Storm King Stout | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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2,616 Reviews
Storm King StoutStorm King Stout

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Emerging from the deepest shades of darkness, a rolling crescendo of flavors burst forth from this robust stout. The thundering, hoppy appeal of Storm King subsides into the mellow subtleties of roasted malt, exhibiting an espresso-like depth of character in its finish. An exquisite blend of imported malts and whole flower American hops merge harmoniously in this complex ale. Discover the dark intrigue of Storm King, as it reveals the rich, substantial flavors that it holds within.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-10-2001

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Reviews: 2,616 | Ratings: 5,813
Photo of TastyTaste
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottled 10-14-05

Appearance: Jet black body, large tan head, good retention.

Smell: Chocolate, both milk and dark, alcohol vapors, and a slight acidity, very nice.

Taste: Overflowing with dark roasted malts, espresso, which culminate in a fine hop finish, a finely crafted RIS.

It had been over 2 years since I last cracked open a storm king, but this remains a very good, if not great, beer.

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Photo of vdread
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Victory Storm King Imperial Stout pours a deep black with a big mocha head that leaves some lace in the glass.

smells of chocolate-like dark roasted malts and licorice.

the taste is rich and creamy with dark bitter chocolate, coffee, and a certain 'burned' taste that reminds me of charred wood used to grill food with. the hops are bright and floral in the end. alcohol is apparent throughout, but not overbearing. this is an excellent imperial stout

mouthfeel is chewy and creamy, though leaving the mouth dry, and tasting like i just bit into some dark chocolate.

this is an easy drinker for me. tastes overflow with dark, bitter chocolate and floral hops. what's not to love?

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Photo of objectivemonkey
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a black, thick, and a gorgeous head, deep tan, wonderful lacing in arches down the glass. Aroma of nice roasty bean, coffee, sweet chocolate, molasses, brown sugar, very very nice. Taste begins sweet with chocolate and brandy perhaps, then comes the espresso and a bittering from just enough hops and almost too agressively roasty malt. Also, there is some dark fruit, like a brown sugared apple or something. Basically, the mouth is the greatest feeling under heaven, smooth, creamy and the slightest carbonation and pleasantly warm down the throat. This is one of those rare, wonderful beers that you take a sip, swallow, then continue to 'drink' it as you swallow the residue in your happily salivating mouth. When I think of stouts, this is what I hope for.

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Photo of HopDevil
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It was a dark and stormy night!

This, the tongue-in-cheek beginning of many a Peanuts Snoopy novel, now seems completely apropos of my experience with the Imperial Stout from the court of Victory called Storm King.

A thundercloud of foam the color of dark coffee stain sits brooding over the inky black liquid I've just poured from bottle to glass. The beer below the thunderhead is an absolutely opaque black velvet. Even held up to the lamp the only discernable highlight is a sliver of garnet tracing the conjunction where beer meets glass. Some carbonation is visible rising through the column of obsidian brew, just barely enough to counteract a cloying sensation later on.

I'm totally unprepared for the aggressive surge of fresh hop fragrance that assails my nostrils followed by a pleasing wave of roasted malt aroma. The effect of this is impressively suggestive of broiled grapefruit covered in caramelized brown sugar recently pulled from the oven.

As the foam recedes leaving a swag of lace I raise my glass and sip the sable libation. Immediately I'm embroiled in a tempest of complex, luscious flavors of strong, rich dark espresso with bitter chocolate shavings, assertive grapefruit hoppiness, malted chocolate milkshake and burnt toast with black currant jelly that conceals the high abv. The mouthfeel, if there is a fault to this beer, is almost syrupy. It is huge, satisfying, and oily and goes down slick leaving a stickiness on my lips and a splendid, showy, bitter coffee aftertaste that is surprisingly smooth, demanding and utterly captivating. It lingers on the palate for what seems an eternity.

This is a storm I'll be happy to weather again and again.

