If you are a Krug classicist, this is your wine. There’s nothing like it, other than prior great vintages of Krug (and perhaps the 2002, when that breaks away from the cellar). My notes on this wine are extensive, but the one word underlined is Kruggy: It has the power and stodgy brilliance of Krug. The depth of the wine is hard to describe, with ethereal quince and sweet spice providing sunniness to counter the gravitas of the structure. It brought to mind the crostini topped with uni and lardo at Marea in NYC—a dish that would bring out the layers of lime, lemon zest and shellfish broth in this wine. It would also match well with rich Lyonnaise cuisine, a foie gras terrine, duck confit...whether you open it now or in 20 years.
*Collectibles* This harmonious Champagne offers luxurious texture and powerful, focused acidity, showing aromatic accents of spring blossom, crushed thyme and chai, with rich notes of lemon meringue, hazelnut, black currant and fresh porcini mushroom. The full package. Impressive. Drink now through 2028.
*Cellar Selection* Although the aromas are toasty, the flavors are still so fresh, rich, complex. This is a wonderful expression of taut minerality, pure citrus zest and then a wood-toast character that gives the wine both richness and sophistication. Given the fresh, intense fruit, this will certainly age for many years.
Krug's 1998 Brut Vintage is an excellent choice for drinking today, as the classic Krug style is rich, alive and totally vivid. Honey, almonds, smoke, graphite and dried apricots are some of the many aromas and flavors found in this rich, enveloping Champagne. A wine of texture and depth, the 1998 impresses for its vinous personality and terrific balance. Lively veins of underlying acidity suggest the 1998 will drink well for many years to follow. This is one of the best bottles of the 1998 I have ever tasted. (AG)
(LLLLPK 00178): Bright gold. Ripe orchard fruits, peach pit, toffee, marzipan and dried flowers on the pungent, smoky nose. Broad and fleshy on entry, then tighter in the mid-palate, offering palate-staining pit fruit nectar, apple pie and brioche flavors, enhanced by a toffeed quality. Closes spicy and very long, with resonating smoke and toasted hazlenut qualities.
Very, very fine bead. Very discreet and beautifully constructed. Very dense. Like a ship, constructed bit by bit. Dry finish. Needs food! A great rarity: a Krug with more Chardonnay than Pinot Noir. 19.5/20 points.
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