Oat (Imperial Oatmeal Stout) | Southern Tier Brewing Company

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Oat (Imperial Oatmeal Stout)Oat (Imperial Oatmeal Stout)

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

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
The Blackwater Imperial Stout Series is full of delicious dessert beers, with one exception: Oat, our Imperial Oatmeal Stout. Pouring black as night, with a mocha colored head, big dark flavors of molasses and bitter malts conspire to hide the high alcohol content.

Brewed with 2-row pale malt, oats, caramel malt, barley flakes, chocolate malt, black malt, Columbus and Willamette hops, this beer is chock-full of what a real imperial stout should be brewed with. We’re brewing it expressly for the turning seasons. It’s a great beer to kick back with on a cool fall evening, or cellar some away for when the snow starts to fly.

Added by John on 12-17-2004

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Ratings: 1,364 |  Reviews: 679
Photo of russpowell
4.31/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Got this one from rgtravers, cheers Ryan...

Fall 08 Vintage pours black as night & oily with fairly fast falling brown/mocha head. Some lacing & head retention

S: Dark fruits, raisins, cherries & vanilla & cocoa

T: Leafy hops, dark fruit, licorice & molasses with powdery dryness up front. Dark choclate, figgyness & more dark fruit with a whisper of booze as this warms, plus faint herbal & leafy hops, plus a touch of charred grain. Finishes dry with nice mocha notes & a touch of charred grain

MF: Very oily & smooth as all hell with low carbonation & nice stickyness. Great balance on this as well

Drinks pretty easy for the style & abv, another great dark bruiser from Southern Tier

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Photo of brianh78
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Randomly found this beer on tap while on a business trip in southern New Jersey, so I had to give it a shot...so here goes...

Appearance: very very dark brown to jet black, with a creamy and slightly caramel colored head which was about a finger thick...left lots of pretty lacing on the glass

Smell: malty sweet; vanilla, caramel, a hint of chocolate and cooked oat overtones

Taste: sweet; malty; caramel and slight vanilla, hint of chocolate/coffee/toffee; light oat flavor which was a bit toasty in the back

Mouthfeel: velvety thick, slightly coating; carbonation in the first sip, but calms down quickly and settles to a nice, slick feel

Drinkability: holy high alcohol content, Batman! 11%? where is it? I didn't taste it at all. This beer is, like many other oatmeal stouts, quite filling. I wouldn't drink more than two in a sitting...but it is quite tasty!

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Photo of jera1350
3.68/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle is from batch 2008.

Jet black color with a one finger tan head. Small amount of lace.

Cola dominates the nose with some light chocolate and coffee as well. Literally smells like a glass of cola.

I'm guessing that since this isn't fresh, the flavor has changed a bit. Deep roasted malt and coffee make up the majority of the taste. A bit of dark chocolate causes a slight bitterness as well. Really lacks in complexity for an Imperial Stout.

Full bodied, syrupy and smooth. Small amount of soft carbonation. Finish is extremely dry.

Pretty easy drinking. Not as heavy as some double stouts. Great coffee flavor if your into that. Just lacks in depth and complexity for the style. Maybe it's just the age on it. Nicely priced though compared to others in the style.

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Photo of tigg924
3.6/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: dark brown in color, 1/4 inch head that goes away quick, clear

Smell: burnt malt, coffee, and chocolate syrup

Taste: burnt malt, oats, coffee, subtle chocolate, and a bit of toffee

Mouthfeel: a little bit bitter, heavy bodied, chewy, minimal carbonation

Drinkability: A good and solid, but not great oatmeal stout. Because of the high abv, one per sitting is the absolute max. This is a sipper. It hits the flavors just right, but I was not as blown away by this one as other Southern Tier beers.

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Photo of OldSchoolGamer
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have had this brew on numerous occasions, and it remains very nice throughout. I have had the '08 fresh, '08 aged a year and now the '09 fresh. There is not a drastic drop off in quality from last year as many BAs would lead you to believe. Here is my review.

