French Press Tutorial

by Angela (Oh She Glows) on October 13, 2010

If frost on the ground and a temperature of –1C isn’t reason for Coffee, I don’t know what is!


It was freezing when I got up this morning. I put on a sweater and a robe and I was still chilled to the bone.




I guess this means hell has frozen over when I am craving coffee on a chilly morning!

All I could think about was my French Press…


I ended up buying a President’s Choice Burr Coffee Grinder.


It took me a few fumbles to get used to how it worked, but now it is easy as pie. I like that I can set the grinder to coarse and just hit the on button.

As for my coffee beans, I bought Mountain Gems Organic + Fair Trade French Riviera.


The description, ‘Cool summer evenings on the French Riviera inspired this bistro style coffee. Deep roasted coffee builds a solid foundation for a perfect steamy café au lait.’

Umm, yes please!!

I put two tablespoons of beans into the grinder for 1 mug’s worth.


I’m not sure if that is the ‘right’ amount, but it tastes amazing when I make it this way!

Set the grinder to the coarse dial (far right) and click on.

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Within about 5 seconds, you have your coarse grounds! Pour the grounds into the French Press.


Now pour your boiled water into the Press, leaving 1 inch at the top.

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Set your timer for 4 minutes and walk away!




And slowly press…

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Add your milk. I use Almond Breeze unsweetened.

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And guzzle down a taste of Paris.


I was amazed at how much this coffee tastes like the stuff I had in Paris!!! It is almost identical. It has a deep flavour with hints of chocolate and caramel. It is crazy to me that coffee can have undertones of chocolate and caramel! Awesome. I don’t even find that it is missing sweetener either.

Welcome, me to the dark side. muahuhauha. I can’t wait to experiment with different coffee blends.

I like my 3 cup Bodum (really it makes 1 mug’s worth) because I enjoy my cup of coffee in the morning, and then I switch back to my Japanese Sencha Green Tea for the rest of the day.


A nice balance, I think!

After my coffee and Gingerbread VOO, I bundled up for a very chilly + brisk run outdooors:

The run:

  • Distance: 4.10 miles
  • Time: 33:53
  • Avg pace: 8:15 min/mile (the cold makes me run fast!)
  • Splits: 8:36, 8:14, 8:12, 8:06


Very glad to have that done with for the day. It was freezing!

I am off to bake up a few orders including a huge order for Ambrosia. If I get all of that complete, I will be working on my new Glo Bar Flavour. Very excited about this new flavour. :) Have a great day!

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{ 97 comments… read them below or add one }

Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg October 13, 2010 at 8:36 am

There is NOTHING better than a hot cup of coffee on a cold morning!!! Winter is definitely on its way… :-D


claire October 13, 2010 at 8:37 am

I love that I am reading this as I sit drinking french press coffee…so cozy! Can’t wait to hear more about the new glow flavor!


Amanda (Eating Up) October 13, 2010 at 8:38 am

A French press is awesome! I think they’re way better than a coffee maker–especially if you only need to make a small amount for yourself!


Christine October 13, 2010 at 8:39 am

Chocolate and caramel! That’s exactly what I look for in my coffee–but some people prefer a lighter roast with fruit-er flavors.

My house is so funny — everyone has a different coffee!


Charlie October 13, 2010 at 8:39 am

French press is the best way to make coffee at home! It’s easy and tasty ;).


Jessica @ How Sweet October 13, 2010 at 8:39 am

I am not a huge fan of coffee (unless it has bunches of stuff in it) but bought a french press last year. It ended up shattering (I cried!) and I have been dying to get another. I think the coffee tastes so good coming from the press!


Andreas May 23, 2013 at 11:21 am

I agree. I think part of the reason is that the french press leaves in the oils of the coffee (as opposed to say ther filter method) I think thats the reason for the french presses ‘deeper’ taste.


haya October 13, 2010 at 8:48 am

we have that same grinder! do you not find that it makes kind of a mess? i’m not really sold on it yet…

we love kicking horse coffee beans. fair trade, organic and canadian (and available at loblaws)! i find that i can’t really tolerate anyone else’s coffee when i’m not at home anymore ;-)


Joslyn @ missfitbliss October 13, 2010 at 8:48 am

My mom is in love with her french press! I am not a coffee drinker at all but you’re getting me quite curious.


