Typically Charles

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Maison Charles Heidsieck
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Email : charles@champagnes-ph-ch.com
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Charles Heidsieck

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Charles Heidsieck

Charles's Story

Let us discover Charles Heidsieck…


Charles Heidsieck

Innate audacity

As the centuries pass, the influence of Charles’ charm continues. His ambitions have driven his descendants. His choices have defined the identity of the House, rendering it unique and immediately recognisable among the competition. In 2011, ownership of the House transfers to the Descours family, whose only ambition is to make it the very best.

Intuition, expertise, determination and excellence.

For generations, our cellar masters have been dedicated and inspired.Our champagnes offer a blend of one third of each varietal from a single year (representing 60% of the overall blend) with the remaining 40% made up of reserve wines. The wines age in chalk cellars for between three to fifteen years, a process key to their finesse. Since 1990, its non-vintage bottles have displayed the dates both of their cellaring and disgorgement.

An extraordinary individual, ahead of his time, Charles established a prestigious lineage. Today, as in the past, opening one of his bottles is a little like receiving him as your guest.


Charles Heidsieck

Elegance and savoir-faire

Masculine and elegant. Forthright and refined. Our champagnes embody Charles Heidsieck wholeheartedly.

The curves of chalk cellar – or crayère – No. 9, located in Reims and unique in the world, inspired the original design of the bottles used for the Brut Réserve and Rosé Réserve cuvées. This showcase, whose proportions mimic those of a magnum (the ideal format for maturing the wine) did not escape the attention of Charles.

The monochrome aesthetic of the ‘Crayère’ bottles is directly inspired by the House’s heritage and care has been taken to convey the spirit of the historic labels. For each cuvée, the labels on the neck and body of the bottle are in an original colour, chosen to reflect the character of the wine within.


Charles Heidsieck

The Cellars

Click the key to discover the cellars.

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Charles Heidsieck’s trunk

Contemporary reissue of Charles Heidsieck’s travel trunk.

This wine-tasting trunk, made from maple, pays tribute to the first Champagne merchant to conquer America with his unique wines.

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Champagne Charlie

It was during the first of four trips to America that Charles-Camille became known as ‘Champagne Charlie’. A song is written in his honour.  

Charles, Who else ?

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‘– Do you know Charles Heidsieck?
– The man or the champagne?
– It doesn’t matter. The two are inseparable!’

Charles is gripped by wanderlust. He is a forthright dandy - and dedicated to his champagne. His eloquence commands admiration. His passion is captivating. His exceptional champagnes reflect his personality: iconic and unique.

For him, no challenge is too great, no border too remote.
His dreams still hold true today.

Discover Charles Heidsieck. Learn about the man, his champagne, his charm as well as the subtleties of his wine’s character and aromas.

Passion has roots

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Charles-Camille Heidsieck is born in 1822, 37 years after his great uncle founded the Champagne House Heidsieck & Co.

Growing up in the midst of the vineyards, young Charles was nourished by the love of his mother, Émilie Henriot, and his sisters, and raised in an environment shaped by Reims traditions and Prussian rigour.

A cultivated man, noted for his integrity and elegance – but not lacking in ambition. Contrary to all expectations, Charles does not hesitate to take control of his destiny…

The adventure begins


In 1851, a 29 year-old Charles tempts fate and founds a champagne house that is a true reflection of his character.

‘The vineyards must remain in the hands of the growers and their expertise’.
Charles chooses to leave the vineyards in the hands of those who know them best, nurturing their talent, their knowledge and their respect for the terroir.

A pragmatist, he decides to concentrate on producing and ageing wine, and purchases forty-seven Chalk cellars dating from the 11th century. This labyrinth of underground alcoves and galleries offers ideal conditions for ageing and enhancing his wines. His intuition will be rewarded.

Driven by confidence and instinct, Charles ensures his wine reflects his personality, going so far as to give it his first name. This decision causes quite a stir in Champagne.