A: Pours a pitch black color. Head is pretty much non-existant. No lacing to speak of. Not super thick looking, but definetly a stout.

S/T: In the aroma, I get roasted malts, chocolate, smoke, and a touch of oatmeal. Flavor is very nice, but a little different than last year. Not worse, just different. I get a lot more smoke in the flavor this year, and less on the oatmeal. Lots of roasted malts, chocolate and a touch of coffee. Some alcohol is present as well. Probably my least favorite in the Blackwater series, but when you got beers as good as Choklat and Jah-Va, that really doesn't mean anything. Definetly one of the best Oatmeal Stouts around.

M/D: Its definetly a full-bodied beer. Somewhat syrupy. I wish it was a little creamier, however. Drinks rather well. Like most stouts, it is a sipper. Finishing a whole bomber will be no challenge.

Sometimes I just think people like to hate Southern Tier based on the fact that they make very unconventinal and unique beers. This is one of their more mainstream efforts, but it is nothing short of great. Age definetly adds to the greatness. Another Southern Tier classic.

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Photo of bsp77
3.48/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from bomber into Snifter.

Appearance: Looks pitch black but some dark brown at the edges. Very thin tan head at first, then looks flat.

Smell: Alcohol, milk chocolate, molasses, sweet roasted malt. The smell is too boozy.

Taste: Chocolate roasted malts, cream, molasses and oats. Decent level of bitterness that builds with each sip. The alcohol becomes noticeable in the aftertaste.

Feel: Very thick and chewy, with a nice smooth and warming body. However, it is pretty much flat and slightly chalky.

Drinkability: Actually pretty easy to drink despite the 11%. However, it is a little simple for an Imperial Stout and definitely too boozy. Actually, every ST Imperial beer I have had is too boozy. I don't think it is worth paying for them anymore.

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Photo of ProudBeerSnob
3.84/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into snifter.

Inky black color with khaki colored head that dissiapates qucikly but leaves pleasnat lacing throughout the enjoyment of the beer.

Aroma of roasted malt and oats, as one would expect.

Roasted malt upfront, with some coffee notes as well. Quite tastable alcohol. Finishes quite bitter and dry but also a but sweet at the same time because of the oat.

Not all that drinkable because of the alchol, but I would like to finsih the bomber tonight. We'll see...

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Photo of adamette
3.23/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from the bomber that I bought at SAVE-ON Tobacco & Beverage in Mentor for $8.99 last week into my Dark Horse Brewing Company pint glass. No "best by" date observed by me. 11.0% ABV written on the label.

A Dark dark body that lets no light through. Head was not easy to get (had to pour vigorously) and when it did come it was less than 1 cm high and a medium brown. Reasonable, trace lacing on the glass. 3.5

S Little to no smell. Repeated sniffs reveal some dark roast malt and the slightest oat, grain smell. True to style but not amazing or remarkable. 3.0

T Dark roast malt, some oat grains but a kick of alcohol that is a bit too obvious for my liking. This remains a tasty beer but could have been so much better in my opinion. 3.5

M More thin that I thought it would be but the dark roast malt and the kick of alcohol beef up the feel. It lacks a nice thick body that I like in the style but also it lacks any stickiness that I also enjoy out of this style. 3.0

D Only fair due to the rather obvious alcohol, the bigness of the dark roast malt and the less than desirable thin feel of the beer. 3.0

Notes: There are better examples of the style out there. Southern Tier remains a good brewery as my recent rating of Unearthly and more remotely Pumking will atest.

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Photo of billab914
4.47/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2009 batch Poured from a bomber into my Southern Tier Tulip glass.

This is one of my favorite offerings from Southern Tier so I thought it was time I gave it a review (My first review as well).

Pours dark brown and nearly black with a modest amount of head that disappears quickly. It tastes of sweet malts with some chocolate and coffee. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, slightly creamy. I really enjoy drinking this one and will purchase again.

