January 28, 2013


"Industriel, Urban Farm Cuisine" -- what the heck does that even mean??  In the restaurant's words, it's "the style of cuisine served up by your grandmother in her farmhouse in Provence, France with one little twist: Your grandmother has sleeve tattoos."  Huh?  "Provencal tradition, but with modern LA attitude."  Okay...

To find out what they're really trying to get at and also to launch the first DTLA Supper Club meeting (aka - a group excuse to indulge/ dine out on a weeknight), A & I finally checked out this 2-storied restaurant.

I spy a farmer... and industrial-looking lighting.  Urban Farm Fresh?

A fun mishmash of design and decor.

Honey Bears hanging from the ceiling over an empty tub.  Unusual... but cool.

The interior design is simple, but the ambience is confusing.  A mix between modern minimalist and industrial, the vibe is both museum-like and comforting at the same time.  Oddly, it works.

A Cabernet Sauv pour le mademoiselle, per usu.

Castelvratrano Olives -- fancy name for green olives w/ pickled sweet peppers and EVOO -- $3

I love olives.  These were just okay, but they come in a mini mason jar.  Maybe I'm just a sucker for these things, but there's something quaint about eating olives from a cute jar. 

Kale & Housemade Bacon Salad with panko, parmesan, white anchovies, and tossed in a roasted garlic bacon dressing -- $11

I usually like to eat everything and anything, although there was an arguably dark period in my life when I refused to eat pancakes (I'm happy to announce those days are ovah!).  But anchovies still remain on my "eh, I'll pass" list.  The kale and thick-chunks of bacon in all of its fatty glory -- an unusual combo that really delivers -- is tossed in a thick garlic dressing that could turn any kale-hater into an instant kale-lover.  And even the two small pieces of anchovies couldn't deter me from ordering and devouring this dish.

Gnocchi with sauteed kale and mushrooms, shaved pecorino sardo and tossed in browned butter -- $14

Goat-cheese stuffed gnocchi.  Browned butter.  Pecorino cheese.  If Industriel messed up this dish with the aforementioned ingredients, there would be a serious problem.  Thankfully, they did not.  In fact, although there was so much richness in the gnocchi and the browned butter, it wasn't over-the-top decadent.  I'd still recommend sharing the dish with a non-greedy friend.

Cider-brined Pork Loin with salt-roasted onion, apple chutney, and burnt bread sauce -- $19

The pork loin is about the size of your palm.  Not too big, but very juicy and flavorful -- sweet, salty, vinegar-y, you name it, it's in there.  Maybe it's because A and I shared every dish, but the portion was perfect.

Perfectly cooked pork chop.

Despite my inability to figure out what "Urban Farm Cuisine" means, by the end of the meal, I wasn't concerned about my unanswered questions.  What's important is that this place is comfortable, service is friendly, the wine/ beer list is lengthy, and the food is pretty damn tasty.  The prices aren't too steep, but it's also not a typical weeknight kind of place either (at least not for this recent law school grad).  Still, fret not about figuring out where Provence is, whose grandmothers has sleeve tattoos (if yours does, I want to meet her!), or what kind of inspiration the owners had when opening up the restaurant.  Instead, sit back, sip your cocktail or wine, and enjoy your meal.  Cheers to that!

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Industriel on Urbanspoon

cuisine: New French/ New American
location: DTLA (southwest corner of 6th & Grand)
hours: M-Th: 11 AM - 11 PM; F: 11 AM - midnight; Sat, 10 AM - midnight; Sun: 10 AM - 10 PM
websites: { Industriel | yelp | twitter | facebook }
attire: Casual
parking: Street or nearby lots
notes: They claim to be French, but I didn't really get that from my meal.  Maybe you can inform me otherwise.
other reviews: { LADT NewsJ. Gold (was not a fan) }