'm going to go chew on a grapefruit rind.

M: The can says "exceptionally smooth flavor" and well, it's right It's pretty damn smooth and not highly carbonated. I'd give it a 3.5 for mouthfeel, but the burn of the alcohol on the way to my tummy angers me... so it gets a three. Take that Steel Brewing Company!!!

D: So it's not the best tasting thing in the world, but it accompishs (fuck it I'm not going to spell check) it's task of getting me drunk. In fact, I even wish I had another, though that might be overkill, and I'd awake sitting in the chair at the computer without acually hitting the review button staring at the cans of 211 wondering... what the...? Woo!!!!

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Photo of sevenredrabbits
1.43/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

So you are down to your last few dollars, have a motel room and a girl who would be willing if she were..'convinced'. Steel Reserve High Gravity Lager to the Rescue. Don't drink this shit unless you are nearly broke and need a quick buzz. Poured into a red s.o.l.o. party cup, as it isn't worth the effort of washing glasses later on. Head: Looks to be the sort of color consistency one would find when buying a chocolate shake at mcdonalds where the chocolate syrup isn't mixed into the vanilla ice cream well. Smells like a wino. Tastes like my alcoholic ex-girlfriend's mouth first thing in the morning after 10 straight booze-soaked hours. Mouthfeel: The alcohol/poison numbed my senses and I really couldn't feel anything. Drinkability: When your bonfire/pig-roast is out of budweiser's and granpa's supply 'o' moonshine is running low, steel reserve is a reasonable option. Just be careful. Some nimrod is gonna think he can handle as many of these as he can of michelob light only to discover the gravitational properties of the magical porcelain water vortex.

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Photo of Erdinger2003
2/5  rDev -19%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

The head is light and falls away fast going and never returning. The color is light and gold.

The smell is sweet and a little like beer, malt liquor I guess.

The taste is almost pleasant without any bitterness.

Mouthfeel is ok, not much there.

Overall I will never have this ever again...the lack of bitterness gives me a stomach ache.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
2.17/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

A - Straw to gold in color with a monsterous (six fingers plus if unfettered) foamy head that lasts about one minute. Small amount of lacing. Intense carbonation is visible throughout.

S - Much better than expected. It has a surprising pleasant floral aroma with some cloves and musty grain. Well the musty grain isn't pleasant, but it isn't really that dominant.

T - Strong corn flavor with some oppressive cloying sugary flavor and very musty grain. The aftertaste is a thoroughly unpleasant stale, sugary, gumball-like flavor accompanied by musty, moldy grain flavors. Honestly, it's not as terrible a taste as I would expect from a beer that boasts of an increased gravity as opposed to having any concern with flavor. It is still really bad though.

M - Very thin, harsh, too highly carbonated, not really refreshing either. Not a single plus here, except that it could be parching.

D - What do you expect? This is a beer designed to get you drunk. That is it's very purpose and reason to exist. The flavor is not supposed to matter. Still, compared to other malt liquors, this doesn't seem so bad. I'd go with the can though, I am sure this would be unbearable were it to come from a clear bottle. Who knows? I might have this again if I am drinking objectively.

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Photo of HoustonTX
1.77/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

A - Poured deep yellow, with a rich frothy head, which dissapated quickly.

S - Smell was of alcohol/malt.

T - Taste was conquered by the alcohol, as if they had taken a bottle of cheap vodka and mixed it with water, and thrown some slight malt grains in. No balance-what-so-ever. Awful taste.

M - Moutfeel was stingy and waxy on the palate.

D - Drinkability is low, due to the putrid taste.

I find it hard to believe that I actually drank a few of these back in the day. Hard liquor in a can, and the only thing this beer has going for it, is that it's low priced for high abv. Be careful as your stomach and liver may not be able to handle these.

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Photo of RBorsato
3.94/5  rDev +59.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chill hazed urine yellow with a quickly dissipated white head but nice active carbonation. Decent malt aroma and flavor with just a touch of adjuncts. Nicely balanced; no hops really noticeable but it is certianly not sweet considering the ABV. Medium-full bodied and fairly clean for the style.

A costly example of the style but worth it in comparison.

Can States: "Fort Worth" & "Extra Malted Barley and Select Hops For Extra Gravity" & "Slow Brewed For a Minimum of 28 Days"

($1.49 / 24 oz. tall aluminum can)

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Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) from Steel Brewing Company
2.47 out of 5 based on 1,186 ratings.
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