Many follow the crowd but few break with convention and fight to create their own path. It is these few that are the figures of change and inspiration. Over 170 years ago Joseph Krug made a choice that marked him out as a visionary, that of pursuing a dream to make a prestige cuvée in Champagne which would be superior quality every year, rather than those around him who were beholden to the fickle climate of Champagne.
Born in Germany, in the heart of the Mosel, Joseph aged 24 moved to France and set out to follow his dream of making his mark on Champagne. Famed house Jacquesson employed him and he worked tirelessly, becoming a partner and travelling the globe to promote the brand. However, he became increasingly frustrated over his time there making lower quality cuvées every year, but having to wait for a good vintage to make a top class Champagne.
Finally aged 42, despite having married into the Jacquesson family and approaching retirement, he took a leap of faith. He set up his own house and built a reserve of wines made from grapes from separate plots with its own unique character. These became his mixing palate and allowed him to make ‘the most generous expression of Champagne’ year in year out.
“The inspirational No.1 Krug Grande Cuveé was born. It was a revolution.”
Krug was the first to decide to create only prestige Champagne every year and a vintage only in the best years in line with Joseph’s view that ‘A good house should create only two Champagnes of the same quality.’ This defining trait of Krug is what continues to mark Krug out as unique.
Krug’s bread and butter- the Grand Cuveé - is a blend of more than 120 wines from 10 or more different vintages with an ageing process of at least 6 years on its lees, which undoubtedly stands out in a crowd. Krug, not content with just creating a unique Champagne, they want to push boundaries in the way that they explain their philosophy and encourage new consumers to try their Champagne.
They recognise that wine is expressive and subjective just as food, art and music are. If you visit their website you will see how they have explored all of these synergies, making them one of the most forward-thinking creative Champagne brands out there.
Music is the collaboration they have spent a great deal of effort exploring. It is at the heart of their marketing, revolving around the notion that the Grande Cuveé is a well-crafted piece of music played by a symphony orchestra; the melody needs to be the same but it can be played by different instruments to create the same effect.
“Each plot and its wine is seen as a fine musician giving their own flair and uniqueness to the final blend.”
However, they wanted to take it further than a metaphor and found that there was research which recognized the changes hearing can make to a tasting experience. With this in mind, they approached a range of artists whose music they felt was akin to the experience of drinking Krug Champagnes. The artists selected or created pieces of music which they felt captured the essence of the given cuvée, they then described why the chosen song encapsulates the Champagne they were paired with.
Keziah Jones, a ‘Blufunk’ artist from the project describes the synergy with music Krug have uncovered ‘they work hard to create something unique. Just as I try to do in music’. Gregory Porter takes this further and explains how the selection of his song Liquid Spirit links to Grande Cuvée - ‘In pairing Liquid Spirit to the experience of tasting Krug Grande Cuvée it heightened the emotion of both the music and the experience of drinking Champagne.” A collaboration like no other (involving, no doubt, some tipsy musicians) which can be experienced here.
Krug has always been ahead of the times and this trend continues with their unique focus on music and use of social media to engage consumers through their ‘wall of love’ for Krug lovers. Furthermore, the creation of the Krug ID which can be found on each bottle and scanned to reveal the journey of their bottle, its components, disgorgement and music pairing, provides every drinker with an enhanced personal experience of Krug. To me, Krug is inspirational, trailblazing and each bubble is full of joy - so if Krug be the Champagne of love, they simply must continue to play on!
You can find more information about the Champagnes we stock here. If you want to stock any of the wines mentioned, click here to place an order online now, or here to request an account with us; and don’t forget we’re here to support you with everything you need to ensure that your wine range is a success, from free menu design and print services to staff training.