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Photo of ChrisBowers
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Wonder what everyone's talking about? Then go get one. Or ten. This is an amazing brew from the boys at Victory. Most recently had it on tap at their brew-house. Pours with a great caramel colored head and a nearly opaque body. Smells of chocolate, espresso... Taste is amazing for an american brewed beer of this high ABV. Alcohol is balanced beautifuly. There's just that hint at the end reminding you it is there. But it takes nothing away from the rich flavor of roasted hops, coffee and chocolate. Damn this is good stuff!

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Photo of Winter
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Review #400.

Victory has come to Wisconsin and the arrival of Storm King was the one from the line that I was looking forward to finding most and finally being able to try. I had already sampled Hop Devil, Golden Monkey and Old Horizonal after finding them in Chicago a few years ago, but it was Storm King that elluded me until now.

A thick brown head sits atop a body that's as black as a moonless, starless night sky. Aroma of expresso, cream, sweet cocoa with hints of dark fruit and alcohol. The mouthfeel is full-bodied and luscious. Introductory flavors of sinful dark chocolate and burnt malt. Expresso coffee and cocoa follow. Assertive (but balanced) hop bitterness towards the back sets this apart from most other Imperial stouts. The 9.1% alcohol is barely detectable which makes this an even more dubious offering. One of the best, for certain.

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Photo of Brad007
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Color: Pours a jet black color with the consistency of motor oil with a decent mocha-brown two finger head.

Aroma: Roasty with strong coffee aroma. A hint of chocolate and licorice in the aroma as well. Hops stand out well but do not seem to be overpowering.

Taste: Starts out with a decent roasty bitterness followed by flavors of coffee, chocolate and licorice. Hops are just right and seem to add to the smoothness of this.

Mouthfeel: Roasty, bitter and thick with a creamy consistency. Muted coffee/chocolate flavors. Little hop bitterness.

Drinkability: Very smooth and simple. A straightforward RIS that hits it on the spot for me. Alcohol is just right too. I would recommend this as an introduction to the style. I would also rate it higher than McNeils RIS because the hop bitterness does not overwhelm the palate.

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Photo of canucklehead
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Malto for this sample. My god , the head looked like a Starbucks exploded into a full gale making me realize that this stout was for the big boys or girls. It smelled like a cross between Old Crusty and Rogue Imperial Stout mixed together; all plums, alcohol, hops and tobacco.

The taste was to say the least intense; big, nay huge hops with a backbone the size of Texas. I love Barleywines and so was not overwhelmed by the complexity and in your face profile of this beer.
Yeah, cellaring would smooth things out but I loved this beer.

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Photo of COBeerBuff
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: Pours the darkest of blacks with absolutely zero light coming through. A gorgeous fluffy mocha colored head rests lightly above the storm below. The light fluffy head contributes wonderful lacing down the sides of the goblet. God, this looks yummy!

Smell: Sweet chocolate and coffee malty goodness. The roasted character is highly prevalent in the nose, and it smells delicious. Some hints of alcoholic esters fade in and out as well.

Taste: Roasted coffee and espresso goodness be found! The sweetness is well balanced by the bitterness of the coffee and the roasted malts. Some twinges of oatmeal also are present.

Mouthfeel: Thick and chewy. This is definitely a solid RIS. It coats the tongue and mouth, and leaves a very strong coffee and espresso aftertaste.

Drinkability: Its 9.1% ABV is on the lower side for some of the richer RIS's, and its coffee flavor is definitely on the high end as well. If either of these factors are not high on your list of wants, this might not be the RIS for you. Personally, it's exactly what I want from an RIS: rich, creamy, chewy, malty, bitter, yummy goodness!

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Photo of lostbearbrew
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a dark, opaque black with just a little allowance of light and dark tan/brown head.

Smell: Strong burnt malt/bittersweet chocolate with hints of both coffee and hops.

