He'Brew Jewbelation Sweet 16 Anniversary Ale | Shmaltz Brewing Company

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He'Brew Jewbelation Sweet 16 Anniversary AleHe'Brew Jewbelation Sweet 16 Anniversary Ale

Brewed by:
Shmaltz Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 16.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Thickfreakness on 10-12-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 142 | Ratings: 529
Photo of ummswimmin
3.63/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I poured this beer into my tulip glass and I immediately smelled a strong dose of alcohol off the top.

This is a very dark beer. The black beer doesn't let any light through.

Off the top of this one is so much alcohol that my eyes water.

This is a challenging sipper. You get a decent amount of coffee and dark fruit. I can really feel the warmth at the back of my throat.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.17/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a He'brew small shaker pint. Pours a very dark, opaque brown with a one finger brown head that dissipates very slowly to a thick ring around the glass leaving light lacing. Aroma of dark malt with slight oxidation, oak, a hint of vanilla and cherry; strong ethanol. Flavor is wonderful, brown sugar, dark and toasted malt, chocolate, vanilla and hints of dark dried fruit. Very boozy, but full flavored like a heavy bodied apertif. Medium to heavy bodied with some creaminess. Very tasty and warming. A beer that is complex enough to make the necessary slow sipping worthwhile.

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Photo of retry4z
4.42/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bought at a liquor store that had a decent beer selection; amazing I was able to find this anniversary ale and for only $11. This is the California edition, so it has the intended 16% abv.

Served at room temperature in a delirium snifter.

Looks pitch-black. I can barely make out coffee hues in the light. A thin, espresso-colored head that dissipates quickly.

Smells of coffee beans, vanilla, caramel, licorice, and alcohol!

A nice initial hit of spices and alcohol, with a sweet and dry-coffee finish. The 16hops must be drowned by the 16 malts because I could barely detect any bitterness.

A full body with some tingling due to the medium carbonation. This is a very heavy beer that is meant to be savored slowly.

A well-balanced ale that is more reminiscent of a stout than an ale. Paradoxically, the more abv an American Strong Ale has, the less bitter it seems. A splendid, heartwarming brew that is pure delight to be shared with an old friend after dusk.

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Photo of ESPNman
3.72/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Served in a Stone IRS Snifter

A - Pours a thick, murky, opaque brown that is extremely close to black. You have to tilt the glass and hold it to the light to see the hint of brown emerge. This is one seriously thick beer. It leaves very little head and zero retention of said lack of head. It really sticks to the side of the glass almost like syrup.

S - Overwhelmingly boozy, even when served too cold. The nose is very reminiscent of port, but with candied sugar and barley instead of grapes. A bit of vanilla and oak in there as well, but overwhelmingly sweet and dessert-like. This is a cupcake of a beer.

T - Slightly better than the nose, but I feel like this beer was designed to be served atop ice cream. It is delicious, don't get me wrong, but wow... it is extreme. A lot of the flavors are drowned out by the mix of booze and sickly-sweetness. Under those flaws, there's a good bit of candied fruit, oak, cherries, and baking spices.

M - Thick, heavy, sticky, syrupy, and yet somehow it manages to maintain some semblance of carbonation. I'm really wishing I hadn't opened the bottle without anyone to share it with. This one's going to take a few hours to make it through. Mouth-coating.

O - Is this beer good? Absolutely. Is it a beer that I'd recommend to most people? Absolutely not. It is an extreme beer, and it's something that I'd like to share with a group of people. It's not something I plan on cracking open to drink a whole bottle of again any time soon.

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Photo of SPThirtyThree
2.97/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours two shades lighter than pitch black, with a rich, deep brown, one-finger head. The foam soon settles to a wispy garnish that looks a bit like a Van Gogh. As it warms, any remaining head loses the battle to the alcohol. The thick liquid sticks to the sides of the glass like a strong scotch.

