Shibuya to Kotto-dori

Moyan Curry (Curry). 6805-1994
Moyan offers a huge variety of tasty Japanese-style curries and ethnic-style side dishes, along with inexpensive wines and cocktails. [Go to branch review]
mapShibuya 1-7-5, Seven Heights 1F. Open 11:30am-2:30, 6-10:30pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
Zoogunzoo (Wine bar). 3400-1496
The smart interior here is a very Tokyo-exotic mix of baked-mud walls, heavy wooden furniture, and organic-looking extra-terrestrial lighting fixtures like something from the set of "Alien". But you're really here for the wine - over 100 different varieties, from all regions of Australia and New Zealand. [See FULL REVIEW.]
decormapShibuya 2-9-11, Aoyama City Bldg. B1F. Open 6pm-2am. Closed Sundays.
!!Beacon (Steak house). 6418-0077
This swank dining spot from chef David Chiddo (Cicada, TY Harbor) bills itself as an "urban chop house" - basically a steak house, but with more seafood choices. The kitchen uses only top-class ingredients - long-grain-fed Angus beef, wild Aussie jumbo prawns, organic Scottish salmon - and the menu offers good value for money (budget around Y8500 for dinner and drinks). The wine list focuses on smaller New World vineyards, with some twenty choices by the glass.
SunmapShibuya 1-2-5. Open 11:30am-3, 6-10pm (LO) daily.
!Beacon Bar (Bar). 6418-0077
The front bar area of the popular Aoyama steak house is a worthwhile destination in its own right, with excellent original cocktails, a good wine list with many choices by the glass, a casual food menu and outdoor seating on the patio if you're so inclined.
SunmapShibuya 1-2-5. Open 11:30am-3, 6-10pm (LO) daily.
Marzac (Izakaya). 6418-5063
Charcoal-grilled meaty snacks and good-value wine by the glass are the draw at this casual late-night bar. There's a selection of around ten decently drinkable wines from France, Italy and the New World for just Y500 a glass, along with a big selection by the bottle. The chalkboard menus list plenty of daily specials, along with simple vegetable dishes and grilled lamb, chicken, pork and beef.
lateSunmapShibuya 2-2-3, Luca Bldg 2F. Open 6pm-3am (LO; Sun -10pm) daily.
UN Cafe (French). 5469-0275
A casual cafe where you can drop in anytime for a drink, a sandwich, or a full-course meal. The menu is California-style French, with both European and Asian touches. There's also a well-thought-out selection of wines at good prices.
SunmapJingumae 5-53-67. Open 11:30am-3, 5-10pm (LO) daily.
Las Chicas (International). 3407-6865
International cuisine and drinks at this sprawling, tourist-friendly restaurant and cafe-bar.
SunmapJingumae 5-47-6. Open 11:30am-11pm daily.
El Vuelo (Spanish). 6427-7197
Spanish tapas and wines in a cozy setting. Budget around Y4000 in the evenings, Y900 for lunch.
SunmapJingumae 5-50-6, Success Aoyama 2F. Open 11:30am-2, 5-11pm daily.
!Benoit (Mediterranean). 5468-0881
From French celeb chef Alain Ducasse, a Mediterranean restaurant covering the cuisines of Italy, Spain, North Africa and Greece. The dining room is comfortable and attractively laid out, with nice views of Aoyama-dori, Shibuya and Shinjuku. Service is professional without being stiff. The wine list has some nice choices for under Y9000, and wine by the glass is fairly reasonable. Prix-fixe dinners from Y8,000, lunches from Y4500.
no smokingSunmapJingumae 5-51-8, La Porte Aoyama 10F. Open 11:30am-2:30, 5:30-10pm (LO) daily.
!Farmers Market @ UNU (Retail). 0120-63-9672
Farm-fresh fruits and vegetables are on sale at the popular farmers market that pops up every weekend in front of UN University (across the street from Aoyama Gakuin). Besides the dozens of stalls there are also several food trucks selling coffee, curries, salads and other quick snacks. The hours are usually 10am-4pm, but they stay open until 8pm on the third Saturday of every month.
SunmapJingumae 5-53-70. Open 10am-4pm (weekends only).
