Maison de Champagne Billecart-Salmon | Mareuil-sur-Aÿ, France

By Sophie Gayot

Champagne Billecart-Salmon, a maison renowned for the finesse of its Champagnes

We all like a family story where the legacy is passed from generation to generation. This is the case for the Maison de Champagne Billecart-Salmon. Its history started in 1818 when Nicolas François Billecart and Elisabeth Salmon are married, and decide to found Maison Billecart-Salmon in Mareuil-sur-Aÿ. All these years later, the family still owns Champagne Billecart-Salmon, and the seventh generation is running it with Mathieu Roland-Billecart at the helm.

Who better to talk to about Champagne Billecart-Salmon than its very own president? While Mathieu Roland-Billecart was in Los Angeles, I got to sit (actually, to stand) with him on the rooftop of the Downtown L.A. Proper Hotel with the skyline of the City of Angels as a backdrop, and learn more about Champagne Billecart-Salmon.

> Below, watch my exclusive video interview with Mathieu Roland-Billecart, President, Champagne Billecart-Salmon.

In 1958 Jean Roland-Billecart had a vision and introduced a longer fermentation at a lower temperature and finally a cold settling as part of the vinification in tanks. This technique has become Champagne Billecart-Salmon’s signature, ensuring the freshness and finesse which are characteristic of Billecart-Salmon wines. Then in the 1970s, Jean Roland-Billecart initiated another trend with the Brut Rosé. He wanted to create a Champagne very pale in color. The Brut Rosé Non-Vintage has since become the House’s flagship cuvée.

In 1995, the Clos Saint-Hilaire Cuvée was created, named in honor of the patron saint of the church in Mareuil-sur-Aÿ. From each vintage, only between 3,500 to 7,500 bottles are made every year. Each bottle is individually numbered.

During 2000, a new cuverie was installed, making possible to trace the grape varietals and individual parcels. In 2018, a new chai à foudres is inaugurated with twenty-four large oak casks that hold eighty hectolitres, to complement four hundred small and two large oak casks there since 2010 for a comeback to the ancestral methods of vinification.

Maison Champagne Billecart-Salmon has long been committed to sustainability by reducing their carbon footprint, using less packaging, limiting water usage and promoting biodiversity.

For more information, visit Champagne Billecart-Salmon official website.

> Watch Sophie Gayot sabering a bottle of Champagne Billecart-Salmon, Rosé with Antoine Roland- Billecart, Deputy General Manager.

> The champagnes of Billecart-Salmon are on GAYOT’s:
Best Non-Vintage Champagnes
Best Demi-Sec Champagnes
Best Rosé Champagnes To Drink
Best Champagnes Under $100