Tea Tasting Wheel Explained

Unlocking the Secrets of Tea Tasting Wheel

Welcome to the comprehensive guide to understanding the Tea Tasting Wheel and its invaluable role in the art of tea tasting. As tea enthusiasts, we understand the desire to explore and appreciate the complex flavor nuances of different teas. That’s why we’re here to take you on a journey of discovery as we delve into the various segments of the flavor wheel and uncover the techniques to effectively use it to identify and savor the unique characteristics of each tea. By developing your understanding of the Tea Tasting Wheel, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge to elevate your tea tasting experience and expand your palate like never before.

The Basics of Tea Tasting

Before we embark on our exploration of the Tea Tasting Wheel, it’s essential to grasp the basics of tea tasting. In this section, we will provide you with a fundamental understanding of the vocabulary used to describe different flavors in tea and introduce you to the elements of a tea flavor profile. We’ll also equip you with the knowledge of how to use a tea tasting chart effectively. By mastering these fundamentals, you’ll be able to discern and evaluate the distinct characteristics of various teas, allowing you to appreciate the full complexity and depth of flavor that tea has to offer.

In this section, you will learn:

  • The key terminology used in tea tasting to describe flavors
  • The elements of a tea flavor profile
  • How to use a tea tasting chart to guide your tasting sessions

Key Takeaways:

  • Understanding the vocabulary of tea tasting is crucial to effectively communicate and discuss different flavors.
  • A tea flavor profile encompasses the various characteristics and nuances present in a specific tea.
  • A tea tasting chart is a valuable tool that helps you organize and document your tasting experiences.
  • Mastering the basics of tea tasting allows you to develop a refined palate and appreciate the complexities of different teas.
  • Exploring the Tea Tasting Wheel will further enhance your tea tasting skills and ability to identify specific flavor characteristics in different teas.

The Basics of Tea Tasting

When it comes to exploring the world of tea, understanding the basics of tea tasting is essential. Whether you’re a casual tea enthusiast or a connoisseur, developing a refined palate can help you discern and appreciate the unique flavors and nuances of different teas.

To embark on this flavorful journey, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the vocabulary used in tea tasting. By understanding the tea tasting terminology, you can effectively communicate your tasting experiences and discuss the characteristics of various teas.

Let’s start by exploring the elements of a tea flavor profile. A tea’s flavor profile refers to the combination of tastes, aromas, and mouthfeel that contribute to its overall character. When evaluating a tea, you can identify different flavor notes, ranging from floral and vegetal to fruity and nutty.

To aid in the evaluation and description of tea flavors, the tea tasting chart is a valuable tool. This chart provides a visual representation of the different flavor profiles and allows you to make comparisons between teas. It categorizes flavors into major categories, such as sweet, bitter, and savory, enabling you to pinpoint specific taste sensations.

Let’s take a closer look at some common tea tasting terminology:

  • Astringency: The sensation of dryness or puckering in the mouth, often associated with teas high in tannins.
  • Body: The weight and texture of the tea in the mouth, ranging from light to full-bodied.
  • Mouthfeel: The overall sensation of the tea in the mouth, including factors like thickness, smoothness, and viscosity.
  • Finish: The lingering aftertaste of the tea, which can be short and crisp or long and complex.
  • Fragrance: The aroma of the dry leaves, as well as the infused tea.
  • Flavor Notes: Specific taste sensations, such as floral, vegetal, fruity, nutty, or spicy.

Understanding these tea tasting terms will empower you to better appreciate and evaluate the wide range of flavors found in different teas. Let your taste buds guide you as you embark on a journey of tea exploration and discovery.

The Tea Tasting Chart:

Flavor Category Flavor Descriptors
Sweet Malty, honey, caramel, brown sugar
Bitter Dark chocolate, coffee, citrus peel
Savory Grassy, vegetal, seaweed, umami
Floral Jasmine, rose, lavender
Fruity Peach, berry, citrus
Nutty Almond, walnut, chestnut
Spicy Cinnamon, clove, ginger

Use the tea tasting chart as a guide to identify and describe the flavors you encounter in different teas. Experiment with various tea varieties and expand your taste horizons.

Now that we have covered the basics of tea tasting, let’s delve deeper into the rich history of tea in India and explore the different varieties of tea bushes.

