This lush, rural corner of France where four great rivers meet offers good food, good wine and good living. Cadogan’s foray into the home of gastronomic indulgence now sails into its fifth edition. Authors Dana Facaros and Michael Pauls lived in the Lot for ten years, and the guide bursts with their intimate knowledge of the region. They explore the world’s most celebrated vineyards along the Dordogne and Lot rivers, through Bergerac, Saint Emilion and the medieval city of Cahors, with detailed wine critiques along the way. From Bordeaux to Toulouse, the region’s two fascinating cosmopolitan cities, they reveal the density of historic and natural treasures the region has to offer; from the earliest known prehistoric art at the Lascaux caves to the beautiful Renaissance town of Sarlat. Now fully redesigned, this new edition contains the most up-to-the-minute practical information and listings, along with a stunning section of color photographs and useful maps.
Excerpt: Market Values
The old vans and lorries will start wheezing in some time after eight, unloading prunes and geese and greens and oysters while the children are passing through on their way to school. The stall-holders in French village markets aren’t the sort of people to knock themselves out coming at dawn. That’s the whole point. The Friday morning market has probably taken place here since the Middle Ages, and today it’s a symbol of liberty, and a refuge for everyone from the clock-driven, bureaucrat-infested life of the cities. Free men and women come and go when they damn please; there are no receipts, and no VAT that can’t be avoided; no advertising, no special discount offers, no Styrofoam, no bar codes; just real food, scents, colours and conviviality. Perhaps this is that Free Market they’re always chattering about in the newspapers. ...click here to read the rest
Intelligent and fun, /5
I've always found the Cadogan guides written by Facaros and Pauls brilliant. Yes, they lack the pictures that you get in an Eyewitness guide, for example, but they more than make up for that in the quality of the text: it is detailed without being heavy, and fun without being stupid. To me, they strike the right balance between historical and architectural information and foodie indulgence. I bought this to replace my copy of the third edition which has now fallen apart through over use. I rate their stuff so highly that I now look to see if they have written a guide to a place I intend to visit. In a perfect world I'd have one of these and a corresponding Eyewitness guide - but if I only had room in my bag for one it would always be the Cadogan guide. Apart from the fact that the Eyewitness ones are heavy because of the glossy paper, the text in the Cadogan guides is vastly more entertaining.
Knowledgeable, well organized and humorous, /5
I was very satisfied with this guide. The presentation of the places is knowledgeable to the extent that you learn many things without being overwhelmed. It is very well organized helping you with ready made routes. I particularly liked the clever english humour of descriptions.
Apart from all these advantages, this is a text with an opinion and a point of view of the place it describes. You actually dialogue with the authors who give their informed opinion of the places. It doesn't only give you information. I would say that it keeps you company.
This is my first Cadogan guide and I 've already became a believer. Very satisfied indeed.
chacun ses gouts, /5
I came to this page in search of a new edition of this book. I don't have the old one, or obviously this one, so I will not write a review. But seeing that these two reviews on this site are so negative I just wanted to say that in general I find the Cadogan guides to be better than most others, including LP. The same authors write a series of guides on this part of the world--they actually live in SW France. Their South of France book (presumably incorporates their separate books on Provence, Cote d'Azure, Languedoc-Roussillon) is unreservedly excellent. I have to concur with the Amazon reviewer of that guide who wrote this:
"When I travel to other places I'll look at the guides by Facaros and Pauls first."
I have no connection with the authors or publisher but like them I have a special affection for SW France. Perhaps it is more a cultural difference for these two reviewers who didn't like the "Brit chatty tone". As an Australian who has lived in England and France (and briefly worked in USA) I cannot say I especially detected that in the SoF book and it made me curious: checking their website it is not clear but on Paul's website the current article begins "we Americans".. But on their shared website it says "Pauls' primary interest has always been cities and urban design, which sets their guidebooks apart.." This could be another reason why I find their guides a bit different because it happens that this is also a lifelong interest of mine.
So there it is, perhaps simply chacun ses gouts.
Dana Facaros and Michael Pauls can be reached at: email@example.com