Allie (Live Laugh Eat) October 13, 2010 at 8:48 am

If you find a good decaf coffee, you NEVER have to switch to green tea :) I love French press although cleaning out the grounds can get annoying. Although it’s not a lot of work for delicious coffee. So glad you have come to the dark side!


Sarah October 13, 2010 at 8:48 am

I use the same amount of coffee, and my french press is the same size (they call it a ‘plunger’ in the UK and Australia, which is always a bit funny to me), so I say it’s the ‘right’ amount! I wait 20 min for mine to brew though because I like it STRONG. I have a problem :-)


Holly @ couchpotatoathlete October 13, 2010 at 8:52 am

I have yet to try FP coffee — I’ve heard the flavor is so much better than drip coffee. I wonder if that is actually true.

I should ask for a FP for Christmas :)


Nicole @ Yuppie Yogini October 13, 2010 at 8:53 am

Love the Tournee Du Chat Noir coffee mug–very Francais!


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat October 13, 2010 at 8:55 am

My lawn looked just like your photos this morning… I don’t like this!! I suppose a nice warm coffee like yours would be enough incentive to get me out the door for a run too. Those beans sound really tasty! At work we have one of those Flavia coffee makers and I usually go for the French Vanilla and Hazelnut packets. Good luck with all the baking today, and I can’t wait to hear about the new Glo Bar flavour!


Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman October 13, 2010 at 8:58 am

I’ve never used a French press, but I could go for a single-serving coffee maker of any kind. As it is, I end up making too much and throwing most away when I have to go to work.


Jenny October 13, 2010 at 8:59 am

The coffee looks amazing! I am obsessed with coffee but have yet to try the french press for coffee. (I have a press for tea) Maybe I’ll add it to my christmas list :)


Mymsie October 13, 2010 at 9:00 am

Now that you’re a coffee drinker, I’m excited for you to experiment with adding coffee to your recipes, especially the chocolate ones. Mmmm!

P.S. LOVE your blog – very inspirational!


Babs October 13, 2010 at 9:05 am

i’ve recently started a bit of a coffee addiction myself, and i must get my hands on some french press. people swear by it


Camille October 13, 2010 at 9:08 am

I have been eying a French Press for a while now! Until I actually have money, I guess I will have to stick with my old, plain coffee maker.


MaryBe October 13, 2010 at 9:11 am

You make French press coffee look so easy!


Angela (Oh She Glows) October 13, 2010 at 9:25 am

Actually I was shocked at how easy it is!


stephanie a. October 13, 2010 at 9:11 am

I just want to say I love reading your blog, but sipping my coffee this morning, and seeing someone else’s appreciation for joe, just made me feel complete : ) I look forward to getting your photos in my reader each day…thanks!

And on the note of weather, we’re expected in the 90’s my part of town (CA)!


Angela (Oh She Glows) October 13, 2010 at 9:26 am

haha glad you enjoyed it :)


Christina October 13, 2010 at 9:21 am

Oh how I love french press, Yum! My husband and I recently got a french press as well, and we love it. Something I didn’t know was that they actually make special blends just for french press. The lovely friends who gave us our french press, also gave us a bag of special french press coffee and it was amazing; so smooth!


Claire (Low Impact Fashionista) October 13, 2010 at 9:22 am

I’m going to have to ditch my Mr.Coffee machine and Folgers Classic Roast…your coffee looks way better!


Chelsea at Striking Balance October 13, 2010 at 9:29 am

I absolutely love having coffee in the mornings. I don’t have a french press, but even drip coffee I love. I usually also switch to tea the rest of the day, but in the morning, I just wake up craving a hot cup of coffee! :) Glad to see you have joined the dark side!


