We all have these mornings when nothing seems right. Not sure of our lives, are we really happy and wondering if it’s now time for real change. Early last week I almost experienced one but then I remembered it is Krug lunch today. Couple of hours in the office then skip the routine desk lunch, discretely disappear and replace it with lunch with Mr. Krug and his wines. Surely this is enough to turn even the grimmest of mornings into a happy day.
Later that day, down from our office to sunny Mayfair, I felt straight away it was the right place for Krug. My destination: the Punch Bowl mainly known due for its famous owner rather than anything else. Quick run up the stairs and then with slight excitement, I finally meet with Mr. Champagne himself. Olivier Krug is an experienced host, he skips the formalities. It’s a refreshing approach by someone who represents some of the most exclusive bubbles on earth. The menu was tailored in this spirit and promised a clash of two worlds: the poshest Champagne and Britain’s favourite take away, the old fish and chips.
We kicked off with an upscale version of cheese & tomato salad: sweet plum tomatoes, ultra fresh mozzarella, a light drip of olive oil and a glass of Krug Grande Cuvee in hand. I really did feel I’ve got the best job on earth. Olivier explained that the Grande Cuvee is an assemblage of around 1,000 wines. Being in charge of these tasting is a hard job, he mentioned. I understood straight away he’s got a stronghold to the best job in the earth.
Salad aside and we were now ready to take for the main event. Out came the fish, fhips, Krug Vintage 98 and even the classic mushy peas. The match was near perfect. The the richer and fuller 98 was magical on its own, and lend some of its startdust to our battered cod. Being the freshest piece of fish I had in a long time it also was a complete match with the fresher Grande Cuvee. Olivier was right, it is a classic match. While both wines beautifully cut through the oiliness of the fish each one of them creates an individual experience and they both work so well.
A sophisticated version of bread and butter pudding was then matched to the Krug Rosé and provoked a fierce debate. While so many of us normally associate Rosé with desert, Olivier sees things differently. Krug Rose is so delicate yet immensely focused, concentrated and precise that Olivier thinks there’s much more than dessert pairing to it. As we were left with no choice, this had to be a lesson that will wait for the next Krug lunch day.
Time was up and it was back to the office time. Back in our chairs we made the best efforts to loudly convince our colleagues how hard this all was. I’m not sure if anyone bought it but there was a silent agreement. Next time they’ll be back from a hard day’s lunch, I will nod in agreement that we’re a hard working gang.