MacDonald release is imminent!!!

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AlexO
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MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#1 Post by AlexO » September 7th, 2020, 3:40 pm

The release that many of us have been eagerly awaiting is almost here!

I have been informed that "Save the Dates" will be sent out shortly, and they will indicate that the release is a week from Tuesday.

This is for the 2017 vintage. I have it on good authority that in 2017, MacDonald picked their fruit about 3 weeks before the fires struck in Napa/Sonoma Counties. MacDonald has always tended to pick earlier than many other top Cabernet based wineries, so their vineyard management in 2017 was in keeping with their normal practice.

Sounds like the '17 was a blend of the top rows from all 3 sections of their vineyard, including the 60-70 year old 1/2 acre that many of us are familiar with.

Additionally, they were done with their fermentations before the power outages that may have plagued other wineries in the middle of crush. So their winemaking was unaffected in 2017.

I also hear that production may have crept us very slightly from the '16.

I have yet to taste the '17 as I wasn't able to travel out to CA earlier this year as I normally do, but I think many here on the board have had the pleasure.

Certainly look forward to hearing what everyone has to say about this impending release!
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#2 Post by Andrew K. » September 7th, 2020, 3:58 pm

Anyone looking to share an allocation this year to keep your place on the list, feel free reach out to me.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#3 Post by NED VALOIS » September 7th, 2020, 4:08 pm

2017 MacDonald Cabernet Sauvignon, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review
OCTOBER 16TH, 2019 BY LOREN SONKIN
# Best of Napa, Oakville, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon, California

What a treat. On a recent visit to Napa, we go to walk the vineyards with Alex MacDonald and learn so much about this venerated vineyard and hear about the "newer" winemaking at MacDonald. And to top it off, we got to try the recently bottled 2017 Cabernet (not yet released). The story is worth Googling , but the short version is that at the heart of the To Kalon Vineyard in Napa are some very old Cabernet Sauvignon vines. They have been owned by the MacDonald family since 1954. These have been used in the top Mondavi wines since before there was even a Mondavi Winery. Due to some copyright restrictions, the MacDonald brothers (Alex and Graeme) can not use the name To Kalon. But, they get the pick of the oldest vines and best grapes. Some of the vines are 60 years old, yet amazingly virile and healthy. Hopefully, there will be an article on this winery on this site soon. For now, another tasting note will have to suffice.

The 2017 had been decanted for about 8 hours prior to us trying it. It is purple in color with some deep ruby swirls. The nose is open and very nice. It is big but more in an elegant way. Black cherries, cassis, slight cigar box with underlying char. There is a slight amount of oak (fresh lumber) showing at this age but seemed to integrate quickly in the glass. On the palate, this is surprisingly soft yet with medium tannins. Fresh and lively black cherry fruit with a bit of black licorice. Very nice balance. Long finish. This outshone a 2014 consumed the prior night (note is posted on this site) as it was more accessible and bigger flavors although the 2014 was a bit shut down. They make less than 400 cases and have a waiting list of almost 5,000. Still, this is one to sign up for and hope for the best. It is so young a range would likely be more accurate than a score, but that would be 95-99!

flirtysmile [cheers.gif]

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Rich Brown
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#4 Post by Rich Brown » September 7th, 2020, 4:09 pm

I've sadly got at least a handful more years of cheering from the sidelines, but will look forward to hearing the comments from those much luckier than I
[cheers.gif]

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#5 Post by T. Altmayer » September 7th, 2020, 4:22 pm

Rich Brown wrote:
September 7th, 2020, 4:09 pm
I've sadly got at least a handful more years of cheering from the sidelines, but will look forward to hearing the comments from those much luckier than I
[cheers.gif]
I am undoubtedly in the same boat.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#6 Post by David Baum » September 7th, 2020, 4:27 pm

FWIW production bumped up nicely in 18. That will be the year some of you will get your chance and it is a great vintage

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#7 Post by blarmston » September 7th, 2020, 4:28 pm

I tasted this with Alex at Bistro Jeanty back in early March (so, 32 years ago it seems), and it was delicious. The ‘17 is another in a long string of epic vintages for the MacBros.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#8 Post by PaulMills » September 7th, 2020, 5:10 pm

I am looking forward to the release.

