Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout | Central Waters Brewing Co.

very good
258 Reviews
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Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry StoutBrewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout

Brewed by:
Central Waters Brewing Co.
Wisconsin, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by dirtylou on 03-22-2007

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Reviews: 258 | Ratings: 789
Photo of KellyScottMad
4.77/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is a very good beer for the winter months and you want to change your palate. Not too fruity at all which was a good thing because that would take away from the actual stout. I liked the beer, but not as much as I would have liked too.

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Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.64/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle from my good friend NFLMVP, to a pint glass. The liquid is a dark brown to black with ok carbonation. The dark tan head is modest yet lasts quite a while and leaves good lace.

The smell is excellent lots of Door County (My Home) tart cherrys washed in chocolate and bourbon. Yum

The taste is great, the stout could have a bit more chocolate but this is one of the best cherry beers I have ever had. The taste is just marvelous. The cherry is perfect just like a cherry pie from Grandma, not too sweet and no medicine after taste. The bourbon works so well, the perfect desert brew.

The mouthfeel is very good, full body and great feeling carbonation.

The drinkability of this brew is excellent. I love it. I wish I had more, can't wait for next years batch.

Prosit und Zum Wohl, MK

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Photo of pat61
4.55/5  rDev +21%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

From taste notes. Appearance: dense cherry tinted brown under a thin film of of-white foam. It does produce some lace and has good legs. Smell: Definite cherry aromas coupled with dark malt with bourbon in the background. Not a lot of hop or roast in the aroma. Taste: Has a very creamy palate featuring a dance of sweet and sour with cherry interacting with chocolate, caramel, vanilla and bourbon. A pinch of hops for a balancing accent. Mouthfeel: Has a satiating, full body with medium to medium low carbonation. Overall: the cherry, bourbon and dark malts play very well together to produce a good after dinner or dessert beer. Goes well with chocolate or runny cheese.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.54/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2010 vintage. Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a Blue Point snifter.

A: Vigorous pour yields a slowly upward cascading .5 finger coarse, beise head that dissipates quickly into a patch of bubbles atop a near opaque, black cherry colored brew. Lacing is sparse and spotty with little cling.

S: Super enticing aroma here. Notes of vanilla, wood, bourbon, cream, candied cherries, and chocolate milk. Also some roasted malt and rich cocoa in the background. Sweet and robust.

T: One sip and I can already tell this is a "sour stout". And I don't like sour stouts... until now I guess. Big roasted malt, chocolate and cherry upfront. The fruit simultaneously sweetens and sours just a touch towards the middle. Perfect complement to the upfront bourbon that develops. Chocolate and booze in the back. Finish is sweet but not overly so. Very good balance. Aftertaste is of wood and liquorice.

M: Medium to full bodied, lightly carbonated, oily in the mouth and smooth going down with just a little bit of heat. Just the tiniest bit rough around the edges. Finishes messy with an aftertaste that lingers just a bit.

D: Probably the surprise of the year so far for me. I fell in love with CW Satin Solstice the first time I had it and this just blows that beer away. An awesome, awesome brew, I wish I had easier access to this. Still, well worth the trouble of acquiring!

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Photo of Bierguy5
4.54/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle. Pours black with no highlights at all. Thin off-white head trickles to a thin collar.

Wonderful aroma of bourbon, oak, chocolate, and cherry. A bit of a roasty note, and a whiff of alcohol. I could hold this and smell it all day.

Starts off with a roasty flavor, then develops a nice bourbon and oak flavor. A bit of tart cherry finishes things off. Some chocolate wrapping around everything as it warms. Very complex.

Maybe a bit thin. A good amount of warming alcohol. Very well done.

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Photo of hopdog
4.54/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle.

Poured a dark brown color with red edges and a small sized off white head. Aromas of wood, light bourbon, caramel, cherries, chocolate, vanilla, and nuts. Tastes of wood, tart cherries, light bourbon, vanilla, and chocolate.

Notes from: 8/15/07

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Photo of IrishHockey
4.5/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2014 vintage

Appearance: dark, almost black. When held up to the light, red shines through. Very nice looking beer

Smell: WOW! damn good!!!

Taste: alright, I loved it. It's a top 5 for me. Taste is bourbon and cherries. It's the cherry coke of bourbon beer. I want this to be a never ending glass. As it warms, the malts start to come out a bit, but the bourbon and cherry shine. This is everything I wanted a bourbon cherry beer to be.

Mouthfeel: this is the only component of the beer that I feel was lacking. It's a little thin. Almost like a soda. Carbonation was higher than I would have guessed. This in no way made it subpar. It would have been almost perfect with a creamier body.

Overall: I loved this beer. I will buy as much as I can and horde it! Fuck everyone else! Or I'll share, cause damnit, everyone who loves bourbon and cherries needs this. Once you do, Welcome to the crack pipe

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Photo of MattyG85
4.45/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a chalice. 2014 vintage.