The Journey Through Tea Heritage

Embark on a captivating journey through the rich history of tea in India, a country steeped in tea tradition and culture. From ancient times to the present day, tea has played a vital role in shaping India’s identity and economy.

India’s love affair with tea dates back thousands of years, originating in the lush regions of Assam and Darjeeling. The history of tea in India is intertwined with tales of exploration, trade, and colonial influences.

Tea production in India began in the early 19th century when the British East India Company cultivated tea bushes from Chinese seeds in the Assam region. This marked the birth of India’s tea industry, laying the foundation for its prominence in the global tea market.

Over time, India became renowned for its diverse varieties of tea bushes, each boasting unique flavors, aromas, and characteristics. Some of the notable tea bush varieties found in India include:

  • Camellia sinensis var. sinensis: Also known as the China bush, this variety is typically grown at higher altitudes and produces delicate teas with floral and vegetal notes.
  • Camellia sinensis var. assamica: Commonly found in the Assam region, this variety thrives in the lowland regions and produces robust and malty black teas.
  • Camellia sinensis var. cambodiensis: This variety, native to the Nagaland region, is known for its unique flavor profiles, combining floral and earthy notes.

Tea cultivation in India is not limited to these varieties, with several hybrid tea bushes and cultivars that have been developed over the years. These varieties contribute to the diverse range of Indian teas available for tea lovers worldwide.

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As you delve into the historical and botanical foundations of tea in India, you will gain a deeper appreciation for the cultural significance and craftsmanship behind every cup. This understanding sets the stage for exploring the intricate flavors and aromas encapsulated in the Tea Tasting Wheel.

Now, let’s take a moment to visually immerse ourselves in the beauty of India’s tea heritage:

Tea Bush Variety Characteristics
Camellia sinensis var. sinensis (China bush) Delicate teas with floral and vegetal notes
Camellia sinensis var. assamica (Assam bush) Robust and malty black teas
Camellia sinensis var. cambodiensis (Nagaland bush) Floral and earthy notes

The Methodology of Tea Tasting

In the world of tea tasting, precision and knowledge are key to unlocking the secrets of aroma and flavor. By following a systematic approach, you can enhance your sensory analysis skills and gain a deeper appreciation for the complexities of tea.

Tea tasting techniques

When it comes to tea tasting, there are several techniques you can employ to evaluate teas effectively. These techniques involve engaging your senses and using all your faculties to discern the unique characteristics of each tea. Here are some popular methods:

  1. Appearance: Start by observing the dry leaves of the tea. Look for color, shape, and size, as these can provide clues about the tea’s quality and processing.
  2. Aroma: Take a deep breath and inhale the aroma of the brewed tea. Pay attention to the intensity, complexity, and specific notes present, such as floral, fruity, or earthy scents.
  3. Flavor: Sip the tea and allow it to coat your entire mouth. Take note of the taste and flavor characteristics, including sweetness, bitterness, astringency, and any unique notes that emerge.
  4. Mouthfeel: Assess the texture and body of the tea in your mouth. Is it light and delicate, or rich and full-bodied? Consider the tea’s weight, smoothness, and lingering aftertaste.
  5. Finish: Focus on the sensation that remains after swallowing the tea. Does it leave a refreshing, cleansing feeling, or is there a lingering taste that evolves over time?

By following these tea tasting techniques, you can thoroughly evaluate teas and gain a deeper understanding of their flavor profiles. This knowledge will enable you to appreciate the intricacies and nuances of different teas and elevate your tea tasting experience as a whole.

Enhancing Your Tea Tasting Skills

Becoming proficient in tea tasting requires practice and refinement. Here are a few tips to help you enhance your skills:

  • Practice with a variety of teas: Taste teas from different regions, processing styles, and flavor profiles. This exposure will broaden your palate and help you develop a more discerning taste.
  • Engage in guided tastings: Join tea tasting events or workshops led by experienced tea professionals. These sessions provide valuable guidance and allow you to learn from experts in a hands-on setting.
  • Take detailed notes: Maintain a tea tasting journal to record your observations, including appearance, aroma, flavor, and overall impressions. This documentation will help you track your progress and remember the characteristics of different teas.
  • Compare and contrast: Conduct side-by-side tastings of similar teas or teas from the same category. This comparative analysis will sharpen your ability to detect subtle differences and understand how various factors impact tea flavor.

