L'Alimentation Générale (ALG)
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It might translate as General Foods, but Alimentation Générale is no supermarket – rather, it’s a bar, restaurant, concert hall and club all rolled into one. Evenings at ALG are warm, colourful, ultra festive and always affordable – entrance is usually around €5 to €10 with a drink. The concrete room, furnished with big convivial wooden tables and a table football set, also includes a crammed dance floor, allowing revellers to get up close and personal with the acts. Evenings start off quite quietly, with decorous drinks and nibbles – there’s cheese and charcuterie and some pricey but good things à la carte (pasta, prawn skewers, tapas). The room fills up quickly though, and before you know it the table football is being pushed to one side and the volume turned as the gyrating crowds overrun the dance floor. French crooners, rumba Columbia, Brazilian samba, funk, gypsy jazz… all the sounds of the world have their place on this stage. At weekends, enormously varied DJ nights (funk, hip-hop, electro, tropical electro) are the meeting point of a young and very friendly cosmopolitan crowd. Just be aware that there’s no re-entry after 10pm and that the smoking area, out the back in an unventilated bunker, is pretty unbearable. Also, don’t come too late on the weekends, because the ALG is the only bar/club in the area that closes at 5am, and once it fills up they close the doors.