Appearance: Pours a dark blackish brown with a moderate amount of bubbles. Slight layer of tan head that quickly fades away.

Smell: A sweet, roasty, and fruity dark malt driven aroma with big hints of cherries, dark chocolate, and bourbon. Dark roasted barley malt with hints of dark chocolate, coffee, toast, biscuit, toffee, caramel, smoke, and yeast. Big scent of sweet and tart smelling cherries. Solid barrel presence with hints of bourbon whiskey, vanilla, oak, and wood. Also some hints of molasses, tobacco, and leather. A very good aroma.

Taste: Like the nose hints at, a nicely sweet, roasty, and fruity dark malt forward taste with lots of cherries, chocolate, and barrel notes. Dark roasted barley malt with notes of dark chocolate, coffee, biscuit, burnt toast, caramel, toffee, smoke, and yeast. Big juicy taste of tart and sweet cherries throughout. Barrel notes of bourbon whiskey, oak, vanilla, and wood. Sweet notes of burnt molasses. Also picking up some leather and tobacco like notes. A pretty good taste.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Rich, creamy, juicy, and somewhat syrupy. Alcohol heat is hidden pretty well.

Overall: A very good twist on a barrel aged stout. Good combination of dark malt, cherry, and bourbon notes. On the sweeter side but not sickly sweet.

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Photo of joeseppy
4.43/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

At first it pours a bitch black with a foamy head that dissipates soon clinging to the edge. Then as I see sit up against my brown leather chair, the snifter turns to a dark brown with ruby hues, pretty cool. 2013

My first impression of the smell is of chocolate covered cherries in nougat. As I relax collecting it all in, I'm getting sweet malt, oak and ever so bourbon cherry tartness.

Picking up on bourbon right away in welcoming fashion. The tartness (sour if you will, maybe) follows behind. Sweet malt not very strong lends marginally with the tart.

Relatively a thin stout, but I can appreciate this. Moderate carbonation with a brightness to it. The tongue almost feels numb from the tartness. Easy to drink and pleasant.

A lingering flavor of red cherry that brings me back to my youth when I used to sneak into my neighbors yard to climb their cherry tree and indulge. Well, nothing artificial for me here. I'm a bit surprised at marginal reviews for this but I love it and look forward to letting a few sit and see how they evolve. I'm trying this based on the recent BBBW and Peruvian from Central Waters. Man, everything has been solid. I say great job and glad you guys distribute here. Nice to have you as a neighbor.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.42/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes to beerwolf77 for this brew.

Poured into a chalice a very nice black color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy tan head, with some nice sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with some chocolate/toffee, nice little touch of cherries, nice touch of bourbon. The taste is very nice, malty, vanilla sweetness, very nice touch of chocolate/toffee, and some nice tartness from the cherries. Medium body, ABV is hidden very well with this brew. Very drinkable, this is a very tasty brew, highly recommended.

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Photo of jampics2
4.42/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Could it be true?

After struggling to even take a second sip of the Bells Cherry Stout then being totally turned off by the New Glarus Cherry Stout, have I finally found a chery stout I like?

Yes! It is true! And screw the haters, this is one awesome brew, in fact, I've been so impressed by the Central Waters stuff from this last batch that I'm going to the brewery in the next year to visit ground zero of the best up and coming BA Brews around.

Black as night with a small white head that becomes a ring. Looks nice!

Smell is weird at first, then becomes more intoxcating with every scent. Tart cherry skin, a touch of bourbon, giving impressions of vanilla and even coconut. Any stoutiness or roast is subdued.

Taste is great as well. The bourbon really kicks this up and makes it work. Tart cherry begins the ride, with chocolate and roasted malt catching the bus a block down the street. After a turn down bourbon street, some vanilla and coconut from the wood join the party bus. Lots of levels of flavor. A really fun ride.

A touch light and too carbonated. Mouthfeel could be better. More chocolate shake, less cherry cola.

Nice beer overall. I love it - finally I get why anyone would brew a cherry stout. But not just anyone should. Leave it up to the folks at Central Waters!

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Photo of nsmartell
4.36/5  rDev +16%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I enjoyed this beer from the comfort of my own living room. From 12-oz bottle to a snifter.

Appearance: Dark brown in color, with not much head, probably due to snifter glass.

Smell: Nice mix of cherries and bourbon.

Taste: Oaky, which is a good thing on this beer. Cherries, without being too sweet and the bourbon is just right.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, medium-bodied.

Drinkability: Very smooth, drinkable beer.

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Photo of MacQ32
4.36/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours near black/uber dark brown with almost a finger of rich caramel colored head. Decent retention, ok lacing.

