Cellar Reviews (2020)

Discussion in 'Cellaring / Aging Beer' started by TheGent, Jan 1, 2020.

  1. argock

    argock Poo-Bah (3,341) Dec 30, 2006 Virginia
    Society

    2014 Bell’s Expedition Stout
    13504 PKGD 09/18/14 C stamped on back label. Cellared in box In basement at 60-65F. Poured into a snifter.

    A: Jet black with beige ring of head that lingers and leaves dots of lacing.

    S: Amazing dark malt aroma — black coffee, prunes, roast but not ashy, lightly sweet caramel, touch of oxidation, tons of toffee in the retronasal.

    F: Flavor is also stellar with none of the licorice notes (maybe slight in the finish but ignoring) that older vintages sometimes have a high amount of. Delicious decadent dark malt and toffee notes with raisin, prune, light roast, espresso, and vanilla sweet notes in the finish. Really a treat —I was expecting a licorice bomb but this is a spectacular cellared beer. Alcohol is very well-hidden but the flavor is dense. Aftertaste with smoky dark coffee and burnt raisin.

    M: Full-bodied but not syrupy with some residual carbonation.

    O: I am going to be hitting these ExpStouts hard over the next 6-12 months if they taste like this. I am going to try a few older ones I have saved back to see if they tend to have more licorice like I remember.
     
  2. Beersnake1

    Beersnake1 Poo-Bah (2,304) Aug 17, 2013 California
    Society Trader

    You bet!
     
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  3. Beersnake1

    Beersnake1 Poo-Bah (2,304) Aug 17, 2013 California
    Society Trader

    I think version 1.0 DEFINITELY improved. This one holds up.
     
  4. Beersnake1

    Beersnake1 Poo-Bah (2,304) Aug 17, 2013 California
    Society Trader

    2017 barleywine. This is amazing stuff. I still have one 2013 that I will crack soon. Tons of figs, raisins, and toffee on the nose. The bourbon comes through nicely - imparts some nice vanilla notes. Taste is super complex and tasty. Toffee, sweet candy, a touch of oaky bitterness, spice, bourbon, dark fruits, and maybe a little bit of soy sauce. Overall, this has aged nicely. I still prefer the older vintages, but I am a happy camper.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Davl22

    Davl22 Aspirant (269) Sep 27, 2011 New Hampshire
    Trader

    2018 BCBS Vanilla
    [​IMG]

    I never cracked a fresh bottle, but heard the vanilla was overwhelming at release. I honestly was a little underwhelmed. It still had all the best qualities of BC, with an enhanced vanilla frosting finish that gets a little stronger as it warms. I would drink this ASAP if you’re looking for a Vanilla forward stout. It seems to be dropping off quickly.
    I did have Cycle Blend 1 the night before and thoroughly enjoyed it. I actually rated it higher. Granted BC had an extra 6-9 months on it, but take that as you will.
     
  6. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Poo-Bah (6,684) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Society

    Schmaltz Jewbelation 21 (2017)

    Pours slightly murky dark brown with ruby highlights at the edge of the glass. Tan colored head that fades fast. Aroma of dark caramel, plum, fig, and raisin. Taste is similar flavors, pretty sweet. A touch of earthy hops. Medium to full bodied, lower carbonation, slick feel.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. unlikelyspiderperson

    unlikelyspiderperson Meyvn (1,247) Mar 12, 2013 California
    Society Trader

    Are.they still around out in the north east. 10 years ago or so they were a regular presence in my fridge (the uncle something rye something was my jam!) But they've disappeared from shelves out here and I always wondered if it was just contracting their footprint or they went under
     
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  8. argock

    argock Poo-Bah (3,341) Dec 30, 2006 Virginia
    Society

    2010 North Coast Old Stock Ale
    Cellared at 60-65F. Served in a Duvel tulip.

    A: Kind of prune juice looking with small off-white head that sticks with the beer in a rim of bubbles..

