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April 24, 2020

The Original Champagne Charlie

Charles-Camille Heidsieck was a bold and daring man who challenged conventions with style. He freed himself from The Establishment and from the predictable, comfortable future of becoming an heir to his family business. At 29 years old in a quest for true excellence and trusting only his own beliefs he set up Champagne Charles Heidsieck.

In 1852, Charles made a visionary decision to import champagne to the United States which was met with roaring success. As such, he was given the nickname Champagne Charlie thanks to generous newspaper coverage. He then went on to become a fixture of the high society social scene, with banquet receptions and legendary parties held in his honour.

Always aiming for the very best and convinced that the ageing process was the main determining factor in champagne quality, in 1867, when others were acquiring vineyards he invested in 2000-year-old chalk cellars or ‘Crayères’, a Gallo-Roman legacy and now classed as a UNESCO world heritage site. Charles Heidsieck wines are still aged to this day in the Crayères.

Charles Heidsieck draws on its heritage and the founder’s hedonistic character to manifest a spirit, which is embodied in champagne. Charles Heidsieck wine represents a world of elegance and indulgence through orchestral blends of grapes harvested from over 60 villages over 20 years. It is beautifully balanced and captivatingly complex.

Charles Heidsieck Rose Reserve N.V

The Rosé Réserve is typically full-bodied in the Charles Heidsieck style, yet retains an elegance and freshness that makes this a delicious Champagne. Alongside the silky rich smoothness, there are aromas of freshly picked red fruits strawberries and raspberries, and it all finishes with great breadth, length and a hint of spice.

Piper-Heidsieck Brand Background

The house traces its history back to the original Heidsieck and Co., which was founded in 1785 and later split into three different entities, the others being Heidsieck Monopole and Charles Heidsieck.

In 1785 Marie Antoinette became the brand’s first ambassador and in 1834 Christian Heidsieck formed his own company that became Piper-Heidsieck. The Piper association comes from 1937 when Christian’s widow married Henri-Guillaume Piper and the estate adopted the name H Piper & Co, changed again to Piper-Heidsieck in 1845.

In the 1950s, the entire cast of Hollywood had taken a fancy to Piper-Heidsieck. Alongside legends such as Ava Gardner and Humphrey Bogart, Clark Gable and Fred Astaire, Piper-Heidsieck often played a best supporting role. None other than the incomparable Marilyn Monroe herself adored Piper-Heidsieck champagne, declaring in 1953, “I go to bed with a few drops of Chanel No5 and I wake up each morning to a glass of Piper-Heidsieck; it warms me up.”

Piper-Heidsieck Rosé Sauvage

An unusually large proportion of red wines gives this Rosé champagne its unique personality. Adopting an audacious stance reflecting the values of the Maison, this cuvée is a structured ‘gastronomic’ wine.

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