Taste: Caresses your tongue and coats your mouth with a thick, rich flavor that seems like all the best potential flavors ever in any stout have combined here. From rich expresso notes to the smooth chocolate tinge, this is one kickbutt stout.

Mouthfeel: Next to absolute perfection. Medium to Heavy body that goes down perfectly smooth. The smoothest and easiest quaffing imperial stout I've ever tasted.

Drinkability: Warming alcohol is quite well hidden. The 9+% alch can sneak up on careful - I won't have more than two of these in one sittng (anymore) as they do start to seem heavier after one..and as experience has shown, even more so, after two. A stunningly great beer, for certain, and one I always buy a case of on trips home to PA.

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Photo of CharlesRiver
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Just an outstanding beer what I could have time after time. This beer pours out solid black in color with a small tan head. The smell is coffee and chocolate all the way. Malty and grainy as well. The taste is like a strong cup of espresso. Complex and long, this is a beer to sip. Coffee flavors kind of die down but the chocolate richness comes through more. I am guessing this is a fresher keg as some hop notes come through at the end.

A world class beer that I could drink at ANYTIME!

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Photo of inebrius
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Whipped head paints the inside of a pint better than Behr premium plus. Rousing nose of vanilla cake iced in chocolate buttercreme and slathered with a fresh cherry sauce; some decorative toasted shortbread cookies thrown in for effect. A cup of espresso and a shot of wheatgrass on the side. Starts simultaneous sweet malt and roast petering into nutskin and ramping up lingering hop to finish. Hairless and almost too easy to drink.

Huge cheers to frank4sail for sending this one!

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Photo of KFaulkner
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Here it is; Storm King.

This is perhaps "the perfect beer." Of course, RIS's are a style beer snobs are partial to, but the storm king is amazing. When you factor in not just taste and drinkability, but also price and availability, you have a beer I would call "damn near perfect." Nothing flashy or fancy, this beer blows many bottle-conditioned corked Imperial Stouts out of the water.

As said before, not much else to say. It's gorgeous, smells great, hoppy yet malty, sweet yet complex and the alcohol is not just hidden, but necessary to add to the complexity of the package. Notes of espresso and, as the bottle says, "character" round it out.

Get it... now.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a rick, opaque, nearly black brown with a thick tan head. Aroma is wonderfully dark and smoky. Flavor does not disappoint - it is decidedly stouty with strong burnt overtone and coffee hints. Drinking this is almost like drinking spiked cold coffee. Rich and smooth, it has a fierce finish that is a little fiery and very pleasing. I strongly recommend it to all stout lovers.

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Photo of pharmer
4.64/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a SA pint glass. Pours like syrup and creates a 2-finger light brown creamy head..The head diminishes into a thinner one..however it is enough to cover the beer throughout the drink..Lacing is evident on the walls of the glass

Smells of citrusy hops, coffee and roasted malt..with a very light alcohol smell in the back.

Feels silky smooth in the mouth with a nice tight carbonation.

Tastes intially of coffee and roasted grain...some nice bright citrusy hops in the middle...and finishing with a bitterness that remains on seemingly forever.

Simply put, the finest stout I've enjoyed to date(I look forward to trying to find a better one). What's scary is that it has over 9% ABV and I could drink a sixer of these very easily. This is a must try for any true beer lover.

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Photo of zeff80
4.64/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Coutresy of dertbert.

A - Poured out a clear, jet black color with a small, caramel colored head that dissipated quickly. It did leave some lace.

S - Wow! A ton of chocolate aroma! There are also notes of caramel and toffee.

T - It has a very sweet chocolate taste. It had an espresso-like flavor.

M - It was soft and smooth with a warming alcohol presence. A medium to heavy-bodied beer.

D - This is a very good beer. The aroma was simply outstanding and that carried over into the taste.

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Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.64/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours super dark black with a small 1/4" head of tight tan bubbles. The beer has quite a few bubbles rising, but this doesn't maintain the head. The head falls within about 30 seconds to end up as a small ring around the top of the glass. Later the beer looked pretty still.

