Medvezhya Pad’

While it is not unusual for a Russian restaurant to have a bear in its name (“medvezhya” means “of the bear”), the other word – pad’ - is something of an enigma even to a native Russian speaker. It may mean a valley where all the trees have fallen down, or a special kind of honey. So the name may be loosely translated as “bear’s honey.” This is not a bad name for a Russian restaurant, and tourists of every description come in droves to Medvezhya Pad’, undaunted by the price tag. Inside, the first things that catch the eye are the fireplace, a stuffed bear and some stuffed foxes. They have bear meat on the menu. They also have stuff like bear pelmeni, moose pelmeni, roe deer roast, and wild boar pelmeni. At the end of a long list of wild kill, prepared this way and that, there’s this cute note: “If your teeth hit a lead pellet while eating wildfowl, it’s for good luck, according to the old tradition. You get good luck and a shot of cedar vodka compliments of the house!”