Tamara Sheward discovers that Melbourne’s Borsch Vodka and Tears delivers everything it promises. Well, almost

Not many establishments spell it out as clearly as this Melbourne favourite: a cross between straight-up bar and all-in restaurant, BVT has certainly got the borsch (Polish, Russian, and vegetarian, not to mention chicken meatball and “gypsy” soups) and it’s definitely got the vodka (over 100 different types including variations that exist nowhere else in this country).

Tears, however, are BYO… although muck around with too many Polish Bitches (cherry-infused vodka with a wallop of Tabasco) and they’re on the house.

Taking a seat inside BVT is like snuggling up in a babushka’s parlour — perfumed by dill and dumplings, it’s warmly-lit and comfortingly decked out with arbitrary antiques, enchanted mirrors and, of course, shelf upon shelf of obscure vodkas. Those after a true Slavic session — collective style — huddle over rollmops and roll-yer-owns at tightly packed tables out the front. Definitely nothing to cry about.

Get your fill at 173 Chapel St, Windsor, or salivate online at http://www.borschvodkaandtears.com
Bookings recommended: phone (03) 95302694

About Tamara Sheward

In between travelling to exotic places around the world, Tamara Sheward has worked as a toy spider salesperson, a Guinness packer, a Quizmaster and an occasional journalist. She is the author of Bad Karma: Confessions of a Reckless Traveller in South-East Asia, the co-author of 101 Sudoku for Kids, and the author of The Little Aussie Alphabet Book and The Little Aussie Numbers Book.