Pariya (Japanese). 3409-8468
This stylish open-air cafe offers an all-day deli-style menu - i.e. small-plate dishes, lots of salads, and a "rice of the day" for around Y1050. The menu changes every week, and everything is available to take out.
SunmapKita-Aoyama 3-12-14, Mako Kita-Aoyama 1F. Open 11:30am-11pm daily.
Number A (Cafe). 6427-4038
Located on a quiet back street smack dab in the center of Aoyama, Number A is a casual, laid-back cafe that's mostly noteworthy for their extended lunch hour (until 5pm) and reasonably priced cafe fare.
SunmapKita-Aoyama 3-12-2. Open 11:30am-11pm (LO) daily.
Darie (Romanian). 3797-7374
Authentic and homey Eastern European cooking from Tokyo's very first Romanian restaurant, which was located in Ginza for 32 years before moving to Aoyama. The brightly colored basement dining room is casual with an Old-World stylishness, and service is cordial and professional, with detailed explanations of the various dishes as they're being served. [Show more]
SunmapKita-Aoyama 3-13-1, KIta-Aoyama Sekine Bldg B1F. Open 11:30am-2, 5:30-9:30pm (LO). Closed Tuesdays.
Celeb de Tomato Omotesando (Italian). 6427-9922
This tomato-centric Italian restaurant/cafe offers full-course dinners from Y4000-7000. The buffet lunch (Y2500; Y3000 on weekends) includes a three-juice tasting flight, a choice of pasta, dessert, beverage, and a mid-sized buffet full of vegetable-based dishes like stuffed cabbage, carrot salad and stewed eggplant. More than twenty different tomato varieties are featured, and various tomato juices are sold by the bottle.
SunmapKita-Aoyama 3-15-5, Portofino B1F. Open 11:30am-2:30, 2:30-5, 5-9:30pm (LO) daily.
To The Herbs (Italian). 3499-2900
Tasty, sometimes unusual pizzas and well-constructed pastas at this budget Italian cafe chain.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-10-1. Open 11:30am-11pm daily.
Berry Parlour (Cafe). 5774-9142
If you're in the mood for a luxurious dessert, this gorgeously decorated basement cafe serves "haute couture parfaits" from fresh seasonal fruit (Y1400-) and fruit teas (Y950-). Upstairs is Comme Ca Cafe, the very artistic cake shop on the first floor. Open from noon on weekends.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-10-19, Masahiro Aoyama Bldg B1F. Open 2-10pm (LO) daily.
Kua 'Aina (Sandwiches/ burgers). 3407-8001
Hawaiian-style burgers and deli sandwiches, plus Kona microbrew beers from Hawaii.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-10-21. (on the corner of Kotto-dori and Aoyama-dori, across from Max Mara) Open 11:30am-10pm (LO) daily.
3rd Burger (Sandwiches/ burgers). 6419-7579
With its sleek decor and lush wall of greenery, this is one of the more pleasant and relaxing spots along Kotto-dori to stop for a midday snack. Charcoal-grilled burgers (from Y450) are served with gourmet bacon and organic vegetables, including an interesting avocado-wasabi topping. There are also a couple of vegetable sandwiches, and smoothies in flavors like fresh tomato, komatsuna-banana, green tea and espresso.
decorSunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-11-2. Open 7am-11pm daily.
Meal Muji (Cafe). 5468-2368
Inexpensive bakery and deli items and salads from the famous no-brand design store Mujirushi.
no smokingSunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-11-9. Open 9am-10pm (Sun 11am-9pm) daily.
Relleno Sugawara (International). 3409-6828
Chef Kenji Sugawara was one of Japan's pioneers in the art of California cuisine, and his "Tokyo international" style is unique and exciting. Menu descriptions include plenty of exotic Asian ingredients and spices, but they're handled delicately, adding subtle flavors that are skillfully balanced. The glassed-in open kitchen adds some energy and liveliness to the cozy dining room, which seats just 14. The wine list is small but diverse and reasonably priced; lunch is priced from Y1200, and the prix-fixe dinner menu is Y5800.
mapMinami-Aoyama 5-12-6, Dai-ni Wada Bldg B1F. Open noon-2, 6-10pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
Den Aquaroom Aoyama (Bar). 5778-2090
This elegant, very relaxed bar features gigantic fishtanks filled with exotic tropical fish from Okinawa and environs. The menu includes tasty original cocktails and light food items. There's a Y700 per person table charge.
latedecorSunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-13-3. Open 6pm-2am daily.
