I blame it on the sheep. I saw them on Saturday on my way to Lagrasse. They were grazing among vines. The roquette is blooming, maybe that’s what they were eating. I planned to take a picture on my way back but they were gone, sheep must move a lot faster that I would have thought.
Today I saw them again in the field next to the quarry outside of Servies en Val. So many of them. It was an epiphany – well maybe not an epiphany but a definite aha! moment. For 2 1/2 years I’ve been hearing a beautiful sound, something like big bamboo windchimes but muted. Not all the time, just once in a while. It’s the sheep’s bells. A very calming sound – the way new-age ‘nature’ music is supposed to be but never is. I would imagine that shepherds have low blood pressure.
There’s a cheesemaker in Villetritouls – near Lagrasse – who makes a tomme de brebis and a brebis (I’m not exactly sure what the difference is) – both from ewes’ milk. I want to think that these are his sheep. There’s a wonderful brebis tommette, made in the Corbieres, that’s aged in grenache – Tommette des Corbières affinée
au vin de grenache. You can always get it at the shop in Servies.
Roquefort isn’t made in the Aude but Roquefort sur Soulzon is only about 2 hours from Montlaur. (Sheep + cheese = Roquefort). I keep meaning to go. Maybe soon.