Hop Sun (Summer Wheat Beer) | Southern Tier Brewing Company

very good
565 Reviews
Hop Sun (Summer Wheat Beer)Hop Sun (Summer Wheat Beer)

Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: American Pale Wheat Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.10%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 05-15-2004

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Reviews: 565 | Ratings: 1,462
Photo of Sammy
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice grapefruit, a C hop aroma, good initial foam in pour. Some creaminess wheat nice on palate. Decent hop bitterness,lemon and spice, above average carbonation. Balanced with malt, Drying finish. an above average brew, the paradigm of this brewery.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: thin head on a cloudy pale golden body.

S: mostly wheat and pale malts with lemon, pine and bready notes.

T: This one was hoppier than expected with a slight bitter finish. Backbone of pale malts and breads.

M: light body and high carbonation.

Overall: the slight bitter finish hurts the drinkablity for beers of this genre. Well balanced flavor however overall.

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Photo of Knapp85
4.12/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The HopSun was actually something that I like quite a bit. The pour of the beer was a cloudy yellowish orange color with a fluffy white head on it. The smell of the beer had a great mix of citrus and a gentle aroma of fresh wheat. The nose was very well balanced here. The taste reflected the same way, it was a nice wheat sweetness very mild upfront with a nice hoppy bitterness in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is mostly like any other wheat ale out there. It's bright and lively, also very refreshing for the summer season. Good stuff!

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Photo of metter98
4.12/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: It poured clear golden yellow in color with a thin white head that quickly diminished into lacy patterns of bubbles. A light amount of carbonation is visible.
S: There are aromas of floral and citrusy hops in the nose, along with notes of wheat.
T: Flavors of pale malts and wheat are very well balanced with citrusy flavors from the hops. There is a little bitterness in the finish.
M: It feels light-bodied and crisp on the palate, but not watered down.
D: The beer is very refreshing, thirst quenching and easy to drink. It's a sessionable beer for a hot summer day.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Went on a Summer seasonal binge using my local store's mix your own 12 pack special, this is the first one up.

Pours a nice light golden color, great head to it.. minimal amount of lacing. Light bodied (which is what I'm looking for on a nice hot day), some nice lemon type flavors in there. Goes down very smooth and easy.. incredibly refreshing! Nice balance going on here and not just a light bland summer beer like some other breweries do... good one to pick up here!

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Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A light IPA with a wheaty finish, this is the ideal flavor to usher in warmer weather.

Hop Sun pours with a thinly clear straw color. Carrying an airy froathy white head that, while showing moderate retention, laces fairly well. Despite the wheat use, the filtration strips the associated haze and allows the carbonation streams to shine.

Medium hop intensity of grapefruit, orange peel, and herbal lemon grass governs the scent that stands above a slight bready, wheaty base. Very appetizing and zesty, the nose gives the impression of lightness and sprite.

Citrusy hop flavor also take comman of taste with white grapefruit, orange peel and pith, with a light lemon zest spiciness. Clean and crisp bitterness assists with refreshing impressions late, lessening just a bit in finish to allow for a strong wheaty aftertaste to return in memory. Quite simplified in taste, the beer relies on freshness, crispness, and cleanliness over complexity- and does so beautifully.

Light to start and light to finish, the well attenuated wheaty body has a cracker-like dryness with a dry crispness that controls the beer well before the finish. While shying away from astringency, the beer's crisp bitterness makes it the refreshing beverage that dictates its success

Like Three Floyds Gumballhead, Hop Sun has a crisp cracker-like wheaty taste that only shows it's maltiness in finish and aftertaste. It's all about the hops. It also reminds me a bit of Abita's Purple Haze, just better with the base beer and a focus on hops rather than the fruit.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.05/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with interesting label art and branded pry-off black/silver pressure cap acquired as part of a 4 pack (or was it a 6 pack?) at me local bottle shop and served into an Independence Brewing pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are above average given the brewery. "Brewed with 1 variety of hops and 3 types of malts." 5.1% ABV confirmed.

Not paired with food.

Served cold, straight from me fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as I pour.

Pours a two finger wide head of white colour. Somewhat thin. No real creaminess or frothiness. Head retention is above average - about 3 minutes. Decent inconsistent lacing coats the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Body colour is a clear translucent pale yellow. No yeast particles are visible. One of the most transparent beers I've seen in a long time; you can read through this. Appears adequately carbonated.

Standard fare for the style. I'm looking forward to trying it, but it's not unique or special.

