Krug ’Cremant’? 16 september 2015
Very rare vintage sparkling champagne Krug. Anecdotally, there is not a single bottle at the property. This is a non-vintage champagne which was developed ephemeral and limited before and after the war and then only for a few years between 1974 and 1978 before banning the use of words in Champagne sparkling wine.
Recall that the sparkling ’Crémant’ are champagnes which is imparted a pressure lower than that of a plain in the second fermentation in the bottle (secondary fermentation). This feature gives a creamy smoothness to the wine and especially the foam that is often true lace.
This wine was sold in the 70s to lower prices ”Cuvée Private”, the ancestor of the ”Grande Cuvée”. Only a few restaurants and loyal customers from home could get it. Dress yellow gold, still vivid. This is a very good champagne, very elegant, lively but full, lemony, with a wealth of undeniable constitution. However, it has an unusual character for home air Krug. The most advanced bottles, but still a nice foam, have a more pronounced and vinous nose with aromas of coffee. Many bottles tasted, 90s until 2007 for the last, always good tasting notes. As they are not vintage, it is difficult to date them accurately but they are probably from the 60s and 70. Note that some bottles have labels indicating a capacity of 75 cl, 78 cl other which should allow to date them differently. If the label indicates a rapid maturity to the ”Crémant” Krug experience shows that this does not prevent a long and successful aging in bottle. Crémant is a rare Krug champagne worth looking to discover the singularity.
This unique champagnes is available @ Clos & Cru in a few weeks time …
KRUG ’CREMANT’│55PN 20PM 25CH│TASTING NOTE ’Very cool and extremely rare 70’s wine in splendid condition. A collector’s wine with massive nuttiness and chocolate saturated richness in a typical Krug manner. The weak mousse is nothing you would take notice of. RJ 95(95)
RICHARD JUHLIN ON KRUG For me, Krug is more than a Champagne. It is a word that stands for artistry, tradition, craftsmanship, and moments of pure pleasure. The Krug family has used the same methods since the house was founded in 1843 by Johann-Joseph Krug from Mainz. It is hardly likely that the Krug philosophy will be abandoned in the foreseeable future, since it has brought so much success.
Put simply, that philosophy means that all the wines are fermented cru by cru in well-aged 205-liter barrels from the Argonne and central-east France. The wines are seldom filtered: they undergo just two rackings, by gravity, from cask to cask. Nor do they induce a malolactic fermentation, which is one of the reasons for Krug’s fantastic aging potential. None of the wines is disgorged before it is six years old, and the reserve wines are stored in stainless-steel tanks from the Swedish company Alfa Laval.
The firm’s least costly wine, Grande Cuvée, is made from 118 wines from ten different vintages. Naturally the raw materials are also of the very highest class. Twenty hectares in Aÿ, Ambonnay, Le Mesnil, and Trépail are owned by the house, but above all it is the network of prestigious contracts with some of the region’s best growers that answers for the quality, as the growers consider it an honor to supply Krug with grapes. Johann-Joseph Krug, the founder, learned his Champagne craft at Jacquesson and, when he regarded himself as qualified after nine years there, he set off to Reims to start his own house. After Joseph’s death his son Paul took over and built the powerful Krug dynasty, followed as he was by Joseph Krug II in 1910 and Joseph’s nephew, Jean Seydoux, in 1924. It was he, together with Paul Krug II, who created the famous cuvées, and it was only in 1962 that the legendary Henri Krug took over.
Today the wines are made by Eric Lebel and Olivier Krug is the president. They work undisturbed and independently, despite the fact that the firm is owned by LVMH. All Krug’s wines are small masterworks, and although Grande Cuvée may be lighter and fresher than its predecessor, Private Cuvée, after a few extra years in the cellar it outshines the competitors’ vintage Champagnes. Unfortunately I have to note a small question mark for the latest blend. Clos du Mesnil is a charmer that combines the best Blanc de Blancs while simultaneously distinguishing the wine with the house’s own distinct style. For me, Krug Clos du Mesnil is he best wine in the world!
The Clos d´Ambonnay is a shockingly expensive rarity that has only just been launched. The most costly young champagne in the world is worth 3,000 euros per bottle which does not seem to frighten away Krug fans since all 3,000 bottles are already booked up. The wine itself is fantastic most especially since it is clearly a brother belonging to the same sibling group in the Krug family. This wine is much more the breath of Krug than of Ambonnay, just as the Clos du Mesnil is in its own niche. It feels as though all Krug wines receive a last tiny squirt of Krug perfume that distinguishes them from everything else wherever their origins. It matters not if others copy the methods with old, small oak barrels, no malolactic fermentation, aging for 12 years and other technicalities. It is still impossible for them to copy Krug. I think that the Clos d’Ambonnay is very reminiscent of the ordinary vintage and is astonishingly enough only marginally more full-bodied than the latter. A blanc de noirs with fantastic finesse far beyond all ungainliness. Its freshness and phenomenally long aftertaste are however the most striking things about this magnificent wine. The bouquet is richly creamy with a hint of hazelnuts and brioche along with papaya preserves and mango. The flavour balances between fairytale mellowness and a freshness that is similar to a 96. A new world-class wine has been born.
The vintage Krug is now in competition with the Clos wines, but if we go backward in time, this is without doubt the best champagne of them all. The 1996 is pure magic and the 82 Collection is super. If the opportunity arises, never miss the chance to drink a Krug! Vintage Krug competes with today’s Clos du Mesnil, but if we go backward in time, it is without doubt the best Champagne. The 1990 is pure magic. If the opportunity arises, never miss the chance to drink a Krug!