The Moulin de la Galette is a windmill and associated businesses situated near the top of the district of Montmartre in Paris. Since the 17th century the windmill has been known for more than just its milling capabilities. Nineteenth century owners and millers, the Debray family, made a brown bread, galette, which became popular and thus the name of the windmill and its businesses, which have included a famous guinguette and restaurant. In the 19th century, Le Moulin de la Galette, represented diversion for Parisians seeking entertainment, a glass of wine and bread made from flour ground by the windmill. Artists, such as Renoir, van Gogh, and Pissarro have immortalized Le Moulin de la Galette.
The current name Moulin de la Galette is based upon galette, a small brown bread that the Debray millers, who owned the mill in the 19th century, made and sold with a glass of milk. The tasty bread became so popular that it later became the name of the windmill. In 1830, they replaced milk with wine (especially the local Montmartre wine) and the windmill became a cabaret. Parisians made their way to Montmartre to enjoy “the simple pleasures” of the countryside with a glass of wine, freshly baked bread and a terrace view of Paris and the Seine below. In 1833, one of the Debrays decided to open an area for dancing, dedicated to the Greek muse Terpsichore. His flair for dancing and enthusiasm attracted patrons to the dancing hall and it became a success.
As the nearby fields were replaced with housing and factories, Nicholas Charles Debray sought commercial opportunities to remain a going concern. One of the windmills was turned into a viewing tower and a dance hall was opened adjacently. People came to the relaxed, popular Moulin de la Galette for entertainment and dancing. Over its history, the building has experienced a wide range of uses: open-air cafe, music-hall, television studios and restaurant. It is now a private property. The windmill Radet, however, marks the entrance to a bistro named Le Moulin de la Galette
Official Website – www.lemoulindelagalette.fr
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