By adopting these strategies and continually honing your tea tasting skills, you’ll develop a deeper appreciation for tea and its diverse range of flavors.

Now that you’re familiar with the methodology of tea tasting and the techniques used to evaluate teas, let’s turn our attention to exploring the different varieties of tea. In the next section, we’ll delve into basic teas, grades of green tea, Assam Orthodox black tea, Darjeeling tea, and CTC tea.

Exploring Different Tea Varieties

Immerse yourself in tasting sessions featuring a variety of teas that showcase the diverse flavors and characteristics of this beloved beverage. From basic teas to specialty varieties, each tea offers a unique experience for the discerning palate. Join us as we explore the world of tea and discover the exquisite flavors that await.

Basic Varieties of Tea

Let’s begin by delving into the basic varieties of tea. These teas form the foundation of the tea world and are known for their classic tastes and aromas. Whether you prefer a bold black tea or a delicate white tea, these staples are sure to please.

  • Black Tea: Known for its robust flavor, black tea boasts a rich, full-bodied taste that is perfect for those seeking a bold and invigorating cup.
  • Green Tea: Celebrated for its fresh and grassy flavor, green tea offers a gentle and soothing experience that is packed with antioxidants.
  • Oolong Tea: With its complex flavor profile that falls between black and green tea, oolong tea offers a captivating and balanced taste that lingers on the palate.
  • White Tea: Delicate and subtle, white tea is prized for its light and floral flavors, making it a perfect choice for those seeking a gentle and nuanced cup of tea.

Grades of Green Tea

Green tea, one of the most popular types of tea, comes in various grades, each with its own unique quality and taste. Let’s explore the different grades of green tea:

Grade Description
Matcha A vibrant green powdered tea with a smooth and creamy taste, often used in traditional Japanese tea ceremonies.
Sencha A refreshing and grassy tea that is the most commonly consumed variety in Japan.
Gunpowder Tightly rolled leaves that unfurl during steeping, offering a bold and slightly smoky flavor.
Dragonwell A nutty and mellow tea with soft vegetal notes, also known as Longjing tea.

Assam Orthodox Black Tea

Assam Orthodox Black Tea

Originating in the lush valleys of Assam, India, Assam Orthodox black tea is prized for its bold flavor and malty undertones. This tea is made using traditional methods and undergoes a rigorous process that includes withering, rolling, oxidation, and drying. The rich and coppery infusion of Assam Orthodox black tea is a delight to the senses, making it a favorite among tea connoisseurs.

Darjeeling Tea

Elevate your tea tasting experience with the exquisite flavors of Darjeeling tea. Grown in the mist-shrouded hills of the Darjeeling region in India, this tea is often referred to as the “champagne of teas” due to its delicate aroma and unique floral notes. Savor the light and muscatel taste of Darjeeling tea, which is carefully plucked and processed to preserve its exceptional quality.


CTC (Crush, Tear, Curl) tea is a popular type of black tea known for its strong and bold flavor. It is made by mechanically processing the tea leaves to create small, uniform grains. CTC tea brews quickly and produces a deep reddish-black liquor that is perfect for those who prefer a robust and invigorating cup of tea. Experience the robust taste and invigorating aroma of CTC tea, a favorite in many tea-loving households.

Understanding Tea Terroirs

When it comes to tea, the concept of terroir plays a crucial role in shaping the flavor and character of each cup. In this section, we will explore the flushes of tea and undertake a comparative analysis of tea terroirs in India to uncover how regional characteristics influence the taste and quality of Indian teas.

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Flushes of Tea

Before delving into the world of tea terroirs, it’s important to understand the concept of tea flushes. A flush refers to the specific time period during which tea leaves are plucked from the tea bushes. The timing of flushes plays a significant role in the flavor profile and aroma of the resulting tea. Different tea-growing regions have unique flush patterns, which contribute to the diversity and complexity of teas worldwide.

