Genuine Tennessee Moonshine: Our Visit to Ole Smoky
I was pleased with our decision to do a moonshine tasting. Before the tasting, whenever I thought of moonshine, I thought of very high proof alcohol that burns on the way down and leaves a taste no chaser can take away. However, I was surprised by the pleasant and smooth taste of most of the flavors we tasted.
During our tasting, we were able to try 12 different flavors of moonshine and one whiskey. Some of the varieties included in our samples were Blackberry, Mountain Java, Some Beach, Margarita, Buckeye, Butter Pecan, and Chocolate Cherries.
The cost of the moonshine tasting is $5. In addition to being given 13 samples, you receive a $5 coupon to use on anything in the store. Therefore, if you later make a purchase, the tasting can be viewed as free.
Ole Smoky was the first federally licensed distillery in East Tennessee.
When I first heard this, I assumed that it meant the distillery had been around for a very long time. However, it was only in 2009 that Tennessee changed its laws and allowed people to make, distill and sell moonshine.
However, Ole Smoky’s roots go back much farther than its formal opening in 2010. The family claims to be one of the first to live in the Smoky Mountain and that their moonshine recipe dates back over 100 years.
Now, you can visit the world’s most visited distillery in four Tennessee locations. Two locations are in Gatlinburg, one is in Pigeon Forge, and the newest location is in Nashville.
We highly enjoyed the tasting. After sampling 13 options (and they have more we did not taste!), while we enjoyed some more than others, we can honestly say that we are a fan!
We ended our night deciding to take home three flavors: Blackberry, Buckeye, and Carmel Apple. Since we have been enjoying them at home, Buckeye is our favorite. We for sure will be buying more soon!
Bootleggers Homemade Wine
Before heading home after our moonshine experience, I decided to make a quick stop at Bootleggers Homemade Wine. The Gatlinburg tasting room is in the same plaza as Ole Smoky’s Holler location, and of course, I cannot just walk by a winery without stopping in – especially when the tasting is free!
Even though I did not purchase any wines, I did not leave empty handed. The gift shop had many wine-themed shirt and accessories that I wanted to take home. In the end, I settled on my new favorite casual tank top, and my husband bought a hat.
If you are in the Gatlinburg area, I highly suggest you visit Bootleggers Homemade Wine. If you like sweet wines, you might find a new favorite. Otherwise, I’m sure you can find a new shirt or another must-have item in their gift shop.
Want to read more about my travels tasting wine and other great liquors? Click here to check out my 50 State Wine Tour!