The climbs, high-speed descents and hairpin activates faucet for Stage 9 of the Tour de France can be sufficient to make even spectators watching at dwelling dizzy.
Luckily, the culinary choices accessible because the race enters the Alps on Sunday are gentler on the abdomen.
Beginning in Nantua, close to Geneva, the peloton will scale three “hors categorie” — past score — climbs earlier than concluding with a serpentine descent into the Savoie city of Chambery.
This is a gastronomic, sporting and cultural look on the 181.5-kilometer (113-mile) stage:
BAGUETTE AND BUTTER: Climbs with common gradients close to 10 p.c are pretty uncommon within the Tour. But there are three of them on this stage. First up is the Col de la Biche with its exceptional views of Mont Blanc, adopted by the unprecedented and fearsome facet of the Grand Colombier, generally known as the Directissime, which options gradients of as much as 22 p.c. Then solely the fittest needs to be in competition up the Mont du Chat, which hasn’t been on the Tour map since 1974.
PLAT DU JOUR: Quenelles de Brochet. Pike truffles with Nantua sauce are an integral a part of lyonnaise delicacies. Whereas recipes differ from one city and chef to the following, historically the truffles are made by forming a “panade” of milk, butter, egg and flour, mixing within the fish and poaching the quenelles in salted water. The truffles are then doused in Nantua sauce made from crayfish butter and baked earlier than serving.
CULTURE: The Musilac competition in picturesque Aix-les-Bains (situated on the opposite facet of Bourget Lake from the stage route) every July is a multi-genre occasion starting from rock to electro and pop to reggae.
VIN DU JOUR: AOC Roussette du Bugey. This extremely fragrant white wine made with the Altesse grape selection function flavors of citrus, herbs and even olives typically.
HISTORY: The origins of Mont du Chat’s (Mount Cat) title are a supply of debate. Theories for the naming vary from a wildcat haunting the 1,504-meter (5,000-foot) summit to an animal killed by the knights of King Arthur, who obtained in trade the estates of Chambery and Montmelian. That is the second time the climb is included within the Tour. In 1974, Raymond Poulidor took a minute off Eddy Merckx however the Belgian nice caught up on the descent and went on to win in Aix-les-Bains.
STAT OF THE DAY: four,600 meters (15,000 ft). The quantity of climbing in Stage 9.
QUOTE OF THE DAY: “Tomorrow goes to be a monster stage.” — Yellow jersey holder Chris Froome.
DIGESTIF: Genepy, or genepi. This olive-colored natural liqueur is made all through the French Alps and within the Italian area of Valle d’Aosta. It is the right drink to assist digest a hearty mountain meal stuffed with potatoes and cheese.
NEXT ORDER: After the race’s first relaxation day on Monday and a protracted switch to southwestern France, the Tour resumes on Tuesday with a flat 178-kilometer (111-mile) leg from Perigueux to Bergerac that fits up nicely for sprinters. Marcel Kittel can be aiming for his fourth stage win this yr.
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