Tea bushes produce multiple flushes throughout the year, typically categorized as first flush, second flush, monsoon flush, and autumn flush. Each flush has distinct characteristics that reflect the environmental conditions and seasonal changes. For example, first flush teas are often vibrant and light with delicate floral notes, while second flush teas tend to be fuller-bodied and possess stronger muscatel flavors. The flushes of tea allow us to explore the dynamic nature of teas and appreciate the ever-changing nuances.

Comparative Analysis of Tea Terroirs

Now, let’s shift our focus to the fascinating world of tea terroirs in India. Terroir refers to the unique combination of natural factors, including the climate, soil, altitude, and geographic location, that influence the growth and development of tea plants. These factors imbue the teas with distinctive flavors, aromas, and textures, making each region’s teas truly exceptional.

Indian tea terroirs are renowned for their rich diversity and unmatched quality. From the lush valleys of Darjeeling to the verdant landscapes of Assam, each region showcases its own distinctive terroir, resulting in teas with distinct characteristics.

Let’s explore a comparative analysis of some prominent tea terroirs in India:

Tea Terroir Main Characteristics
Darjeeling High-altitude teas with floral and muscatel flavors
Assam Rich and malty teas with strong, full-bodied flavors
Nilgiri Mountain-grown teas with brisk and balanced flavors
Kangra Fragrant teas with floral and citrusy notes

By understanding the comparative analysis of tea terroirs, we can develop a deeper appreciation for the artistry and craftsmanship that goes into producing exceptional Indian teas. From the picturesque plantations to the skilled hands that pluck and process the leaves, every step of the journey contributes to the final cup of tea.

Next, we will delve into the art and science of tea blending, exploring the techniques and creativity behind creating unique and harmonious flavor profiles.

The Art and Science of Tea Blending

Tea blending is both an art and a science. It involves the skillful selection and combination of different teas and herbal ingredients to create unique and harmonious flavor profiles. Whether you’re a tea enthusiast or looking to start your own tea blending business, understanding the basics of tea blending, exploring herbal ingredients, and mastering advanced blending techniques are essential steps on your journey to becoming a tea blending expert.

Basics of Tea Blending

The basics of tea blending involve understanding the characteristics of different teas and how they interact with one another. Each tea has its own distinct flavor profile, ranging from earthy and robust to delicate and floral. By combining different teas, you can create new and exciting blends that showcase the best qualities of each individual tea.

When blending teas, it’s essential to consider factors like leaf size, oxidation level, and brewing temperature. These variables can significantly impact the final flavor of your blend. Experimenting with different ratios and combinations will allow you to fine-tune your blends and create a unique taste that sets your teas apart.

Herbal Ingredients

Herbal ingredients, such as flowers, fruits, and spices, can add depth and complexity to your tea blends. Whether you want to create a soothing herbal infusion or a refreshing fruity blend, the choice of herbal ingredients plays a crucial role in achieving the desired flavor profile.

Some popular herbal ingredients used in tea blending include chamomile, lavender, rose petals, hibiscus, cinnamon, and ginger. These ingredients not only add flavor but also contribute to the aroma, visual appeal, and overall sensory experience of the blend.

Advanced Blending Techniques

Once you have mastered the basics of tea blending and explored a range of herbal ingredients, you can level up your blending skills with advanced techniques. These techniques involve experimenting with different layers of flavors, creating complex flavor profiles, and incorporating unique ingredients.

One advanced blending technique is layering, where you create a blend with distinct layers of flavors that unfold as you sip. This technique allows the different teas and herbal ingredients to shine individually while harmonizing together in a cohesive blend.

Another technique is incorporating unexpected ingredients to add intrigue to your blends. For example, adding a hint of citrus zest or a touch of cardamom can transform a simple blend into a captivating sensory experience.

Advanced Tea Blending

Tea Blending Techniques Description
Layering Create a blend with distinct layers of flavors that unfold as you sip, allowing the different teas and herbal ingredients to shine individually while harmonizing together.
Unexpected Ingredients Incorporate unique ingredients to add intrigue to your blends, such as citrus zest, spices, or floral accents, creating a captivating sensory experience.
Ratio Experimentation Experiment with different ratios of teas and herbal ingredients to fine-tune the flavor profile and achieve the desired balance and complexity.

Mastering the art and science of tea blending requires practice, experimentation, and a keen sensory awareness. Embrace your creativity, explore new flavor combinations, and delight in the endless possibilities of tea blending.