Aroma: Wow! I get clean chocolate malt along with some roast and a good dose of floral hops in the mix, and this is only the first sniff. There is some serious alcoholic notes coming out as both spice and a oxidative plum-like effect from the malt. As you swirl the beer, there is some alcohol as well as a good bit of fruitiness, but the beer doesn't have an overly acidic edge as some Russian Imperial Stouts do.

Taste: The flavor doesn't hide the strength as it gives you a warming effect pretty much right away. There is a good bit of roast as well as some toasty notes in there, but the alcohol is probably the biggest player here. There is a bunch of hops in this beer. They come across as lending a dry bitter edge to the finish as well as a bouquet of floral flavors that fade in and out throughout the flavor profile. After the hops get through, there is some alcohol that warms up the finish and stays a contender long into the finish.

Opinion: This is an excellent beer, and I am so glad that it is available in the Houston least for now. This beer has complexity and balance so that it is pleasing to the palate at just about every turn. It is very difficult to come up with any flaw in this beer. If you were to twist my arm, I would probably think that the hops should play a bit smaller role and that some toasty malts should take its place...other than this, I have nothing to contribute and I would drink this beer just about any time the opportunity presented itself.

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Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.65/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Jet black beer, thick as pitch, thin mocha crown, decent stickiness and retention. Very syrupy looking.

Nose: must and earth, citric acid, rosted grains, coffee and chicory.

Taste: Complex malt character. They’re big and roasty. Coffee, dark chocolate, bitter chicory, molasses, dirt, and dank wood. Subtle dark fruit comes through the finish.

MF: Thick yet smooth as silk worm’s cocoon. Hints of citrus balance out the big malts.

Drinkability: Really dangerous. This one goes down too easy for the ABV and style.

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Photo of DESTRO
4.65/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

my roomate who works for an airline brought this back from a stop in new york and i will forever love him. this stuff glugs out dark as dark can get. aromas of roasted malt, sweet molasses, licorice and alcohol. sounds like a strong mix, but unlike some other motoroil stouts it does it in a welcoming gesture that is more pleasant than most. taste is alot like the nose, sweet and strong. roasted coffee beans, dark chocolates, sweet malt, a perfect hop bitterness...the works. slight alcohol tug at the end. thick and rich in the mouth, creamy and coating. this is a big beer, but what makes it so awesome is that it is so drinkable its scary. this gets a full blast zepplin "black dog" tribute and an attempt at the splits.

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Photo of NiceGuyMike
4.65/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

To be honest I wasn't expecting much from this beer. What I was expecting was in your face hoppiness or some other "American" (read high alcohol) style attribute. When I saw it in the store I was pleased to see something new, so I gave it a try.

The first pour showed me that I was up against a true stout with an impossibly dark body. A fine tan head formed with a touch of lacing. My initial sniff reveal my fears. Hops and a lot of hops. I like the smell, but get tired a big taste of hops so I was concerned. Further smells reveals hints of smokiness and coffee and chocolates. I'm impressed with the smell.

My first taste gave a some hopiness along with the expected smokey stoudness. This is soon followed by a decent amount of bitterness in the back of the mouth. Alcohol is evident too which is expected. The hopiness is perfect. It is ubundant, but necessary for this brew. Further tastes provides great depth of flavors already described.

I drank the first brew with a burger and fries (left overs). What a combo, this is truely something goes well with food. It also goes well on it's own as well as on it's own as my second glass showed me the next day. This is a near perfectly drinkable beer.

