Stage 17: Bern > Finhaut-Emosson

We are in Switzerland all day – 184.5km, four climbs and a summit finish. You’d hope the riders spent part of yesterday eating for tomorrow, which is – of course – today.

According to the Australian home of Raclette cheese:

Apart from the magnificent Swiss Alps themselves, Switzerland’s greatest natural resource is the cow.

and Switzerland certainly brought us a bovine bonanza before the rest day. I am hoping we will have more delights today. The buffalo were a bit of an unexpected surprise on Monday; today we are travelling through the home of the Simmental so we should be assured of a sighting.


Perhaps we will also spy some Braunvieh, complete with cowbells (if the roadside randoms have left any for the cows).


Image: Ikiwaner


Clearly this is a stage for chocolate and/or cheese. There are a lot of alpine cheeses to choose from, but if you can get your hands on one of these, tonight would be the perfect night for bunging it in the oven:

800px-Vacherin_Mont_d'OrImage: Wikimedia Commons

when baked, it’s like a brain wreck of everything going on – fat, funk, fresh cream, wood, garlic, rank, and a peculiar buttery sharpness scrambling all of your senses together in each single mouthful. And if that description didn’t scare you away, then you’ll be rewarded with a life-altering eating experience.

David Lebovitz

Now, if that doesn’t make you want to rush out in search of this cheese, I don’t know what will.

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