Exploring Handcrafted and Specialty Teas

Immerse yourself in the world of handcrafted and specialty teas as we take you on a journey of unique flavors and exceptional craftsmanship. Join us for a tea tasting session unlike any other, where we delve into the intricacies of these extraordinary teas.

Handcrafted teas are meticulously crafted by skilled artisans who pour their passion and expertise into every leaf. Each tea undergoes a meticulous process, carefully hand-picked and processed to bring out its finest qualities.

Specialty teas, on the other hand, are known for their distinct characteristics and exceptional flavor profiles. From rare tea blends to single-origin teas, they represent the epitome of tea craftsmanship.

During our tea tasting session, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the richness and complexity of these handcrafted and specialty teas firsthand. Our knowledgeable tea experts will guide you through the tasting process, teaching you how to appreciate the subtle nuances and delicate flavors that make each tea truly exceptional.

As you indulge in each sip, you’ll discover the incredible diversity of tastes and aromas that can be found within the world of handcrafted and specialty teas. From delicate floral notes to robust earthy flavors, this tasting experience will awaken your senses and deepen your appreciation for tea.

Handcrafted and specialty teas offer an extraordinary sensory experience that is unmatched by mass-produced teas. Delve into the world of artisanal tea-making and discover the ingenuity and dedication behind each cup.

Are you ready to embark on a tea tasting adventure like no other? Join us as we explore the realm of handcrafted and specialty teas, and unlock a world of flavor and craftsmanship.

Why Choose Handcrafted and Specialty Teas?

  • Unparalleled flavor profiles that highlight the unique characteristics of each tea
  • Artisanal craftsmanship that reflects centuries of tea-making traditions
  • Exceptional quality and attention to detail
  • A wide range of flavors and varieties to suit every palate
  • An opportunity to support small-scale tea producers and sustainable farming practices
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Experience the artistry and taste the difference of handcrafted and specialty teas. Join us for a tea tasting session that will transport you to a world of exquisite flavors and tea-making mastery.

Tea Packaging and Entrepreneurship

When it comes to tea, packaging plays a vital role in preserving its quality and flavor. Proper packaging techniques not only maintain freshness but also help create an appealing product that attracts customers. In this section, we will explore the essential guidelines for tea packaging and storing to ensure that your tea reaches consumers in the best possible condition.

To start with, let’s delve into the art of tea packaging. Packaging is more than just a cardboard box or a tin container; it is an opportunity to create a memorable experience for tea enthusiasts. From the design of the label to the choice of materials, every aspect of tea packaging should align with your brand image and values.

One key consideration is the type of packaging material. Selecting the right material helps protect tea from external factors such as moisture, light, and air, which can degrade its quality. Common options include foil pouches, jars, tins, and biodegradable bags.

Another crucial aspect of tea packaging is labeling. A well-designed and informative label not only catches the eye but also provides customers with essential information. The label should mention the tea variety, origin, processing method, and brewing instructions, enabling customers to make an informed choice.

Tea storage also plays a significant role in maintaining freshness. Proper storage prevents tea from absorbing external odors and humidity, preserving its flavor and aroma. Here are some key guidelines for tea storage:

  • Store tea in airtight containers to prevent exposure to air and moisture.
  • Avoid storing tea in the refrigerator as it can lead to moisture absorption and flavor contamination.
  • Keep tea away from strong odors, such as spices or detergents, as tea easily absorbs odors.
  • Store tea in a cool, dry place, away from sunlight and heat sources.

To ensure the longevity of tea, it’s essential to educate consumers about proper storage. Consider including storage guidelines on your packaging or providing additional resources on your website or blog to help customers make the most of their teas.

Tea Entrepreneurship

Tea entrepreneurship offers exciting opportunities for individuals passionate about tea and its rich culture. Whether you’re considering starting a tea business or expanding an existing one, understanding the entrepreneurial landscape is crucial for success.

When entering the tea industry as an entrepreneur, it’s essential to identify your target audience and their preferences. Conduct market research to gain insights into the tea market, including current trends, customer preferences, and potential competitors. This information will help you refine your product offerings and develop a unique selling proposition.