Laura (Blogging Over Thyme) October 13, 2010 at 9:33 am

That coffee looks delish, I’m glad you were able to 99% recreate your coffee experience in Paris. And definitely looking forward to the new Glo Bar flavor–I have a feeling it may be fall inspired :)


Natalia - a side of simple October 13, 2010 at 9:42 am

Mmm can’t wait to hear about the new Glo Bar flavor!! Happy baking :)


Gail October 13, 2010 at 9:48 am

Ok, you guys have convinced me to get a french press. I used to drink coffee, but gave it up when I gave up soda years ago. I occasionally have a cup, but I always have to put loads of soy milk in it (it’s so bitter). My husband brought me back some 100% kona coffee from Hawaii years ago and it’s still sitting in my freezer. I feel bad because it was about the same time that I quit drinking the stuff, but it’s such good coffee, I didn’t want to get rid of it. I think I’m going to get a french press and start having a little more of it, especially now that the weather is turning colder. Thanks guys!


[email protected] October 13, 2010 at 9:49 am

Love it! We have a french press at work and I need to get one for home too – they are just so darn elegant! Can’t wait for details about this new Glo Bar you speak of…


Katy @ a shot of life October 13, 2010 at 9:51 am

I’m more of a tea girl but now you have me tempted to try out my mom’s french press!! Silly question- how do you know which beans to use? I’m clueless when it comes to coffee, to the pont of being intimidated by Starbucks ;-) I never know how/what to order!


Shanna October 13, 2010 at 9:54 am

Told ya it was lovely over here ;)

I need to get a French chic!


Renata October 13, 2010 at 9:56 am

Hi Angela,
I’m excited about your new flavor…and perhaps you’ve already touched on this in a previous post. But, will you be getting the Run Bars back in stock anytime soon?


Heather @ Get Healthy with Heather October 13, 2010 at 9:57 am

I love making french press coffee but I usually reserve that for the weekend when I can really sit around and enjoy it.


Karen October 13, 2010 at 10:00 am

Welcome to the dark side! I enjoy tea, but by and large, I’m a coffee girl. Just wait until you try various blends! So many different flavors and each has its own complexity; you can have as much fun with as it you can with wine or beer tastings!

My brother-in-law adds a dash of cinnamon to his coffee grounds before he brews it. It is absolutely DELICIOUS!!


Marina October 13, 2010 at 10:05 am

I love coffee :)
I’m glad you’ve discovered it :)


Hilary October 13, 2010 at 10:05 am

Wow that’s a fancy french press! It grinds AND presses. I have a single/two cup coffee maker that makes the perfect amount right now but it has been making funny noises lately. If it breaks I might move on to a french press.


Michelle @ Turning Over a New Leaf October 13, 2010 at 10:08 am

“When the frost is on the punkin’ and the fodder’s in the shock…”

I’m jealous of your frost. It’s not anywhere near freezing here! Today’s the coldest day of the season so far with a high of 74 F. Leaves don’t change color here until November.


Karen Beth October 13, 2010 at 10:08 am

Oh wow. I have a French Press but NEVER EVER use it. I think you’ve inspired me to get it out and dust it off. Looks amazing!


Nicole of Raspberry Stethoscope October 13, 2010 at 10:10 am

hmmm you’re really making me think I should give coffee a shot. i also like that you don’t need a coffee maker. hmmmmmm


Maria @ Oh Healthy Day October 13, 2010 at 10:13 am

Like you, I’ve always been a tea drinker and didn’t think I liked coffee. Now I’m super curious to see if I will like french pressed coffee.
Stay warm today! We are in the high 80’s!


Sarah for Real October 13, 2010 at 10:16 am

Welcome to the dark side! Haha, you’re so cute. I have a mini-press like that one and a big Bodum too for when it’s more than just me drinking coffee. I think a french press sounds scary but it’s really hard to mess up. Plus I’ve heard that to truly brew coffee the right way, the water has to be really stinking hot which NONE of the coffee makers can do (except one in the article I read and it was like, a $300 European model).


Wei-Wei October 13, 2010 at 10:24 am

Ahhh, that coffee sounds amazing… We have a Nespresso machine at home, it’s great too but I can never experiment with different beans. :(


Gillian October 13, 2010 at 10:25 am

I smell an amazing vegan pumpkin spiced latte coming from you on the horizon…


Nicole @ Geek Turned Athlete October 13, 2010 at 10:26 am

I absolutely adore french presses! That is literally all the hubs and I use when we have coffee once in a blue moon.

