Somewhat surprisingly, Krug presents the much-anticipated 1996 Blanc de Noirs Clos d’Ambonnay as the first wine in our tasting. This incredibly refined Champagne opens with a superb, well-delineated bouquet and an impeccable, almost imperceptible mousse. At first very refined, the wine tightens up in the glass considerably as the acidity comes to life on the palate. The purest essence of crushed rocks and minerals define the finish. Today the 1996 Clos d’Ambonnay comes across as incredibly young and searing, in fact at this stage, it reminds me most of the vins claires I tasted at the estate last year! The wine will require considerable patience, but given its lack of track record, it seems reasonable to wonder whether the wine will ever be truly as expressive as the 1995, or the other wines in Krug’s 1996 lineup. No disgorgement date provided. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2026.
(186, The Wine Advocate 22nd Dec 2009)