Reviews of Krug Clos Du Mesnil 1996
Krug Clos du Mesnil is the one exception to the Krug rule of blending, since it is the product, not merely of a single grape variety and a single year, but of a single historic vineyard. In this enchanting champagne, the purity of Chardonnay and the mineral aromas of the terroir are balanced by a discreet yet distinctive taste of honey, which is a particular characteristic of Krug Clos du Mesnil.
To the elegance and purity of the Chardonnay grape and the mineral accents characteristic of the Mesnil-sur-Oger plot, Krug Clos du Mesnil 1996 brings a dramatic new dimension. Constantly surprising, always sublime, Krug Clos du Mesnil 1996 is a sensational interpretation of this exceptional vintage.
Honey – Nougatine – Candied citrus
100% Chardonnay grapes from the clos du Mesnil, a single vineyard covering just 1.85 hectares nestling within the village of Mesnil-sur-Oger in the renowned Côte des Blancs. Enclosed by a stone wall since 1698, the Clos du Mesnil is blessed with an ideal microclimate, being situated on a gentle southeast-facing slope and sheltered from the weather by its wall and the surrounding houses.
THE ULTIMATE “GARDEN PLOT”
The Krugs purchased the Clos du Mesnil in 1971 as part of a total of six hectares of excellent vineyards. However, it was not until after the purchase, when they visited it for the first time, that they realized its full potential. What they found was a beautiful 1.85 hectare vineyard that dated back to 1698, as testified by a plaque on one of its walls.
At the time of the purchase, the Clos du Mesnil had been neglected for some years. The Krugs took the decision to restore the “garden plot” to its former glory by replanting it with Chardonnay vines. The simple solution would have been to replant the whole vineyard at once, but Henri Krug decided to replant the vines in stages, knowing that a champagne has more character when it is made with grapes picked from vines of different ages.
The vineyard was secretly replanted over eight years, and it was not until 1979 that the first harvest was deemed to fulfil expectations. When the wine was tasted, it proved so outstanding that the Krugs decided to bottle it on its own. There would be no “assemblage” – a bold decision amply justified by the exquisite quality of the single ingredient.
Alcohol content: 12%
Serve between 4ºC and 8ºC
Optimal consumption period: 1996-2021
Pairing: Appetizers, Bluefish, Fowl, Seafood, Soft Cheese, Whitefish.
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