    S: Fig, prune, raisin, and red grape with low note of vinous alcohol in the background.

    T: Delicious with no oxidation character which is amazing to me. Flavor is divine with fig, raisin, date, and plum all glorified with a sustained underlying bitterness and light herbal hop note. Some medium crystal malt flavor provides another layer of complexity without being cloying.

    M: Smooth with medium body and low carbonation.

    O: Amazing cellared beer — I don’t know how much longer this can go but this bottle was spectacular.
     
  9. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Poo-Bah (6,684) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Society

    So if I understand correctly, they finally had their own brewery in upstate NY, but then sold it to Single Cut. So I guess they are back to contract brewing a few beers. But they still have a little bottle shop in Troy NY. I was there a month ago and they were selling a bunch of these vintage Jewbelation beers.

    The beer you remember is probably this one:
    https://www.beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/262/30970/
     
  10. unlikelyspiderperson

    unlikelyspiderperson Meyvn (1,247) Mar 12, 2013 California
    Society Trader

    thats the one. im a sucker for rye ipa
     
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  11. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Poo-Bah (6,684) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Society

    Yeah, I am bummed that Founders Red Rye went draft only. Haven't seen it since.
     
  12. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (7,078) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Society Trader

    I have one bottle of this left. The other bottle that I did have was no less than fantastic.
     
  13. strohme2

    strohme2 Meyvn (1,305) Nov 3, 2007 Michigan
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  14. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Poo-Bah (6,684) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
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  15. ericwo

    ericwo Initiate (96) Aug 21, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Trader

    This is that emergency that we've been cellaring beer for all these years. Today dug out a Bruery GFAR from 2011. Not noticing any signs of being 9+ years old. Has held up extremely well. If this isn't a time to work on your cellar, then there never will be one. Cheers!
     
  16. foundersasap

    foundersasap Aspirant (282) Feb 2, 2015 Michigan
    Trader

    This beer was released a few months ago and is readily avail on shelf’s here in MI.
     
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  17. kemoarps

    kemoarps Poo-Bah (1,888) Apr 30, 2008 Washington
    Society Trader

    We had a discussion in a different thread recently about coffee beers, so I thought I'd pull this guy out. I know coffee is supposed to be one of the flavours that falls off most quickly, so lets find out, shall we?

    I was BIGLY enamoured of this one when I first had it fresh back in January 2017. Unfortunately, I did not write down what year this bottle I'm about to open is, and I can't find any indication anywhere on the bottle from the brewery itself (that's a bit of a pet peeve of mine), so I'm going to assume it's likely that same year (2016/2017), though it's possible it could be older.

    [​IMG]

    Still a pretty little pour. Head retention is not quite as strong, though it does maintain a steady fuzzy presence.
    Nose has fallen off a fair amount. What was, 'clean coffee and chocolate,' is now largely faded overall. Some generic roast and light fruitiness that reminds me of unroasted coffee beans.
    I get a similar impression with the flavour. What was originally creamy smoothe chocolate and coffee has now been dominated by the lactose, a flavour component that I once really enjoyed, but I find myself largely turned off by at this point in my beer-drinking career. The chocolate that once straddled the line between bitter bakers chocolate and rich fudge now tastes more like chocolate syrup, and where once was artisan coffee-shop java, it's now just kind of a general acridity that is subsumed by the lactose. I think the chocolate and the coffee (the chocolate more so) could have carried a decently pleasant course forward, but the lactose just rolls up and dominates everything and I no longer find that an appealing characteristic.
    Body is no longer the creamy smoothe experience I had three years ago, but a sticky thin carbonated thing.

    [​IMG]

    I'm sure at least some of this is evolving tastes on my part, but a lot of it is undeniably the aging of this particular bottle itself. I wouldnt say this is a 'failed' experiment as it's still drinkable (and even somewhat enjoyable once you get past the overwhelming lactose), but it is not one I feel the need to replicate any time soon.
     
