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March 15, 2010

NV Krug, Champagne Reims Brut Grand Cuvee

When they say the stuff that dreams are made of--I get it now. It's not some overreaching cliche reserved only for the likes of Sam Spade. I was blinded this wine for the first time last night (no one I know would ever blind Krug; we generally open it under spotlight while screaming yeah, it's KRUG mothafuckas!) and all I could think of it as was fantasy. Sure, looking back, it was obviously Krug (my guess got as far as a young Reims with "something very unusual going on"). The second we revealed the bottle, I got tornadic wafts of toasted dried mushroom from the heavy dose of pinot meunier (indeed unusual). The giant smoky sourdough, creme anglaise, and strawberry biscuit aroma finally made sense--the unique barrel fermentation and lees age that Krug receives. And sure, all that lunging acidity was the blend of young wine that every NV Krug (more appropriately labeled multivintage) is built on. But that's after seeing the bottle. Really knowing Krug is to not know it's Krug. Here's a wine I've been lucky enough to have several times--one that as far as my interest in Champagne goes is supposed to be a benchmark. Yet looking back on all my prior encounters, I only remember it as delicious. Sometimes even elegant (which Krug is decidedly not). And that's because I knew it was Krug. I came wearing my tux to meet the aristocracy. But last night. Last night was running into the princess at the IGA. Something about you draws me in. I'd like to get to know you better. Even next to the frozen peas. There's the wonder of this wine. Without its label, without its pretense, without knowing its cost, it's indeed a better, more awe-inspiring wine. An imaginative, impressionist Champagne. Cezanne corked and under pressure. If you made a wine in your mind, half asleep, imagining six impossibilities before breakfast, this just might coerce itself into existence right after animals can talk. It's wunderlust. It's fugue. It's magic without knowing there are secrets in this world. And proof that sometimes you have to close your eyes to know what stands in front of you. But for us dreamers, take a breath, purse your lips, and dare to be surprised. Yeah, it's Krug mothafuckas. Thank you, Danielle.


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