Ah BYO, those three sweet letters that instantly induce such prolific glee and delight in the economically thrifty, the broke, the fussy, and the tight-assed among us.
Unfortunately though, more often than not, along with the money saved on booze consumption, comes a major drop in the quality of food available. But in a city like Melbourne, there's absolutely no need to sacrifice your taste buds for your liver, or your wallet for your stomach. There are plenty of delectable and high quality eateries around town that will let you BYOB to your heart's (and liver's) content! To prove it, here's our pick of the best BYO restaurants on the Southside.
RED DOOR YUM CHA
A Chinese restaurant serving the punters a vast array of dumplings and yum cha dishes, Red Door is the perfect place to bring your friends, some wine and beer, and settle in for the night. Housed in a great space with antique furniture and hanging Chinese lanterns, Red Door is a loud and fun, yet intimate, setting which will start your night perfectly. Just off the beaten Chapel Street track, there's no shortage of places to head afterwards, if a nightcap is required.
Red Door Yum Cha | 1 McIlwrick Street in Windsor | 03 9510 9658
If you live in or around the southeastern suburbs, there is a high likelihood that you have many a fond memory at Fratellino! An intimate Italian restaurant in South Yarra, this is the perfect place to bring a bottle of red and tuck into a consistently delicious menu of Italian fare.
Considering the ridiculously low prices, the pizzas and pastas here will knock your socks off. With an open kitchen where you can watch the chefs at work as they throw about dough before cooking it in a wood-fired oven, Fratellino is a certain inclusion in our list of best BYO restaurants.
Fratellino Pizzeria | 415 Malvern Road in South Yarra | 03 9826 3624
A Chapel Street institution, Patee Thai has been delivering southsiders one of the best BYO restaurants in all of Melbourne for many a year! Along with consistently delicious Thai fare, Patee Thai always has a vibrant ambience. Take your pick of tables downstairs, or head upstairs for a traditional Thai experience – take your shoes off, make yourself comfortable on the array of cushions, and tuck in to your meals from the floor tables.
Patee Thai | 135 Chapel Street in Prahran | 03 9510 3060
BALA DA DHABA
Not only is Bala Da Dhaba easily one of the Southside's best BYO restaurants, it is said by many to produce the best curry in Melbourne, and the closest you'll get to authentic Indian. Packed every night of the week, bring a bottle and get stuck in. Must-tries include the chili chicken, lamb saag, pumpkin masala, and Nepalese potato salad!
Bala Da Dhaba | 63 Glen Eira Road in Ripponlea | 03 9523 8683
Image credit: Ladro Greville Street
Tucked away down the Fitzroy Street end of Acland Street, Chinta Blues is headed by Simon Goh, one of Australia's foremost and acclaimed Malaysian chefs. With food of such high quality as this, it's hard to believe it is BYO – but…it is! Sing hallelujah.
With affordable prices, an excellent outdoor dining area and even better tunes, Chinta Blues is one of our favourite Southside BYO restaurants, and the perfect place to start any night in St Kilda.
Chinta Blues | 6 Acland Street in St Kilda | 03 9534 9233
WAT DA PHO
Wat Da Pho is (in our opinion) the only modern pho venue in Melbourne serving up a 'new-age' pho experience. With a funky, sophisticated fit-out, Wat Da Pho will provide you with a steaming bowl for under $10, and let you choose exactly how to have it.
Whilst BYO is always a fantastic economical choice, if you're feeling frivolous, the alcoholic 'ice blends' are deeelicious – apple, mint and coconut with a splash of vodka, or pineapple, lychee and coconut with a splash of soho.
Wat Da Pho | 212 Clarendon Street in South Melbourne | 03 9696 5605
LADRO ON GREVILLE
Ladro is one of the best Italian restaurants in Melbourne, and being the generous folk they are, every Monday night is BYO at Ladro on Greville Street! Corkage is but a meagre $5, and all proceeds go to charity. Pizza, pasta, wine, and giving something back to the world – perfection!
Ladro | 162 Greville Street in Prahran | 03 9510 2233
A true suburban relic, Paradai Thai is a Southside gem, and a clear frontrunner for one of Melbourne's best BYO restaurants! Located in Carnegie (pronounced car-ne-jey to the locals), Paradai Thai never lets you down if you're looking for mouth-wateringly delicious Thai cuisine. Bring a bottle of wine, some frothies, and tuck in!
Paradai Thai | 75 Koornang Road in Carnegie | 03 9572 1206
Main image credit: Tokyo Terrace