Ole Smoky Moonshine has become one of the most popular destinations in all of Gatlinburg. Morning or night, you will see people coming and going from this huge store and sampling all that they have to offer. Up until a few years ago, the only places that you could go to sample an alcoholic beverage in Gatlinburg was the winery off Hwy. 321. That has changed and their success has brought more producers to the strip.
The distillery is the most visited in the United States, and with plenty of good reason. They have so much stuff to here see and taste. You can watch the stills where they make the moonshine, listen to a bit of history from the staff, and taste a lot. They even have tours if you want to get more in depth. They have many different varieties of moonshine, and you can try them all. They have Original , White Lightnin’, Blackberry, Apple Pie, Strawberry, Peach, and Lemon Drop. They also have flavors that are offered at different times of the year. My personal favorite is the hunch punch. It is delicious. There are some flavors that I don’t care for, like the original But regardless, it is fun to try them all and you will definitely leave the place feeling pretty good. The moonshine comes in jars and are fairly pricey at $25 a piece, but the product is good and very different from what you can get elsewhere.
One thing you might not expect is the amount of different dips and sauces they make from the stuff that you can try. There are sample plates everywhere with chips and crackers to try their sauces. I’m not a big fan of dipping sauces, so I rarely partake in that, but by the amount of empty bowls of chips and empty sauces, a lot of people partake. As you might expect in the town of Gatlinburg, there are also a ton…and I mean a ton of souvenirs for this place. T-shirts, magnets, post cards, and so much more can be purchased at this place. You can spend quite a lot of time and money here if you want to.
Another great thing about this place is the music. There is live music right outside the store very often. Not only does it add to the experience that you are having in the store, but it is also great to listen to on its own. There is a ton of seating around for you to listen to some authentic blue grass music from acts and families from around the area.
Like I said before, this place does get busy. If you are looking for the tasting counters, just look for the crowds. They have several bar areas to taste, but they are perpetually busy. Just get yourself a place in line. When the group in front of you leaves, be sure to step up. There is no line queue system or anything like that, so when you see the buzzed folks at the counter start to move, get up there quickly. You can try as many different variations as you like, and the barkeep will tell you about each one before you try it. If you want a second of something when you get done if you are deciding which one or two to buy, just let him know and he’ll pour you another.
This place is open from 10am-10pm every day. As you can imagine, it gets busier as the day goes on, but you can expect it to be busy virtually anytime. This place does not seem to follow normal traffic patterns, so it can be super busy on a Monday and less busy on a Saturday. I would just say stop when you get there. You’ll leave happy for sure. It is very easy to find. The Holler, as it is known, is tucked away right on the strip in Gatlinburg on the Parkway. There is parking (for a fee) close by to give you easy access. Though if you sample too much, you might want to take a walk for a while before you get back in the car.