  18. Whyteboar

    Whyteboar Initiate (117) Jun 7, 2008 Michigan
    Trader

    They canned it for release in Michigan only. Just hit last week. It's really nice to have in the fridge once again.
     
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  19. strohme2

    strohme2 Meyvn (1,305) Nov 3, 2007 Michigan
    Society Trader

    [​IMG]

    Opened after missing #cellarsaturday with a bunch of virtual friends. This is my last 2013.

    Popped in the fridge for 15 minutes after pulling from the cellar.
    After a somewhat aggressive pour this is about all the head I could muster. Faded fairly quickly leaving only a small ring around the glass. Nose is just as I remember it, but smoother. Bourbon, roast, fudge, a touch vanilla.
    My oh my. I’m almost regretting opening this.
    This beer is so smooth. Fudgey but with bakers chocolate and walnuts. Coconut, vanilla, the smoothest bourbon and oak, toasted dark breads. It retains a chewy and velvety smooth mouthfeel.
    This is an absolute pleasure to drink. Cheers!
     
  20. maximum12

    maximum12 Poo-Bah (4,566) Jan 21, 2008 Minnesota
    Society Trader

    Cigar City Marshal Zhukov - Sherry Barrel Aged

    I loved this fresh, but had no idea what four years would do to a sherry barrel beer. Popped it open during family movie time last night (thus no detailed review) with no expectations, & holy crap. Even better than fresh, this has edged up to phenomenal. The sherry is still strong, but has retreated just enough to let the base Zhukov start to shine through. The balance is exquisite & I was sorry to see it go.

    If you're still hanging onto one of these for whatever reason, go get it. Clear A+ beer for me at this stage of its development.
     
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  21. BeardedWalrus

    BeardedWalrus Devotee (405) Jun 5, 2018 North Carolina
    Trader

    2014 Sucré. Poured into my favorite 10 oz snifter, poured aggressively it yields a thin off white head that dissipates quickly, with some lacing in the glass. Color is a dark, deep amber with almost no visibility. Smell is big and bold, the bourbon just wafts off, along with big caramel, toffee, raisin, all with a strong sweetness. Taste is phenomenal, about the richest bourbon flavor I've ever gotten from any beer. But it's not overpowering, I can still pick out the accompanying flavors of vanilla, toffee, caramel, and a hint of oak towards the back end. Feel is incredibly sticky, it just coats everything inch of your mouth, just bordering on overdoing itself. Overall yet another phenomenal brew from the folks at the Bruery, though I can't imagine ever tasting a subpar beer from them.

    [​IMG]
     
  22. brian4beer

    brian4beer Initiate (152) Jan 27, 2013 Indiana
    Trader

    [​IMG]
    2011-original owner. Great opening nose of raspberries. Still great carbonation. Has gotten a bit more funky and sour over the years but in a good way. I really enjoy this beer (99 boos was one of the best beers I have ever tried) and I think it will continue to do well over the next 10 plus years if stored appropriately.
     
  23. Beersnake1

    Beersnake1 Poo-Bah (2,304) Aug 17, 2013 California
    Society Trader

    2014 Firestone Anniversary Ale. Nose has an incredible sweetness. Some really nice red grapes/raisins notes, along with toffee, brown sugar, vanilla, bourbon, and candy. The taste is very nice - mostly sweet, but with a bitterness on the back end. Upfront is candy, maple, raisins, plums, chocolate, and some vanilla. After that is a touch of tobacco, some charred wood, and a bit of coffee grounds. The latter three are fairly mild though. Mouthfeel remains thick and creamy. Overall, this is one of those stouts that ages very nicely.

    [​IMG]
     
  24. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Poo-Bah (6,684) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Society

    KBS - dated February 2018, so just over 2 years old.