S - Wow. Big sweet boozy notes, vanilla, oak, dry/slightly tart cherry, tons of sugary chocolate,.

T - wow! initially you get that sweet vanilla bourbon oaky flavor but semi tart cherries quickly swoop in making this one surprisingly refreshing and drinkable. Aftertaste/finish is all cherrys and a good bit of boozyness, almost causing me to regret my quadruple sip. Very easy to go down up until that point. The cherry flavor is phenominal.

M - Mostly due to the tartness (i think), relatively easy to drink. Carbonation seems at least adequate, mouth-feel is fairly thick but this one goes down quite easily

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Photo of nflmvp
4.35/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle, snagged from my cellar ;)

Served at 55 degrees, poured into a 20 oz tulip stout glass leaving an inch of foamy head that fades to a light coating. Not much lacing left on the glass.

Appearance is a hazy dark chocolate with slight rusty tint. Some light gets through but not much.

Smell is sweet, with cherries in the forefront. Notes of vanilla, bourbon, oak and maybe even a little chocolate follow.

Taste is almost an even balance of bourbon and cherries (I'm getting hungry for dessert and I haven't even had dinner yet). with vanilla and alcohol following closely, quietly behind.

Mouthfeel is smooth and velvety. Not as full bodied as I expected but this is certainly not a detraction. The alcohol is well masked.

Drinkability is very good. This beer slides easily, happily down the throat.

This beer makes for a perfect sipper and now I'm wishing I HAD eaten dinner first because I'm feeling like a double dose of dessert.

It's no wonder this is a GABF GOLD MEDAL winner. Another top notch offering from the top notch guys at Central Waters.

Keep 'em coming!

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Photo of crossovert
4.34/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2010 vintage. 12 oz bottle.

Pours a thick, dark black with a quicly receding, tightly-bubbled tan head.

It has a thick cherry scent, with some plastic that occurs with a lot of cherry brews, if they are using Door County cherries I know those are often stored in plastic jugs. Under that is thick bourbon flavors with vanilla and oak. There are some dark chocolatey malts in there too that give a cherry pie scent. The alcohol is mildly present. It smells delicious.

The taste is a good mix of flavors, different from other cherry stouts. It is STRONG though, the boubon flavors and alcohol POP on the palate, I wish it wasn't so limited so I could age a bottle, but next year I will age my bottle just to let is settle down a bit. It is basically a mouthful of tart cherry with some vanilla, bourbon, oak, and a huge dose of brownie. It is sweet and delicious but slightly tart. The bourbon and alcohol come in the end and burn slightly.

The mouthfeel isn't cloying and it has a biting sensation from the alcohol and carbonation. It is surprisingly drinkable though, not not really an easy drinking big beer.

This is another strong barrel aged offering form Central Waters, they have found their niche, lets see how far they take it.

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Photo of CoalCellar
4.31/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into my delirium snifter.

A: Pours like a normal stout would, builds a light brown head that fades quickly.

S: Funky sour cherries, sweet bourbon, and charred blackened grains. This is one heck of a nose.

T: This is an incredibly complex stout. First the cherries hit you and pucker you up, then sweet bourbon, oak, vanilla, and dark fruits wash over the palate and finish out with a light cocoa flavor.

M: Syrupy and viscous.

D:This stout is a journey for the plate. Rich, complex, sweet, sour, it is not a session brew, but one to be savored, and studied.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.3/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown and black appearance, less in the way of head than the regular bourbon barrel stout had, so less lace, retention as well. Aroma, nice bitter cherries, its in there, milder bourbon aromas in the regular bourbon version are, well, even more mild here now that it is competing with the ample amount of cherries. Chocolate, wood round out the aroma department, vanilla, conspicuously missing, but thankfully comes back around in the mouthfeel.

Taste, wow, the bitter cherry really stands at the forefront here. The stout component is actually still pretty smooth, not a big bitterness from heavy roasting or whatnot, it seems solely derived from the cherry aspect. Some sweetness, not diabetic coma inducing by any means. The mouthfeel is a little thinner than what the imperial stout fanboys tend to prefer, and also probably contributes to the metallic bitter aspect that one can get from the beer.

You can't beat the price on such a barrel aged beer though. That counts.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.3/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The cherry added to Central Waters Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout adds an added dimension to it, but it's not a make or break alteration. All of the original bourbon character remains, especially in the nose, and the vanilla woodiness is the same. However, that interplay between the cherry and the vanilla can be nice (it occassionally rings of coconut); and to a certain extent, the slight tart-sweetness of the cherry helps to cut through the implied sweetness of the bourbon. It's a little more "flowing" and drinkable. I liked it then, and I like it now. But I do have to give them credit for pushing the envelope a bit! It's a very worthy beer for many occassions: relaxing in front of the fire with a good book, settling down on the back porch on a warm spring night, snuggling with your lover on the beach or boat at sunset, or paired with a juicy steak just off the grill, and so on. Very well done!!! And, dare I say, worth seeking out? I'd better grab some more first ;)

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Photo of tpd975
4.3/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to SeaBass for this one.

