Céline Jacquet is a young woman winemaker who established her domain in the village of Arbin, in Savoie. She created her domain in 2011 after studying and learning winemaking in Beaujolais. The domain is small, approximately 5 ha, and she wants to keep it small. Céline’s approach is very authentic.

She cultivates the traditional grape varietals of the Combe de Savoie: Mondeuse, Roussette, Altesse and Bergeron (also known as Roussane in the Rhone valley). She has vineyards in different places in the Combe de Savoie: Arbin, St-Jean de la Porte, Cruet, and Chignin. Many of her parcels, such as the one going into Mes Aieux or Les Echalats, are at the top of the vineyard, planted on very steep slopes who benefit from perfect south, south-east exposure looking at the alps and the sun. The work in the vineyard is very authentic and natural, manual farming as for most of it, the slopes won’t allow anything else, using no chemicals or industrial techniques, and caring for biodiversity.  Of course, harvest are done by hand.

The winemaking is also very classic. Fermentation and maceration with the full cluster, preference for indigenous yeast as well as minimum addition of sulfites. Some of the wines, such as Les Echalats, don’t even use sulfite as bottling. Still, you can tell that Celine’s vision and wines are into classicism and authenticity, favoring balance, cleanliness, and precision to anything. Her wines show that Savoie wines can be much more than the simple wines to glouglou with Raclette! Her mondeuses, especially Mes Aieux, shows that good winemaking and fruit can lead to wines that combine very strong character yet being very soft and not heavy or high in alcohol.

The wines:

For all wines, the farming of the vineyard follows natural methods. It excludes the use of pesticides and of industrial techniques and machines. Vinification is done with the whole grape for the red.

La surprise de Marc 2019

  • AOP Savoie
  • 100% Jacquère
  • 70 years old vines, hand harvest
  • The parcelle is located on the north, high altitude, overlooking the Chignin vineyard, located in small circus with south-west exposure at 700 meters elevation
  • Light direct press with slow debourbage
  • Wine doesn’t go through malolactic fermentation
  • Bottling in December, no elevage
  • 6000 bottles produced

La surprise de Marc is named after the story around the plot used for this cuvee. In 2019, little before the harvest starts, the owner of the plot “Marc”, handed over the parcelle to Céline. A great surprise for the domaine.

The result is a very light and zippy Jacquère that is probably the best idea for an aperitif, even more if you add a few oysters to the experience!

Chignin Jacquère 2020

  • AOP Savoie, Chignin
  • 100% Jacquère
  • 50 years old vines, hand harvest
  • Light direct press with slow debourbage
  • Wine doesn’t go through malolactic fermentation
  • Bottling in December, no elevage
  • 2000 bottles produced

Jacquère has been traditionally grown on the slopes of the “Combe de Savoie” and is the main grape used in the Chignin cru. The wine is very dry, gently aromatic with nice citrus touches and showing a very nice acidity and minerality. A wine for appetizers, seafood or even fresh cheese.

Roussette de Savoie 2019

  • AOP Roussette de Savoie
  • 100% Altesse
  • 25 years old vines in average. Three plots on Saint-Jean de la Porte, Cruet and Arbin. Hand harvested.
  • Light direct pressed followed by fermentation and elevage on its lees in microfiber tanks for five to six Months. Wine goes through the malolactic fermentation quietly.
  • Production: 6000 bottles

Altesse has been traditionally grown on the vineyards of Savoie and is the only variety used in the AOC Roussette de Savoie. This Roussette is on the elegant and subtle side, and not overly exuberant. Of course, it shows some of the specificity of the grape: fruit-forward with roundness and fat, but it remains light and clean, bringing discrete touches of honey and showing the fruit without any makeup. It’s not as big or fatty as some might be.

Manon 2018

  • AOP Chignin Bergeron
  • Single vineyard
  • 100% Roussane (aka Bergeron)
  • A plot on the high part of the appellation, on the Tormery village
  • Light direct pressed followed by fermentation and elevage on its lees in microfiber tanks for five to six Months. Wine goes through the malolactic fermentation quietly.
  • Production: 2500 bottles

This wine, named on Celine’s daughter, is made from a selected parcel on the vineyard of Chignin. The grape is Roussane, also known as Bergeron in Savoie. It has been traditionally grown on the vineyards of Chignin and is the grape used in the appellation Chignin Bergeron. As usual for this grape, the wine is on the bigger side for an Alpine white, with a bit of fat and more on the white fruit, but Céline keeps her touch here and unlike many other Chignin Bergeron, the wine shows freshness and nice acidity. It’s straight and mineral on the finish and can hold a lot of different pairing options. The wine ages beautifully and can easily wait beyond five years, getting bolder, showing then notes of Apricots and Honey.

Mondeuse d’Arbin 2017

  • AOP Savoie, Arbin
  • 100% Mondeuse noire
  • Vines on average 50 years old
  • Wholecluster fermentation and maceration for about 10 days in microfiber tanks, where the wine then ages 6 months then bottled
  • Production: 7000 bottles

Mondeuse is native to the Savoie region and almost only grown here. The Mondeuse d’Arbin is distinguished from other mondeuses by its terroir located on the steep rocky hill overlooking the village of Arbin, which gives its unique character to this wine. It has strong character although it remains a relatively light wine (12%). The tannins are soft and the taste brings a lot of licorice, a bit of smokiness and leather.

Mes Aieux 2016

  • AOP Savoie, Arbin
  • Single Vineyard
  • 100% Mondeuse Noire
  • 60 years old vines
  • Wholecluster fermentation and maceration for about 10 days in microfiber tanks, where the wine then ages 6 months then bottled
  • Production: 3000 bottles

This wine comes from a selected parcel of the Arbin vineyard high on the slope.  A pure expression of the very unique terroir of Arbin. Very coherent with the other Arbin from Céline, Mes Aieux brings a bit more of everything. It’s even softer on the tannins and brings more structure and complexity. For many, this is Céline’s higher-end red wine. This wine has aging potential.

Mondeuse MD 2019
  • AOP Savoie, Arbin
  • Single Vineyard (same as the Mes Aieux cuvée)
  • 100% Mondeuse Noire
  • 60 years old vines
  • Wholecluster fermentation and maceration for about 10 days in a sandstone (grés) amphora, where the wine then ages 6 months then bottled
  • Production: 1300 bottles

A very interesting wine that, thanks to the Amphora, shows a more open and ready wine early compared to the other cuvees made in microfiber tanks. The oxygen exchange happening with the wine emphasizes the fruit and soften the tanins from the wholecluster maceration extremly well to give a very smooth and open wine.