Don’t know much about central European food? You wouldn’t be alone. Think schnitzel, cabbage and lots of deep-frying and you’d be on the right track. And as far as vegetarians are concerned, forget about it. That does this little restaurant something of an injustice, though.
All brick and dark wood, it’s a little bit ’70s but the waitress has a lovely lilt that suggests she’s a native of the area concerned. She explains the specials, and delivers half-litre mugs of proper Budvar (hell, if that was all Koliba offered, it’d still be worth a visit). Entrees are almost unnecessary, but if you must, the bramborak – fried potato pancakes served with sweet and sour cabbage – and the devil toast topped with minced beef and cheese are worth discovering.
The mains (goulash, pork knuckle, chicken schnitzel, roasted duck) are huge and come with plenty of carbs. The roast pork served with bread dumplings and cabbage is particularly good. If you can possibly face dessert, the apple strudel studded with sultanas and walnuts is just the ticket (or so we hear).
11 Johnston Street, Collingwood
(03) 9417 3797