Wander down through the Parc de la Villette, along the green-tinged Canal de l’Ourcq down towards Jaurès metro station, and you’ll now find a handful of excellent recent bar and restaurant openings, like the Bancs Publics, Café Odilon and the latest, Maison Becquey. With its polished, industrial-chic look, lamps suspended from the ceiling, hanging plants and pink neon lights, the décor has a cool, laid-back feel about it that extends also to its atmosphere.
Food wise, ingredients generally come from the various reputed farms around the Île-de-France region, but the menu veers off in all directions, offering a hodgepodge selection of fish, burgers, pasta and bagels. And having heard a lot about their supposedly brilliant spicy chicken and home made chips (€13.90), we’re slightly disappointed. It’s decent, sure, but we wouldn’t have it again: the meat isn’t substantial and the skin barely crisp.
Progress onto the drinks menu, however, and things get a lot more exciting. Their tip-top selection of organic wines and artisanal beers (various Parisian brews at €5.50) refill us with confidence, as do their complex signature cocktails, like the extraordinary Wandez-Vous (tequila infused with chilli pepper, cucumber cordial, fresh coriander and Perrier, all poured over crushed ice), or the much sweeter After Sex (vodka, orange juice and banana juice).
TRANSLATION: LEONIE CATER