Sunday, July 2, 2017

Wine & Food of the Tour 2017 Stage 2

Where are we? Leaving Düsseldorf and traveling 205 kilometers to Liège.

Liège: Cycling fans know the town from the spring classic: Liège-Bastogne-Liège. Michelin tells me that: Arriving in Liège can be disconcerting, but don't be put off by its lack of obvious charm. The Second World War destroyed much of its heritage and nowadays Wallonia's metropolis presents a strong, authentic, working-class character.

LeTour specialities: Liège meatballs (boulets), Liège white pudding, Liège salad, bouquette (crêpe), lacquemant (wafer), chocolate, peket (juniper), Liège syrup

The stage: Christian Prudhomme's comment:
Most of the stage will take place in Germany. During the last visits to Liège during the 21st century, the riders battled it out on time-trials while those who normally shine on Liège-Bastogne-Liège are among the best punchers of the moment. This time, a sprint victory is to be expected on the boulevard de la Sauvenière.

Live: Sprint stage alert, with more rain. Time to find out if Cav is healthy or not.

Our break of the day has one of my favorites: Pichon, Boudat, Offredo and Phinney. They attacked from the very start. With 86 kilometers to go, they had about two and a half minutes.
Meanwhile, the abandonments after yesterday: Alejandro Valverde, Luke Durbridge and Ion Izagirre. 
Sixty five kilometers to go and the gap was at 1:20. Forty five and it was back over two minutes. 

And a crash with lots of riders down, right at the front of the field. Many big names down, including Froome and Bardet. 

Bike change for Froome.
Ahead, Taylor Phinney takes the KOM points. He'll be in polka dots tonight! He also kept going, attempting a solo ride to the finish. He was joined by Offredo. Thirteen kilometers to go and they had about fifty seconds. Eight kilometers to go and forty seconds. Four kilometers and thirty seconds. The catch seemed likely, but you never know. The gap would continue to drop rapidly. Indeed, they would be caught. Dry-ish looking roads for the sprint. 
He was very emotional:


Wine: 2013 Stein Mosel Rosé Secco 

Well now, as long as I am playing fast and loose with German wine regions, why not do something truly unexpected--sparkling rosé? They tell me it is mostly pinot noir, but to me it is mostly a lot of fun.

From the importer“Dr. Ulrich Stein is infamous for such lost causes as the reclamation of abandoned, frighteningly steep sites; and battling the entrenched 1971 German Wine Law. It seems, though, that he is more a David than a Don Quixote, because he has won them all.” – David Schildknecht, The Wine Advocate


Food:  Liège waffles!
We use this recipe from the Blue Bottle Craft of Coffee book.
1 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast, or .3 oz (9 g) fresh yeast
¼ cup lukewarm water
½ cup (112 g) unsalted butter, plus softened butter to serve
2/3 cup (88 g) all-purpose flour
3/4 cup (80 g) pastry flour (or substitute all-purpose flour)
1 tablespoon granulated sugar, plus more to sprinkle on top
1/2 teaspoon Maldon brand sea salt
5 eggs, at room temperature
1 vanilla bean or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons pearl sugar

Instructions: In a small bowl, bloom the yeast in the water for 5 minutes.        Melt the butter and let cool to approximately 115°F. Sift the flours and sugar into a large bowl. Stir in the salt. Place the eggs in a medium bowl. Split the vanilla bean in half, scrape out the pulp and add the pulp to the eggs, or add vanilla extract. Whisk until combined. Add the yeast, egg mixture, and melted butter to the dry ingredients, then whisk until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap, and let dough rest until doubled in size, about 1 hour, or refrigerate overnight.

Preheat a Belgian-style waffle maker. Gently mix the pearl sugar into the dough and let rest for 15 minutes. Pour the batter into the waffle maker and sprinkle a little bit of granulated sugar on top. Cook according to manufacturer’s instructions and serve immediately, either as a snack or with maple syrup.

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