I am from India and influx of common American food into the Indian market only gained force over the last fifteen years. I was a teen when American pizza chains and fast food joints started investing in the market. Pizza Hut, Dominoes and Kentucky Fried Chicken were among the first few players. Even the virally invasive McDonalds entered the market only much later. All these joints were quick to adapt to the palate and, religious and cultural requirements of the Indian market. Pork and beef was largely replaced by chicken and vegetarian options. Often pizzas and burgers were topped or filled with tandoori chicken rather than pepperoni or beef patties.
So for a long time, the humble and ubiquitous burger remained an exotic food for me. I had seen it in the movies, seen the pictures in comic books, I had eaten a chicken burger, but never an actual cheeseburger. And when the food network and other travel channels gained popularity on the television, I quickly realized that “the best burger in town” is somewhat of a big deal in the US. Americans have strong opinions over where to get the best burgers and will argue over what is the best technique to cook them, what to and what not to put on them. Now I really had to see what the fuss was all about. So when I moved to the US a few years ago one of my first things to do was to go to a local mom and pops place and get myself a proper burger. It tasted exotic.
8. Carl Henshaw
I don’t know about exotic, but the food my foreign friends consistently find the most nauseating is root beer. Apparently, the use of anise to flavor medicine is common almost everywhere except the US. So it would be roughly like somebody serving you a cough syrup flavored soda.