Borsch, Vodka & Tears
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Open: Mon-Wed 8am-1am, Thu-Sat 9.30am-3am, Sun 9.30am-11pm
Contrary to popular belief, the vast majority of vodka is not produced in Russia. Neighbouring Poland may only be a fraction of the size, but the country has a very serious vodka industry, producing hundreds of different varieties. Borsch, Vodka and Tears showcases some of the best. Serving as both a restaurant and bar, Borsch, Vodka and Tear gives you a little slice of Eastern European hospitality right on Chapel St. While the menu provides a good selection of traditional peasant foods, it's the vodka that really makes this place stand out. That and the authentic Eastern European decor; it really does feel like you just stepped inside a little restaurant in the Polish countryside. So, about the vodka, the menu runs for several pages and takes in over 50 varieties. These comprise ever flavour, regional variation and specialised brewing technique you can imagine. If your previous vodka experience has been limited to vodka and OJ in a nightclub (once known as a Screwdriver), then you're in for a shock. Thankfully, the staff are happy to help and will recommend options based on your preferences. There are even tasting trays that allow you to sample three different shots for $14.95. Not only is it a bargain, it's sure to turn up your night out several notches. While imported European beers are also available - including a few bought in directly from Poland - and the wine list is competent, this is a vodka bar at heart, just as the name suggests. Whether you want to broaden your spirit drinking horizons or are just looking for a way to jumpstart the evening, it's a great little haunt.