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Photo of Erix
4.65/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pint glass filled from bottle.
Appearance: Looks Delicious. Extremely dark, with a khaki colored head.
Smell: Hops come through in a big way. Smells malty too, and less burnt that I expected. Maybe a little too cold? Less luscious than the Black Chocolate Stout I just had last night. I've had to raise the rating for the smell as the beer warmed. Now dark chocolate and fruit are apparent, like a cherry cordial.
Taste: Starts with dark malt and its burnt bitterness, met by the hops and their herbal bitterness, and counters this bitterness with the sweet malt and alcohol, and refuses to go away even after there is no beer left to drink. I get such a mass of flavor out of each sip that I have trouble picking out more than a few threads... coffee, chocolate, toast, sweet something or other..
Mouthfeel: Drying, warm (almost hot if held in the mouth too long) thick, but not as thick as what I have become accustomed to with the style. Very coating, helping to keep the taste going long after each sip.
Drinkability: As often happens when I start on a beer that is strong in both flavor and alcohol, my opinion of the drinkability has increased as I emptied my glass. The astringency makes this a rather easy beer to drink, prompting a self perpetuating need for more libation. Good stuff.

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Photo of soupyman10
4.65/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Jet black pour, a finger of tan head. Scent is really sweet maltiness, dried fruit, apricot, grapes, maybe some raspberry. Taste is strong roasted malt first, molasses, brown sugar up front. Hop presences as the beer drips down. A good amount of dried fruit, specifically raisins. Coffee, with those hops again the background. Feel is thick and creamy, good carbonation. An excellent beer, great Russian Imperial, although not quite up to the Bell's Expedition Stout I had a bit ago, IMO.

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Photo of bigfnjoe
4.65/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first ever Russian Imperial...happy happy joy joy.

Pours nearly pitch black with a cappuccino colored head that vanishes nearly instantly. After a quick whiff, smells very caramelly, and also of coffee. Absolutely beautiful scent. After the first taste, very get used to it after awhile, and can enjoy the tastes of very dark chocolate, caramel, and coffee. Very light in the mouth, doesn't feel heavy at all. It has a pretty high ABV however, so you won't be able to put back more than a couple in a night. Its a very nice sipper to have beside you in the winter.

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Photo of TheodorHerzl
4.65/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received from RutersBeerguy in the top 100 BIF. Thank you Sir!

A -- Pours a deep black hue with one finger of mocha colored head. spotty lacing on my snifter
S - wonderful roasted malt smell with undertones of espresso and chocolate. A good amount of hop presence as well.
T - this is the winner on this beer for me. Bold upfront flavors of roasted grain, coffee, and bitter dark chocolate. All flavors meld so well together.
M- So super smooth and creamy almost silky on my mouth.

D- If i could buy this stuff locally I would stock my beer closet with it. Fantastic brew.

A big thanks to RutersBeerGuy for this. Fantastic beer.

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Photo of isaac
4.65/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured fom a 12oz bottle into my standard pint glass.

A - dark. dark. dark brown, basically black. looks like very dark coffee. pours a small, one finger head that sinks into thick bubbles and clumpy clacing down the glass

S - a very pleasing aroma. take an IPA or DIPA (citrus hops) and mix it with chocolate and roasted coffee.

T - whoa. the hop content of the smell is lessened up front by the big malty flavors (chocolate, roasted grains, earthiness, and mild sweetness). after that, the hop bitterness, with hints of lemon or orange (perhaps, might i say, grapefruit?) rind, kicks in and pushes the sweeter flavors from off the palate, but a hint of dark cocoa powder remains in the finish. high amounts of gut and throat warming from the alcohol.

M - not as thick as i would have thought - i'd say this is perhaps even thinner than the big DIPAs (such as moylan's beers), but it seems to gain more volume in the finish, becoming somewhat syrupy (which is good, i think, for this style and other big beers). the carbonation is a bit strong and burns the tongue, but it isn't awful.

D - very high. besides the slightly-overdone carbonation, i can't think of much wrong with this beer. another A+ from victory. i wish i had more, but, with the 10% ABV, maybe it's good that i should lay back; got to get up early tomorrow, afterall.

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Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
92 out of 100 based on 2,616 ratings.
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