S: Oakey and complex. Sticky, sweet, malty, tarry. Caramel and root beer. Cinnamon. Hot fusels. Sour cherries. Gasoline. Burnt vanilla. All of the elements are well-balanced together. After warming, though, the balance is completely gone. Hot fusels sear my nostrils like huffing rubbing alcohol. Below 35°F, this beer was fine, but somewhere around the fifty-degree mark, it went horribly wrong. Smells like those crazy Jews over at He'Brew let the fermentation get a bit too warm.

T: Delicious. It's a warm, wintery stout. I'd expected something lighter, but the appearance and smell were clear indicators it would be a very dark, malty beer. The high alcohol content does not hide. The taste begins with a rich sweetness in the front of the tongue mixed with a hot harshness at the center to back. Hop astingency and tarry oak provide a powerful mouthfeel, and a warmth that borders on alcoholic sting linger. Served warmer, the same spoiling characteristics begin to dominate.

M: Kinda described above, but bitter from black malts. I'd venture a guess that there's a lot of roasted barley in here, either that or a questionably large dose of black patent. A stickiness from both sugar and alcohol combine for a nice mouthfeel. It's almost like drinking a slightly hopped white Russian, only made with Bourbon. (Is there a name for that?)

D: The drinkability of this beer is pretty low. While it's hot, charred richness might be good on a frigid, snowy day after a cold morning on the slopes, it's generally unpleasant, and the alcohol content is high enough to blast you far from sobriety, meaning it's only good for when you (and maybe a friend, depending on your alcohol tolerance) want to get drunk off one bottle. Nothing against that occasion, but a beer only good for that purpose isn't very versatile.

Overall, this beer is okay. I can't fault it too much for some of it's characteristics, but the solventy, harsh flavors and smells aren't desirable under any circumstances, for any style of beer. I served it colder than normal, making it initially acceptable, but at warmer temperatures, it was almost a pour-out. It had enough redeeming qualities aside from the fusels to make it just barely finishable, but if you can't enjoy the good qualities, what's the point of having them?

I don't know if BJCP still publishes guidelines, but I've never seen a description of what an American Strong Ale is supposed to be, so I'm not sure how to perceive some of the aspects of this beer. Knowing that it's a 16% ABV beer, I understand why some of these traits are present (and nearly inevitable), but that still doesn't justify this bomber from being so unpalatable.

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Photo of acevenom
4.12/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 ounce bomber into a goblet. Pours like black coffee with a quickly dissipating tan head. There are some visible bubbles on the walls of the glass that rise to the top, indicating some decent carbonation. There are aromas of chocolate, dark roasted malts, dark fruits, and molasses. The alcohol is there in the smell, but you would expect that from a 16% ABV beer. The taste does follow the nose with a strong blast from the alcohol in the back. The other notes from the aroma do come through. The dark roasted malts and chocolate notes create a nice, roasty flavor. This is also a sweet beer and once you get past the alcohol, those other flavor notes come through much stronger. The body is medium to full with moderate carbonation. The strong alcohol presence has a nice warming feel. The beer just coats the mouth really well and this lends well towards sipping. This is a very good beer. I imagine this would improve greatly with some age.

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Photo of FanofHefe
3.61/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap in a Chimay chalice at Global Brew in O'Fallon, IL. Dark body, nearly black and no light penetration. A one-finger dark tan head that doesn't hang around too long and leaves only a bit of lacing.

Not a very complex aroma. Mostly dark fruit with some roasted barley notes.

The flavor is relatively decent. A tasty blend of dark fruit, roasted malt, with a bit of smokiness. Dark chocolate, tobacco, and licorice come through in the background. More complex than I would have expected from the aroma.

Quite a bit more notice of the alcohol than I would normally like, which detracts. Overall, a decent brew.

