Vodka is the Russian alcoholic beverage of choice. As a traveler to Russia, you may be stunned by the varieties of Russian vodka available, be pressed to drink vodka as a guest in a Russian home, and otherwise be confronted with vodka as a Russian cultural phenomenon as it appears in jokes, songs, and literature. What should you know about Russian vodka before you travel?
The Vodka Museum in Moscow is a fun excursion for fans of Russian vodka. Learn about vodka's distillation process and sample Russian vodka when you visit this museum.
© Alex Gumerov
Russian vodka can be bought or made, but homemade vodka can be dangerous. Learn how to avoid drinking bootleg Russian vodka when you travel.
Russian hospitality may call for guests to be plied with alcohol (usually vodka). Pressure to drink can be intense, so learn how to politely decline alcohol that you are offered.
© Mathieu Viennet
Samogon is the Russian word for moonshine. Samogon is often homemade vodka, but the word can identify other types of moonshine as well.
© lehel mor
Vodka basics are covered by About.com's Guide to Cocktails. Many countries produce vodka, but some of the best brands of vodka come from Russia and Poland.
© Ivan Bajic
Alcoholism is a rampant problem in Russia. While vodka consumption contributes to alcohol-related deaths, so does the drinking of samogon and other substances that contain alcohol.