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#9 Post by Demian Saenz » September 7th, 2020, 5:35 pm

I too am a number of years out from an allocation, but if someone wants to share their allocation to stay on the list, please send a DM. Thanks

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#10 Post by P Turk » September 7th, 2020, 5:55 pm

I, too, would gladly share someone’s allocation in the greater Chicagoland area.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#11 Post by Mark Y » September 7th, 2020, 6:23 pm

I’ll share a btl when an ultramarine buyer shares some at cost ;)

EDIT: Shoot...Sorry this was a sarcastic joke at my many failed attempts to get some UM at cost... I do have an allocation of MacD, but i'm sharing some with friends already.. Please spare my inbox.. [cheers.gif]
Last edited by Mark Y on September 7th, 2020, 6:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#12 Post by NickRut » September 7th, 2020, 6:35 pm

Good chance I don’t get an allocation but fingers crossed.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#13 Post by Craig G » September 7th, 2020, 6:54 pm

You guys are really generous to help folks out by sharing their allocations!
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#14 Post by MarkStDBA » September 7th, 2020, 7:07 pm

[dance-clap.gif] [dance-clap.gif] [dance-clap.gif]
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#15 Post by Brian Lynch » September 7th, 2020, 7:22 pm

The 17 was smoking in January after a few hour decant so line up. Some Herculean efforts of the team and some local friends to stave off the fire made this possible. Saw some pics re the course of the fire while in the vineyard and it really made an impact on how real and imminent the threat was. Unreal stuff.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#16 Post by Joe B » September 7th, 2020, 7:40 pm

When is release?
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#17 Post by MatthewT » September 7th, 2020, 8:04 pm

Excited to buy my usual case and 3 magnums but hoping I get a 3 Liter this year. How many years does it usually take before you get a 3L?
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#18 Post by Craig G » September 7th, 2020, 8:16 pm

MatthewT wrote:
September 7th, 2020, 8:04 pm
Excited to buy my usual case and 3 magnums but hoping I get a 3 Liter this year. How many years does it usually take before you get a 3L?
I signed up in 27 BC and have not been offered a 3L yet, but hoping for this year.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#19 Post by Mark Y » September 7th, 2020, 8:24 pm

MatthewT wrote:
September 7th, 2020, 8:04 pm
Excited to buy my usual case and 3 magnums but hoping I get a 3 Liter this year. How many years does it usually take before you get a 3L?
It’s only offered to the super awesome tier...
[rofl.gif]
Y.e.

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#20 Post by MatthewT » September 8th, 2020, 5:07 am

Mark Y wrote:
September 7th, 2020, 8:24 pm
MatthewT wrote:
September 7th, 2020, 8:04 pm
Excited to buy my usual case and 3 magnums but hoping I get a 3 Liter this year. How many years does it usually take before you get a 3L?
It’s only offered to the super awesome tier...
[rofl.gif]
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#21 Post by Ian S » September 8th, 2020, 6:07 am

MatthewT wrote:
September 7th, 2020, 8:04 pm
Excited to buy my usual case and 3 magnums but hoping I get a 3 Liter this year. How many years does it usually take before you get a 3L?
Are you sure you won't get booted for being a de Negoce shill? [snort.gif] neener [stirthepothal.gif]
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#22 Post by David Baum » September 8th, 2020, 7:39 am

MatthewT wrote:
September 7th, 2020, 8:04 pm
Excited to buy my usual case and 3 magnums but hoping I get a 3 Liter this year. How many years does it usually take before you get a 3L?
Do you get the sauv blanc yet? When you do you'll know you are close

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#23 Post by Matt N » September 8th, 2020, 8:21 am

[cheers.gif] Adding my name to the list of people who would be delighted to help someone who doesn’t want to buy this year but wants to preserve their spot on the list..
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#24 Post by Jeff_M. » September 8th, 2020, 8:58 am

On the outside looking in with this release. Maybe one day.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#25 Post by Mstanford » September 8th, 2020, 10:20 am

Just got the Macdonald email - looks like 392 cases for 2017 vintage. How’s that vs. 16? Anyone remember
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#26 Post by JYoung » September 8th, 2020, 10:26 am

Mstanford wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 10:20 am
Just got the Macdonald email - looks like 392 cases for 2017 vintage. How’s that vs. 16? Anyone remember
My email from last year says 369.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#27 Post by Mike Stoneking » September 8th, 2020, 10:44 am