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Photo of mjpolzin
3.3/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not a fan. I thought it was way too hot and the amount of ingredients they used didn't meld together well enough for me. I don't mind a hot alcohol beer but the alcohol in this had a cheap burn to it, almost like drinking vodka out of a plastic bottle. The various hops and malts were a mess together also. I will say that I would be curious to try this again years down the road because it's possible that it just needs time to mellow out and to let everything come together a little better.

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Photo of Vonerichs
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep espresso colored and opaque body. It has a flat appearance with no head or activity.

Smells like molasses and cough syrup. There's a hint of raisin.

The taste is blackstrap molasses, raisin, cardboard, and extremely boozy. It's very sweet.

The mouthfeel is syrupy, sweet, and hot like NyQuil. It's the consistency of nighttime medication.

This beer was way too hot and syrupy compared to some of their previous anniversary beers. Laying it down for a while could take care if the boozy part, but I don't know about the texture.

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Photo of GPHarris
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a - poured a half finger thick tan head into a snifter that left a thin ring throughout. the body was dark brown.
s - burnt chocolate aromas.
t - burnt chocolate with some dark fruit flavors and a hint of piney hops. boozy as most jewbelations are at first.
m - medium and coating.
o - i've always been a fan of the jewbelation beers and this one is no exception. i think this one will improve with age as they all do.

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Photo of Bierguy5
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, 16% abv. Black in color, with some slight ruby edges. Head fades quickly, but there is a nice tan collar. Nice spots of lace cling to the sides after every sip.

Big booze in the nose. Some roasty notes, as well as ripe, dark fruit. Figs, raisins and dates come to mind. Hints of dark chocolate.

Some sweetness up front but not overwhelming. Nice roasty character with dark chocolate notes. Hints of fruit, but rather restrained.

Medium body, with lower carbonation. Not syrupy but not too far off. Alcohol is very big, but not overwhelming. I like this, maybe a bit of age will make this even better. Good stuff.

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Photo of BeerLover99
3.45/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: black/deep brown body, khaki finger head,
sexy lacing

S: BIG boozy, ripe fruit, dates, figs, sweet bready malt

T: big sweet ripe fruit, lots of bready malt, HUGE boozy finish

M: med/heavy body, chewy/smooth mouth

O: He'Brew is great beer for the money, but
this one is just way too boozy and probably
needs almost a year or two to settle down.
Far too boozy for my taste.


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Photo of brewcrew76
3.7/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep brown with a fizzy soda head in both sound and appearance that disappears immediately.

S - Chocolate covered caramel, dark fruits, toffee. This is a dessert lovers dream. All kinds of toffee, butterscotch and chocolate covered candy. Light grassy hops.

T - Sweet caramel and toffee, chocolate, raisins, prunes, brown sugar, some fruity and grassy hops, molasses. Similar to aroma. Tastes like every piece of chocolate, toffee, caramel candy wrapped into one.

M - Medium to full and slightly sticky. Low carbonation with a good amount of alcohol warming.

D - Very complex in a sweet candy type of way. A little too sweet for my tastes but interesting.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.4/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This oughtta do me in for a NYE beer! Pours an opaque black color with a rich froth of brown head. Nice retention and lacing...a god looking brew all-around.

Nose is sweet jujubees with fruit and alcohol galore. Nose is bold and alcoholic, but seems pretty manageable with sweet, dark maltiness leading the way.

Ohhh, this is rich. Sweet and cloying for sure...sticky and big. Whatever other words you might have for an overbearing brew would fit here. Surprisingly it is not too hot though, maybe the rich maltiness keeps it from being a fire-breather, but it lacks the finesse and deliciousness of say, a WWS or Black Tuesday. An interesting brew indeed, might be a good candidate for the cellar? Just waaay too much right now. Its somewhat tasty now but I can see some oxidation helping out the malt flavors.