    Black in color, thick tan colored head that fades. Aroma of bourbon, vanilla, bitter cocoa and coffee. The coffee and chocolate taste is mostly gone, is mostly whiskey and the flavor is fairly bitter and a touch acidic. Thick, full bodied.
    Definitely not as good as fresh. This bottle was the last from a four pack that I tried some aging with. But I will stick to drinking this beer fresh in the future.

    [​IMG]
     
  25. argock

    argock Poo-Bah (3,341) Dec 30, 2006 Virginia
    Society

    2015 Founders Imperial Stout
    12/02/15 stamp on back label. Cellared at 65F in basement.
    Poured into a mini-snifter/mead goblet — shared with my wife! Serving temp 52F.

    Cake batter brown head with good retention and scattered scraps of lacing as I make it through the glass.

    Aroma of dark chocolate, espresso, hint of licorice, prunes and dates with slight ash

    Flavor is delicious chocolate covered graham crackers with espresso mid-palate and touch of ash on the finish.

    Feel full-bodied with low carbonation but not syrupy.

    Delicious — mellower than the 2016 from a week or so ago but still some booze and plenty of lush imperial stout flavor. Need to move to MI!
     
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  26. jvgoor3786

    jvgoor3786 Poo-Bah (1,778) May 28, 2015 Arkansas
    Society Trader

    [​IMG]

    2016 version. Almost no carbonation left. Very sweet. Like a brandy brownie. Still has that great, velvety mouthfeel.
     
  27. neenerzig

    neenerzig Poo-Bah (2,597) Feb 15, 2006 Ohio
    Society

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  28. argock

    argock Poo-Bah (3,341) Dec 30, 2006 Virginia
    Society

    2011 SN Bigfoot
    Collared at 65F in the basement.
    Decanted carefully into a Duvel tulip (snifter broke). Serving temp 51F.

    Slightly hazy amber with healthy (for collared beer) light beige 1-finger head that drops quickly but leaves some dots of lacing.

    Aroma with ultra-burnt caramel aroma with nougat, milk chocolate, mild butterscotch, and light herbal hop note.

    Flavor is smooth and sweet with amazing range of caramel and some tootsie roll and lighter background herbal, leafy character. Moderately bitter.

    Feel is really smooth and silky with low carbonation tacky sweetness on the finish.

    Delicious and makes me think the 2010-2015 SN Bigfoot vertical I have is about ready to go.
     
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  29. Beersnake1

    Beersnake1 Poo-Bah (2,304) Aug 17, 2013 California
    Society Trader

    2015 Mother of all Storms. Nose is full of toffee (one of the best BA barleywines for this!), vanilla, figs, raisins, port, bourbon. Taste is ridiculously smooth and complex. Super thick and full of rich malts, toffee, candy, tree sap, bourbon, wood, raisins, dark cherries, and brown sugar. I just love this fresh AND aged.

    [​IMG]
     
  30. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Poo-Bah (6,684) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Society

    2016 Red Brick - Beard Envy BBA Barleywine

    Clear dark amber color. Thin cream colored head that fades fast. Toffee, caramel, vanilla in the aroma and taste. Not overly sweet. Lower carbonation, sticky mouthfeel.

    [​IMG]
     
  31. brian4beer

    brian4beer Initiate (152) Jan 27, 2013 Indiana
    Trader

    [​IMG]
    2010. I’ve had this multiple times over the years and this has always been a favorite beer of mine. This bottle has lost some of the vanilla on the nose as well as in the taste. Still a very visceral thick mouth feel. Minimal oxidization but it is starting to come through. Overall still a very solid beer for the age but not the same as it once was in terms of a vanilla bomb. My last bottle of this and doubt I will ever come across again
     
  32. Scotchboy

    Scotchboy Meyvn (1,416) Dec 7, 2010 Idaho
    Trader

    Just discovered this thread and will be revisiting occasionally. Decided to pop a FW 14 tonight -

    [​IMG]

    Aged partially in a 60-degree cellar/basement, and the last 5 years in a beer fridge.