JYoung wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 10:26 am
Mstanford wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 10:20 am
Just got the Macdonald email - looks like 392 cases for 2017 vintage. How’s that vs. 16? Anyone remember
My email from last year says 369.
So you're saying there's a chance?? [snort.gif]
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#28 Post by Gray G » September 8th, 2020, 11:18 am

thank you to those offering to share their bottles albeit understandably at market, cheers
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#29 Post by Anton D » September 8th, 2020, 11:35 am

David Baum wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 7:39 am
MatthewT wrote:
September 7th, 2020, 8:04 pm
Excited to buy my usual case and 3 magnums but hoping I get a 3 Liter this year. How many years does it usually take before you get a 3L?
Do you get the sauv blanc yet? When you do you'll know you are close
Dang, I was happy to start getting their sparkling wine and their chardonnay. Now you tell me there's a sauv blanc?
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#30 Post by John Webber » September 8th, 2020, 11:38 am

Tasted in early August and I can strongly recommend the 2017. Sorry, no detailed notes because it was more about meeting Alex and seeing the vineyard that trip.

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#31 Post by NickRut » September 8th, 2020, 12:14 pm

No email... bad sign. Dang it
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#32 Post by Craig G » September 8th, 2020, 12:18 pm

Mike Stoneking wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 10:44 am
JYoung wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 10:26 am
Mstanford wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 10:20 am
Just got the Macdonald email - looks like 392 cases for 2017 vintage. How’s that vs. 16? Anyone remember
My email from last year says 369.
So you're saying there's a chance?? [snort.gif]
No. They said they decided to put it all in one very large bottle.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#33 Post by Sherri S h a p i r o » September 8th, 2020, 12:49 pm

For those looking to buy or sell, please post in commerce corner. Let's try to keep this thread on the release.

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#34 Post by MatthewT » September 8th, 2020, 1:07 pm

Sherri S h a p i r o wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 12:49 pm
For those looking to buy or sell, please post in commerce corner. Let's try to keep this thread on the release.
It's 500 people looking to buy at release price and not a single person looking to sell at release price, LOL

[rofl.gif] [rofl.gif] [rofl.gif]
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#35 Post by Andrew Gold » September 8th, 2020, 2:04 pm

Those on the waitlist (me included), when did you sign up?

I signed up in April of '15, emailed to confirm my interest last fall... Alex has always responded quickly, and generously invited me to visit/share a glass, though I've yet to take him up on it, though has been frank that there's very little turnover so very few folks making it onto the active list.

I remain excited to try them sometime!

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#36 Post by Bdklein » September 8th, 2020, 2:08 pm

Bruce Klein

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#37 Post by Warren Taranow » September 8th, 2020, 2:24 pm

AlexO wrote:
September 7th, 2020, 3:40 pm
... the 60-70 year old 1/2 acre that many of us are familiar with.
I love that 1/2 acre!

.
75AE6245-B638-41DD-B5CD-A461771DD00F.jpeg
.


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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#38 Post by dennis.coronado » September 8th, 2020, 2:44 pm

Joe B wrote:
September 7th, 2020, 7:40 pm
When is release?
Sept 15

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#39 Post by Scott Brunson » September 8th, 2020, 3:12 pm

Craig G wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 12:18 pm
Mike Stoneking wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 10:44 am
JYoung wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 10:26 am


My email from last year says 369.
So you're saying there's a chance?? [snort.gif]
No. They said they decided to put it all in one very large, etched by garden gnomes bottle.
fify

As always, can’t wait. I can confirm that Alex said they picked and fermented before the fires.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#40 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » September 8th, 2020, 3:41 pm

MatthewT wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 1:07 pm
Sherri S h a p i r o wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 12:49 pm
For those looking to buy or sell, please post in commerce corner. Let's try to keep this thread on the release.
It's 500 people looking to buy at release price and not a single person looking to sell at release price, LOL

[rofl.gif] [rofl.gif] [rofl.gif]
Why would ANYONE sell at release price when there are brokers offers 2X pre-release? I'm not going be generous to a fellow member with under 100 posts just to have him/her flip it immediately.

To be clear, I am a buyer and have been for years. No intent to flip or monetize the wine. If someone I knew from the board for YEARS and had a visible track record of drinking high end and allocated wines, I would share.

