Sunday, March 6, 2011

Spring is so close

It has been the most glorious weekend in Carcassonne - unbroken blue skies, new produce in the market and blossom bursting forth - Spring is so very nearly here.

Here at 42rvh we have just about had our fill of cauliflower and cabbage - we adored it's comfort back in November but are now so craving something fresher and livelier. We are on the cusp of the change.

Yesterday's market had the first local asparagus and some Spanish peas, beans and strawberries. They are not yet at their best - far from it - but they are a sign of things to come. Last night we had simply cooked asparagus with butter and this morning strawberries, yoghurt and granola for breakfast. Nothing dramatic in that but a welcome shift in our eating habits that promises delights around the corner.

An hour sat outside The Saillan with friends yesterday lunchtime resulted in layers being removed at regular intervals, such was the effect of a sheltered spot in full sun out of the breeze. Today was no different - we drove to Lastours and the Minervois with the roof down on the Audi.

The impending change is very evident out in the countryside. There is white almond blossom and pink cherry blossom and yellow mimosa providing spectacularly colourful highlights against the still mostly grey/brown drab winter landscape. The scent of the blossom lifts the spirit and highlights the joy of driving an open top car on days like these but although the fields are ploughed and the vines are pruned it is still too early for signs of agricultural growth.

Spring is not yet here - we have had a Springlike weekend full of the promise of the joys to come, but the temperature still plummets during the clear starlit nights and the cabbage will remain in the diet for another couple of weeks at least and the vines will surely wait a little longer before they feel it is safe to start the new wine production cycle. Don't go to early because we await as ever what you have in store for us this year.

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