Sm: Citrusy lemon zest, clean barley, wheat, floral hop character, citrusy fruit hop character, and light resins. A clean pleasant aroma of mild strength.

No yeast character or alcohol is detectable.

T: Clean barley, lemon juice, lemon peel/lemon esters, citrusy fruity hops, floral hops, spring water, lemongrass, light spiciness/fruit zest, a hint of crackery malts, light resins, a bit of grain, fresh wheat, and herbal hop leaves. Somewhat simple, but well balanced. There's not much subtlety or nuance, but for a simple wheat beer it's pretty tasty. Refreshing and enjoyable. Not gestalt, but it does have some cohesion.

Average depth, duration, and intensity of flavour. Clean.

No yeast character or alcohol comes through. I like it for what it is.

Mf: Smooth and wet, with enough coarseness to coax out the flavours a bit. Slightly oily. Refreshing. Crisp. Overcarbonated (perhaps its biggest flaw). Decent body and thickness. Okay presence on the palate. Clean. Suits the flavour profile well in a general sense, but there's not a marriage of texture to taste.

Not harsh, astringent, boozy, hot, or gushed.

Dr: A very drinkable summer seasonal that I enjoy but wouldn't go out of my way to get again. It's not Southern Tier's best work, but it's hard to not enjoy. There are better offerings out there at or below this price point, but this is certainly worth trying. While I wouldn't recommend it to friends, it's a tasty worthwhile beer considering the style. Hides its ABV well.

Low C+

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Photo of oline73
3.46/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: The beer pours a clear golden color with an amber hue. There is a half finger of off white head that goes away almost completely.

Smell: Very mild. Getting a bit of sweetness from the grain. Reminds me of a pils.

Taste: Very light and slightly sweet. I'm picking up the light grains as well as some pilsner like malt. The finish is slightly bitter.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a good amount of foamy carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: Very light and crisp. Definitely reminds me of a pilsner. I might have another given the chance.

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Photo of zeff80
4.17/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.75

A - Poured out a very clear, bubbly golden-yellow color with a small, bubbly, white head. The head held on for awhile then dissipated to left some soapy residue.

S - It smelled of citrus and orange peel. It had a nice grassy aroma with notes of wheat and yeast.

T - Surprise! A wheat beer with noticeable hop character. Nice bitter hop kick with a smooth wheat flavor. Some citrus and yeast flavors, too.

M - It was very crisp and sharp with a fizzy mouthfeel. A light to medium bodied beer.

D - This is a great american pale wheat ale. Its hop character defies conventional wisdom.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a pale and slightly-cloudy gold with hints of apricot. Nice white head and a bit of lacing as it goes down.

S: Some nice, subdued sweetness comes through in the initial whiff. This is followed up with a good dose and lemon pith and citrus hops.

T: A nice wheat base with some definite citrus notes from the hops coming through. Fairly simple, but quite well done.

M: Light bodied and a little bit dry. Very crisp.

D: Very drinkable. Although not nearly as good as Gumballhead, definitely the best I've found anywhere around DC.

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Photo of superspak
3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, bottled on 3/20/2013. Pours slightly hazy golden straw color with a 1-2 finger dense white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass. Aromas of lemon, orange zest, floral, pine, grass, wheat, bread, light honey, and floral earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance of malt and hop notes; with solid strength. Taste of lemon, orange zest, grapefruit, floral, grass, light honey, wheat, bread, light pine, and floral earthiness. Slight floral bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, citrus zest, floral, grass, light honey, wheat, bread, and floral earthiness on the finish for a short bit. Very nice balance of hop and malt flavors; with zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth and fairly crisp mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with no warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a very nice pale wheat ale. Nice balance of hop and malt flavors; and very smooth to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of oberon
4.39/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours out clear light golden with a thinner white head leaving no lace behind,great aromas a real zesty/citrusy hop jumps out ya wich is unexpected but welcome along with a little buttery note that lingers softly.Alot of subtle but very refined nuances to this beer a dry wheaty malt backbone holds up well to a healthy dose of citrusy hop I mean its nearly perfect finishing pretty dry and buttery.Compares very well with Three Ffloyds G-Head man I like these hoppy American wheat ales!

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A combination of citrusy hops and wheat-based malt greets you in the nose of this delightful summer ale. It's deep gold body is slightly hazy beneath an average-sized head of bright white froth that, unfortunately, slips easily away. It does maintain a thin surface covering, however, and leaves sheets of tiny spots and splashes of lace that cling throughout the glass. It's crisp and slick across the palate with a light-medium body and very fine-bubbled carbonation. The flavor delivers the hops that the nose promises, along with a solid backbone of bitterness that leads it to a dry and citrusy finish. Clean, crisp and refreshing... worth trying!

