A Tour of The House of Krug
Krug is one of the most prestigious houses in the champagne region in France. To be able to visit and do a private tour and tasting at The House of Krug is truly exceptinonal. Joseph Krug established the House of Krug in 1843 to create the very best champagne. Krug is based in Reims the main city in the champagne region in France. We visited the Krug cellars during our stay at L’Assiette Champenoise where they offer Krug speciality packages.
Our visit was very special from the word go, Starting in the House where Krug began in the heart of champagne. The beautiful building with the oak barrels lining the entrance were spectacular in itself.
The Lounge of Krug
Joseph wrote all of his tasting notes in a cherry red notebook passing on all of his knowledge to his son Paul. He experimented with building a reserve of wines from grapes grown in different plots to blend exceptional wines.
The lounge area was beautiful with relics from the old house on display including the note book of Joseph himself.
Joseph wrote in his book ” A good house should only create two champagnes of the same quality” , champagne no 1 to be the fullest expression of champagne every single year, and. Champagne no 2, the expression of the circumstances of a particular year captured by Krug, and created only in the years as Krug vintage.
We know this today as Krug Vintage.
The Krug Champagne
Today the house offers seven different Krug champagnes.
Krug grande cuvée, Krug rosé, the Krug vintage , Krug collection and two clos du mesnil .
A walled vinyard ‘the clos du mesnil’ is where the grapes are grown in protected area with perfect soil (terroir) to create an exceptional flavour. These two different areas grow grapes that are used to produce the Krug Clos Mesnil Champagne and the Clos D’ambonnay which produces the Krug Clos D’ambonnay Champagne.
We sampled three champagnes on our tasting, A Krug Grand Cuvée a Krug Vintage 2003 and a Krug Vintage 2000. All three were exceptional.
Krug Grande Cuvée is a blend of over 120 wines coming from ten or more different vintages – some up to fifteen years in age – and three grape varieties,Pinot noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier. All from numerous vineyards in the champagne region.
Krug Vintage is, according to the House, “not the selection of the best wines of a particular year, but rather the expression of that year according to Krug” Composed only of wines from a single year, Krug Vintage Matures in Krug’s cellars for at least ten years before release.
We were told all about the Krug ID which tells the unique story of each individual bottle of champagne.
Each bottle has its own Krug ID number on the back of the bottle. Once you put this information in to the Krug app it will tell you the story of your individual bottle, From the age of the reserve wine’s used to make it to when it was corked and left the cellar.
You’ll find tasting notes , information on food pairing and even music that suits the mood of your champagne.
What is in the cellars of the house of Krug?
Once we had finished our tasting, we took a tour of the house. First off was the stunning cellars where even the smell is amazing, the cool dark spaces emulates such History and an excitement much like their champagne..
Champagne is stored to mature in wooden riddling racks. These riddlers allow for just a quarter turn at a time for each bottle to allow the sediment to settle in to the neck of the bottle.
Seeing the stunning vintages locked behind gates was amazing. All sitting and waiting for that special event.
Next was a tour around the reserve wines in they’re huge aluminium vats. Here you will find the house’s library of 150 reserve wines. These wines are to be used in the blend of a future Krug Grande Cuvée and Krug Rosé.
The pristine clean rooms are a stark contrast to that of the cellars.
Krug uses small 205-litre oak casks tailor-made from trees that are more than two centuries old in the forests of Hautes Futaies in Central France. These Barrels are only used for approximately 40 years.
During the summer preceding the harvest, casks are regularly watered to humidify the wood. The oak casks were a beautiful sight to see filling up the courtyard of the House of Krug. The water leaves stunning reflections on their lids of the surrounding house.
Visiting The House of Krug was a fantastic opportunity to explore and taste some beautiful champagne’s from an exceptional house.