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Samuel Adams Stony Brook Red (Barrel Room Collection) | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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Samuel Adams Stony Brook Red (Barrel Room Collection)Samuel Adams Stony Brook Red (Barrel Room Collection)

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Aged in oak barrels; hand-bottled corked & caged; bottled-conditioned. A greater percentage of "Cosmic Mother Funk" was blended into this beer.

Added by Todd on 10-30-2009

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Reviews: 249 | Ratings: 756
Photo of delta490
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep ruby with a short-lasting light tan head. A little soapy lacing is left behind. The aroma is dark fruit, slightly tart like fresh sour cherries. The taste, though, is underwhelming. A little bit of the tartness remains, but disconnected from any other flavor. There isn't much of the bourbon barrel aging process noticeable either, beyond a hint of wood towards the back of the tongue. It also has a little bit of fizzy quality to the body, despite not much carbonation. It could be, and should be, much better.

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Photo of barnabasdog
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

A- dark brown with a red tint, little visibility, cloudy, no head and no lacing

S-malt, apple, grape, brown sugar, doughy, chocolate

T- tons of fruits, cherry, sour apple, malty, toffee, roasted nuts, sangria character, all spice

M- medium body, little carbonation, surprisingly refreshing

O- unique Belgian style red very complex and enjoyable, slightly sweet. I like seeing Sam Adams do these out of the box small batches

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Photo of ricchezza
4.75/5  rDev +23.4%

Clear auburn hue with little off-white lacing.
Tart dark cherry & plum aroma.
Tastes crisp, tart (lactic) and fruity (black cherry, vanilla, and raisin).

I’ve been told by Boston Beer Co. employees that the make up of this Barrel Room Collection blend is 50% Kosmic Mother Funk (and unfortunately not much else about the recipe).

Incredible drinkability. I have a hard time not purchasing a Stony Brook Red every time I come across one. This has long ago become one of my favorite beers.

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Photo of jwc215
3.84/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours reddish amber with a nice lingering pinkish head. A fair amount of lacing sticks.

The smell is of tart cherries. Not too "wild" but enough funky sour to fit.

The taste is of sweet-tart cherries with woody notes. Sour and sweet with a hint of vanilla. Alcohol is well-integrated.

It is super-smooth. A very drinkable brew - Not as sour as some others, but the cherry-like character and firm malt backing give it a pleasant balance and smoothness while allowing the sour character to come through.

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Photo of R011TYD
4.37/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Great tart flavor. You can buy at places like total wine and more. Also one of the beers actually sold at the Sam Adams Brewery in Boston. Cool corked bottle, best served in a Sam Adams engineer glass to capture the fruit aroma. The bottle makes it impossible to tell color, but when poured into a glass, it has a reddish brown color.

Pros: Great tart / fruit flavor. 9% Alc/vol. Big beer - 1 pint 9.4 oz. = about 2.5 beers.

Cons: Can be hard to find. $9 per bottle.

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Photo of Bstrickler
2.2/5  rDev -42.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I know I may be in the minority in this one, but this beer tastes like straight teriyaki sauce. It may just be the bottle I drank (I hope so) but the taste was just horrible. The coloring and mouthfeel is alright, but otherwise, avoid this at all costs.

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Photo of BeerWithMike
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampling right now on 6/12/14. Comes in a beautiful painted-on label in a '1 pt. 9.4 oz.' bottle that has a metal cap and a cork and costs $8.49 + tax. Bottle chilled down to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler and poured into a Sam Adam's pint glass.

Pours a pretty deep mahogany in color with a good 2+-finger off-white head that settles down a to a thin layer on top and sides of the glass. Spotty lacing is seen when sipped. Lots of sediment left in the bottom of the bottle. The aroma is of dark fruit, toasted malts from a oak barrel. The taste is really complex with a tart cherry at first which is quickly overtaken by the oak that finishes with a slightly vinegar finish. More probably going on for sure but is hard to pin-point. Overall a different brew but tasty.

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Photo of Andrew041180
3.96/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Note: This beer has been improperly stored for at least five years. Temps reaching well over 90 degrees in the summers.

A - Poured gently into a tulip glass. The beer is a hazy orange brown with virtually no head. No lacing.

S - The aroma is actually quite nice. I really gives good insight into what to expect. Strong, but not overpowering acidic notes. A little sweet.

T - Given how long this had been sitting for, I was a little worried. Worries were all unfounded. The dominant flavor is something like brown sugar, but it's subdued and contrasted with a tartness that grows with each sip and/or as the beer warms. Lightly citric acid. There is also oak in the background. The 9% alcohol is barely present in terms of flavor.

M - Not too much here. Billed as full-bodied but it doesn't feel that way to me. More like medium. Mild heat/tingle of the alcohol on the finish is nice.