!Les Cristallines (French). 5467-3322
Good, modern French cuisine and excellent service. Prix-fixes lunches from Y1750, dinners from Y3800, and wines (mostly French) from Y2800 per bottle.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-4-30, Casa Serena 1F. Open 11:30am-2, 6-9:30pm (LO) daily.
Kotori Cafe (Bird cafe). 6427-5115
This unusual cafe is populated by a diverse flock of parrots, parakeets, sparrows and cockatoos for your bird-watching enjoyment. They serve coffee and cake (Y1580 for a Kona coffee and cake set) and sell a variety of bird-themed paraphernalia. [Show more]
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 6-3-7. Open 11am-7pm daily.
Nezucafe (Cafe). 3400-2536
The Nezu Museum's cafe looks out onto a beautiful wooded garden - a lovely, serene setting for a cup of coffee or an afternoon snack. The menu offers coffee, matcha latte and desserts as well as light meals - pastas, sandwiches, meat pies and salad Nicoise.
decorSunmapMinami-Aoyama 6-5-1. Open 10am-4:30pm (LO) daily.
!!Lauburu (French). 3498-1314
Lauburu is dedicated to the art of serious eating - specifically, the serious consumption of pork. Billed as a French/Basque country-style bistro, the food here is prepared simply - no rich, complicated sauces or sculptural statements on the plate, just good honest country cooking. [See FULL REVIEW.]
mapMinami-Aoyama 6-8-18. Open 6-10pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
Bar Rage (Bar). 5467-3977
Fancy fresh-fruit martinis are all the rage here, and owner Tomoyuki Kitazoe makes his own herbal and fruit syrups to use in them. The bar itself, located at the Nishi-Azabu end of Kotto-dori, is quite stylish and features an outdoor terrace area.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 7-13-13, Aoyama Jin & IT Bldg 3F. Open 6pm-midnight daily.

East of Kotto-dori

This lively basement restaurant offers a great selection of wines from around the world at close to wine-shop prices. In fact a small retail wine shop is set up at the entrance, stocking a lot of nice New World and European choices in the Y2000-3000 range. Just pick up a bottle that looks appealing and bring it back to your table; the corkage charge is only Y600. Staff are ready to offer advice if you ask. [Show more]
SunmapKita-Aoyama 3-10-6, Aoyama Pax Bldg B1F. Open 11:30am-3, 5:30pm-midnight (LO) daily.
Gerbeaud (Cafe). 3499-0099
Good Hungarian pastries at this Old World-style cafe; the main branch opened in Budapest in 1858.
SunmapKita-Aoyama 3-11-7, AO 2F. Open 11am-10pm (LO; Sun -9pm) daily.
!Two Rooms (Grill). 3498-0002
The former chef from the New York Grill (Park Hyatt) has teamed up with veterans from the Oak Door (Grand Hyatt) to create a glitzy new dining destination in central Aoyama. This international-style grill offers excellent fish- and beef-centered prix-fixe dinners (Y6500 and Y8500 respectively), with full-course lunches ranging from Y1750 to Y2950 (+10%sc). The spacious dining room has an open kitchen and comfortable booths looking out over the Aoyama-dori fashion parade; there's also terrace seating in the bar area. The walk-in wine cellar has some 1800 bottles to choose from.
decorSunmapKita-Aoyama 3-11-7, AO Building 5F. Open 11:30am-2:30, 6-10:30pm (LO) daily.
Two Rooms Bar (Bar). 3498-0002
Attached to the Two Rooms Grill, the bar and lounge area offers cocktails and a wide choice of wines from around the world in a lovely setting, with a big outdoor terrace looking out over Harajuku and points north. 10% service charge, but no table charge.
decorSunmapKita-Aoyama 3-11-7, AO Building 5F. Open 11:30am-2am daily.
