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One of the most serious English Sparkling producers. This historic estate has been in the Goring family since 1743. The tiny 16-acre vineyard is close-planted on a steep south-facing chalk escarpment described as 'similar to the Côte des Blancs' in Champagne. The fruit is picked very selectively with quality being the absolute focus. The grapes are pressed gently using a traditional Coquard press. After three years on the lees this wine, composed of 45% Pinot Noir, 33% Chardonnay & 22% Pinot Meunier, is hand disgorged and balanced with a minimal dosage of just 4g/L. It has a fine counterbalance between toasty richness and power from the wines élevage in Burgundian French Oak barrels, with racy acidity, tension and a focused chalky minerality.

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Tasting with Oliver Krug

Upcoming Events

We host regular weekly and Saturday wine tastings in each K&L location.

For the complete calendar, including lineups and additional details related to our events, visit our K&L Local Events on KLWines.com or follow us on Facebook.  

 

Free Spirits Tastings at K&L! Now that we have our license for spirits tastings in Redwood City and San Francisco, we’re excited to host regular free spirits tastings in those locations.  Check the Spirits Journal for an updated tasting schedule.

All tastings will feature different products from the Spirits Department and take place on Wednesdays in Redwood City and San Francisco. Visit our events page on Facebook or the K&L Spirits Journal for more information.

>>Upcoming Special Events, Dinners, and Tastings

See all K&L Local Events

Archives
Friday
Feb072014

2014 UGC-The 2011 BDX Vintage

instagram.com/winechef

 

Established in 1973,  the Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux (UGC) was formed for and by Bordeaux wine producers that were already touring the world in order to introduce their products to importers, vendors, retailers, journalists, and consumers.

Saturday, January 25th, 99 chateaus convened at the Bentley Reserve to taste …. on the 2011 vintage, accompanied by a grand display of decadent artisanal cheeses. This is the event of the year, where Bordeaux lovers gather to taste potential.

K&L Team Bordeaux opened hundreds of bottles, and were able to taste the wines before the doors were opened to the public.

Click to read more ...

Friday
Feb072014

2003 Krug- A Bold Move!

We tasted the 2003 Krug this week- a preview of a wine coming later this month.

I was very surprised and more than a little bit skeptical when I heard the rumor that Krug would release a 2003 vintage Champagne. As many of you know, 2003 was a torridly hot vintage in Europe and the earliest harvest in Champagne since 1822. This 2003 is the earliest harvest in the history of Krug, which was founded in 1843! Most early, hot vintages in Champagne are saved by Chardonnay, the freshest of the big three grape varieties, but in 2003 2/3’s of the Chardonnay crop was destroyed by an April frost. This has made for the most difficult vintage in my 14 years as Champagne buyer here at K&L, and by quite a large margin.

Few have declared this vintage; Bollinger did, but decided to call it “2003 by Bollinger” rather than Bollinger "Grande Année" 2003. Moet took a big position on this vintage, declaring both grand vintage and Dom Perignon in brut and rose. Since LVMH owns both Krug and Moet, it made me even more skeptical of the declaration. When I met Krug Ambassador Garth Hodgon to taste the 2003, I did my best to keep an open mind.

Krug ambassador Garth Hodgdon showed us both the 2003 & 2000

I was pleasantly surprised when Garth arrived with not just the 2003, but also the 2000 to taste next to it. He explained that they had made less than 1/3 of the amount that they usually vintage in 2003, an amount that will only represent 5% of production. Grand Cuvee is 80-85%. He also surprised me by giving the cepage; it is composed of 46% Pinot Noir, 31% Meunier and 23% Chardonnay. Using the Krug ID (this bottle was 113015) I found even more solid information. The wine was disgorged about a year ago in the winter 2012/ 2013 after 9 years of ageing on the lees and took advantage of some of the cooler sites on the north facing slope of the Mountain of Reims. The only thing left now was to taste it.

I feel the 2003 Krug Brut Champagne ($219, expected in early March) has it in the bottle. It had a golden color that was touched with green, and a warm, pie crust like nose that was more than a little bit malic. Aromatically, I felt that this had a lot going on and was not a one note player the way that almost all the other 2003’s I have tried have been. In the mouth it was very rich with caramel apple and brioche flavors and a broad texture. The finish was super dry, and if I had to guess I would speculate that this is dosed in the extra brut range- 6g/liter or less. I think that our wine journalist friends are going to love it- watch for big scores in the Wine Spectator etc… This is impressive stuff.

The 2000 Krug Brut Champagne ($199) was very elegant and subtle by comparison. I think many of us will prefer this for current drinking, but given how wonderfully the super ripe 1976 Krug Brut Champagne is drinking right now, I wouldn’t count the 2003 out for keeping. What a treat!

A toast to you!

Gary Westby

Wednesday
Feb052014

Perfect 10 year old Pessac-Leognan!

The exotic 2004 Larrivet was perfect with my Japanese inspired steak bowl!

It is easy to enjoy being on a strict diet when a key part of the regimen is eating steak and drinking Bordeaux once a week. This past Monday Cinnamon and I enjoyed a wonderful steak and claret night with the 2004 Larrivet Haut-Brion, Pessac-Léognan ($32.99) and a steak and rice bowl that I prepared. This wine had been a real standout at a recent staff tasting, and Cinnamon had bought some for the cellar and more importantly, for the table. While this Pessac-Leognan showed very well next to other wines at the tasting, it really came alive with the food.

The Graves area, which Pessac-Leognan is the best part of, is some of the oldest vineyard land in Bordeaux, pre-dating the draining and planting of the Medoc by hundreds of years. The Chateau Larrivet Haut-Brion is a very old property and records of winemaking on this site go back to 1840. The current ownership, the Gervoson family, has owned the property since 1987.

The vineyard is nearly 190 acres, planted mostly to red grapes, although the Chateau does make an excellent white. For the red, the vineyard is planted to 50% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc. The average age of the vines is 25 years.

The 2004 vintage was sandwiched between the ultra ripe showy 2003’s and the packed, super sized 2005’s, and has been nearly forgotten by collectors. That is good news for the claret drinker, because at 10 years old, the good quality 2004’s are starting to sing, and this great example should continue to drink wonderfully for another 10 years. Clyde has always been an expert at ferreting out the best wines from overlooked vintages and this is a great example of that.

I found the 2004 Larrivet to have a great smoky, exotic aroma and after an hour in the decanter the bouquet was matched by a seamless, medium bodied texture. I found it to have a great combination of dark plum and cassis fruit that complemented the food perfectly. I started my bowl with rice, added a small omlette loaded with shishito peppers that I had charred in the skillet, and added thinly sliced, bite sized pieces of prime ribeye on top. The tobacco element of the wine complimented the shishito’s perfectly, and the ripe tannins cleansed the palate of bites of the rich ribeye. I think the best element of the wine was the very long, very detailed mineral finish. I can almost still taste it on Wednesday afternoon!

-Gary Westby

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