Leslie Odom Jr.’s Tips For Creating The Perfect Champagne Playlist

Leslie Odom Jr.

Leslie Odom Jr. is best known for his role in the hit Broadway musical Hamilton. These days, however, he’s been using his musical talents for something else: creating playlists. But not just any playlists. The multi-talented star partnered up with Krug to pair champagnes with songs that when enjoyed together enhance the listening and tasting experience. Here, he shares his tips for creating your own champagne playlist, what music he currently has on repeat, and how he likes to enjoy his time in LA.

You partnered with Krug to develop music pairings that make champagne taste even better. Tell us about that.

There are so many similarities between music and Krug Champagnes. In the same way that you have solos and symphonies, you have wines like Krug Clos du Mesnil–a single grape, a single year expressing itself, and wines like Krug Grande Cuvée–an orchestra of 120+ wines coming together to create something amazing. When I came up with the musical pairings for this concept, I tried to match the tone and feel of my selections to the spirit of the wine. When you combine both together, you get an incredible experience. Together, champagne and music are more than the sum of their parts.

What are your tips for creating the perfect wine and music pairing playlist?

Follow your ears and your taste buds. If you’re basing your playlist off the wine, pay attention to how it makes you feel. If it’s a lively wine with a lot of notes, consider a piece that reflects that. Recently, I had the pleasure of drinking Krug Clos du Mesnil 2003. It made me want to slow down a little bit, so I paired this with a rendition of “Young Forever.” There’s no one genre. You can do this for classical, jazz, pop, and even rap. It’s all about the way it makes you feel! If you need guidance, the Krug ID app has suggestions.

What songs are on your personal drinking playlist?

I’m in party mode these days. I play PJ Morton’s Gumbo from top to bottom constantly.

What else are you working on right now?

I am on a book tour. I wrote a book last year to encourage and hopefully inspire anyone who’s pursuing a dream. It’s called Failing Up. I’m very proud of it.

What are some of your favorite LA spots?

We’ve settled out here recently but I’ve been home maybe a total of a month or two in about a year. When I’m home, it’s all Lucy all the time. So currently whatever dog park is close (my kid loves dogs), the dining room table when all the family is together, and our little neighborhood in West LA. In NYC, we frequented the Library (the restaurant located on the mezzanine at The Public Theater) and The NoMad Restaurant.