Sitaara (Indian). 5766-1702
Good kebabs as well as curries are served at this attractively appointed tandoori specialist. Weekday lunches are Y1050-1600, while dinner with drinks averages around Y4000.
mapMinami-Aoyama 5-7-17, Ohara Kaikan B1F. Open 11:30am-2:30, 6-10pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
!Coutume (Coffee shop). 6418-5325
Coutume Cafe has been an important specialty coffee destination since they first opened in Paris in 2011, where they also train barista staff and roast beans for more than sixty other cafes and restaurants. Now they've started operations in Aoyama, offering a rotating selection of single-origin drip coffees, regular and micro-lot espressos, and an exclusive "Aoyama Special Blend" to Tokyo's coffee afficionados. [Show more]
no smokingdecorSunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-8-10. Open 7:30am-9:30pm daily.
!Ghungroo (Indian). 3406-0464
Critically acclaimed curries in a pleasant little shop located on the little street parallel to Kotto-dori. The food is authentic and good, and Ghungroo even caters events at the Indian Embassy.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-9-6. Open 11:30am-10:30pm (LO) daily.
Denpachi (Izakaya). 3406-8240
All kinds of sardine dishes, plus a number of beef-tongue items (perhaps for nutritional balance). Seating is a bit cramped, and customers are packed in like, um, fish in a can. (The main, more spacious, branch is in Higashi-Ginza near Tsukiji Fish Market.)
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-9-9. Open 5-11:30pm (LO) daily.
Nicolai Bergmann Nomu Cafe (Danish). 5464-0716
A lot of upscale Aoyama shops seem to have an obligatory cafe area tucked into a corner somewhere, but the combination works especially well at this Copenhagen-based designer flower shop. While the food and drink aren't so very different from a dozen other area cafes, the lovely, plant-filled setting and the lively atmosphere set it apart. [Show more]
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-7-2. Open 10am-8pm daily.
!Breadworks (Bakery). 6434-1244
The original Breadworks is in Tennoz Isle next to TY Harbor Brewery; this new branch is attached to TY's sister restaurant Cicada, and offers a similarly inspiring selection of pastries and savory breads and rolls.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-7-28. Open 8am-9pm daily.
!!Cicada (Mediterranean). 6434-1255
First-rate Mediterranean cuisine from Chef David Chiddo and the TY Harbor group (Beacon, Ivy Place). Now located in the heart of Aoyama (after a decade in Hiroo), the spacious quarters are evocative of a luxury tropical resort, with comfortable terrace seating, pools of water and an appealing open-air bar. The complex also houses a branch of TY Harbor's excellent bakery, Breadworks, and a casual cafe space called Crisscross. [See FULL REVIEW.]
latedecorSunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-7-28. Open 11:30am-2:30, 5:30pm-2am (LO) daily.
Crisscross (Cafe). 6434-1266
A casual cafe attached to the popular Mediterranean restaurant Cicada; there's pleasant outdoor seating in the front courtyard when the weather permits. Craft beer fans can choose from six brews from T.Y. Harbor Brewery available on tap.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-7-28. Open 9am-10pm (LO) daily.
Cafe Madu (Cafe). 3498-2891
This cute and very spacious cafe has big front windows looking out onto the fashion-shopping alley next to Kotto-dori. The menu offers sandwiches, galettes and assorted pastries for mid-afternoon snacking, as well as a diverse cocktail selection for later in the day.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-8-1. Open 11am-11pm daily.
A to Z Cafe (Cafe). 5464-0281
Those with a fondness for cartoon-character dolls and action figures will find a kindred spirit in Yoshitomo Nara, whose paintings and sculptures of devilish children are as disconcerting as they are cute. A joint project with the Graf design firm, A to Z Cafe, with its original artwork, mismatched furniture, and liberal use of worn wood and corrugated iron, is a cool place to spend the afternoon. [Show more]
lateSunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-8-3, Equbo Bldg 5F. Open 11:30am-11:30pm (to 4am weekends) daily.