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Photo of far333
3.73/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Blackish brown and opaque with a thick and frothy head of dimpled foam that lingers long. Aroma of vanilla and bourbon, some woody notes. Rich flavors of darkly roasted malt, cocoa, bourbon, vanilla, espresso, slight cherry tang, pine board, hints of smoke, raisins, root beer, dried leaves, and charred bark. Amazingly complex flavors. The sky-high ABV is fairly subdued. Good beer overall, a sipper for sure.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an opaque black with a foamy super dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. A foamy latticework of lace coats the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, toasted malt, caramel, toffee, brown sugar, and slight cocoa. Taste is much the same with an alcohol kick and a mild amount of roasty and hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and full bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that has a good smell but the taste is pretty boozy and strong.

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Photo of jzeilinger
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours black in color with a toffee cream colored lacing ring, swirl the glass and the lacing ring thickens.

S - Dark fruit, oak, bourbon, light char and alcohol.

T - Dark roasted caramel, dark fruit, oak, bourbon, and alcohol.

M - Thick, heavy body, sticky, viscous.

O - For 16% the alcohol is surprisingly well hidden in this beer.

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Photo of TheBrewo
3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

We pour a brew of the darkest brown, giving no light at all around the edges. It holds a two finger head of soft, creamy light brown bubbles. This shows great retention, and is easily reproducible. Thick sheets of lacing are left down the glasses. No haze or sediment is noted, and carbonation appears moderate, but slow, in this goopy beverage. The nose is initially heavy with tin and aluminum. Warmth brings out a baked raisin bread sweetness and spice, with caramel malts, and faint bready esters on the back. Booze is biting and equally as warming as the malty backbone, where it takes on an additional woody or oaky quality with buttery diacetyls, giving the impression of something barrel aged. White sugar sweetness is thick, mixing with enhanced syrupy sweetness of the booze, giving cherry and plum fruitiness. Our first impression is that the opening is very, very sweet, but this falls quickly to a more bittered, cleaner ending. As we sip, the taste gives buttered wood, fig sugars, hot booze, metallics, and synthetic apple flavoring. Toffee sweetness and lightly bittered molasses pull us to the peak which is characterized by that massively malty, bready sweetness of the nose and boozy cherry syrups. The transition to the finish gives more biting metallic bitterness and thick black coffee malts with a bit of a roast. There is light chalkiness amongst the onslaught of grain, with dark fruity sweetness of black cherries and plum, with black pepper booze to boot. The aftertaste gives citric and grassy hops out of nowhere, with heavy fusel booze, caramel malts, salt water taffy, echoes of coffee, metallic yeastiness, synthetic cherry flavoring, and the almond booziness of Disaronno. The body is completely full, and the carbonation is bubbly and moderate. There is supreme slurp, smack, cream, and froth to each sip, with a thick, thick coating left around the mouth. There is little ultimate dryness to the mouth, but things are slightly puckered and left smoothly calmed. The abv is massive, giving a big warming quality to it. This is a definite sipper.

Overall, the best thing about this beer was the robustness of the aroma. If there was one word to describe this beer it would be “rich”. The feel is intensely silky and soft, with generous coating and boozy fire from the abv. This follows a syrupy sweet and monstrously malty flavoring, with nectars and fruit laying it low with sugars. This, however, is not as hearty as the nose, which gives a shade more complexity to the experience. The hops were also hard to find, giving the balance to the malty side. This beer is over the top on pretty much every level, but hey, for anyone celebrating their sixteenth, opulence is a requisite.

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Photo of IronDjinn
3.61/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 650 ml brown bottle, import sticker on the back states the abv. at only 15.2%. Pours out a dense opaque pitch black hue, with a tight beige head that retains to a thick cap.

Sharp alcohol and intense dark dried fruits in the aroma, cocoa and dry sherry.

Flavour is intense with cocoa, roasted malt and dark dried fruits, while a port-like booziness is omnipresent throughout. Malty sweetness is cut by and almost dominated by the alcohol, giving the overall flavour a dry characteristic.

