x
  • Country ranking ?

    254
  • Producer ranking ?

    17
  • Decanting time

    30min
  • When to drink

    now to 2035
  • Food Pairing

    Enjoy without food

The Tb points given to this wine are the world’s most valid and most up-to-date evaluation of the quality of the wine. Tastingbook points are formed by the Tastingbook algorithm which takes into account the wine ratings of the world's 50 best-known professional wine critics, wine ratings by thousands of tastingbook’s professionals and users, the generally recognised vintage quality and reputation of the vineyard and winery. Wine needs at least five professional ratings to get the Tb score. Tastingbook.com is the world's largest wine information service which is an unbiased, non-commercial and free for everyone.

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In 1996, in the village of Ambonnay, there were extremely wide temperature variations as the grapes were coming to the end of the cycle in the vineyard, with warm, sunny days and very cold nights, resulted in ripened grapes with an extremely high freshness. This weather pattern exalted the finesse of Clos d’Ambonnay’s Pinot Noir grapes. 1996 is to become a year that will go down in Champagne’s history books.

Krug’s savoir-faire has successfully revealed the depth and intensity of grapes of this single plot in the year 1996, enhanced by over twelve years in the cellar gaining finesse and elegance.

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The Story

Krug Clos d’Ambonnay celebrates with the rarest of Champagnes the unique character of a particular Pinot Noir grape that of a small, walled, 0.68-hectare plot from the heart of Ambonnay, one of the most distinguished villages for this grape variety in Champagne, and one which has played a very special role in the life of the House of Krug. Krug Clos d’Ambonnay reveals a personality with significant presence, great substance and an amazing length and finesse.

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Wine Information

Krug Clos d’Ambonnay 1996 can be enjoyed with pan-seared firm-fleshed white fish, sea bass with a langoustine sauce or a light creamy almond sauce, boiled or grilled langoustines with a light sabayon cream, or simple top-quality food, such as “pata negra” bellota ham, or just a little black truffle sandwich.

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Vintage 1996

Up to this point 1996 has been considered a fantastic vintage which produced classic wines; the best since 1990. A long, dry summer produced grapes of record ripeness with record acidity. Some, including myself, question how the 1996s are aging. The wines are generally characterized by a distinctive rather lemony acidity and very good attack, but some wines now seem terribly austere, while others already seem dangerously short of fruit. None of the subsequent vintages are quite as distinctive as 1996, which in the more successful cases should almost certainly be drunk after the 1999s.

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Latest Pro-tasting notes

22 tasting notes

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Written Notes

A wine from the foremost vintage from the foremost producer can of course not be other than fantastically good. It is however easy to be disappointed when expectations have been raised too high. I was offered my first bottle of this stately but immature wine by the Danish wine-loving couple Peter and Torun Kirk during an unforgettable dinner at their villa in Copenhagen. We drank it side by side with an absolutely wonderful bottle of 1988 Krug that out-classed the 96 in the degree of pure pleasure. It must however be said that the 96 is going to be a heroic wine though it still has a very long time to go yet. It is reminiscent of the 28 and also partly of the 61 in its compact costume and with its youthfully peevish acid. A monumental construction still at the model stage. Store!!!!
  • 95p

“Overt and expressive nose of toast, honey, red apple, earthy spiciness and finely integrated touch of oak. Some oxidative nuances too. Explosively fruity palate that is lifted by a remarkable acidic back bone. Great vivacity, intensity and near-eternal length. The palate takes the oak very well, merging it into the seamless complexity of super intense flavours.”

  • 94p

Light gold with slight hints of violet, recalling its Pinot Noir origins.
Sumptuous aromas of plum tart fresh from the oven, brioche, lightly toasted hazelnuts, orange blossom, candied apricots and citrus fruits. The palate is incredibly concentrated, full and deep, reminiscent of autumn fruits, an amazing freshness and great fullness, enhanced by very fine bubbles and a very long finish.

In 1996, in the village of Ambonnay, there were extremely wide temperature variations as the grapes were coming to the end of the cycle in the vineyard, with warm, sunny days and very cold nights, resulted in ripened grapes with an extremely high freshness. This weather pattern exalted the finesse of Clos d’Ambonnay’s Pinot Noir grapes. 1996 is to become a year that will go down in Champagne’s history books.

Krug’s savoir-faire has successfully revealed the depth and intensity of grapes of this single plot in the year 1996, enhanced by over twelve years in the cellar gaining finesse and elegance.

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Information

Origin

Reims, Champagne

Vintage Quality

Outstanding

Value For Money

Satisfactory

Release state price

1250€

Investment potential

Excellent

Fake factory

There is a possibility

Glass time

1h

Drinking temperature

8

Other wines from this producer

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Clos du Mesnil Vinothèque

Grande Cuvée

Grande Cuvée 160ème Édition

Grande Cuvee 161st edition

Grande Cuvée 162ème Édition

Grande Cuvee 163th edition

Grande Cuvee 164th edition

Grande Cuvée - 165ème Édition

Grande Cuvée -166ème Édition

Grande Cuvée 167ème Edition

Grande Cuvée 168éme edition

Grande Cuvée Edition 167

Krug Clos du Mesnil

Krug Collection

Krug Rosé

Krug Vintage

Private Cuvée

Rosé - 18ème Édition

Rose 21st Edition

Rosé 22 Edition

Vintage

Inside Information

Wine Advocate #186
Dec 2009
Antonio Galloni 95+ Drink: 2012 - 2026 $2036-$4000 (2000)
Somewhat surprisingly, Krug presents the much-anticipated 1996 Blanc de Noirs Clos d’Ambonnay as the first wine in our tasting. This incredibly refined Champagne opens with a superb, well-delineated bouquet and an impeccable, almost imperceptible mousse. At first very refined, the wine tightens up in the glass considerably as the acidity comes to life on the palate. The purest essence of crushed rocks and minerals define the finish. Today the 1996 Clos d’Ambonnay comes across as incredibly young and searing, in fact at this stage, it reminds me most of the vins claires I tasted at the estate last year! The wine will require considerable patience, but given its lack of track record, it seems reasonable to wonder whether the wine will ever be truly as expressive as the 1995, or the other wines in Krug’s 1996 lineup. No disgorgement date provided. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2026. 

My tasting this year with Olivier Krug was fascinating as I had the rare opportunity to taste all of the house’s 1996’s side by side, a comparison that yielded very interesting results.
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