A Piece of Cake (Cafe). 5466-0686
A relaxing, quiet space inside a museum devoted to the whimsical works of sculptor Taro Okamoto.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 6-1-19. Open 11am-7pm. Closed Tuesdays.
Fukui Minami Aoyama 291 (Antenna shop). 5778-0291
The food-and-drink section of this spacious prefectural shop stocks frozen fish, miso paste, goma-dofu (sesame tofu), assorted herbs, artisanal vinegars, and around thirty types of sake from Fukui Prefecture. There's also a great selection of pottery and other local handicrafts. A cafe-restaurant area behind the shop serves full meals.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-4-41. Open 11am-9pm daily.
Blue Note (Jazz club). 5485-0088
The venue of choice for top jazz and R&B acts from overseas. [Show more]
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 6-3-16. Open 5:30pm-1am daily.
Tinun Aoyama (Thai). 5766-5811
This branch of the ubiquitous budget Thai chain has a larger-than-average menu, good food and take-out service. The decor is also a cut above the norm.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-1-25, Kitamura Bldg B1F. (on Aoyama-dori a few doors down from Andersen) Open 11am-9pm (lunch to 2) daily.
Andersen (Danish). 3407-4833
Danish-style stews and other main courses in the restaurant area above the bread shop, and European-style breakfast in the morning. [See FULL REVIEW.]
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-1-26. Open 8am-9pm (LO) daily.
Andersen (bread shop) (Bakery). 3407-4833
This particular branch is one of Tokyo's better bakeries, with many varieties of fresh bread and pastries, baked on the premises. They also sell premade sandwiches to go.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-1-26. Open 7am-9pm daily.
Andersen (sandwich counter) (Sandwiches/ deli). 3407-4833
Excellent made-to-order sandwiches and salads in the basement deli area underneath the bread store.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 5-1-26. Open 9am-9pm daily.
Toriyoshi (Yakitori). 3403-7720
Spectacular chicken wings and other chicken specialties, and a tasteful, traditional Japanese interior.
lateSunmapMinami-Aoyama 3-18-16, Behind exit A4 Omotesando station. (across from El Torito) Open 5pm-4:30am daily.
Crayon House (Japanese/health food). 3406-6409
The basement of Crayon House has an organic vegetable shop and two separate natural-food restaurants: "Hiroba", serving Japanese food, and "Home", with French cuisine. "Hiroba" offers an interesting buffet lunch for Y1,200.
no smokingSunmapKita-Aoyama 3-8-15. (walk down Omotesando towards Harajuku, turn left at the Hanae Mori Building and walk one block) Open 11am-9pm (LO) daily.

East of Omotesando

!Radio Bar (Bar). 3402-2668
If the walls of Radio Bar could talk, they'd sing like Chet Baker and laugh like Marlene Dietrich. The indigo interior combines elements of traditional Japanese design with Art Deco ornamentation, and exudes an air of Hollywood in the fifties. The space is seductively dim, conducive to tete-a-tetes and true confessions. [Show more]
mapMinami-Aoyama 3-10-34. Open 6pm-1am. Closed Sundays, Mondays.
!!Torimikura (Yakitori). 5770-5039
Excellent charcoal-grilled yakitori and other chicken dishes are the specialty at this branch of the Aburiya Fudo group of restaurants.
latedecorSunmapMinami-Aoyama 3-12-4. Open 6pm-2am (LO) daily.
Brimmer Beer Box (Beer bar). none
Living up to its name, this really is a box - it looks like a shipping container, with rather minimalist decor and furnishings, and standing areas inside and outside. They serve four different craft beers fresh from Brimmer Brewery in Kanagawa Prefecture - golden ale, pale ale, porter and ESB the last time we dropped by - for Y500 a glass. There's no food, but you can find good take-out fried chicken at the shipping container next door. Open from noon on weekends.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 3-8-34. Open 4-11pm daily.
Ippudo (Ramen). 5772-8373
A branch of the famous Hakata ramen chain, featuring thin, slightly chewy noodles in a pork-based broth ("red" or "white"), with or without extra chashu. You can add your own freshly grated garlic.
