Much like a favourite pullover you automatically reach for on grey days – shapeless form and bobbles be damned – we keep coming back to Café de l’Industrie. It might lack the electric clatter and hum of some newer, hipper places around the Rue de la Roquette, and you know the duck with honey will never have the longed-for crispy skin, but there’s something about the big well-worn space with its neo-colonial décor, stalwart waiters, jazz manouche soundtrack and low-key bustle that is immensely comforting. Apart from anything else, it’s a good cheap option in the area and you’re unlikely to have to battle for a table even at peak times.
Stick to the original space at no. 16 rather than the newer extensions opposite, and enjoy the décor of dark wood, crocodile skins, oil paintings and gleaming houseplants everywhere. While nothing on the menu will blow you away, the plat du jour at €12 will do the job very well (as will the rest of the menu of salads, sandwiches and bistro dishes). Team with a bottle of wine – it’s a good place to linger – and enjoy the atmosphere of a much-loved neighbourhood joint that never quite goes out of fashion.