The 2002 Clos du Mesnil is brilliant right out of the gate. Vibrant, focused and crystalline, the 2002 hits all the right notes. Lemon peel, grapefruit, slate and white flowers give the 2002 its high-toned personality. The ripeness of the vintage has softened some of the typically angular young Clos du Mesnil contours. Best of all the 2002 is a rare Clos du Mesnil that drinks well right out of the gate, even if it will surely be more complex with more time in bottle. The 2002 has been absolutely stellar on both occasions I have tasted it so far. (AG)
(Clos du Mesnil) A lovely, lacy Champagne, with ripe apricot, fennel seed and espresso aromas. This caresses the palate with a finely detailed mousse and expansive flavors of pineapple pâte de fruit, toasted brioche, fleur de sel and grated ginger. Long and chalky on the finish, this is a prima ballerina, showing power cloaked in grace. Disgorged winter 2015. Drink now through 2032. (AN)
(Vintage) This is a fabulous wine from the greatest Champagne vintage so far this century. Still young, it blends almost equal amounts of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay fleshed out with Pinot Meunier. The minerality and the rich apple and green fruits are balanced, and acidity cuts into the wine with a pure, perfumed line of freshness. The wine could be drunk now, but it will age well into the the 2020s. (RV)
(Vintage) This has the stamina of the 2002 vintage from the first scent, a fragrance like pear skin and butterscotch, and something fresher, like meadow flowers. All of that fragrance comes in a wine that’s expansive and dry, almost austere in the power of its acidity. Over the course of several days, the wine remains impervious to the fraying of oxidation, instead building on its flavors, deepening to scents of white truffles. Initially, the power of the acidity not only cleans up after the wine’s substantial flavor, but also seems to lash all those notes together and rocket them through a buzz of energy that lasts for minutes. That energy, undiminished four days later, when the bubbles have finally gone, takes on a gentler power, presenting the harmony and elegance at the center of the wine. The 2002 may well be the greatest vintage wine Henri Krug produced during his four-decade career.
(Vintage) The much-anticipated 2002 has impeccable detail and depth with a lot of chalky, stony and flinty elements on the nose as well as a very fresh edge. The nose is very complex and wound up tight but presents itself as very integrated and compressed. There are aromas of lemon rind, lime juice and a lime custard all at once, complemented in turn by a super-restrained hazelnut-like edge. Undertones of brown mushrooms, chalky minerals and lemon leaf. The palate has a core of sizzlingly intense, concentrated chardonnay framed whitin a powerful phenolic structure that will underpin the future of this Champagne. Flawlessly fresh and as perfect as it gets. Give this time as it needs to settle: best from 2020 and then for another decade beyond.
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