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Photo of Duhast500
4.7/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a stemmed glass.

The color is a complete black with no light getting through with a nice foamy brown head with some nice lacing.

The smell is pretty strong with oat presence and a pretty nice malty sweetness. Some hop flavor does come through on the second go around.

The taste is a sweet with a biscuit feel. There is some nice mixing of a bitter hop and a bit of a sweet maltyness that really comes across quite well.

The feel of this beer pretty easy drinking and has a medium body to it. This does have a bit of a kick but it an Imperial Oatmeal Stout. A really great beer.

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Photo of TheViolator666
3.91/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

22 fl. oz. bomber poured into snifter.

A: Pours "dark as a moonless night" as the bottle describes it, letting no light through at all. Initially had a small head, but after looking away for a moment and looking back, the head had already dissipated down to a thin circle of of tan bubbles along the edge. Very light lacing.

S: Smells of dark fruit and sweetness. A bit of alcohol is present, but not overwhelming. Caramel and dark roasted/burnt malts.

T: Tons of alcohol, dark fruits and a caramel-like maltyness are in the forefront, followed by dark roasted/burnt malts that also consists of a warming alcohol sensation down the back of the throat. The aftertaste also reveals a bit of rich chocolate, earthyness and grainyness.

M/D: Very viscous yet smooth. Alcohol comes on a bit strong, taking away from the drinkability.

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Photo of kegger22
3.58/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a dark brown with an embarrassingly miniscule head that really didn't disappear as much as never show up. The aroma didn't exist. So far, not a very promising start. The taste... actually, not bad. I was a little worried that there would be nothing there either. First off, it's very sweet, though not sickeningly so. There is also some coffee, some maple, and from out of nowhere, a bitter after taste. That's an interesting surprise. The feel is full bodied with nada carbonation. Drinkability? Ehhh, not so much. Too sweet and too much ABV to be anything more than a sipper.

ST Oats tasted pretty good, but suffered from low scores on all of the other categories.


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Photo of brystmar
4.02/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 650ml bottle into a snifter.

Pours very dark -- almost black -- with very little head. Carbonation is minimal. Chocolate & oatmeal are the predominate scents; hints of coffee too. This beer is an utter treat to smell...I could sniff it all day!

Taste is that of overwhelming chocolate and oatmeal-y goodness. Quite smooth too -- I was completely unaware of its high (11%) ABV until standing up to toss the bottle when I was almost finished with the beer. It was at this point that I checked the beer's ABV. This thing hits you hard, but not in the head, not the palate. Very very smooth for the ABV. I'm not typically a stout guy, but I can see myself keeping a regular stash of this beer.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, sneakily hiding this beer's true strength. Aftertaste leaves a tiny hint of its strength, but it's well balanced for sure. Undoubtedly solid in this field.

Drinkability is quite good from a strictly mouthfeel & smoothness POV, but slightly diminished due to its strength.

Pretty darn delicious overall. And again, I'm not a stout guy.

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Photo of jsh420
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

drank and reviewed on 10/3/09 but for some reason it was deleted

pours the darkest brown almost black with a 1/2 finger tan head that left no lacing

smell sweet carmel chocolate oat pale malts and with hops in the background

taste - wow! this might not have the best nose but this is a great impy oaty stout - bitter hops is what hits my buds first then the rich chocolate oat and sweet carmel malts

mouthfeel is medium body which adds to the drinability - low carbonation leaves a silky smooth finish

drinkability is crazy even with the 11%abv - this is one of the better impy stouts i have had in a while

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Photo of ClevoPiwo
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours opaque black with highlights of deep rich brown on the edges. Not much head, what did form was nice and tan, but quickly died down - not much carbonation. After a few minutes and a few sips there is completely no sign of foam, the beer looks deceptively placid.

The smell is fantastic. Big notes of chocolate, sweet dark fruit and some hints of alcohol are very pronounced with underlying aromas of coffee.