We keep the actual coffee maker down in the basement for when my mom comes to visit. It just doesn’t compare to a French press!


Mary (What's Cookin' with Mary) October 13, 2010 at 10:58 am

I make us french press every morning and love it. We like it strong, so I use I Tbs per cup of water… and I think my FP is 6 cups. BUT, we like our coffee STRONG… i.e. when you pour it (like in your picture) it is solid brown… cannot see through the liquid ;) and I have to use cream. Brian uses the so deliscious coconut creamer.


Lily @ Lily's Health Pad October 13, 2010 at 11:04 am

So happy you love your french press! I was worried you were going to write about how it was a fail!

Golly, you love your caffeine! One cup of coffee and then green tea all day long must keep you wired.


Andrea (@ Puppy Dog Tales) October 13, 2010 at 11:13 am

I really want to try coffee from a french press. I need to buy one for work so that I can use it in my office. Yay for chilly morning runs. I did one this morning too!


Kelsey @ CleanTeenKelsey October 13, 2010 at 11:18 am

Haha, this post is wonderful. I don’t drink coffee so I don’t fully understand the grinders/presses, but I’m glad you found a system that works for you! lol.


Liz @ Tip Top Shape October 13, 2010 at 11:36 am

Your post makes me want some cofee and I just finished a grande from Starbucks! Good call on grinding the beans yourself. That definitely makes a better cup.


Kjirsten- Balanced Healthy Life October 13, 2010 at 11:37 am

I can’t believe you had frost this morning! Before we know it the holidays will be here and it will be 2011! I think I enjoyed my morning coffee as much as you did this morning!


Kristin October 13, 2010 at 11:40 am

I’m so glad that you have found a love of coffee, as it is amazing. The french press is sooo the way to go too. If you can find freshly roasted beans from somewhere (some coffee shops do it on the premises) and put those in the press it will be even more delicious. The french press allows the oils from the beans to seep into the water and create a richer flavor than the coffee maker does. Happy Java!


Lisa Eirene October 13, 2010 at 11:41 am

I bought a french press a year ago to save money on buying coffee and STILL haven’t used it. I just haven’t figured out how to use it. Is it possible to make just ONE cup of coffee with a french press instead of the whole thing?


Mary @ Bites and Bliss October 13, 2010 at 11:49 am

My goodness, you have frost?! It’s 80* here!!


Erika @ Health and Happiness in LA October 13, 2010 at 11:54 am

I love coffee soooo much but I’ve never used a French Press. Could you explain how it works?

I like my coffee really strong and dark and I love the coffees with chocolaty undertones. No fruity coffees for me!


Jil @ Peace, Love & Munchies October 13, 2010 at 11:57 am

Nothing better than a hot cup of coffee in the morning! Especially French Press…love mine!! I need to invest in a coffee grinder…stat.


Allison @ Food for Healing October 13, 2010 at 12:05 pm

i like coffee, but i am more of a fan of latte’s, i love espresso drowned in milk haha.
now i am craving a pumpkin spice latte!


Faith @ lovelyascharged October 13, 2010 at 12:22 pm

I can’t believe that as a self-proclaimed coffee addict, I’ve never done french-pressed coffee! Must get myself one of these ASAP! I have a bean grinder, just now for the miracle machine!


Nichole (Flirting with Food Fitness & Fashion) October 13, 2010 at 12:25 pm

I have been using Starbucks coffee, seems like I am missing out! :)


Caroline October 13, 2010 at 12:32 pm

I’m sure someone has mentioned this before, but French presses are also excellent for steeping tea. :)


Sarah October 13, 2010 at 12:34 pm

Yum! I am a big fan of coffee on cold mornings. I added a packet of stevia to each mug (I had two!) this morning, and it was delicious:).


AGS October 13, 2010 at 12:54 pm

I exclusively use a french press — it is different than drip, perc, etc. I never have it with sugar, and if it’s good enough coffee, I don’t add milk, either. Coffee should be good enough that you don’t need a lot of extras to it. It’s fun that you are experimenting with this. I’m surprised it said 4 minutes — usually 1-2 minutes is fine (and what most coffee shops use when you buy a pot of french press).


