Imperial Porter (Brewmaster Series) | Long Trail Brewing Co.

218 Reviews
Imperial Porter (Brewmaster Series)Imperial Porter (Brewmaster Series)

Brewed by:
Long Trail Brewing Co.
Vermont, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.30%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Long Trail Imperial Porter features a complex, darkly roasted malt flavor complemented by a thin, creamy head. The abundance of malt is balanced with a variety of hops, creating a clean finish. The recipe has been a homebrew secret that was developed by one of our own brewers. We are proud to present Long Trail Imperial Porter...ENJOY!

56 IBU

Added by Bierman9 on 08-07-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 218 | Ratings: 378
Photo of dbrauneis
4.11/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Pours an opaque jet black in color with only the faintest hints of very dark amber highlights and a light amount of visible carbonation near the surface. The beer has a finger tall dense and creamy very dark tan head that slowly reduces to thin film covering the majority of the surface of the beer with a thick ring at the edges of the glass including some large bubbles in it. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate to strong aromas of dark roasted malts, chocolate, and coffee - there is also a lighter amount of dark fruit sweetness and just a hint of pine hops.

T: Strong flavors of dark roasted malts with some moderate to strong flavors of dark chocolate, coffee, and some dark fruits (plum and raisin). There is also a light amount of smokiness and ash. There is a light amount of bitterness from the pine hops but the beer finishes with just a hint of sweetness. Overall, this is a pretty well balanced beer with a nice amount of complexity.

M: Medium to heavy bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Smooth with a light amount of alcohol warming in the finish.

O: The Long Trail Brewmaster Series beers are always a very nice beer for a great price (in fact, they are pretty cheap in the NYC area) and this one did not disappoint - this is a very solid American Porter that is a very nice sipping beer. This is a big beer with a decent amount of alcohol in it, mostly hidden, so it is best enjoyed slowly - and it went really well on a cold winter afternoon.

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Photo of macrosmatic
3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to ActonBrewer for this one! Reviewed from notes. Poured from bomber into a TBBC pint glass.

A: Very dark brown, opaque, with a one and a half finger tan head. Moderate visible carbonation.

S: Cacao, coffee, raisins, sweetness (molasses), and hints of soy.

T: Dark chocolate, cacao, raisins, and some acidity & tannins. There is some hop bitterness noticeable as well.

M: Medium to heavy body for a porter. Good amount of carbonation sensation, and the alcohol is noticeable but doesn't quite overwhelm.

O: This isn't really working for me, but it's not awful. Glad to have tried it, but I don't foresee another in my future.

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Photo of smcolw
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rocky, tan head. Deep dark brown color where only a minimum of light passes. Good ring lace on the glass.

Chalky cocoa aroma. Semi-sweet chocolate. Light alcohol in the background.

Starts off mild with darker caramel malts. This fades with the black patent component that kicks in a couple of seconds later. There's some solid hop bitterness in the swallow. A long aftertaste of bakers chocolate and bittering hop.

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Photo of dacrza1
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

glassware: Duvel tulip...occasion: watcing The Ten Commandments after the Easter vigil feast--and forty days without beer!...aroma: thick malty presence; not lactic, but a bit milky...appearance: dark black body with an imperially thick brown head; nice brown lacing...palate: active, aggressive presence; full-bodied, effervescent end...taste: slightly hoppy with a staunch malt backbone--a powerful punch...ovverall: "Robust?" Yup--although the alcohol slightly obscures the balance of the beer itself; intense and gripping, with a small physical price and a larger monetary bill--wish I could afford more of this!

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Photo of match1112
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber into pint glass, 2011 vintage.

a: dark cola colored body, two fingers worth of mocha colored head. great lacing and staying power.

s: dark fruit, raisins, chocolate, some roasted malts.

t: dark chocolate bitterness, caramel, raisins, orange rind and mint. as it warms a roasted malt/coffee aroma appears.

m: velvety smooth, incredibly rich. a slight bitterness

o: very impressive! a rainy day sipper for sure.