O - This is a nice refreshing beer! I was surprised that it held up for so long and I'm strongly considering picking up another just to see what it would be like fresh. If I do so I'll certainly update the review.

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Photo of KTCamm
4.06/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a perfect pint glass. 4/23

Pours reddish tinged brown, lighter on bottom. Some white foam sits atop. Caramel notes, light malty sweetness. Little oak in there. Light sour taste that builds to a pucker. Woodsy sour. Cherry fruit mixed. Full bold mouthfeel. Really good.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.06/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750 ml cork and caged bottle poured into a tulip.
9% ABV,

A - Deep ruby mahogany in color, this clear beer's effervescent and tall off-white head falls pretty quickly from the acidity in the beer but doesn't hesitate at leaving lacing on the glass.

S - Slight acidity moves in on the mouthwatering earthy funk and vinegar-like sourness that overlaps toasted malts. Nutty bread thinly spread with dark fruit jam adds layers of complexity beyond the forward yeast nose for an aroma worth embracing.

T - Toasted oak joins toasted malts for a delicious collaboration of earthy wood and complex bready flavors on the tongue. Over ripe stone fruit dipped in vinegar and finished off with an injection of acidity gently overlaps the beer's differently fruity warming alcohol finish.

M - Stony Brook Red's smooth entry gracefully changes to a lightly bubbly finish that's accented by light tartness and a faint sour bite on the finish that gently warms the innards with it's almost unnoticeable 9% ABV.

O - Samuel Adams greatest achievement with Stony Brook Red is making a near double-digit alcohol beer drink like half its content. This Flanders Red, if you will, has a nice touch of oak aging and funky sourness to it that creates a different experience but it's greatest achievement is also it's undoing I feel. The strength in numbers doesn't shine through, but the slightly heavier body and fuller maltiness leads this beer down a path of less drinkability; a detour from the course the style originally intended. It's nice to see big brewers like this playing around with sour beers though.

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Photo of SportsandJorts
3.49/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: deep garnet. almost brown. a finger or two of a tan head that fades slowly and leaves a fairly strong lacing. dark but a strong brightness some good clarity

Smell: a weak fruit, maybe some cherries or raspberries. lots wooden and earthiness to it. some brett funk but nothing too strong

Taste: opens up with just a little bit of cherry that is quickly taken over by wood and earthiness has a good amount of vinegar to it. full of a good but not over powering

Mouthfeel: medium body. strong acidity to it. some what sticky and leaves behind some brett.

Overall: this beer has some good qualities to it (brightness and good brett balance) but overall its a little too vinegary and acidic for me. the flavors aren't quite developed for me.

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Photo of HattedClassic
3.91/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The beer pours some light head that dissipates very quickly. The head is an off-white color and has a foamy texture. The beer itself is a clear ruby red. The beer has a strong tarty smell with a slight oak and vanilla note. The tart is a dark cherry tart with dark fruit notes. The other notes enhance the tart and compliment it well. There are also some dark fruit notes but they get lost in the tart smell. The taste notes are similar to the smell. The taste has the same funk taste but the dark fruit notes are much stronger. The oak and vanilla notes are still there but they come at the end of road. The lighted toasted malts make an appearance in the taste. The beer has thick and sticky feeling. The beer is medium bodied with biting carbonation. Overall, a decent beer.

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Photo of travolta
3.74/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: A dark and opaque cranberry juice color. Slightly tan head which bubbles away with almost no lacing.

Nose: Right away tart raspberry, and pomegranate. Major funky raspberry jam.

Taste: Yeasty and wild...tart and smooth. Vanilla, vinegar, and cider.

Notes: It's krieky and jammy with plenty of character.

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Photo of superspak
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, 2012 bottling. Pours fairly crystal clear deep ruby red color with a 2 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of tart cherry, cranberry, green apple, raisin, plum, red wine vinegar, hay, straw, oak, clove, pepper, leather, caramel, toast, light chocolate, musty funk, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good complexity and balance of fruity/funky yeast, oak barrel, and malt sweetness; with good strength. Taste of tart cherry, cranberry, green apple, raisin, plum, red wine, oak, clove, leather, funk, light vinegar, hay, straw, herbal, caramel, toast, light chocolate, light vanilla, and yeast earthiness. Fair amount of fruity/earthy tartness on the finish; with lingering notes of cherry, cranberry, green apple, plum, raisin, red wine, oak, clove, leather, funk, light vinegar, hay, straw, caramel, toast, light chocolate, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice complexity and robustness of fruity/earthy yeast, oak barrel, and dark malt flavors; with balanced sweetness/tartness and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a smooth and fairly slick/acidic mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is well hidden with only a light warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very nice wild ale. All around good complexity and balance of fruity/funky yeast, oak barrel, and dark malt flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of BradC
3.66/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a ruddy brownish red color with a quickly fading head and minimal lacing.

