It’s quite likely I’m completely alone here, but I’m pretty sure one of my first impressions of the ‘Can Can’ was no doubt a Muppet episode or something similar, definitely with puppets and flared skirts and a fair bit of high-kicks and “woo hoo’s” ..not to mention a good booty flash! Not so alone perhaps though in doing my own weird reenactment in the playground or loungeroom. Perhaps I saw a more grown-up version some time later in a movie but any way, most people around the world at some stage have an understanding of what the “Can Can” is.
Having a rather sheltered life, it wasn’t really until 2002 at the release of the movie “Moulin Rouge” that I became a bit more familiar with it (and by the way, thank you Ewan McGregor 😉 ). Even then though, I didn’t really know of the artistic cultural background of the Montmarte area of Paris and the significance and history of the dance. When Paris was added to my itinerary definitely a few people mentioned the Moulin Rouge as a place to go. Well that’s fine, I have no problems, especially with a birthday to celebrate, a lovely romantic evening out with my man with a great show sounds fantastic. Oh wait …..
Yes, perhaps you might all recall a certain 8 year old that is accompanying us on this trip. Alas, Grandma turned down the invitation to tag along to be our casual babysitter so we would be in a strange foreign city without a babysitter and wanting to attend an adult-only dinner show – hmmmm.
Have no fear – there had to be a way. After a short while someone came to mind. How fortunate were we that hubby’s school has French classes, and a French exchange teacher who would conveniently have returned home by the time we were there. No, she didn’t live in Paris but was but a mere train ride away. Problem solved!!!
The Eiffel Tower earlier in the day was a bit of a let down, but fortunately for us the Moulin Rouge didn’t disappoint. Three menu options were available, prices varied depending on the food and where the tables were located. We opted for the cheapest menu, oddly enough the food was more appealing. Our table was located on the first balcony level, we had a great view. Another couple was seated at our table, a lovely pair …from the Gold Coast! We had a lovely time chatting to some ‘locals’, sharing stories of our holiday travels and life back home. Whilst the pre-show entertainment wasn’t anything to write home about, the feature presentation was amazing. Whilst the partial nudity was a little confronting and distracting, the costumes, special entertainers and show in general kept us entertained and amused to the very end. Unfortunately photography isn’t allowed, so that’s where this part of the story ends.
There was of course the food. As I mentioned before there were 3 menu options available, each having 3 courses and 2 choices per course. We selected the ‘Mistinguett’ menu:
Terrine of Duck Foie Gras “Montmartre”, Fruit Chutney
“Mistinguett” King Prawns with Smoked Spices, Vegetable Tartar,
Vinaigrette with Herbs
“Frou Frou” Sauteed Corn-Fed Chicken Supreme, Morel Cream and
“Cabaret” Baked Salmon Fillet, French White Butter, Boiled Potatoes and
Grape Tomatoes on the Vine
“Tendresse” of Red Berries, Fruity Marshmallows and Raspberry Sauce
Gourmandise of Three Chocolates “Echiquier” Pastry, Crispy Chocolate
I went for the ‘King’ prawns (I’d hate to see their regular size ha ha) with the vegetable tartar, so did hubby. The tartar was simply a combination of cooked vegetables moulded and placed on the plate. It complimented the prawns well though it was a very large portion for an entree. I had a little chuckle at our company who thought she had ordered ‘duck’ not realising it was Fois Gras (I was a little over Fois Gras at this point).
For the main, I chose chicken and hubby chose the salmon. Both dishes were great, my only concern was fitting it all in, with dessert to go I needed to leave room!
The desserts were just as great. Whilst there was nothing overly fancy about any of the dishes they were still a quality meal and nicely presented.
Whilst our evening cost us AU$300 each, compared to our same-value meals at the Edinburgh Tattoo (aka get your own badly cooked roast and mass-produced custard tart) it just goes to show that a great 3-course plated meal with drinks CAN be served to 100s of guests and provide a wonderful dining experience. We couldn’t complain about the food or service, especially given the full-house they cater for. I’m not entirely sure I would have got much more from the more expensive options but I can definitely recommend this option for any traveler.
Special thanks must go to ‘Isabel’ for keeping Miss 8 entertained with a movie and Maccas, she was just as chuffed as we were.
Check out ‘Feenie’ if you get the chance and enjoy a great night out, it was definitely a lovely way to end our birthday and our time in France.