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Photo of DrinkSlurm
4.23/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bomber into NB globe. Bottled 9/6/11 - 2011 vintage.
Really nice looking. Deep brown/black with a thick long lasting tan head. Really nice roasted malted and dried fruit aromas. A lot of hop aromas...especially for a porter.
Taste is really nice. Bitter chocolatey malt, boozey malt, dried fruit, and nice bitter hop flavors. Its a bit boozey mouthfeel; sharp and warming, deff a sipping brew. Overall, a fantastic more complex porter. Well worth the $4.99 paid!!

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Photo of Homebrew35
4.68/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Purchased 9/2010

Pours a nice two fingers worth of a mocha/light brown head. Deep brown semi translucent body. Great lacing, head dies down but is easily roused.

Smells of dark fruit, rum raisins, yeasty fruity esters. Some bakers chocolate, carmel and light alcohol.

Tastes fairly complex, dark fruit, rum raisins again, carmel, light amount of roast, dark chocolate, brown sugar. Alcohol is slightly warming but not heavy in the taste.

Medium thin bodied. Medium carbing. Quite silky smooth, and highly drinkable for this abv. Lingering taste is light roast and dark fruits.

Overall this is a tasty porter. A bit too fruity for a typical porter but as an imperial example works fairly well. The drinkability on this one keeps me happy and wanting more. If they make this again I'll get a few and cellar it for a few years like this one.

$5 a bomber

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass

Appearance – Pours a deep brown nearly black color with a thin brown head. The head faded very fast giving way to a nice level of lacing.

Smell – The aroma is big of a brown bread, cocoa, and coffee mixed with good doses of some dark fruit. Rounding out these aromas is a stronger boozy aroma.

Taste – A big malty taste meets the tongue. A dark bready and cocoa flavor are the biggest of the initial tastes. These flavors are soon greeted with some flavors of the dark fruit more toward the middle, which sweeten it to a light extent, but by no means make it a sweeter brew. At the end, a nice more roasted flavor comes to the tongue bittering up the taste quite a bit. This is accompanied by an oaky and boozy taste which leave a lingering roasted boozy bitter aftertaste on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – Thick and big. The body of the beer is big and chewy. The flavors of the roasted malt and cocoa really soak into the tongue with this thickness as it coats the tongue. The carbonation level is rather low, only accentuating the coating of the tongue that the body promotes.

Overall – Very chewy and roasty. A good cold weather warmer with big flavor.

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Photo of Gatch
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Deep, dark brown with a light brown, fluffy, thick head. Builds quickly but dies quickly and leaves little lace and retention.

S: Roasted malt, dark chocolate, a bit of smoke. Weak overall.

T: Great roasted malt character. Some dark chocolate, dark coffee, brown sugar, and smoke. Delicious.

M: Flavors are there but the body is a bit thin at the back. This is typical of every Porter but with the amount of flavor and booze, I expected a heavier body. It's still heavier than most Porters, though, and the booze is pretty much nonexistent throughout which is great.

O: A very delicious, consistent, and impressive Imperial Porter from Long Trail. Great beer!

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Photo of JayQue
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dense dark brown color with just a little light coming through on the bottom of the pint glass. Good size light tan head with good lacing and head retention.

Smell is bready malt, port wine and a little chocolate. Very pronounced and good.

Taste is exceptional. Smooth bready malt, vinuous (port wine), a little hops bitterness in the finish and semi-sweet chocolate.

Mouthfeel is rich. The port wine and touch of hops add complexity.

I see this more as a light RIS rather than a Porter, but in either case, it is a nice slow sipper.

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Photo of Tucquan
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on 2012-04-27 in Columbia, PA

A - Opaque dark brown with a firm, 3-finger tan head that lingers and leave excellent lacing. There's a tinge of ruby around the edges of the glass when held to the light.