Smells of tart berries, strawberry, some vanilla not much else.

Tastes tart, not necessarily sour, cherry, dark fruits, some vanilla from the oak.

Kind of thin bodied, pretty good carbonation.

Overall, a decent brew, not something I'd go out of my way to try again, but on sale at the grocery, it was worth it. Doesn't quite hold up to the Belgian brews.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.62/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle pours a surprisingly clear ruby color with an ample cap of tan head. Fair retention and not much lace.

Nose is big on the fruits - cherries, strawberries and even cranberries. Tartness is mild, as is the barrel character. Lot of caramel malts, not unlike a more robust Rodenbach. Im actually pretty surprised this is not listed as a Flanders red or brown considering the sweetness and yeast aromas.

Taste throws down a Flanders style flavor profile...rich malts, nutty yeast with a light brett and sourness. Fruits are still big and its more tart than sour unfortunately. Still though, not a bad effort for Sam Adams. The barrel character is very light and it needs more sourness, but the ABV is well integrated and there are some nice flavors to be found here. Id probably grab a Rodenbach Grand Cru over this at the similar price point, but I enjoyed the bottle well enough.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.97/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a dark red color with some haze to it. The head is only a finger high (mocha shade), but has very impressive retention. Its creamy, soft texture doesn't leave much lacing behind, though.

S: Fairly complex. I'm not going to say complicated, though - rather than having a billion notes going a billion different ways, it relies mainly on cherries, tartness, and funk for the aroma. Some whiffs will brings stronger cherry, others bring more in the way of funk or (good) acid. If I could nitpick, its that it's a bit sweet for my preference. Still, a very successful aroma.

T: From the start, it seems like cherry sweetness dominates the flavor, with the funky brett being secondary, the tart bite being tertiary, and the oak tannins being quaternary. Occasionally, some sips will yield more funk than others. After a while, the finish displays a touch of caramel malt, while at the same time, the oak flavors become (slightly) more pronounced. I'm pretty impressed with how complex this is, to be perfectly frank.

M: Wow, as sweet as it initially seems on the palate, it dries out enough on the back end to keep it from being overbearing. Tannins are present but not harsh. Carbonation is quite zesty, too, and combined with the former, this is a surprisingly drinkable brew. Still, it's good enough to savor more slowly.

O: I'm pretty sure this has a 'mere' 85 simply because it isn't that tart. To me, this is closer to a 90. It's far from the most tart, but it's balanced and delicate, a trait that's lacking in many 'Murican sours (of course, I love a big, brute-force sour monster too, don't get me wrong!) Given my experiences with 13th Hour Stout and New World Tripel last year, I think it's safe to say I generally enjoy SA's barrel-aged, funk-laden brews a whole lot.

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Photo of angrybabboon
3.37/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing this

Consumed 1/15/14

Note: 2009 bottle

Appearance: Somewhere between medium amber and purple - pours with an off-white head, fades to a nice collar, with some wisps of a cap, leaves some nice streaks of lacing

Smell: Fruit, funk, and vinegar - definitely smells old, although I imagine it smelled similar when it was fresh - lots of funk, with yeast, damp cellar, and some wet, lactic acid - some musty tartness - some cherry flesh, and a lot of general weirdness - some earth and some sugary notes

Taste: Funky and more interesting than expected, but also very odd - lots of funk, with some wet, damp lactic sourness and some musty tartness - tons of vinegar - some old fruit, like old cherry flesh - a bit too much sweetness, but not really bad - some spiciness, with earth - some caramel grains - finishes with some booze, vinegar, and acetone

Mouthfeel: Medium body, nice carbonation despite the age of this bottle, smooth, kind of a messy finish

Overall: Yeast, vinegar, and sugar, together at last?

This deserves some credit for being decidedly funky. But the vinegar is a bit much, as is the sweetness. Regardless, it's interesting; apparently worth both trying and aging.

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.16/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

2009/2010 vintage. Split with angrybabboon.

Appearance: Still carries a decent carbonation. Creamy sizable off-white/beige head. Drops to a small cap and collar with hints of lacing. A super hazed brick red. Some darker maroons and browns as well.

Smell: Smells like cherry fruit leather. Powdery yeast and a slight layer of earthy funk. Mildly acetic bordering on straight vinegar with a solidndarknfruit sweetness. Almost jammy. Some musty basement as to be expected from the Cosmic Mother Funk base. some legit worn leather as well. Slightly sweet malt base. Some hints of caramel malt. Seriously though, it's a natural cherry fruit rollup.