Creating a robust business plan is another critical aspect of tea entrepreneurship. Determine your business goals, define your niche, outline your marketing strategies, and identify your funding requirements. A well-thought-out business plan acts as a roadmap for your tea venture and helps you secure financing if needed.

Networking is key in the tea industry. Connect with tea professionals, suppliers, and other entrepreneurs to build relationships and expand your knowledge. Attending tea trade shows, industry conferences, and joining tea associations can provide valuable networking opportunities and insights into the tea community.

Lastly, embracing continuous learning and staying updated with industry trends is crucial for tea entrepreneurship. Stay curious and explore new tea varieties, brewing techniques, and packaging innovations. Engage with your customers and seek feedback to improve your products and services continuously.

By understanding the art of tea packaging and embracing the entrepreneurial aspects of the tea industry, you can create a successful tea business that delights customers with exceptional teas.

The World of Coffee Tasting Wheel

Welcome to the fascinating world of coffee tasting! In this section, we will explore the coffee tasting wheel and delve into the art of experiencing the intricate flavors and aromas of this beloved beverage. From small batch coffee to specialty grade coffee beans and lighter roast profiles, we will uncover the keys to unlocking a truly exceptional coffee experience.

At the heart of coffee tasting lies the coffee tasting wheel. This invaluable tool provides a visual representation of the different flavor profiles that can be found in coffee. It helps us identify and describe the wide range of tastes and aromas present in different coffee beans and roasts. By using the coffee tasting wheel as a guide, we can enhance our appreciation for the complexities and nuances of coffee.

When it comes to truly exceptional coffee, small batch production plays a crucial role. Small batch coffee refers to the method of roasting small quantities of beans at a time, allowing for meticulous attention to detail and ensuring optimal flavor development. This artisanal approach allows coffee roasters to unlock the unique characteristics of each batch, resulting in rich, flavorful, and memorable cups of coffee.

Specialty grade coffee beans are another important aspect of the coffee tasting experience. These beans are carefully sourced and meticulously graded based on their quality and characteristics. Specialty grade beans are grown in ideal conditions, harvested at peak ripeness, and undergo rigorous quality control measures. By using specialty grade coffee beans, enthusiasts can expect exceptional flavor profiles and a more refined coffee experience.

Lastly, lighter roast profiles have gained popularity among coffee connoisseurs for their delicate and nuanced flavors. Lighter roast profiles allow the unique characteristics of the coffee beans to shine through, highlighting subtle notes of fruitiness, floral undertones, and bright acidity. This approach to roasting emphasizes the natural flavors of the coffee and offers a refreshing departure from darker roasts.

Benefits of small batch coffee, specialty grade coffee beans, and lighter roast profiles:

  1. Enhanced flavor complexity and depth
  2. Greater appreciation for coffee’s natural nuances
  3. Opportunity to explore a wide range of taste profiles
  4. Elevated coffee drinking experience

By embracing small batch coffee, specialty grade coffee beans, and lighter roast profiles, coffee enthusiasts can embark on a journey of discovery, expanding their palate and deepening their appreciation for the world of specialty coffee.

Aspect Small Batch Coffee Specialty Grade Coffee Beans Lighter Roast Profiles
Production Method Roasted in small batches for meticulous attention to detail Carefully sourced and precisely graded for quality Gently roasted to preserve delicate flavors
Flavor Profile Rich and flavorful Exceptional and refined Nuanced and delicate
Characteristics Meticulous flavor development Optimal growing and harvesting conditions Highlighting natural flavors

Australian Tea Masters Certified in Tea Blending Course

Are you ready to take your tea blending skills to the next level? Look no further than the Certified in Tea Blending course offered by Australian Tea Masters. This comprehensive online program is designed to equip you with the knowledge and expertise needed to master the art of tea blending.

Unlock the secrets and mysteries of tea blending as you delve into the theory and practical application of this ancient craft. Learn from industry experts and gain invaluable insights into the techniques and strategies used by professional tea blenders.

Whether you’re a tea enthusiast or an aspiring tea professional, this course will empower you to create market-ready blends that are both innovative and delicious. From understanding the flavor profiles of different teas to exploring the nuances of herbal ingredients, you’ll develop the skills and confidence to craft unique and memorable blends.

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