Drinks From Around The World That Really Aren't

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Scotch and Russian vodka are not merely drinks in their respective homelands, they are the manifestations of tradition and deeply held beliefs. This is the appeal of the exotic drink – that it offers centuries of refinement and craftmanship and a window into a different culture.

Scotch and Russian vodka are not merely drinks in their respective homelands, they are the manifestations of tradition and deeply held beliefs. This is the appeal of the exotic drink – that it offers centuries of refinement and craftmanship and a window into a different culture.

But many cocktails are not what they seem. Given names that are more evocative than accurate, they trick barflies into believing they're having an authentic experience when, in fact, they're being treated to a bit of refreshment thought up by a mixologist in far-off Flagstaff.

Don't be fooled. The list below unmasks the origin of a few poseur drinks.

Drinks From Around The World That Really Aren't

Here's a cocktail with an identity crisis. This drink's distinguishing component is the Mexican, coffee-flavored liqueur Kahlua, so why the Soviet pomp? It may be due to the fact that it contains vodka, a stereotypically Russian spirit. If the Stolichnaya is replaced with Grey Goose from France, does that make it a White Frenchman or a White Flag?

The cocktail's origin is murky, but one thing is for sure:  It does not come from the land that birthed Matryoshka dolls and Regina Spektor. The drink is an evolution from the Black Russian, which is credited to a bartender who mixed drinks at Hotel Metropole in Brussels in 1949. When cream is added to the drink, it becomes a White Russian.

A staple at any kitschy tiki-themed party, the Mai Tai is a tropical drink with a Polynesian name that is actually not Polynesian at all.

Meaning "very good" in Polynesian, the Mai Tai's deceptive name has fooled many into thinking it originated somewhere under a palm tree in paradise. Alas, the cocktail is of American origin, created in San Francisco's East Bay in 1944 by legendary California restaurateur, Vic Bergeron. Ahh, the sweet romance of Oakland.

The short-lived result of dropping Bailey's Irish Creme into Guinness contains Irish elements to be sure, but has much more place in Greek life than it ever will in Dublin. In fact, the name - which refers to issues with domestic terrorism - is so profoundly offensive, that ordering one of these in County Kerry is quite dangerous. It is also frowned on in Ireland to order the constituent parts and pour them together. This is seen as a gross violation of the sanctity of Guinness.

Snooki's favorite drink is the shortest distance between "Did you see the Giant's game?" and "I never loved your mother." But this drink never lived in the shadow of the Long Island Expressway.

Though the iced tea was being served at the Island's Oak Beach Inn in the 1970s, the drink more likely originated during the prohibition era in Tennessee. JS Moore's book, "Understanding Apples," attributes the drink's invention to a small community in Kingsport, Tennessee, called (drumroll, please) Long Island.

This increasingly popular concoction, made up of orange vodka, Sourpuss Raspberry Liqueur and Red Bull, was created by bartenders at an Ottawa nightclub called OnTrap. Some dare to say it's the new Jager Bomb. Others leave the room.

The Panama Cocktail, made with cognac and white creme de cacao, surged in popularity at the turn of the 20th century. At the time, the Panama Canal's completion was a popular conversation piece and just about anything stamped "Panama" became trendy. The only isthmus involved in the drink is the glass's stem.

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