SunmapMinami-Aoyama 3-8-37, Dai-ni Miyachu Bldg B1F. Open 11am-midnight (Fri, Sat -1am; Sun -10pm) daily.
Cafe Berthollet (French). 5412-8851
Full-course lunches are Y1500-1800. In the evenings you can have anything from a clubhouse sandwich to a full-course meal. Dinner main courses are in the Y2000-2500 range.
SunmapKita-Aoyama 3-5-15. Open 11:30am-10:30pm (LO). Closed Mondays, some Sun.
Le Pain Quotidien (Bakery). 6721-1173
The conveniently located third Tokyo branch of the internationally famous Belgian organic bakery serves coffee and pastries, salads and tartines - open-face Belgian sandwiches with toppings like smoked salmon-avocado and ham-gruyere cheese.
SunmapKita-Aoyama 3-5-15. Open 8am-9:30pm (LO) daily.
Praca Onze (Brazilian). 3405-8015
Live music, dancing, and a good deal of drinking. Open Mon-Tue 6:30-midnight (no music); Wed-Thu 6:30-1am; Fri-Sat 6:30-2am.
mapKita-Aoyama 3-5-2. Open 7pm-1am. Closed Sundays, Mondays.
Omotesando Niigata Kan N'espace (Antenna shop). 5771-7711
Niigata is well known for its sake, and this large prefectural antenna shop carries over 100 varieties, with many available in 300ml mini-bottles and one-cup sizes. There's also non-alcoholic amazake, several kinds of craft beers, and lots of sake-friendly snack foods such as smoked tongue. [Show more]
SunmapJingumae 4-11-7. Open 10:30am-7:30pm daily.
Barbacoa Grill (Brazilian). 3796-0571
Brazilian-style all-you-can-eat churrasco grilled beef and other meats, along with one of Tokyo's best salad bars. Dinner is Y4500, weekday lunch Y3000.
SunmapJingumae 4-3-2, Tokyu Reit Omotesando Square B1F. Open 11:30am-2, 5:30-10pm (LO) daily.
Breizh Cafe (French). 3478-7855
Sweet and savory Breton-style crepes, with hard cider to wash them down, in a pleasantly decorated open-air cafe.
SunmapJingumae 3-5-4. Open 11:30am-11pm (LO, 10pm Sun) daily.
Omotesando Koffee (Coffee shop). 5413-9422
With its combination of great coffee and unique, picturesque setting (the ground floor and courtyard garden of a traditional Japanese house), Omotesando Koffee has caught the attention of every Tokyo guidebook, and draws a stream of foreign tourists as well as local residents. It's located in the middle of a quiet residential area just a few minutes from Omotesando.
no smokingSunmapJingumae 4-15-3. (in the block behind Maisen tonkatsu restaurant) Open 10am-7pm daily.
Panino Vino (Sandwiches/ deli). 5772-2896
Panini sandwiches, in many variations, are the specialty here, with a Y1000 lunch special that includes soup and beverage alongside your sandwich. There are lots of reasonably priced (from Y500) side dishes in the evenings, along with wine by the glass.
SunmapJingumae 4-5-12. Open 11am-11pm daily.
Maisen (Tonkatsu). 3470-0071
Tokyo's second-most-famous tonkatsu restaurant, located in an unusually decorated former bathhouse. In addition to pork cutlets there's also a full menu of set meals and seasonal a la carte items.
SunmapJingumae 4-8-5. Open 11am-10pm (LO) daily.
!!Galali (Izakaya). 3408-2818
This stylish little izakaya offers excellent food, a good sake selection, and an entire menu page devoted to different varieties of salt - 12 of them in all. Charcoal-grilled seafood and vegetables are among the food highlights. Budget around Y2500 without drinks. [Go to branch review]
lateSunmapJingumae 3-6-5. Open 6pm-3am daily.
Gar Eden (Italian). 6721-1444
An Italian restaurant with a good craft-beer selection is a nice find, but if you're not hungry you can come just for the beer. The ten taps dispense an assortment of Japanese, US and European craft beers, with some unusual finds (a Swiss sour ale!) that we haven't seen elsewhere. [Show more]
SunmapJingumae 3-6-6. Open 6-11:30pm daily.
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