R Chandra October 13, 2010 at 1:13 pm

i am so loving reading about your new-found coffee adoration! i am dying for a french press myself. will def refer back to this post for instructions.

enjoy that cwa-fee ;)


Ashley Craft October 13, 2010 at 1:18 pm

I love my french press! And coffee on frosty mornings is the best!! Do you still drink green monsters everyday in the winter?


Moni's Meals October 13, 2010 at 1:22 pm

It is all about the FRENCH PRESS! Thanks for posting such great pics! On another note, BRRRR! And – look forward to the new glo bar flavor. :)
NCH PRESS! Thanks for the great photos.BRRRRI on another note and I look forward to the new glo bar flavor. :)


Rachel (tea and chocolate) October 13, 2010 at 1:23 pm

I’ve only had drip coffee. I wonder how different french press coffee tastes? It sure looks delicious. I can only imagine the smell. :)


Eden October 13, 2010 at 1:30 pm

Chocolate, men, coffee – some things are better rich. hahaha. ok lame joke.
But honestly, I hate to admit I’m not a big coffee drinker, I blame my european dad who exposed me to italian and french coffee. I often find myself in starbucks just stealing sugar packets.


Clare @ Fitting It All In October 13, 2010 at 1:35 pm

Funny – I’m a morning coffee drinker, but the colder weather has left me wanting TEA! Total opposite of you! But it’s nice to have hot tea during the day now to warm me up.


R @ Learning As I Chop October 13, 2010 at 1:41 pm

French Press is definitely the way to go. And, I have the same measuring spoons!


stacey-healthylife October 13, 2010 at 1:48 pm

On a cold morning coffee just wakes you up and keeps you nice and cozy.


Lisa October 13, 2010 at 1:48 pm

I’ve never really been into coffee. But your blog makes it look appetizing! Especially that almond milk shot! =)


ModelBehavior October 13, 2010 at 1:48 pm

I don’t even like coffee, but this post gives me a craving! You could make anything look appetizing love!


Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) October 13, 2010 at 1:49 pm

Glad you’re living life on the dark side.
Dark coffee
Dark chocolate
Dark rum
Dark brown sugar

Those are some of my favorite dark’s :)

Great job on the grinder, the french press, the tutorial..nice!

Btw if you ever want to grind spices and dont want to lug out your vitamix to say grind up some nutmeg, coffee grinders are great. I recommend a 2nd grinder tho b/c sometimes after one grinds a hunk of cloves or nutmeg, it leaves a scent behind you dont want in your coffee :)


Kara Osborn October 13, 2010 at 1:50 pm

I have to agree on the superiority in taste of French Press coffee….and no doubt there are some health benefits of a daily cup…but I keep hearing that the FP coffee is among the highest in cholesterol-increasing cafestol…. I am waiting for a FP that uses a paper filter. Has anyone ever tried this?


faith @ gracefulfitness October 13, 2010 at 1:59 pm

Welcome to the dark side, it’s super tasty over here!


erica October 13, 2010 at 2:09 pm

my co-worker makes FP coffee everyday. maybe i should look into it for the weekends when i have time to let something sit and brew :) love it that you’re a coffee lover now!


Jaime October 13, 2010 at 2:18 pm

I love coffee, but it just tastes better when there is a chill in the air. Yum! Can’t wait for that weather to head down south.


Little Aspects October 13, 2010 at 2:31 pm

Mmm, coffee. We even take our French Press with us on holidays just in case the place we stay at doesn’t have one! Are we coffee tragics or what? :)

As for tasting caramel and chocolate, apparently coffee is similar to wine in that depending on the region, the way it was processed, the roasting process etc the flavours vary immensely. I have a friend who does coffee tasting at international events (like wine tasting). He reckons he can pick where the bean was from after sipping it. Who knew, hey?

If you can, try to get some Fairtrade coffee. I’m not sure what brands are available in Canada, in Australia we have quite a few to choose from. Welcome to the wonderful world of coffee!!


Tiffany @ Eat, Run, Write, Love October 13, 2010 at 2:44 pm

Wow! Can’t believe that you have frost there! I am not looking forward to that.