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Photo of Kegatron
3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Blue Tusk. Syracuse, NY.

Pours a clear gold color with a thin head of brite-white foam that retains well and leaves back some great looking lacing. The aroma is a lively mix of light bready sweetness, citrus, and a fairly prevelant amount of hops.

The taste matches the aroma profile to a tee with a nice hop bitterness (that seems to pop in the mouth) up front and is backed by a mix of silky sweet malts and tangy citrus notes. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a firm and crisp feel.

Very nice summer beer here from Southern Tier with a very hop forward profile that opens up the taste beyond other wheat beers out there. Flavorful, crisp, and hugely drinkable, this is a great summer sessioner.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.57/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a pale gold color with a large foamy white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is heavily loaded with wheat, hops & citrus.

T: A strong lemon flavor jumps out at the beginning and dominated the taste, but it doesn’t make the beer overly sweet. Flavors of wheat and hops follow. The hops presence is pretty heavy for the style, but just like the lemon flavor, it isn’t overdone. Despite it having a weak malt character (even that’s normal for the style), I found it to be a very well-balanced beer.

M: Very crisp and very smooth, light-to-medium body, medium-to-heavy carbonation, finish is very clean.

D: Very tasty, goes down very easily, I would prefer a little bit more of a kick, however, with an APWA I don’t typically expect one. If I were going to drink something light, this would be one of my first choices.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap at Cork City Pub in Hoboken, NJ

A: Pours a crystal clear pale straw yellow in color with light to moderate amounts of carbonation. The beer has a quarter finger tall bright white head that quickly reduces to a small patch of very thin film and a very thin ring at the edges of the glass. Minimal amounts of lacing are observed.

S: A very mild aroma of wheat along with some grassy and floral hops. There is a light amount of sweetness and some lemon/citrus notes as well.

T: Taste is very similar to the smell with some sweet wheat malt body, light lemon/citrus, and some hints of grassy + floral hops. Overall, a very light flavored brew.

M: On the lighter side of medium bodied with moderate to heavy amounts of carbonation. Slightly thin with some light dryness in the finish.

O: A very easy to drink and enjoyable summer beer, went down quite easily on a warm summer evening at the local pub (with the windows open and fresh air). Easily sessionable and one I would likely get another time.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 ounce pint - $5.50 at Taco Mac in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Set down upon the bar top a crystal clear, yellow body with a thin, though long-lasting coating of white foam.

Smell: A sniff reveals a pop of lemon-scented citrus oil in the fore with some lesser, lighter notes of barley and pine trailing behind.

Taste: Placid barley and soft wheat, lightly sweet. Hops are predominately of the citric nature, with tastes of lemon juice and ruby red grapefruit juice, as well as that light pine carrying over from the nose. Finishes crisp with a light bitterness and a little bit of lemon enduring into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Medium-plus carbonation.

Drinkability: Hop Sun brings a bit more energy and liveliness to the typically bland, snooze-inducing APWA style. It's got the relative lightness of wheat ale, but a bright hop character to keep your tongue from falling asleep.

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

It's getting a little late in the year to be drinking a summer wheat, but I figure this bottle won't last until warm weather rolls around again. It's a bright sunny day, 'hop sunny' you might say, and if I use my imagination, I can pretend that summertime is still holding out, refusing to go gently into that good autumn (apologies to Dylan Thomas).

Yeast-filled bright gold with lemon sunshine highlights. The polished ivory crown is as stiff and as sticky as any in recent memory and leaves scattershot lace in polymorphous blobs on the upper reaches of the glass. Lovely nose, as bright and as sunny as they come. It smells like someone just grated a few dozen lemons and an orange or two.

I'm happy to report that the flavor follows the nose. Even though there's little in the way of malt flavor, it is a mite wheaty. The dominant flavor is a tangy, hoppy, lemon zestiness. The body is smack dab light, yet manages to avoid feeling overly thin or watery. I usually like at least a light-medium body, even on 'summer beer', but I just can't fault this one because the flavor doesn't care and the beer is so incredibly drinkable.

Hop Sun is my first Southern Tier beer and I'm impressed. It's tough to make a summer wheat stand out, but this beer is as radiant as Old Sol on a July afternoon. In fact, I'd love to have a few cases at the start of every summer. Thanks to HappyHourHero for the first of many bottles from New York State.

