95% of people I talk to seem to think it's Russian so I'm not sure
believed to have originated in the grain-growing region that now embraces western Russia, Belarus, Lithuania, Ukraine, and Poland
Poland is far less known (in US, especially) than Russia. Vodka is forever ingrained in the Russian stereotype. Add the two together and most will associate Vodka as a (purely) Russian invention.
As far as my dad goes (avid vodka connoisseur) as long as it is well made and tasty (ex: not US, French, in plastic bottle, etc...) and Slovic in origin, it's all good. He's usually got the house stocked with Pasterniak (sp?), Putynka, Sobieski, Gvori and one other one that I forget, plus good ol' spirytus for cooking/making his own wiśniówka or lemon vodka thing. Oh, and he's always stocked on imported Żubrówka, with grass in case he runs out (the US imported crap is terrible at best >_<)