The Peanut Butter Addict October 13, 2010 at 3:29 pm

I miss mornings where I don’t have to heat my car up to melt the frost on it to be able to drive :P What do you wear when you go running in the morning? I’m still trying to get used to running in the cold!


Katherine October 13, 2010 at 3:30 pm

I looooove french press coffee! Personally, I think it is way better than all other kinds. Glad to see others agree!


adriana October 13, 2010 at 3:31 pm

what are some tips for running in the cold? i am running a marathon in 3 weeks and I would like to know how to prepare with clothing, etc.


Lisa (bakebikeblog) October 13, 2010 at 3:49 pm

oooh freshly ground coffee is the best!! We were lucky to get a grinder as a wedding present and we have never looked back!


Mama Pea October 13, 2010 at 3:52 pm

I love how you are such a convert to the java. Our room better have a coffee maker… :)


Sandra October 13, 2010 at 5:13 pm

Hey Angela,

This comment isn’t about your post, but rather, just wanted to see if you knew that your blog was noted in November, 2010’s Canadian Living Magazine as one of the best ones in the “Health” category. I just got my copy of Canadian Living in the mail and there you were! The article is just after pg 111 and is on their page entitled “ON2”


Izzy October 13, 2010 at 6:22 pm

Mwahaha, welcome to the dark side >:) Hey, coffee has lots of anti-oxidants, so it’s not ALL evil ;)

I found your Glo Bars at Ambrosia! Love that store! Can’t wait to hear about the new flavour ;D



Wendy @ Seriously Sassy October 13, 2010 at 7:28 pm

Your French press is so cute!
I can’t live without my one cup of coffee a day. Usually in the morning, but if things are to hectic I wait til afternoon. Could NOT live without my Keurig!!!!!


Sherri October 13, 2010 at 7:56 pm

Just had a cup of amazing “Chocolate Fantasy” coffee. In the mornings when I get up I make a cup.. and then four or five more throughout the a.m as I work on my paintings. :) you can see the results if you click my name ^^^. Cheers!


Laurab @ foodsnobstl October 13, 2010 at 8:31 pm

Ha, ha. Welcome to the darkside of coffee addiction. You won’t regret it :)


Cara Craves... October 13, 2010 at 9:01 pm

I always start my day with a couple mugs of delish coffee from my french press; couldn’t be better!


[email protected] October 13, 2010 at 9:49 pm

I can’t believe how cold it is there already! This post makes me want to buy a french press. I only have a regular drip machine. This looks fancier and I hear it tastes much better.


Jolene ([email protected]) October 13, 2010 at 11:15 pm

Ooooooh I love it! Wait until you try coffee in oats. You will die a little from pure bliss. I make mocha oats, all kinds of latte oats, and today I made creme brulee oats using a creme brulee flavoured organic coffee :-) I have also used coffee in overnight oats, and it is excellent.


Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin October 14, 2010 at 8:07 am

Lately I’ve been living off of Starbucks vanilla flavoured coffee that I bought in the US (since we can’t get it here). But I’m almost done the bag and I’d love to try this kind next! Did you buy it at Fortinos/Loblaws?


Kelly October 14, 2010 at 9:32 am

We have a French press too and I love it! Don’t forget to stir with a plastic stir stick of some kind after adding the water to the coffee grounds as well as making sure the lid is far enough down when you leave it for 4 mins that the grounds are actually in the water!

I should go look for that coffee. I am currently drinking some pumpkin spice coffee my boyfriend got for me!


Laura October 14, 2010 at 10:47 am

Does this mean you’ll be selling Glo Bars at Ambrosia? (as in maybe the run bars I am dying to try!!) If so, when do you expect they will be selling them there? Thanks!


Andrew Lowry October 15, 2010 at 6:54 pm

“Avg pace: 8:15 min/mile (the cold makes me run fast!)”
That is an impressive pace IMHO. I wish I could run that fast. I have a lot of work to do to make that pace but I spend my fitness time lifting weights and doing sports.

Impressive time.


Angie February 2, 2014 at 7:54 pm

In order to keep my body alkaline, coffee is saved for special occasions HOWEVER, I purchase Teeccino Carob/chicory “coffee” from Organic Garage and prepare it in a french press. It’s a great substitute, and you get that great french press flavour.


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