Charles-Camille Heidsieck (1822-1893) was a bon vivant, dandy, gentleman and adventurer, and, as an ambitious entrepreneur, afraid of nothing and no one. He chose his own course with which he inspired all his successors. The current chef de cave Cyril Brun. WINELIFE spoke to him during the presentation of Champagne Charlie 2017. - Text Magda van der Rijst | Image Leif Carlsson
The rebirth of champagne Charlie
Type in Charles Heidsieck and you will get hundreds of hits. The reviews are full of eulogies. Charles Heidsieck is among the Great Names of Champagne, according to many a wine critic. Tom Stevenson, author of a World Encyclopedia of Champagne & Sparkling Wine, calls Charles Heidsieck 'the best-value champagne on the market'. Champagne expert Peter Liem of CHAMPAGNE.NET and author of the wonderful book Champagne adds: 'Charles Heidsieck's sophisticated and complex Brut Réserve is one of the finest non-vintage champagnes on the market and a masterpiece of blending.' In doing so, Liem gets to the heart of Heidsieck's strength.
Assembly = Essence
Indeed, at Heidsieck it is still all about that blending, the assembly, even in these times when many modern champenois choose champagnes from one specific vineyard and from one vintage. That approach is at odds with how it has been for hundreds of years. Champagne has traditionally been a wine blended from wines of different grape varieties, from different vineyards and from different vintage years. Every year, blending is used to create the unique style of the champagne house.
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