However, it is not enough for this cosmopolitan creator… he craves a wider audience for his exceptional wines – the world awaits.

The call of the New World

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In 1852, trusting his intuition, Charles leaves for America, the promised land still untouched by the champagne trade. If there is to be champagne in America, it will be his and no other.

A charismatic dandy, popular with the powerful and the press. An undeniable icon, perceived as an ambassador for champagne and France, Charles seduces New York society and its business bourgeoisie. Furthermore, he wins over the South, including wild Louisiana. He becomes known as ‘Champagne Charlie’.

On returning to Europe, he turns his attention first to Belgium and then England. Lauded and decorated at the Universal Exhibitions, his labels soon start to sparkle in all the royal courts. If Europe and the United States have succumbed to the charm of his fine bubbles, a greater conquest still awaits. Having gained territorial control, he must now conquer time and continue to produce exceptional wines year after year, century after century! A challenge for which he is more than a match.


‘Typiquement Charles’

An entrepreneur and a visionary, Charles Heidsieck founded a Champagne House that was to be a true reflection of his character. He and his wines are one.

His character inspires the style of his wines. 
The rumours, gossip and history surrounding Charles inspired the illustrations commissioned to reflect Charles’ character: glimpsed but never fully revealed, we find the mythical Champagne Charlie, a.k.a Charles-Camille Heidsieck: arresting, surprising, intriguing and enduring.
An image painted in a few humorous brush strokes, celebrating the romance surrounding this late 19th century icon.
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Gift Box

The Gift Box is a tribute to Charles-Camille and his flair for innovation, a talent applied in presenting his wines.

At the heart of this new project is Brut Réserve. His new ‘Crayère’ bottle is named in reference to chalk cellar – or crayère - No. 9. 
The Gift Box also contains two delicate, fluted champagne glasses, designed to allow the wine to express its full aroma. Discreet designs of a monocle and moustache for the first glass and a top hat and bow tie for the second offer a nod to the dandy spirit of the House’s founder.
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Typiquement Charles


To attain and maintain excellence requires constant vigilance. Charles understood this and we continue to ensure that this balance is maintained. A perfect blend resulting from our decision-making at every stage of production – decisions always informed by the pursuit of excellence, rather than convention.

The Brut Réserve, our iconic cuvée, comprises the three champagne varietals in equal measure, taken from 60 carefully selected crus. The very essence of Champagne in a bottle. The 40% reserve wines used in the blend are on average 10 years old. Once bottled, the wine is aged for a minimum of three years in chalk cellars, or ‘crayéres’. An exceptional ageing process for an extraordinary wine.

Composing harmony


Each wine has its own personality, its own affirmed and generous character.
Freshness and elegance from the Chardonnay. Structure from the Pinot Noir. A generous helping of fruit from the Pinot Meunier.
While the decision to blend equal proportions of the year’s varietals is a strong commitment, to harmonise them demands an exceptional savoir-faire.
With a wealth of secrets passed on by Daniel Thibault, star cellar master of Champagne, Thierry Roset, Cellar Master, has been cultivating this art for a long time for the benefit of Charles Heidsieck.

Thierry Roset creates delicious harmonies with aplomb, using the notes obtained from vinification in separate vats. He plays with this delicate balance between complexity, depth and texture.
And since the reserve wines develop with time, Charles Heidsieck lets them express themselves, carefully following their progress as they evolve in silent, dimly-lit chalk cellars.

An exceptional ageing process


Depth and texture. These key words take on their full meaning as we vinify cru by cru, varietal by varietal. The demand for refinement is apparent at each stage.

Whereas the Appellation stipulates a minimum 15-month ageing period, Charles Heidsieck ages its non-vintage champagnes for at least three years. Stored in a maze of forty-seven chalk cellars, they lie in galleries twenty metres underground where the temperature remains a constant 10%. A peaceful haven, ideal for ageing gracefully.