    Looking at my old review from 2012, I would honestly say not much has changed -

    A: Still murky and nearly opaque with a stunning ruby-red section at the stem of the glass. Khaki head dies quickly (expected) - also, still no lacing (also expected). But carbonation appears fine for a big beer.

    S: Tons of sweet-er spirit and dark, sticky fruits still dominate. Vanilla and toffee are strong, oak and red wine as well.

    T: Strong alcohol notes on the front, almost medicinal at times, but with waves of caramel, sticky dates, coconut, vanilla, chocolate, oak, and sweet bourbon. Oxidation is fairly muted to be honest. The strength of the alcohol is surprising to me for a 10 year old bottle.

    MF: Thinned here, not as viscous but still sticky.

    O: Really, a pretty decent experiment. I’m not sure the beer has gotten worse, and I’m also not sure that it would have been better five years ago.

    [​IMG]
     
  33. CaptainHate

    CaptainHate Crusader (709) Apr 22, 2006 Ohio

    2019 River Roost Brewery Rhythm of the Night Batch 4 (Barleywine and Imperial Stout blend)

    4.47/5 rDev -0.7%
    look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

    Picked this up at the brewery in September while on vacation and stored @ 50 degrees. Bottled on 9/4/19 in 375 ml bottle poured into a DFH tulip. Slight foamy tan head which faded rapidly into a ring over a dark inky body. Could smell the boozy sweetness as soon as I popped the cap. Brown sugar, dark fruit, molasses and rye whisky aromas. Can't really detect the stout presence in the smell or taste; definitely more of an old ale/barleywine feel. Taste is superb with the smell components plus a leather presence. Mouthfeel is suitably chewy with still a slight carbonation lightness. I'm really glad I picked this up. I'm not sure what further aging would have accomplished because this tastes wonderfully balanced with no hop presence to fade.
     
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  34. toolbrew

    toolbrew Defender (621) Feb 26, 2008 Indiana
    Trader

    Short’s XIV Anniversary Ale - Blood Orange Wheat Whine w/ peppercorns, blood orange and orange zest. Pkg 040918

    Poured into a ball jar glass. Pours a clear light brown, iced tea color with little to no head or carbonation. Mostly boozey aroma. Taste is some orange, with a mint flavor, little boozey, and slightly bitter finish. Bitter finish stays in the mouth. Overall an interesting beer and I have one more bottle to revisit at a later date.
     
  35. dukeandduke

    dukeandduke Meyvn (1,318) Feb 2, 2015 Illinois
    Society Trader

    This is my first ever post in the cellar thread. Beyond my BCS cellar beer, these pours I will be rating throughout 2020 are less intentional but rather beers I did not get to in my refrigerator and or cellar throughout the years. I have learned a lot about beers and cellaring since the 2014-2015 time frame when I first started purchasing "craft" beers, but still have much more to learn, and I enjoy the process and journey.

    These two pours have been stored in the back of by refrigerator for years. I don't believe they suffered for this treatment beyond perhaps the chalky mouthfeel of the Chocolate Quad. The bitterness in the Delirium was somewhat surprising based on the sweeter aroma, but this taste feature is consistent with many other posted reviews, so I don't believe the age caused it, but as always welcome any feedback to better my understanding.

    This is a two for over the weekend, didn't need a second beer after either of these two powerful offerings.

    Saturday pour: 2014 Castle Brewery Van Honsebrouck Belgium Ale Barista Chocolate Quad 25.4 oz 11% abv (by Kasteel).Purchased several years ago for $4.99 on clearance at a store I cannot recollect.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Appearance:
    Dark brown black pour, tan light bubbly head quickly dissipates leaving light bubbly lacing. 4.0.
    Aroma:
    Rich roast chocolate and malt aroma, very sweet. 4.25.
    Taste:
    Roast malt and chocolate taste, very sweet. 3.50.
    Mouthfeel:
    Fizzy carbonation lingers throughout the pour, medium lightly creamy body, slightly dry, chalky. 3.75.
    Overall:
    Very good dessert quad offering. 3.75

    Sunday Pour: 750ml Delirium Argentum
    7.0% ABV Bottled May 21, 2015 by family owned Huyghe Brewery.