S - Chocolate malt, dark roasted grain, plum, oak wine barrel. Very nice.

T - Dark roasted grain, tart citrus, raisin, muted chocolate, mint, astringent, not too sweet, significant roasted/burnt and hop bitterness that lingers a long time. It's got a hearty flavor.

M - Medium body and light-medium carbonation. Less body than I expected. Not overly smooth. Somewhat prickly.

O - This is a fine brew, particularly if you're in the mood for the charred taste. It's not as soothing as a Founders Breakfast Stout; more like a Founders Imperial Stout with less body and ABV. I'd always be glad for a glass of this but wouldn't make it a staple in my fridge.

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Photo of BlurryVisi0n
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass.

Appearance: Dark as the night, average tan head rose to roughly a notch over a finger's length.

Smell: Light bitter chocolate meets a little caramel.

Taste: Malty as F'k, it is bitter but still pleasant. Dark chocolate, and malty, did I say that before?

Mouth: Medium carbonation a rough smooth, if that makes sense.

Overall: I am not disappointed but there is better out there, but for about 4 bucks a bottle I would buy this again and again. I only wish I had something to go with it, like a pork chop or even sometimes does help compliment the taste buds. Salud!

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Photo of Fish113d
4.11/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served slightly chilled it pours nearly black with a soft pillowy tan head on top rising to about a finger thick. Sitting it leaves a nice half-finger surface layer. Very nice!

Dark roasty chocolate malts along with toffee hits my nose. A bit of alcohol phenols also come across with some slight earthy hops. Nice.

Sipping reveals a nice chocolate malty start along with some sweet toffee notes as well. A drying bit of alcohol finishes this off with a bit of heat and roasted coffee on the finish.

Nice body and nice feel overall. The alcohol becomes present on the finish and makes me like it even more. wow!

One of the better roasty beers I've had this year at the end of the winter and beginning of spring months. Cheers!

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Photo of ksimons
3.67/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-almost black with a thin layer of a light tan head

S-Roasted malt and coffee, dark chocolate, and a light smokiness

T-taste is similar to the smell but seems a bit thinner, maybe things will pick up when it warms a bit. Roasted malt and coffee with notes of dark chocolate and a decent amount of citrus hop bitterness.

M-lighter than expected but gets bigger the warmer the beer gets, light to medium carbonation, dry finish

Overall it is ok, the citrus hops sort of throw me though. The body and taste improves with warming and leaves you with a roasted malt, chocolate, citrus taste.

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Photo of KDawg
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from bottle into a pint glass. Pours a dark black color with a chocolaty head

powerful aromas of dark chocolate, malts, and ground coffee. Very good depth as well

full bodied with lots of malts and coffee. Very good depth and the feel is very good

A quality imperial porter. While it isn't the most complex, it does what it does very well

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Photo of tylerprince
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber (2011) into a pint glass.

A: Near pitch black (light shines through 4 mm) with a two-finger, tan head. Decent retention as the head gives way into some great lacing.

S: Milk chocolate and coffee. Mostly chocolate when cold; transforms into coffee as it warms.

T: Coffee and chocolate up front gives way to a chocolatey yet hoppy bitterness. A subtle and brilliant twist. Also some smoke that lingers with the bitterness. A good place for this beer to really shine.

M: Creamy but cut with a moderate level of carbonation. Very little alcohol sensation despite the ABV and a high level of drinkability for a porter.

O: A delicious porter that I wish they sold by the six or four of these bombers and I'm actually feeling it a bit. I would seek this out.

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Photo of Imsothirsty
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark oily brown. Huge foamy head quickly recedes down to a half finger but stays rocky.

Smell: What the? This cant be a porter its all hops on the nose, floral first followed by some really nice citrus and this bottle isn't even all that fresh. Just a tiny bit of coffee aroma.

Taste: Starts with a quick bittersweet chocolate hit followed by roasty coffee notes and some toffee, sadly the hops didnt make an appearance here except for maybe a smidge of bitterness, the alcohol was not apparent. The warmer it gets the more coffee comes out.