Heir & Founder


‘Wherever there is change, there must be continuity’

Loyal and determined, for the past 25 years Thierry Roset has held the tiller, firstly alongside Daniel Thibault and then Régis Camus. From production to oenology, the Charles Heidsieck Cellar Master knows the complete inner workings of the House. Dedicated to creating wines which honour the epicurean nature of the founder, he has decided to reduce the number of crus from which grapes can be taken from 120 to 60 crus, each wine earning its place only if it truly reflects the character of Charles. Like the founder, ensuring the excellence of Charles Heidsieck’s wines is behind all of Thierry Roset’s decisions.

If Charles were to meet Thierry today, the founder would doubtless express his admiration to his heir.

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Shortly after founding his House, Charles Heidsieck had the audacity to invest his new House’s capital in imposing Gallo-Roman chalk cellars (or ‘Crayères’)

, while all around him invest in vineyards,  convinced that they are the best place in which to age his wines and harmoniously develop secondary fermentation. Today, his House is one of the five Great Houses in Champagne to own chalk cellars.
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Thierry Roset


Thierry Roset is deceptively offhand but sincerely an epicurean. In this universe where he is both creator and heir, he is in a category of his own. An extremely hard worker who does only what interests him, he strives to reconcile his innovative ideas with the priorities dear to him.

«Wherever there is change, there must be continuity”, Thierry Roset delights in contradictions. He even gives the impression of seeking them out. The challenge he faces today however in his professional life is a significant one. He is to replace Régis Camus as Chef de Cave for Charles Heidsieck so that Régis, icon and winner of numerous awards, can devote an increasing amount of his energy and talent in accompanying the success of the sister brand, Piper-Heidsieck.

For this small Champagne house, Thierry Roset claims that consistency is, as it always has been, his watchword. An approach and sense of loyalty forged over close to 25 years spent in this very same House, first alongside Daniel Thibault, and then with Régis Camus.

From head of production to oenologist and then assistant Chef de Cave, Thierry is intimately familiar with the secrets that make for great wines and their success: humility, enduring patience, a sense of what is relative and of the passing of time.

Today, Thierry Roset is 53 years old. The experience he has accumulated with Charles Heidsieck since 1988, in addition to his previous years with Moët & Chandon and Roederer, made him the clear choice for this position. The first wines blended by his hand alone are only leaving the chalk cellars today, three years after he initially created them. The wines that will be put on the market this fall were blended and bottled in 2008 in the new “Crayère” bottle. It takes more than one day for a revolution, as this exceptional winemaker knows.

He has decided to refine the number of crus from 120 to 60, all hand-selected. He has asked and succeeded in having the reserve wines of ten to fifteen years of age kept exclusively for the use of Charles Heidsieck. He confirms these reserve wines will continue to make up for 40% of each blend. His vision is to increase their average age in the Charles Heidsieck Brut Réserve from 8 to 10 years.

At the service of a wine that has everything but the name of a prestige cuvée , he sums up his vision: “I aim for wines that are like an open book but which offer complexity and depth.”

The possibilities are wide.

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Festooned with awards


Charles Heidsieck champagne is one of the most recognised by the profession. The awards belong to the cellar masters who, over the course of the past two decades, have been named Sparkling Winemaker of the Year thirteen times in the International Wine Challenge (IWC).

The champagnes too have been awarded 11 Grand Or medals, 101 Gold medals (37 between 2008 and 2011), 25 Silver medals and some 32 trophies.

The prestigious Blanc des Millénaires cuvée received a Gold medal in the 2012 IWC. The iconic Brut Réserve cuvée was crowned Wine of the Year by the 2012 Bettane and Desseauve guide. In November 2012, in the Wine Spectator magazine, the Brut Réserve and Rosé Réserve scored 93 points, the Brut Millésime 2000 and the Rosé Millésime 1999 scored 94 points, and the Blanc des Millénaires 1995 scored 96 points.