    [​IMG]


    Stored in my refrigerator since purchase, this was a very smooth and creamy pour (ok multiple pours), glad I pulled this out today.

    Bottle stated 2014, but the cork and date code indicated a bottle date and time of 11:42 on May 21, 2015 (141st day of 2015).

    Appearance: Poured into a chalice, very creamy reach bubbly off white head lasts a long time, leaving generous creamy lacing in it's wake. Mild carbonation throughout the pour, beige orange colour, some floaters milling about. 4.25

    Aroma: Nice fruity bread aroma, raisins, dates, figs, apricot. Bold, slightly sweet and pleasant. 4.25

    Taste: Unexpected bitterness as compared to the aroma. Bread and raisins hold, the other aroma complexity was not present. 4.0

    Mouthfeel: Fizzy carbonation lingers throughout the pour, creamy rich body, east clean finish. 4.25

    Overall:
    Very good pour, happy I pulled this one today! 4.25

    Hope you enjoyed the reviews, and your respective pours this Sunday, I have enjoyed reading all of the great accounts throughout the thread. I wasn't aware of this thread until recently, despite being on the board since 2015, but I will continue to read and post now that I am aware.

    Cheers!
     
  36. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Poo-Bah (6,684) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Society

    2008 JW Lees Harvest Ale

    pours clear dark chestnut brown in color, no head. chunks of sediment pour out too and eventually settle to the bottom of the glass. aroma and the taste are rich bold toffee, but there is enough earthy tobacco and raisin in there too so it's not cloying or too sweet. medium bodied, low carbonation, a touch syrupy.
    One of my all time favorite beers.

    [​IMG]
     
    #116 jmdrpi, Mar 29, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2020
  37. ManBearPat

    ManBearPat Devotee (481) Dec 2, 2014 Colorado

    Anyone have experience aging Tropic King?

    Seems like a candidate for aging because of the high ABV, but was wondering if anyone had direct experience with it.

    That said- I doubt I’d be able to have the self control to age any lol
     
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  38. unlikelyspiderperson

    unlikelyspiderperson Meyvn (1,247) Mar 12, 2013 California
    Society Trader

    Its a hopped saison from funkwerks ya?

    If so, my first thought would be that the tropical hop.flavors they seem to want to showcase (and possibly what you like about the beer?) aren't likely to age super well.
    That said, depending on whether its a clean or mixed fermentation there could be some interesting changes and new flavors that you enjoy. I mean, it can never hurt to sit on one bottle for 6 months for science right?
     
  39. tobelerone

    tobelerone Poo-Bah (2,773) Dec 1, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    This isn’t universally true but the more I get into it the more I see the Belgian beers are amazing cellar candidates. We just drank a 2013 corked and caged gulden draak that was simply sublime. Sweet, smooth, alcohol moderated and integrated. Present but a contributor and not a detractor. Not at all cellared under optimum conditions but hanging tough and super drinkable, really toned down in comparison to a young bottle.

    we also drank an affligem dubbel that was like 8 years old and it was tolerable for a few ounces then a drain pour...notably oxidized and way too chunky to be enjoyable.
     
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  40. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Poo-Bah (6,684) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Society

    2015 Great Divide Old Ruffian

    12 oz bottle, pours dark brown with garnet colored highlights. Thin cream colored head that fades. Aroma and flavor still have a bit of piney and minty hop bite under the dark caramel malt flavors. A bit bitter, and probably some negative oxidation. After a couple of bottles I would say this beer hasn't aged very well. Medium bodied, lower carbonation. If they ever un-retire this beer, I'll stick to drinking it relatively fresh.
    [​IMG]