Mouthfeel is full-bodied and somewhat sticky, carbonation is very low yet overall it all feels heavy across the palate.

Certainly drinkable for such a high abv. beer, yet in the end basically comes down to big sweet malt and big dry boozy alcohol in a never-ending tussle, with no reprieve and no alteration to the mix. Okay on its own, but I still prefer the 13 in comparison to their former line up, He'Brew peaked there and still hasn't surpassed that, it was a world class beer!

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Photo of srandycarter
4.03/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Huge tan head, stay forever. Lots of cling lace. Nice all around.

S - Malt is the leader here. Extremely malty.

T - Huge malt, dark fruits, alcohol is surprisingly masked considering the ABV.

M - Meaty beer. Good carbonation. OK balance considering the hugeness.

D - A sipper, for sure.

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Photo of emyers
3.62/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a thick dark brown with a one finger beige head dissipating quickly into lacing.
Smell is a very nice blend of dark fruit, sweet caramel malt, bourbon, and oak. Strong, complex, appealing aroma. The taste contains similar elements to the smell, with caramel, oak, and dark fruit. The flavor profile is dominated by the oak and a fairly strong alcohol presence. Still very flavorful and complex, but comes off just a bit harsh. Actually more than a bit harsh. Mouthfeel is thick with a medium carbonation level. Ultimately, this beer teases at greatness with a very complex flavor profile, but is a bit too heavy on the oak and alcohol heat. I feel a bit of age woul benefit this beer greatly.

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Photo of harrymel
2.13/5  rDev -44.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Looks ridiculous. Here we go.

Pours a dark brown with a thin sheet of tan foam. Smells of alcohol, brandied cherry, some molasses, some dark malts a little cake. Taste is sweet, alcoholic, toasted/burnt, some char and lots of sweet malts and a touch of cigarette butts. Thin and loosely carbed. This is a 16th to forget.

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Photo of cragus
2.73/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

650ml bottle into snifter
A - Pours a dark amber with a decent amount of rapidly dissapating tan head.

S - Cherry and alcohol on the nose with a bit of raisan and a hint of hazelnut

T- Alcohol up front with a stronger hazelnut notes on top of a base of dark fruit.Some pine on the finish and a very minor carrot note. To be perfectly honest, the alcohol is so pervasive that its hard to make out fine details.

M- Thick and viscous, not to a RIS level, but still quite viscous with mild carbonation.

O - Decent, but not exactly sessionable or regularly drinkable. As an extreme and kind of silly brewer's lark, it's not bad; however, it's not really fully thought through. If the ABV was lowered, even to a still hot 10-12% I think it would be quite good. Unfortunately, at 16% this beer closer to a fortified wine, but lacks the balance of such beverages. In short, good beer, but too much alcohol in my opinion. Might be great if aging can knock back the alcohol presence a bit.

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Photo of kemoarps
2.96/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pretty beer, dark with lazy swirls.of almond coloured carbonation
Dark fruits. Fig prune alcohol. Lots o alcohol
Taste follows suit. Dark fruits and grappa
As others have mentioned i wish i had stuck this on away for a couple of years because the underlying foundation is there but it is way too hot at the moment

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Photo of DaftCaskBC
2.3/5  rDev -40.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

A: 1/4" brown head that dissipated quickly over black liquid.

S: Alcohol, caramel malt, chocolate malt, coffee, roasted malt, grapefruit, lemon, pine and grass.

T: Strong alcohol, peanuts, caramel, chocolate, coffee, roasted malt, grassy hops.

M: Significant drying from the alcohol, thick viscosity and a low level of carbonation.

O: The alcohol is too high on this one, it tastes like paint thinner and this aspect of the beer nearly drowns out pretty much anything else. One of maybe four drain pours in my life.

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He'Brew Jewbelation Sweet 16 Anniversary Ale from Shmaltz Brewing Company
3.84 out of 5 based on 529 ratings.
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