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Photo of billab914
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up this one on my trip back to Buffalo for Christmas. poured from a 12oz bottle into my Southern Tier glass. Pours a pale golden color with a small white covering for a head. Moderate lacing on the glass.

Aroma is slightly sweet with citrus hops being the dominant smell. Taste is hoppy and citrusy with wheat being present as well. Pretty light flavor overall.

Mouthfeel is on the lighter side with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good, this is a lighter beer that you could drink several of on a hot day easily.

Overall this is a pretty light flavored beer. The citrus hoppy flavor is pretty good with the wheat base. A good summer drinking beer that I have purchased several times now.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a very bright golden yellow, huge white billowing head, decent retention. Nice side glass lace, good cloudy appearence, lots of carbonation. Very light, lots of yeast with a touch of some lemon maybe, light in aromas, not in overall strength of smell. Very very nice, light palate with a bigtime yeast presence. Lots of grain with a hint of lemon or some other kind of bitter hops, great flavors. One of the best haefe flavor profiles I have tasted. Crisp, clean. very nice carbonation. Great overall feel. Superb, could drink this all night long. Was great when first cold, even better as it warmed up.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.22/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

thanks to tb69 for this bottle, poured chilled into a double walled tumbler.

A - A brilliant and clear golden straw color w/ substantial creamy white head of about an inch. The streams of bubbles indicated moderate to high carbonation appropriate for the style. The bead is fine and the lacing collects but doesn't really hold, no matter.

S - The aroma of citrus in the hops is evident, but more of a floral or herbal aroma to my sniffer. There is mild wheat malt noted, but the hops and fruit from the yeast are more noticeable

M - The feel is great, smooth almost nutty texture, moderate carbonation but not overdone. The sweetness is balanced by the hops a very great balanced texture on the tongue and throat.

T - This is a very good wheat in the pale american style, but has more flavor than most and the low abv makes it one you can drink in full gulps. There is a nutty malty wheat flavor that keeps up with the american hop. There is more hop aroma than taste, but after all this is an American Pale Wheat. The balance in the taste really makes this a refreshing beverage. I like crisp clean flavor that doesn't shy away from malt taste at the same time.

D - just great for the style. I would not hesitate to pick this up by the case. I could see it as a compliment to burgers or ribs for summer grilling events.

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Photo of smcolw
4.27/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The golden color of this ale is very misleading. One expects a fairly thin, neutrally tasting American Ale. This beer tastes bigger than it should. Once I got by the thin head and the Pilsner color, I was treated to a complex beer that is not lacking in hop or malt (although hop wins).

The hop aroma is green and somewhat flowery--definitely dry hopped. This is evident in the taste, too. A touch of sweetness is noted in the flavor, although I could not detect it in the smell. (A friend claimed he tasted the wheat, but I didn't sense it.) The beer is full bodied and moderately carbonated. I wish this were available around Boston.

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

Presentation: 12 oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

Appearance: Firm white froth that sticks all of the glass, deep golden hue with a stunning clarity.

Smell: Floral and citric hops every where, soft yet laid on thick. Quick whiff of malt as well.

Taste & Mouth Feel: Semi-crisp moderate body, lots of mild hop oil flavor up front. Vaguely sharp hop bitterness plays with the crispness of the wheat and sweetness of the barely.

Drinkability & Notes: This has to be one of the best summer seasonals I have had to date.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 08/21/12 notes. Had on tap at Stag's Head in NYC during their ST event.

a - Pours a bright yellow color with one inch of fluffy white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of wheat, grains, bready malts, floral hops, and some earthy notes. Pretty nice nose, like the floral hops.

t - Tastes of lemongrass, citrus hops, floral hops, wheat, grains, bready malts, earthy malts, and toasted malts. Lot of citrus here which I like a lot; a step up from the nose for me.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Body is pretty smooth.

o - Overall a nice wheat beer. Ton of citrus in the taste which is awesome, and easy to drink. A nice, easy drinking summer beer.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.28/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Devil's Backbone weizen glass.

This one was a half-recommendation from my man down at Whole Foods. It pours a clear pale straw topped by a thick mass of white froth. The nose comprises coriander, wheat, light vague citrus, and a dash of cardamom. The taste tones the spices down a bit, and a good amount of orange-peel bitterness is introduced in lieu thereof. The body is quite light, with a light moderate carbonation and a fairly crisp finish. Overall, a very plain, uninteresting brew, but rather highly drinkable and, for those who stick to seasonal drinking schedules, a very nice summer beer.

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Hop Sun (Summer Wheat Beer) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
3.84 out of 5 based on 1,462 ratings.
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