Taste: Powdery yeast, super powdery. Very slightly tart with a big push toward straight vinegar. Cherry flesh. Pressed jammy fruit with a solid leather component. Slightly damp and musty with a building earthy finish. A touch of fake raspberry. Something like aspirin. Drinks like a fruit infused Cosmic Mother Funk. Lightly sweet malt.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and a moderate carbonation. Nice and clean.

Overall: Take it out before year 4.

I loved this fresh. Aged it's still delicious, but it loses something in the long run. The yeast dominates and hurts it a touch.

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Photo of ArmedsouthernEr
4.48/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Can this Stuff in a bomber for about 10 bucks and it is a descent sour ale. for that price you cant beat it compared to some of the other sour ales that can go for as much as 26 30 dollars a bomber. you wont regret this one! Need more characters so Im making filler words!!!

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Photo of puboflyons
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From the corked, caged bottle. Sampled on December 22, 2013. That cork took some effort to pop.

Reddish-brown pour with a modest light brown head and consistent carbonation.

The aroma screams wild yeast and sour, tart cherries and other juicy fruits. Also a fine biscuit malt character appearing on the nose.

The body is medium and acidic.

Taste of roasted malts, cherry, and other sour characters. The sourness of the taste is not explosive like some sours can be. That's what I liked this one better than other sour I have tried.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.74/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Was in the mood for a sour beer so I picked this up for 10 bucks. Not sure of the age but it has to be under a year old.

A - Somewhat hazy red amber in color with a solid 1/2 inch of head that sticks around for a bit.
S - Sour funk, berries, tart vinegar, and some funky goodness.
T - Well it's good I guess kind of thin tasking with mild sour notes, some apple cider vinegar, and some fruity flavors. No alcohol taste which is nice . Kind of average.
M - Worst part of the beer it's very thin tasting. I didn't go in expecting syrup just a deeper body and more flavor.

Overall pretty smooth american Belgium ale with some tart characters. Kind of grows on you but I have had better representations of the style.

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Photo of Brenden
3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pouring the medium brown, somewhat hazy, with bright ruby highlights that comes from the easier versions of this particular style, this beer certainly looks up to snuff. The head is slightly tinted and makes it to a strong pillow almost precisely one finger tall. It develops some density, sitting heavily and falling slowly while it deposits patchy lace on the walls of the glass.
The aroma has a good complexity to it, and the sourness is put forward but with lots of different things going on underneath. There's a little bit of funk, but not as much as I might expect. There's lots of cherry, plenty of tart (think Michigan) as well as black cherry skins with a sweeter and almost sharp aspect. It's definitely got the apple cider vinegar note to it that I hope for. Under all that, there's a sort of earthiness to the malts that go pretty dry.
On the palate, there's a little more aggressive dryness as the oaky notes come out up front with the sourness and the sharp bite. Ultimately, a sort of candied sweetness blends with the sourness to take the edge off, also playing it safe, so to speak. Cherry is as strong in the flavor as the aroma. Ultimately, with the dryness and the jammy nature, it has a lot of red wine character, something with a heavier body and maybe an "old vine" character.
The body is medium, and I'm surprised that the mouthfeel doesn't dry as quickly as I might expect. It's semi-dry most of the way before some wood and acidity throw that dryness into the finish. It has a bit of sharpness to it, but keeps in check.

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Photo of Archimetez
3.53/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: nice deep red color, clear, head cream color

S:very sweet, quickly brings wine to mind

T: sweet with strong overtones of berries.... little oak appreciated

M: smooth and clean

O: good variation of a belgian beer and a nice change of pace, but not really my cup of tea

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Photo of mayerale
4.06/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a mug from a corked and caged pint bottle.

A: Purs reddish brown with little to no head. Slightly transparent.

S: A very aromatic beer that hits the nose long before you bring the beer near. You definitely smell the tartness of the fruit with the scent of the oak barrel coming through slightly at the end.

T: You definitely get the tartness of the fruit immediately (possible cherry or raspberry taste immediately). The oak finish isn't as strong a one might think for a beer coming in a series touting "Aged in oak barrels." Not as carbonated as many beers, which isn't a bad thing. Almost drinks like a red wine.

M: It seemingly drinks like a red wine in that it feels a little dry. Low on carbonation.

O: For a series touting that it is aged in oak barrels, this beer doesn't taste "oaky." Also, it may not be what you expect when you buy a red beer, it is much sweeter than what I expected. That being said, it is a nice change to drink something like this. As I mentioned earlier, it almost drinks like a wine, which isn't a bad thing at all. It is fruity, and you don't really notice the 9% ABV. Definitely worth a shot and I would overall recommend it.

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Samuel Adams Stony Brook Red (Barrel Room Collection) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.85 out of 5 based on 756 ratings.
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