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  • Country ranking ?

    907
  • Producer ranking ?

    90
  • Decanting time

    30min
  • When to drink

    Now-2035
  • Food Pairing

    bread pudding with redcurrant coulis

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 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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The year 2003 was truly unique with particularly challenging circumstances, an eventful year for Champagne
We had a dry winter and spring, an early bud break followed by two serious frosts which meant significant losses, especially of many Chardonnay grapes. Then August was a record-breaker with average temperatures of 28.5°C, ten degrees above the seasonal average! We had our first harvest on August 23rd, the earliest since 1822, but the extreme variations in ripeness throughout the plots meant we could not set harvest dates for each village, as is usually the case in the Champagne region. Thus, the harvest continued in waves until early October. A year of three such extremes was unheard of in living memory… 

At the end of harvest we had small yields, healthy grapes, an expected over-ripeness but also an unexpected under-ripeness; the vines protected themselves from the intense heat by stopping their maturation. We discovered this because we respect the individual expression of every plot; nature’s beauty and strength at work in the fields. Nurturing this individuality meant we found surprisingly fresh, aromatic and balanced wines with very vivacious fruit.


Personally, I am delighted with the varied blend of Krug 2003 because it tells our story; it reflects the challenges we faced. It includes a higher quantity of wines from black grapes than usual and thus also a smaller amount of Chardonnay (29%); these were used discreetly because they gave plenty of aromatic richness. Expression and vivacity comes from the wines of the parcels of Meunier (25%) from villages such as Sainte Gemme, Villevenard and Courmas. The Pinot Noirs  (46%) with their lovely structure and body - from the south and north-facing slopes of the Montagne de Reims - add balance and freshness.


After a decade gaining finesse in the cellars, Krug 2003 can be enjoyed now or for many more years to come. As with all Krug Champagnes, Krug 2003 has a very high ageing potential and will gain with time.

Eric Lebel / CHEF DE CAVES, KRUG

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The Story

Unique to the House of Krug, every Krug Vintage is crafted to be different, to reveal the expression of a particular year. A year with character, a year with a special story to tell in a way that Krug alone can relate. To narrate this story, Krug has blended very expressive wines from a single year, enhanced by a stay of over ten years in the cellars. Krug Vintage is the story of a year as seen by Krug; there are as many stories as there are Krug Vintages.

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Wine Information

Our expression of the year 2003, revealed by Krug as a story of vivacious radiance

The 2003 vintage was a year of many circumstances: dry winter and spring, very premature blooming, two serious frosts and a summer of scorching heat. With small yields, healthy grapes, extremely varied levels of maturity and over and under-ripeness, it was Krug's respect of the individual expression of every plot that produced surprisingly fresh, aromatic and balanced wines. Krug decided to create a vintage for this particular year and named it "Vivacité Solaire" (Vivacious Radiance).

Technical Information:

Vineyards: 100% Grand & Premier Cru | Pinot Noir: Montagne de Reims | Chardonnay: Côte des Blancs | Pinot Meunier: Courmas, Saint Gemme, Villevenard
Grape Varieties: 46% Pinot Noir, 29% Chardonnay, 25% Pinot Meunier
Ageing: 9 years on the lees
Disgorged: Winter 2012/2013
Dosage: 6 g/l
Drink: 2014-2026

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Vintage 2003

A challenging vintage for Champagne in the face of an unprecedented heatwave during the summer months. The wines are characterised by the year's unusual circumstances. Large-scale frosts destroyed most of the projected yield and they were followed by hail and an extremely hot summer. Harvest was kick-started early on August 21st and yields remained minuscule at 8,100 kg/ha. Atypically round, ripe, sun-kissed wines that miss freshness and backbone. The total acidity level was notably low, at 5.8 g/l. Only the very best performers were able to avoid heaviness and overripe aromatics. This vintage was not largely declared but some famous names, Krug and Dom Pérignon at the fore, chose to experiment with it. Both produced excellent 2003s and Dom Pérignon's chef de cave at the time named the vintage as one of the creations he is most proud of. Some special cuvées surfaced, such as 2003 by Bollinger, as the house found the year did not stylistically fit into the La Grande Année range. Palmer & Co also took a curious route and made its 2003 only in magnum, releasing it much later than usual as cuvée Grands Terroirs. The ageing capacity of 2003 is much debated. Dom Pérignon's Richard Geoffroy had great confidence in his 2003 and he actually regretted releasing it too early. The jury is still out, but personally I am inclined to drink mine sooner rather than later, as the advancement post-disgorgement has in most cases been rather rapid and the wines miss the acidic backbone necessary for retaining freshness.

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Latest Pro-tasting notes

36 tasting notes

Tasting note

color

Medium, Yellow and Bright

ending

Long, Extensive and Lingering

flavors

Toasty, Mineral, Creamy, New-oak, Citrus and Tropical fruits

nose

Youthful, Fresh, Ripe and Seductive

recommend

Yes

taste

High in Acidity, Concentrated, Youthful, Medium-bodied, Focused, Rich and Fresh

Verdict

Transparent and Impressive

Written Notes

’A much fresher and more well made wine than Bollinger this year for example. A little dull, but noticeably large nose with dark brush strokes. When it opens up it  feels like  the vintage is a bit heavy & clumsy. Otherwise, the wine is again an unmistakable Krug with a structure and building as more than a little reminiscent of the heroic ’76.’ RJ 92(95)

  • 92p

Looking very fresh and complex with plenty of richness and caramelized autolysis characters. Quite distinctively fragrant chardonnay notes of citrus, stone fruits and melon. It heads into spicy territory, very resolved and composed, with nutty, bready nuances and chalky notes. There?s trademark kaleidoscopic appeal. The palate has depth and composure with assertive acidity amid supple, fleshy chardonnay grapefruit and white-peach-sorbet flavors, plus lemon pith and nougat. Long, majestic, commanding, dark, nutty, red-grape flavors and phenolics drive the palate long. This suits the style and stacks up admirably.

  • 95p

ID 414070. Krug started the harvest on 23 August, their earliest ever, but some grapes picked early in October because of vine shutdown. Frost in spring and then heat in summer shrank the crop. This is a wine that positively bounces out of the glass! Real spine and concentration ? exotic, explosive and yet beautifully balanced. Dried orange peel and spice. Great balance on the palate. Broader and more interesting and complex than the Clos du Mesnil 2003. Tasted: 23-Feb-2016

  • 95p
Pale lemon yellow, tiny bubbles. Minerals, apples, some nuts, fruity and rounded nose, cool feel to it for the vintage, less yellow fruit notes. Fresh acidity, elegant mousse, fresh, again some nuts, minerals, apples, elegant and smooth body and texture, detailed, almost creamy, long.
  • 95p
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Information

Origin

Reims, Champagne

Vintage Quality

Above Average

Investment potential

Below Average

Glass time

1h

Other wines from this producer

Blanc de Blancs

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 Cuvee 169th Edition

Grande Cuvée 170ème Édition

Grande Cuvée Edition 167

Krug Clos d'Ambonnay

Krug Clos du Mesnil

Krug Collection

Krug Rosé

Private Cuvée

Private Cuvée Extra Sec

Rosé - 18ème Édition

Rose 21st Edition

Rosé 22 Edition

Vintage

Inside Information

Krug 2003 can be enjoyed with dishes involving quince and citrus fruits, such as veal, lamb and quince tagine, fine fish and/or shellfish with citrus-based sauces, oysters au gratin. Recipes with spices, cinnamon, curry are good options and for dessert; a nicely prepared bread pudding with redcurrant coulis or citrus gratin.

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