Review- Jacques Selosse

Anselme Selosse

Oh, Jacques Selosse champagne! I find it really hard to put my love for this cult brand into words.

I will, though.

The Selosse family is the perfect natural champagne example, as they’re all about terroir, non-interference and experimentation. In fact, Anselme Selosse had a lot to do with the start of the natural champagne movement. He took over the vineyard from his father Jacques, who was the first family member to make champagne. Jacques’s father did grow grapes, but never produced anything himself. Jacques started out by selling small amounts of champagne to customers in France, Belgium and Switzerland, describing it as a hobby rather than a profession. It was Anselme Selosse who took Domaine Jacques Selosse to the next level, making it an exclusive champagne brand of mesmerising quality. Today, it’s his son Guillaume Selosse who’s at the helm of the family business, and he sure does it in style.


Guillaume’s father Anselme started his career in champagne in the mid-seventies, a time that was all about grape quantity and, therefore, chemicals. He didn’t feel comfortable spraying the vines with all sorts of pesticides, as he was pretty sure they got in the way of the true flavours of the region, better known as terroir. Anselme decided to go organic and for a small period of time he even worked according to biodynamic principles. He made sure the soil was ploughed from spring until fruit set, so that the soil life had all the space it needed to stay healthy. In an interview with Caroline Henry, Anselme said he focuses on three core elements, which are soil, winemaking and harmony. His son and champagne maker Guillaume Selosse shares his philosophy, both in leading the Domaine Jacques Selosse brand and his own brand, called Guillaume S.

Organic label

Although Domaine Jacques Selosse can definitely be described as a champagne producer with biodynamic principles, Anselme* and Guillaume do sometimes use synthetic products when they feel they’re needed to keep the vineyard alive. Back in the days, this got Anselme into a lot of arguments with certification organisations as he didn’t comply with all the rules. He got rid of the biodynamic label and started working in his own, organic fashion. The result was a list of impressive champagnes that are now worshipped by natural champagne enthusiasts all over the world, including yours truly.

*Anselme officially retired in 2020, but blood is thicker than water.


Now let’s do some reviewing! Preliminary remark: I’ve tasted all Jacques Selosse champagnes in their hotel-restaurant Les Avisés and I highly recommend you do so too.


LocationGrape varietiesSpicy detailDosageRating

This blanc de blancs extra brut might just be the best champagne I’ve ever tasted. When you know, you know! Substance is an explosion of honey, minerals, crispy apples and endless depth. When I drink it, I feel instantly happy and warm- an effect only a handful of champagnes have on me. Substance also has an earthy taste to it, which makes you feel like you’re being guided around the vines of Avize.

Version Originale

LocationGrape varietiesSpicy detailDosageRating
100 %
Slept in the
cellar for 7

In my online wine logbook Vivino I described Version Originale (also known as V.O.) as a “magic potion” and I stand by this short review. If you need more words, I’ll give you “honey”, “brioche”, “layers”, “firm”, “complexity” and “divine”.

Tip: drink Version Originale in Les Avisés for an extra dose of magic.


LocationGrape varietiesSpicy detailDosageRating
100 %

Honey! I love it when champagnes have hints of honey. Initial by Jacques Selosse gives me just that, along with notes of caramel and ripe fruit. Initial has a dark, intense colour, predicting great depth and richness (and it doesn’t disappoint). I’ve heard people describe Initial as a “big champagne” and that’s exactly what it is.

Tip: don’t take this champagne lightly- wait for the right place, time and ambiance.

Brut Rosé

LocationGrape varietiesSpicy detailDosageRating
Chardonnay 90%
Pinot Noir 10%
Produced using
rosé d’assemblage

Lieux-Dits sous le mont Mareuil-sur-Ay

LocationGrape varietiesSpicy detailDosageRating
Ay100 %
Pinot Noir

I’m usually not a food & champagne pairing kinda gal (I order what I like), but in the case of Selosse’s, Sous Le Mont, I am. In 2019, I attended a masterclass by Guillaume Selosse in Sacré Bistro, and this champagne was served along with buttery foie gras and raspberry mousse. And oh, how that worked out. The dish underlined the thickness and depth of Sous le Mont, and brought out hints of caramel and toast. It was an incredible gastronomic experience that will stay with me forever.

Leave a Reply