Body is a lighter than expected carbonation is medium, maybe a little high for a porter.

Overall this is a good beer, Im honestly not sure you can call this a porter because of the super strong hop aroma. If you love the smell of hop but not the taste and love the taste of roasted malts but not the smell, this could be your ultimate beer.

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Photo of SeussMD
4.19/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

How do you know craft beer is really making a dent in the marketplace? When you can find a bottle of Long Trail Brewmaster Series Imperial Porter at the Stop & Shop in Unionville, CT. 22 oz. bottle, "Vintage 2011." Stamp on the bottle says "090611," so one presumes this was bottled shortly after Irene tore through the state. Vermont Strong, indeed!

Poured into: My brand-new Boulevard Brewery tulip glass, which came in the four-pack "Smokestack Series" that I received as a gift. Should porter be served in a tulip? Don't know, but it's working here; it's bringing out the aroma beautifully.

Appearance: Black body, slightly opaque near the coffee-and-cream colored head a good two inches out of the first pour; subsequent refreshing about an inch. Decent lacing that dissipates quickly.

Smell: Divine (and this is where the tulip glass does its magic). Roasty-toasty malts galore, French roast coffee, a hint of dried fruit; hop notes are subtle at first and step to the forefront once it warms -- grapefruit peel, so I'm guessing those are the Centennials. The aroma says "drink me." Maybe the best aroma I've ever encountered in the style, and I love porter.

Taste: Hard to know where to start. Bottle was stored at about 50 degrees so it was never too cold, but the malts were more prominent at the cooler temperatures; slight coffee, caramel, dried fruit. The label says "robust malt flavor," but as it warms slightly, the hops take over the dance floor and start a mosh pit. By the end of the bottle all I could taste were hops. And oh yes, there's alcohol in here; the label says 8.3 ABV but it feels like 10 or more. Is this an IPA?

Mouthfeel: Slightly heavy but balanced as the hopped dryness starts kicking in. Head/lacing is creamy. Gets a little syrupy by the end of the bottle.

Overall: An American porter with the kick-ass brawn of a Baltic. Nicely done, Long Trail. And let the record show that my string of never having a bad Vermont beer remains unchallenged. Not a session beer -- as I said before, "Vermont Strong," indeed -- but certainly a satisfying experience. "Warming," let's say. Better at cooler temperature, before the hops cue up "White Riot" by The Clash and start breaking furniture.

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Photo of kennylopez
3.95/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a mini nonic. (shared it with my older brother who doesn't usually drink good beer.

Appearance: it is quite dark black with a minimal head and no lacing.

Smells: slight roasted scent with a mild hop character that sets a tone.

Tastes: a bitter sweetness that has the roasted malt and a bitter hop note.

Mouthfeel: the 8.3% is smooth with the carbonation despite the head.

Overall: I payed $4 for a 22 oz bottle and shared it with my older brother and I must say it was a pleasure. It wasn't either of our favorites, but we both made a memory with it which is a reason I like sharing a brew with enjoyable company. I would buy another bottle for this reason, but ot worth a hunt.

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Photo of challenja
4.7/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served On Tap 4oz (pours) because I drink many many of these in a sitting at the Black Squirrel in Adams Morgan DC.

A: Dark smoked chocolate, deep french press. A frothy 2 finger head that takes 3 minutes to dissipate.

S: Not super aromatic, dark cherries, malt balls, a french coffee presence.

T: This is a really awesome thick creamy dark chocolate french press bomb! Really heavy bitter dark chocolate and french press coffee ground madness! Heavy frothy smoked malt.

M: Heavy carbonation for a porter but it does it extremely well and its carbonation lingers well in-between in the gums and plays with my emotions like a succubus.

O: This is my favorite porter of all time! This bitch slaps the competition. Founders has taken a back seat to the new king!

