Café de L’Industrie was somewhat of a mixed-bag surprise.
I called ahead to make a booking and was told it was not needed, and indeed the place is rather big with plenty of seating so we had no problems finding a seat. Having said that, from about 7.30pm onwards it was buzzing.
This is not hard to understand considering they offer very good value and is clearly a favourite with the locals- in fact I got to overhear one such local initiating a British friend into the delights of French cuisine as they sampled a variety of dishes she had ordered. The atmosphere was a combination of traditional French and a mishmash of other things, but very laid back and the perfect location for a casual meal with friends.
The soup of the day was €4 so both my friend and I ordered the soup to start with, followed by the duck confit (€14) for my main whilst he ordered the dish of the day, pot au feu (€12.50), with a carafe of house wine to compliment it (€14). The soup was carrot and coriander and was exactly what you expect from homemade soup, plenty flavourful and a suitable portion size.
The true gem of the meal however was the duck confit, cooked in honey and spices with perfectly roasted potatoes, it was wonderful. The meat fell of the bone and was slightly sticky with honey but certainly not over the top.
In contrast the beef pot au feu was sort of fine, the meat was well cooked and not tough, and I have definitely had worse beef at pricier venues, but it lacked excitement in its seasoning. Though it was a large portion with plenty of hearty vegetables.
Unfortunately by the end we were both so full that we were unable to contemplate a dessert, I was unable to even tempt my friend into sharing with me as his was so filling.
Café de l’Industrie is worth a visit, but perhaps if our visit is an indication of the whole menu, then it is a bit hit and miss. Still, it is well worth the visit alone for the duck and the buzzing atmosphere.
Address: 16 Rue Saint-Sabin, 75011 Paris, France
Metro: M5, Bréguet – Sabin
Phone: +33 1 47 00 13 53
Hours: Monday to Sunday, 9:00am to 2:00am