Taste of the Tour: When in Limoges, eat a Limousin steak
LIMOGES, France (AP) A gastronomical, sporting and cultural glance at Stage 4 of the Tour de France on Tuesday:
Region: The Stage began in the medieval city of Saumur in the Loire valley and concluded in Limoges, the capital of the Limousin region.
Baguette and butter: Germany's Marcel Kittel claimed the longest stage of the race in a mass sprint, edging French rider Bryan Coquard in a photo finish. Kittel required nearly 5 1/2 hours to complete the 237.5 (148-mile) leg.
Plat du jour: When in Limoges, eat a Limousin steak. It does not come cheap, but this beef from grass-fed cattle is a must-try. It has a pleasant red color, very little fat and is full of flavor.
Culture: Saumur was the native city of fashion designer Coco Chanel. Located along the Loire river, picture-perfect Saumur is also home to the elite Cadre Noir equestrian corps and one of the most prestigious riding schools in the world. Limoges is known for its porcelain.
Vin du jour: To mark the 800th anniversary of Richard the Lionheart's death in 1199 in the Limousin region, locals decided to pay tribute to the late monarch by creating a new wine called Vin de Feste, which translates as ''party wine.'' Crafted in Limoges with aromatic plants and light spices including cinnamon, clove and ginger, this artisanal liquor wine can be enjoyed in multiple manners - as an aperitif, with a slice of foie gras or to accompany a dessert.
History: The town of Oradour-sur-Glane outside Limoges was the site of the largest civilian massacre in Nazi-occupied France. Four days after the June 6, 1944, D-Day landings in Normandy, 642 civilians were slaughtered in reprisal for the French Resistance's kidnapping of a German soldier.
Stat of the Day: 2000. The year of the previous finish in Limoges, won by French rider Christophe Agnolutto after a 128-kilometer (80-mile) breakaway.
Quote of the Day: ''I think I belong with the greats now,'' Coquard said. 24-year-old French rider Bryan Coquard after being beaten by Marcel Kittel in a photo finish.
Dessert: Flaugnarde, a baked fruit dish from the Limousin region.
Next order: Stage 5 Wednesday is the race's first mountain leg, a 216-kilometer (134-mile) route from Limoges to Le Lioran in the Massif Central. Featuring five climbs in a constant up and down finish, including the 1,589-meter (5213-foot) Pas de Peyrol, it will mark the first time that the Tour has gone above 1,500 meters this early in the race since the leg-breaking start to the 1979 edition, which began with three stages in the Pyrenees over the first four days.
Look for overall favorites Chris Froome and Nairo Quintana to spring into action for the first time.