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Photo of rlee1390
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-Black with a two finger head, midway between white and tan, leave behind wonderful lacing.

S-Lots of roasted malt, some hops are present as well

T-Boat load of roasted malt, a little coffee, some chocolate. Ends with decent bitterness.

M-Medium bodied, somewhere between smooth and creamy

O-One of the Long Trail's best offerings. The bitterness at the end is a great touch.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I purchased this bottle from Wegmans -enjoyed chilled from a willybecker.

The color is black and opaque with a thick 3 finger medium tan cap, thick lace clings and bead is ultra fine with very good retention.
The smell is fruity and roasty with slightly hoppy aroma with a light woody scent and an intensely chocolate note in the malt iwth light citrus accents. Thick, viscous feel with moderately high carbonation and medium bitterness with a subtle roast and light creamy tinge with a subtle warming of alcohol in the texture iwth light drying finish and moderately spiced throughout.

The taste is toasty with a lithg brown sugar flavor with subtle citrus tinges and mild woody notes up front. The taste has more roasted coffee in the taste with light grapefruit coming from the hops as it warms with a mild amount of grain astringency and slight bit of bittersweet cocoa and a honee aspect in the woody/roasty finish w/ a mildly sugar taste as it warms with slight stone fruit element in the finish. Overall a nice hoppy porter with light alcohol flavor and pretty smooth for an 8.3% Imperial porter

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Photo of chugalug06
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle dated - 08/09/10

A - Awesome light straw colored head. Lots of big bubbles and foam. Brew is very black with slight red and purple. Nice lacing. Decent wafer of head remains too

S - Lots of awesome milk chocolate. Very roasty with slight caramel-ness. Some vanilla too. Not very aggressive for the style. A slight funk too.

T/M - Very silky and smooth. Great use of malt for to add to the texture and and flavor; robust and (slightly) smokey. No flavor is over-bearing. Slightly over sweet. Perfect carbonation and zero bitterness or heat. Leaves your tongue slightly dry and yearning for more!

O - Awesome brew. Very much enjoyed this brew. Smooth and delicious. If all IPs were like this one, it would be the only style I would drink... Highly recommended.

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Photo of morebeergood
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased a bottle in 2010 and cellared it until 2012. Opened tonight and poured into stemmed glass. Dark brown colored body, and a very nice sized light tan head forms. No lack of carbonation here, still plenty left after some time aging. Great amount of lacing on the glass too. Smell was a bit hoppier than I was expecting, but it was still pleasant. Taste was a nice combination of roasted malt and up front hops. I had no idea this was a hoppy porter when I bought it, and I think some time really helped tame some of the edge. I really liked the balance of flavors. Mouthfeel was smooth but substantial. The 8.3% abv was still noticeable. To drink this beer fresh would really showcase the hops, but some aging probably helped to mellow this beer into a malty porter. I'd buy a 2011 version this time, as I think I recall it was fairly well priced, like only $6-7. A bargain.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a tumbler pint, the beer is of the 2011 Vintage. It pours a jet black, with a slick, creamy look to it. No head to speak of, and some very faint light brown highlights around the edges. Aromas are highlighted by dark roasted coffee, with sweet background scents of chocolate and hazelnut. Also some cream characteristics on the nose. The beer's flavor is very forward on the tongue, with a heavily roasted and slightly charred character initially, and dark roasted coffee sortly behind that. The chocolate flavors come in dark, bitter waves as you drink this thin, solid bodied brew. There are some dark fruit highlights in the flavor profile, as well, but I am unable to distinguish them out. The aftertaste is very roasty, with a stale coffee flavor to it that is not unpleasant. The finish has a slight linger to it, and the bitter coffee and dark chocolate leave an air in mouth and on the palate. This is a sipper, and one that should be enjoyed slowly. Very strong representation of the style, and a very good beer, indeed.

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Imperial Porter (Brewmaster Series) from Long Trail Brewing Co.
4.06 out of 5 based on 378 ratings.
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