YMMV
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#41 Post by Joe B » September 8th, 2020, 5:07 pm

Bill Tex Landreth wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 3:41 pm
MatthewT wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 1:07 pm
Sherri S h a p i r o wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 12:49 pm
For those looking to buy or sell, please post in commerce corner. Let's try to keep this thread on the release.
It's 500 people looking to buy at release price and not a single person looking to sell at release price, LOL

[rofl.gif] [rofl.gif] [rofl.gif]
Why would ANYONE sell at release price when there are brokers offers 2X pre-release? I'm not going be generous to a fellow member with under 100 posts just to have him/her flip it immediately.

To be clear, I am a buyer and have been for years. No intent to flip or monetize the wine. If someone I knew from the board for YEARS and had a visible track record of drinking high end and allocated wines, I would share.

YMMV
I’m more than happy to get a fourth bottle at cost from you. [wow.gif]
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#42 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » September 8th, 2020, 8:13 pm

Joe B wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 5:07 pm
Bill Tex Landreth wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 3:41 pm
MatthewT wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 1:07 pm


It's 500 people looking to buy at release price and not a single person looking to sell at release price, LOL

[rofl.gif] [rofl.gif] [rofl.gif]
Why would ANYONE sell at release price when there are brokers offers 2X pre-release? I'm not going be generous to a fellow member with under 100 posts just to have him/her flip it immediately.

To be clear, I am a buyer and have been for years. No intent to flip or monetize the wine. If someone I knew from the board for YEARS and had a visible track record of drinking high end and allocated wines, I would share.

YMMV
I’m more than happy to get a fourth bottle at cost from you. [wow.gif]
I am sure you would, but your overlord doesn’t approve. Nice try
Compact Disc and Wine Theft should be reported and prosecuted.

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#43 Post by J a y H a c k » September 9th, 2020, 7:03 pm

Not reading the thread, but in case no one has previously posted the exact date, I am pleased to announce that in honor of the fact that I might have been the second person on the MacDonald list (Dentice was first but we were only minutes apart), this year the offer will be released on my auspicious 69th Birthday, September 15.
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#44 Post by M. Dildine » September 9th, 2020, 7:09 pm

J a y H a c k wrote:
September 9th, 2020, 7:03 pm
Not reading the thread, but in case no one has previously posted the exact date, I am pleased to announce that in honor of the fact that I might have been the second person on the MacDonald list (Dentice was first but we were only minutes apart), this year the offer will be released on my auspicious 69th Birthday, September 15.
All the more reason to celebrate Jay!
Cheers,

Mike

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#45 Post by AD Northup » September 9th, 2020, 7:11 pm

J a y H a c k wrote:
September 9th, 2020, 7:03 pm
Not reading the thread, but in case no one has previously posted the exact date, I am pleased to announce that in honor of the fact that I might have been the second person on the MacDonald list (Dentice was first but we were only minutes apart), this year the offer will be released on my auspicious 69th Birthday, September 15.
Happy Early Birthday!
A n d r e w N o r t h u p

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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#46 Post by Harris Goldberg » September 10th, 2020, 5:00 am

Cant wait or order my 3 pack. Wonder if there is a wishlist....
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#47 Post by David Glasser » September 10th, 2020, 5:33 am

Warren Taranow wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 2:24 pm
AlexO wrote:
September 7th, 2020, 3:40 pm
... the 60-70 year old 1/2 acre that many of us are familiar with.
I love that 1/2 acre!
06145FE1-E61C-48AF-8BB7-F373CC9C6AE3.jpeg

Cheers,
Warren
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Markus S
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Joined: May 20th, 2010, 7:27 am

Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#48 Post by Markus S » September 10th, 2020, 5:57 am

Usually when somebody says "imminent" it's in relation to a disaster coming 'round the corner....
$ _ € ® e . k @

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PaulMills
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Joined: July 11th, 2012, 4:54 pm
Location: Greenville, SC

Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#49 Post by PaulMills » September 10th, 2020, 6:25 am

Markus S wrote:
September 10th, 2020, 5:57 am
Usually when somebody says "imminent" it's in relation to a disaster coming 'round the corner....
A disaster to my wallet but a delight to my palate.

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Glenn L e v i n e
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Re: MacDonald release is imminent!!!

#50 Post by Glenn L e v i n e » September 10th, 2020, 7:00 am

I’ll pull a cork or two anyone wants to visit SW OR.
"Never lose sight of the fact that it is just fermented grape juice" - a winemaker and negotiant in Napa Valley, CA

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