Taste is similar to the smell in that the chocolate and dark fruit are very rich and pronounced. There is a big chocolate, molasses and fruit sweetness up front followed by some heat from the alochol, which at 11% is still pretty masked. The finish exhibits some of the coffee character.

Overall a remarkable beer. The mouth feel is very silky and creamy, but not too syrupy and viscous. The alcohol packs a punch but is still well hidden. Chalk another one up to Southern Tier.

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Photo of projectflam86
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a deep brown/black color with a thin light brown head with a bit of retention.

S- Dark malt and roasted aromas dominate the nose.

T- Full roasted malt flavor with waves of bittersweet chocolate, coffee, molasses and oatmeal. Actually the oatmeal is more prominent than I would have guessed going in. A quick alcohol bite was present in the finish.

M- Full bodied with light carbonation.

D- Nice roasted flavor with a well hidden alcohol burn. Worth getting again.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
4.4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle, 2007, into Sam Adams lager glass - all the snifters are packed. Huge thanks to Mike (mikesgroove) for the amazing unexpected extra!

Pours pitch black with a nice, dense brown head of about 3/4", that slowly settles down without ever losing density. Great stickage, walls of lacing. .

Nose is huge, crazy chocolate, loads of licorice, burnt caramel sweetness, shimmering alcohol.

Taste is - wow, this defies any expectations I possibly could have had given how people generally react to whether or not this beer should be aged. Big time chocolate richness, smooth vanilla and a dark caramel sweetness with hints of burnt sugar are at the forefront, followed closely by nice licorice and dark fruit notes that mingle with a firm but by no means dominant spicy alcohol note. This one is a desert in and of itself - respectable complexity, but this one's just about unabashed decadence. Very light roastiness comes out on the finish.

Mouthfeel is fantastically creamy, with just a hint of sharpness from the alcohol. Wee bit boozy, but not in a bad way.

Drinkability is quite nice, though the alcohol is still certainly there. This isn't even close to some of the fire-breathing dragons that some RIS' are, but it's still packing a bit of heat.

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Photo of bobsy
4.05/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer looks the business, and thanks to Cole's for deciding to give me a pint of imperial stout. A deep black body sits under a chocolate milkshake head that laces in sheets as its slowly fades to a cap. The nose is full of that smoky, slightly bready oatiness that I love, but its also complimented by all the regular flavours you would get in a beer of this heft - chocolate, coffee and alcohol. Hmmm... would you like some coffee with your oatmeal? One sip reveals this to be a bang on interpretation of an imperial oatmeal stout. Lots of bittersweet chocolate and burned brown sugar mixed in with a shot of espresso. The oatmeal comes through strongly in the finish, giving the impression of tobacco, and (not surprisingly), oatmeal. There's moderate bitterness, but I feel its mostly from the roasted malt. The mouthfeel belies the alcohol, and isn't as heavy as I would expect, veering more towards that of a regular oatmeal stout. That said it is smooth and well-handled... I just expected something bigger and silkier - Southern Tier don't usually do half measures.

This is an excellent interpretation, and my one real criticism is the same one that applies to all Southern Tier's bigger beers - after a while the sweetness starts to become too much. in fact this would have been excellent in a two-thirds pint glass. Nonetheless, another impressive stout from the blackwater series.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a Brooklyn Brewery pint glass

A: Poured a nice 1.5 finger course caramel colored head that had good retention. The brew was completely black and viscous. Layering was a little spotty for the style but left trace rings nonetheless.

S: Sweet soy sauce, vanilla, chocolate, dark fruit, and roasted malts.

T: Chocolate and sweet soy sauce opening and lasted into the middle. Ends with a slight twinge of hoppiness and a strong alcohol kick.

M: Full bodied and only slightly carbonated with a viscous mouthfeel that really coats the insides of the mouth and lingers.

D: Deeply enjoyable but most definitely a sipper and really heavy enough so that its one and done.

