Charles Heidsieck Cuvée Royale 1981

Mix 6
£490.00
Per Bottle
£495.00
Description & Technical Information
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After many years ageing in the unique and ancient Crayères acquired by its founder Charles Heidsieck, Brut Millésime reveals itself as a champagne poised between elegance and complexity, with a smooth texture and great length on the palate. Extended ageing on the lees has unlocked the full potential of their aromas. Each vintage has its own signature, its own generous tone.

In 1963, they launched the Cuvée Royale, the first vintage (1961) of which would be marketed for the first time in 1966. Seven great vintages would be produced in the 1970s, including the Royal Wedding Cuvée, served in 1981 at the wedding ceremony of Prince Charles and Lady Diana in a vintage 1973. This trade name was registered in 1977, the year of the Jubilee for the 25th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth’s reign. The Cuvée Royale 1981 was the last to be marketed.

Weather: 1981 is a stunning and extremely rare vintage. Drastic climatic variations over the winter as well as to springtime frosts destroyed 25% of the anticipated harvest. Nevertheless, upon tasting the grapes, particularly the Chardonnay in the white Grand crus, they were found to be of excellent quality. The Pinots Noirs married acidity and generosity. In all, they indicated intensely aromatic wines with a very promising cellaring potential.

This champagne is part of Charles Heidsieck Collection Crayeres, a second late release of vintages direct from their cellars in Reims in December 2017. The releases are very limited quantities and a perfect chance to buy and enjoy champagne with age in its very best condition; just 90 bottles have been released. We have 12 bottles available.

Technical Information:
Vineyards: 100% Grand & Premier Cru
Grape Varieties: 52% Pinot Noir, 48% Chardonnay
Drink: Now to 2030+

Tasting Note: A dark golden colour with hints of green. Initial aromas are dominated by cooked apricots and candied oranges, with slightly more nutty notes developing after a little while in the glass. Indulgent caramel flavours fill the mid-palate and combine with toasty notes and balanced acidity that last right through to the finish.
Champagne Charles Heidsieck Overview
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Expert Reviews
19.5/20
Jancis Robinson MW
“Disgorged 1988. Charles Heidsieck explored lots of different ideas at this time, including Royale (for the Asian market at a time when Asia was seen as El Dorado) and Charlie (as prestige). When Rémy Cointreau bought Krug as well as Piper and Charles Heidsieck, Royale was seen as competing with Krug so it was killed off in 1983. Sales people then needed hours to show all the Piper, Charles Heidsieck and Krug range! Charles Heidsieck, in the middle, shrunk by two thirds in sales. Krug was then sold in 1999 to LVMH. 60% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir [Charlie was Pinot Noir dominant]. Dosage 10 g/l. Six years on lees. Some Royale was put in a (waisted) ‘Coca Cola’ bottle.
Deep orangey gold. Light and very lively nose. Superb nose and balance. Fabulous balance and length. Great tension and precision. Such a dancer on the palate. Dense too.”
Related Articles
  1. Charles Heidsieck: 2018 Vins Clairs Tasting

    Charles Heidsieck: 2018 Vins Clairs Tasting

    April 2, 2019

    "The wines in 2018 were good overall. Some were exceptional... some over-mature." Charles Heidsieck Chef de Cave, Cyril Brun, was slightly more cautious than other winemakers regarding the potential of 2018. We tasted a range of vins clairs and reserve wines with the always engaging winemaker at the cellars in Reims.
  2. David Kermode Discovers Charles Heidsieck's 'Finest Bubbles'

    David Kermode Discovers Charles Heidsieck's 'Finest Bubbles'

    August 5, 2018

    A 'Champagne Charlie' in another life himself, wine journalist David Kermode attended our Charles Heidsieck Dinner and Tasting at Frederick's last week to sample a range of new and old vintages from this reformed house. Read his report for The Buyer here.
  3. Charles Heidsieck Dinner with Stephen Leroux

    Charles Heidsieck Dinner with Stephen Leroux

    August 3, 2018

    This week, Director of Charles Heidsieck Stephen Leroux hosted our Charles Heidsieck Dinner and Tasting at Frederick's, Islington. With an expertly paired champagne/food menu and a rare magnum of Brut Millésime 1983 to taste, it was a night to remember.
  4. Charles Heidsieck Collection Crayères

    Charles Heidsieck Collection Crayères

    November 8, 2017

    Charles Heidsieck have revealed a treasured collection of old vintages named 'Collection Crayères'. Released in extremely limited quantities, we are pleased to offer five incredible vintages, in bottle and magnum, from the 1980s.
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