•Lot (46310) • Population: 199 • Altitude: 330 m
Uzech is a tiny farming village in the Lot, 16 km north of Cahors, a group of neat stone houses and an tidy stone church.
A handy place for a half-day hike on the well-marked trails, Uzech has no tourist sites, but it does have a very nice little restaurant.
The restaurant is in the corner of a converted farmhouse and the entrance to the village. The day's offering was a nice-looking €11.50 menu, wine included; the timing wasn't right for us so we'll have to go back one day to give it a try.
Located in the midst of rolling farming country about 15 km north of Cahors, the village is pretty isolated from the main roads. It is on a small crossroads, between the nearby villages of Peyrilles (another good day-hike location), Gigouzac and St Denis-Catus.
Uzech was an ancient center of pottery, specialilzing in oules, and the village is sometimes refered to as Uzech-les-Oules.. The manufacturing was down to 10 makers in 1881. In recent times the oules pottery has made a comeback here.
The oule is a short-necked recipient without spout or handle, popular from the Carolingian period (7th century) to the 15th century. The oule had a lip molded to make it easy to seal, and was used for cooking and storing food. The oule is never glazed, but has a decoration of appliqué bands arond the top (épis de faîtage), a feature that came in around the 10th century.
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History of Uzech
Medieval: Uzech was co-ruled by the lords of Gourdon de Lavercandière and Sirech de Garric.
• GPS: 44.591449, 1.395695
IGN (1/25,000) #2038 E "Luzech"
A short (1h30 - 2hr) PR (petite randonée) loop hike at Uzech is provided by the Office de Tourisme in Gourdon. Part of a series of short hikes in the Quercy region, this loop, called "Le Sentier des Potiers" goes past farmland, through some lovely woods, and past the tiny railway crossing hamlet of Galen.