Brut Réserve

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Wine Spectator

#1 NV Champagne
Fine Champagne Magazine

Bettane & Desseauve

Gilbert & Gaillard

Trophy & Gold Medal
International Wine Challenge

Gold Medal
Decanter World Wine Awards

Master Medal
Drinks Business Champagne Masters
(The only “master” in the non-vintage category)

Best in show, Gold & Critic’s Choice
Sommelier Wine Awards

Brut Réserve. A multi-vintage worthy of a prestige cuvée.

COMPLEX: a particular blend of Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay.
PRECISE: a judicious selection of approximately 60 crus.
UNCTUOUS: 40% of reserve wines,  many of them more than 10 years old.
DEEP: a maturation of more than 3 years in Gallo-Roman chalk cellars.

A golden champagne, with persistent effervescence. A nose that is both complex and delicious.

2013 awards Tasting Notes (PDF)

Rosé Réserve

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Wine Spectator

Bettane & Desseauve

Gilbert & Gaillard

Gold Medal
International Wine Challenge

Gold Medal
Drinks Business Champagne Masters

Rosé Réserve, powerful and stylish.

COMPLEX: an elaborate blend of the three champagne grape varieties.
PRECISE: a very fine selection of red wines.
DEEP: matured for over 3 years in our two-thousand-year-old chalk cellars.
GENEROUS: a pulpy and lively champagne with notes of wild strawberry.

A powder pink rosé, with a delicate sparkle. A complex nose of homemade strawberry jam and fresh gingerbread. A deep wine with an aromatic finish.

2013 awards Tasting Notes (PDF)

Brut Millésime 2005


A wine of distinct character, from an exceptional vintage.

After many years ageing in the unique and ancient Crayères acquired by its founder Charles Heidsieck, this champagne reveals itself as a wine poised between elegance and complexity, with a smooth texture and great length on the palate. By choosing this Vintage Brut 2005, you are entering into Charles’ inner circle.

Tasting Notes (PDF)

Rosé Millésimé 1999

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Wine Spectator

Gilbert & Gaillard

Bettane & Desseauve

#1 Rosé champagne
Fine Champagne Magazine

Gold Medal
International Wine Challenge

Outstanding Gold
International Wine and Spirit Competition

Gold Medal
Drinks Business Champagne Masters

Gold Medal
Concours Mondial de Bruxelles

An exceptional rosé in a legendary vintage.

Having matured for twelve years in two-thousand-year-old chalk cellars, this champagne expresses the full generosity of 1999 in the true Charles Heidsieck style. The delicate effervescence reveals the aromatic complexity of this blended rosé. Its harmony and depth have made it one of the most awarded Rosé vintages in the world.

2013 awards Tasting Notes (PDF)

Blanc des Millénaires 1995


 Wine Spectator

Gilbert & Gaillard

Bettane & Desseauve

Gold Medal
International Wine Challenge

International Trophy
Decanter World Wine Awards

Outstanding Gold
International Wine & Spirit Competition

Master Medal, Prestige Cuvée category
Drinks Business Champagne Masters

Gold Medal
Sommelier Wine Awards

A masterpiece from the Côte des Blancs in a legendary vintage.

17 years’ worth of complexity and yet so fresh.

A precise selection of Chardonnay from the Côte des Blancs - 4 Grands Crus and 1 Premier Cru. 
A unique emotion, an impression of eternity, much like the feeling one has when standing in the heart of the 2000-year old chalk cellars after which this wine is named.
17 years’ worth of complexity.
More than 15 years maturation in the heart of the 2000-year old gallo roman chalk cellars after which this wine is named.
This legendary wine, which has been awarded numerous medals and trophies, deserves an exceptional case: the gift box, which mirrors the curves of the crayères cellars, echoes the nobility of this location where nothing counts except time itself.

2013 awards Tasting Notes (PDF)