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Photo of capra12
3.97/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed with speedwayjim and dj schnitzel served out a snifter on 9/25/09.

Appearance: jet black with 1 1/2 fingers of brown head. Spotty lacing.

Smell: Sweet dark roasted malts and chocolate with alcohol as well.

Taste: Opens with roasted dark chocolate and coffee which last til the end. Right before the finish there is a complex malt profile which last till the end and a slightly alcohol finish leaving a coffee and malty aftertaste.

Mouthfeel:Smooth and full bodied and minimal carbonation.

Drinkability: I would have this again but on another night because of the high abv and I definitely recommend this to try.

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Photo of vacax
4.23/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a thick black with a big light brown head. Fair retention, ring of very fine foam sticks around, along with a thin carpeting on the surface. Shows some alcohol legs. Smells sweet and rich. Oats, cocoa, burnt sugar, roasted malts.

Tastes of candied dark fruits, candi sugar, dark roasted coffee doctored with loads of sugar. Quite sweet, but lots of highly roasted malts in the background, and plenty of tasty dark fruits and a bit of ester to go along. Very tasty. If you like sugar with your coffee, you will like this. If you take it black, maybe not. Full bodied, not the thickest beer, but the oats make it super slick on the palate. A treat. For me this is a great drinking stout, as I can take mine dry or sweet, in this case a bit sweet, but plenty of balance still. Yum. Question: why haven't I ever had barrel aged Southern Tier?

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Photo of hardy008
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark black color with a two finger tan head with decent retention. Smells of chocolate, raisins, molasses, and alcohol. The taste matches the aroma. Vanilla and coffee bitterness are also present . As I suspected, the alcohol is not well hidden, but never mind, the flavor is good.
This is rich as a stout should be and malty. The mouthfeel is full, rich, and creamy. Nicely carbonated. This is a nice drinkable stout.

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Photo of Pencible
4.17/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled in Fall 2008. This poured an opaque dark mahogany with a bit of tan head. It smelled like roasted barley and dark chocolate and molasses, with some coffee and toasted oats and a bit of dark cherry. It tasted like roasted coffee and bitter chocolate, with some molasses and burnt barley. It was thick with a bit of carbonation, and had a bitter aftertaste. Overall this wasn't as sweet or have as much oat flavor as I expected (perhaps due to almost a year of age?), but it still had an easily enjoyable flavor. The body was great, and it hid the alcohol very well, so it was definitely easy to drink. Nothing too special, but still a nice solid imperial stout.

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Photo of jnn4v
3.95/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle brewed "Fall 2008," consumed September, 2009, so I'm guessing it's nearly a year old now. Was stored in a cellar or refrigerator the whole time.

A: Completely black, very little head at all. What little head existed was a dark brown color. Appears to be thick.

S: Some phenols or vinegar mixed with coffee and chocolate as it first was poured. Within 5 minutes of opening, it smelled MUCH better. Rich chocolates, molasses, coffee and some heather / clover floral.

T: Starts out sweet with some chocolate, vanilla and coffee. Gets a bit bitter on the aftertaste. Almost reminded me of a chocolate milkshake at one point. Some toasted oat lingering in there, but not much.

M: Very smooth. Silky, rich texture. Thick. Very little carbonation, but carbonation did exist.

D: Very drinkable for the 11% ABV and thickness. However, it was definitely better split with friends than trying to finish the whole bomber.

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Photo of BenZ
4.37/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is the best southern tier beer I've had. An extremely smooth beer. It's not too sweet, inspite of being on the low IBU side of things. I have to think it's tough to make a really balanced beer like this; they are either way too sweet (the greater sin) or too bitter. This is perfect. There was hardly any head despite the clean goblet and correct technique. Carbonation feels perfect - strange... I thought oats are known to help with head retention.

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Oat (Imperial Oatmeal Stout) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
4.08 out of 5 based on 1,364 ratings.
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