Konstantine makes awesome videos: 2008 vs 2013
I’m a subscriber to his channel and highly recommend it. Short videos and solid content.
I found him I think when I was looking into Coravin. Agree, his content is good and entertaining.
Thanks. Just had a bottle of the 08 at dinner on Friday and I have no problem with his 100 point rating. It’s showing absolutely beautifully right now. Completely outclassed the 08 and 12 DP opened in the past few weeks. Tons of lemon and warm minerality with a creamy texture and perfect bubbles.
Yea, he usually grades lower than everyone else. This was the one exception I’ve seen in his videos.
The problem comes when you set it in context. I agree that 2008 Cristal is a step up over the 2008 Dom Pérignon, Krug, and any number of other wines; but, without going beyond the Roederer stable, the 2008 Cristal Rosé is clearly better than the regular Cristal, which makes it difficult to consider 100/100.
It’s a thorough and well-informed video, though in fact 2012 was the first Cristal made entirely from certified organic fruit, as opposed to certified biodynamic fruit as he states.
For me, it’s hard to choose between the 2008 and 2013 Cristal. I think the 2013 is a more perfectly realized wine in a less perfect vintage, if that makes sense: the big and rapid advances in farming that Roederer made in the interim really show. My experience tasting '08 vs '13 is that seamlessness of structure of the '13 throws the slightly imperfect physiological maturity of '08 into relief; not something you likely notice tasting them separately.
Super fun video, I love his delivery and content. I don’t even drink champagne due to allergy… the last time I tried a champagne was a year or two ago… one glass of the '08 Cristal… “OMG WTF is this what I am missing out on in life!?”, was tempted to make it a WOTY for me off that bare glass, and I bought a couple bottles to share with my wife (for $185!). The notes the video maker made resonate with me… the '08 felt plush/less tartly acidic to me, while being still very fresh with a kaleidoscopic explosion of flavors and bubbles.
That’s fair. Sadly I haven’t had the Rose to compare. But isn’t that the mindset that seems to depress scores across the board in Burgundy? I think it’s possible to think of 100 not as an absolute, but simply a wonderful wine in a great place showing perfectly that moment. Another wine later can also be 100 and it doesn’t necessarily require qualifying the previous one simply because the current one is better.
But I suppose that can create the slippery Suckling slope where scores are continually inflated. The best of the vintage always get 99 or 100 and there are typically multiple at the same score muddying the waters which one was actually the best.
This is a bit of a devil’s advocate argument here as personally I wouldn’t have given the 08 Cristal I had last week 100. Splitting hairs it needs a little more integration between the acid and fruit to reach that level, but I hope it will get there with time. But I can still understand the score given.
I do think it is highly likely that people enjoy fine wines together and try many high quality bottles. I think Cristal is a good example of a wine I think people would want to compare to other wines either it’s other Cristal vintages or Krug, Dom, Bollinger, Salon, etc.
Maybe if it’s a date night I could see opening up a favorite bottle. I think a bottle like this would be interesting to do maybe in 3 vintage comparison. Good to know the current vintages are keeping up tho!
oof are you allergic to the specific yeast? I’ll buy your bottles off you for $185
I agree with your assessment. 100 points means that the wine seems fully complete and there is nothing I’d want changed in the wine. It doesn’t mean that there isn’t room for improvement. In the end score is preference and perhaps the German wines Konstantine most likely drinks more often shades his bias a little even though I’m sure he tries many great wines from all over the world.
You’re absolutely right, it’s a slippery slope, as I think we agree we see in contemporary wine criticism. One can tie oneself in knots about it as much as one likes, but the bottom line is that one needs to give 100/100 out sufficiently infrequently and rigorously that it remains meaningful. Some sort of internal consistency also seems to me important (if I were to rate the 2008 Cristal 100/100 I’d have to give the same score to at least a handful more wines, too, that I consider its qualitative equal). The luxury for consumers of not doing this professionally is that they don’t have to entertain seriously such considerations, so you can just use scores as a short hand for your emotions. Though I confess doing it professionally has cured me from any desire to score wines recreationally, I must say.
Well said. In regards to organic vs. biodynamic for the 2012, I think the issue comes down to certified or non-certified. 2012 Cristal was the first made entirely from vineyards that were farmed following biodynamic principles, but I don’t believe all were certified at the time (I have an old note from 2013 saying approximately 1/3 were certified, but it may have been a higher percentage). The 2008 Cristal Rose was similar - it was the first wine from Roederer to be made from 100% biodynamically farmed grapes, but I don’t think all the plots had official certification at the time.
It’s always challenging to me to think of a wine as ‘perfect’. Perhaps it’s because I’m a winemaker and I know what goes into the process. Or perhaps it’s because I think of the ‘perfect imperfections’ that make wine a bit more ‘human’ and more interesting…
I understand the idea of a wine offering more enjoyment than others but to me, that us so subjective and time specific.
We are often times are our own toughest critics. We are so familiar with the things we make we know where it “could be better”. Unless you’re on this forums then these Berserkers are the toughest critics .
This doesn’t limit itself just to wine, but even your favorite movie or song you may consider a 100% but the filmmaker/director/producer/artist might be like omg we just scrapped by making it. I think one of the very few 100 pt experiences in my life was a roller coaster ride called California Screamin’. All the other roller coasters you have to wait to be slowly pulled to the top before it starts. This coaster just shoots you off from the start up a steep incline. It was such a rush.
Perhaps for me 100 pt experience is something that will inevitably stay in your memory for many years because it was that good.
Watched a couple more of Konstanin’s videos…
MASTER OF WINE Tries WORST Wines from VIVINO Under $20
“save up that $7.30 and get something else nicer”
“I’m going to dismantle the favorite term of many somm, journalists and wine buyers… minerality”
“every plant needs the same plants need the same nutrients… have you wondered by your orange juice doesn’t taste mineral?”
“most rocks do not have taste or smell. if you believe me, start licking some stones. [lick]. Nah! And this rock came from DRC”
Universal glass blind tasting
Puts in a plastic cup in the rotation… “can smell nothing but my leather gloves, but on the palate its nice”
Love this. And perhaps it will stay in your memory for many years not only because of the wine, but because of where you were and who you were with. The closest to perfection I ever had in a beer was a Bud Light - it had nothing to do with the beer but instead to the setting, who I was with, and how it went down . . .
This reminds me of a night with old high school friends. I was introduced to a thing called a beer-mosa. It was just natural light and orange juice, but a super fun night. I had a nice thanksgiving but I know I won’t remember any of the wine even though it was fairly nice stuff… somehow I remember the flavor and really enjoying a beer-mosa.
Yes! I’ve watched pretty much all of his videos. He has a very pragmatic way of explaining things. His home winemaking series was also a good watch.
I’m in the same boat. Have not had the 08 Rose, but did not give the 08 Cristal 100 points anyway, though it is an undeniably exquisite champagne and one of my favorites of the past few years. Re 100 point wines and scoring, it’s a tough call. If a wine can be superior, then surely there was room for improvement in the wine you are drinking which suggests it cannot be 100 points. But if that is the case, then is there only 1 100 point wine? A king of all wines? Surely not. A Rose to me is an altogether different beast than a champagne to which no still wine has been added. each could presumably be perfect in their category, while still being different wines subject to favoritism. In any event, there appears to be some disagreement between critics about which of these wines is superior, as the 2008 Cristal has slightly higher overall scores than the 2008 Cristal Rose, and both have multiple 100 point scores, 99 point scores, etc.