Blog

07/05/2018

Champagne Charlie - the story

Charles Heidsieck himself was the original “Champagne Charlie” gaining the nick-name during his travels around America  in the mid-19th century, inspiring George Leybourne’s famous song.

champagne charlie poster

Some people go for funny drinks and down 'em by the pail, 

Like coffee, cocoa, tea and milk and even Adam's ale 
For my part they can keep the lot I never would complain 
I wouldn't touch the bloomin' stuff, I only drink champagne.  For, 

Champagne Charlie is my name 
Champagne Charlie is my name 
There's no drink as good as fizz, fizz, fizz 
I'll drink every drop there is, is, is 
All round town it is the same 
By Pop! Pop! Pop! I rose to fame 
I'm the idol of the barmaids 
Champagne Charlie is my name. 


I earned my famous title thro' a hobby which I've got 
Of never letting others pay however long the shot 
Whoever drinks at my expense has no need to complain 
For everyone I treat alike I make 'em drink champagne.

George Leybourne  

Unlike many other famous Chamapgne Houses of the period who were selling their wines to an insatiable Russian aristocracy, Charles headed across the Atlantic and introduced Champagne to America. 

Letters from Charles back to his family in Champagne tell of his popularity and reputation as something of a dandy and whose wines were some of the most popular of the time. He wrote “…there is around my personality a rumour, an excitement as they say, that we will greatly benefit from...the 200,000 people of Baltimore have the good taste to prefer Charles Heidsieck champagne to any other one and we have good friends who are now mine.” December 1860

Hugh Grant also played the part of Charles “Champagne Charlie” in the 1989 movie  of the same name.   This is the story of Charles Heidsieck who opened the market for Champagne sales in America just prior to the American Civil War.  He is a reluctant French spy and is captured and spends time in a Union prison. There are two parallel love stories going on and battles with his uncle for control of the family vineyard (because his father married his mother who the uncle also loved).

For the Foodies

Thoughout the year we offer some great dates for your diary - you can book any of these on their own or as part of a package: Call 051.389600 to book. 
 

Dunbrody Classic Afternoon Tea - €30

With the warm weather here at last and the garden in bloom a leisurely afternoon on the terrace indulging in a Dunbrody Classic Afternoon Tea is the perfect way to indulge the senses. Served from 3-5pm Call 051389600 to book

Cinema & Supper Club at the Local – €20

Thursday 5th September, Thursday 24th October, Thursday 14th November, Thursday 5th December                              Combine a night at the movies with a special Chef's Surprise supper menu at the Local on some specially selected Thursdays this Autumn.  Call 051389600 for more information or to book  

Champagne Charlie DinnerSaturday 16th November €100

A night of fabulous food paired with some of the finest champagnes from the Heidsieck cellars.  Charles Heidsieck is second to no other producer when it comes to impecable quality. None can match the consistency - from the basic non-vintage through vintage to prestige cuvée champagnes. To book with accommodation click here

Thanksgiving Dinner at Dunbrody – Thursday 28th November €70

Start your evening with a choice of classic American cocktails – Manhattan, Sidecar, Martini…followed by a traditional American Thanksgiving Dinner with the option of California wine to also choose from.  To book with accommodation click here

Dunbrody Packages