Billecart-Salmon is a Champagne producer based in Aÿ, Champagne. The company has a rich history dating back to 1818 when it was founded by Nicolas François Billecart and Elisabeth Salmon. It remains one of the few family-owned Champagne producers with a tradition of producing high-quality, elegant Champagnes.
History of Billecart-Salmon
The Champagne House was founded by Nicolas François Billecart and Elisabeth Salmon in Mareuil-sur-Aÿ. The marriage of Nicolas and Elisabeth brought together the vineyards and wine traditions of their respective families and laid the foundation for the Billecart-Salmon brand. Nicolas was an experienced winemaker and together they started producing Champagne. Billecart-Salmon remains one of the few family-owned and operated Champagne houses in a region where many producers have been acquired by larger conglomerates. This family ownership has allowed the house to maintain its commitment to quality and tradition. Throughout its history, Billecart-Salmon has been recognized for its dedication to producing elegant and refined Champagnes. They are known for their meticulous attention to detail in the winemaking process, precise blending and use of high quality grapes. Billecart-Salmon is also at the forefront of innovation in champagne production. For example, in the 1950s they were one of the first houses to use stainless steel tanks for fermentation, which allowed better temperature control and preservation of the character of the grapes. Today, Billecart-Salmon is still owned and operated by the Billecart family. The specific individual members of the Billecart family involved in management are Francois and Antoine Roland-Billecart (6th generation) and Mathieu Roland-Billecart (7th generation).
Billecart-Salmon sources its grapes from vineyards in various sub-regions of Champagne. They use a significant portion of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier in their Champagnes. The grapes are carefully pressed and fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks. They also emphasize a long aging process to develop the unique characteristics of their Champagnes. The art of blending is at the heart of Billecart-Salmon's production. Their cellar master, François Domi, plays a crucial role in crafting each cuvée with precision and consistency. The house is known for its low dosage levels, which means their Champagnes are typically drier and more focused on fruit character and terroir. Billecart-Salmon owns and manages vineyards in several key areas of the Champagne region. They have vineyards in Mareuil-sur-Aÿ, Aÿ, Avize and other Grand Crus, allowing them to source high quality grapes for their Champagnes. Billecart-Salmon produces a range of cuvées, each with its unique characteristics and style. They produce a number of different types of Champagnes. Some that can now be opened such as the Brut Rose and the Brut Sous Bois. Champagnes made in specific years such as the Nicolas Francois 2008 and the Elisabeth Salmon 2008. They also produce Champagnes from Single plots (Clos) such as the Clos-Saint-Hillaire, an extremely rare Champagne made from 100% Pinot Noir.