A: Pours a nice dark charcoal black hue with a small tan head. No real retention or lace.

S: Tons of bitter dark cherry, fudge, and oaky barrel.

T: Bitter dark cherry, and rich fudge. The barrel comes out in the finish. Fresh oak, vanilla, and a touch of booze.

M: Medium to full in body. Smooth, rich, tasty.

D: Real tasty, One to sit down with and relish.

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Photo of emerge077
4.29/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Drank this at room temperature, maybe 68º. 2008 bottling, red foil label.

Pours a chestnut brown, with a long lasting head. Stalagtites of drippy lace.

Fantastic barrel aroma, soaked in bourbon and sun-dried, retaining it's oaky complexity. It reminds me alot of Enigma, strangely enough. Woody with a slight suggestion of dried fruit. Chocolate and spice.

Strong chocolate base with bourbon notes that verge on solventy. Spicy with some black cherry flavor. Mouthfeel is smooth and rich, alcohol really only detracts from the taste slightly. This is a nice sipper. More cherry lingers in the aftertaste. Pretty nice anytime of the year...

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Photo of Scooter1027
4.27/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

As many others have said, the cherry really comes through, and it's more tart than sweet. A little bit unbalanced, but I like cherries, so it all works for me. Bourbon flavor is a bit less pronounced. Overall I enjoy it quite a bit, but you gotta like those tart cherries.

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Photo of IntriqKen
4.25/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours beautifullly black with a very nice half finger of tan colored bubbles that seems to last and last, leaving a nice lacing in it's wake as you drink.

Aromas are surprisingly devoid of cherries....lots of oak, boubon, and some dark sweet fruits.

Taste is where the sour cherries come in....oak barrels, bourbon notes, sour black cherries, finishing to a nice tartness.

Mouthfeel is rich and creamy.

Aftertaste is oak and sour cherries.

Good stuff.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.24/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out of the 12oz bottle a dark brown with ruby red highlights and a nice light tan head on top. Aromas of tart cherries right off the bat mixed with nicely roasted malts and a woody bourbon aroma as well. Some caramel and maybe even a touch of coffee. I really enjoy the tart cherry integration.

First sip brings a light roasted malt profile upfront. Tart cherry flavors follow with woody bourbon accents. There's a nice mix of caramel and chocolate flavors hiding in there as well as a touch of coffee. The brew finishes with a lingering cherry flavor and a touch of bitterness. Good stuff.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and smooth. Good carbonation throughout, this flows across the palate nicely without becoming too heavy. A tasty brew that I'm glad to have had the opportunity to sample. Cheers to Cental Waters for another tasty bourbon brew.

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Photo of johnkale
4.24/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2011 release date, though clearly actually bottled and sold in 2010.

A - Dark brown with translucent ruby on the edge. One finger head turns to minimal lacing pretty quickly

S - cherry, bourbon, alcohol, a little bit of chocolate

T - less cherry than I expected up front, oaky, dark chocolate, whisky, finish is slightly sweet, tart cherry with a nice bourbon alcohol burn, nothing too strong, cherry is present but doesn't dominate

M - lighter body than I anticipated, carbonation isn't too high, not sharp at all, and not too much to handle

D - the tartness in this finish makes this awfully refreshing for a big beer

I may be biased by my Door County roots, but bourbon and cherries go together like few other flavor combinations. This beer was nicely balanced, hopefully I can pick up another four pack before it's off the shelves.

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Photo of thebigredone
4.24/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up after getting to sample 1414 at a local liquor store. The owner of CW did the tasting, and let me say he was super cool. Allowed everyone several sample pours from the growler of 1414 he brought along, was very friendly, and overall made a fantastic impression. Can't wait to go and visit the brewery.

BBCS pours a deep black with a redish tint when held to light.

The smell nearly made me pitch a tent. Delicious bourbon with a sweet cherry nose. I like.

Taste is also great, starting with a strong cherry flavor that moves into the mild bourbon finish. It would be nice if the stout held it's own a little more, but I didn't really expect it to in a beer aged in bourbon barrels with 80lbs of cherries added to each barrel.

Overall, this is a fantastic beer. I don't understand the criticism of the cherry flavor. If you don't like cherry flavors, don't get a cherry stout. They use real cherries (AND LOTS OF THEM), so saying that it tastes fake is just plain dumb. This beer has simply strengthened by admiration for Central Waters.

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Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout from Central Waters Brewing Co.
3.76 out of 5 based on 789 ratings.
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