Secrets to the Best Food and Booze in Gatlinburg

We had the chance to visit Gatlinburg, TN in May. This trip was a bit unusual since it was an actually accidental purchase. We were looking at different trips on Groupon dreaming of taking one (we will be empty-nesters next year). We were looking at trips to Iceland, Spain, and also a little cabin in Tennessee. I swear I don’t remember clicking the buy button. I thought I just closed it and went on to the next one. Well, the next time I was checking my Groupons to redeem one, there sat the little cabin in Tennessee in the purchase screen. I tried to get a refund, but that didn’t go very far. So we decided to make the best of it and plan a weekend around it.

Photo of inside of a cabin near Gatlinburg, TN
Accidental cabin rental purchase

We did a lot of fun things in Gatlinburg, but one of our favorites was the food and booze selections in the little downtown area. You can get every different type of food and drink – including moonshine!

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Doc Collier Moonshine

519 Parkway Gatlinburg, TN 37738

There are several different Gatlinburg moonshine makers/stores – Doc Collier Moonshine, Sugarland Distilling Co., and Ole Smoky Moonshine. We walked by Doc Collier and saw that they were doing a tasting session so we joined in.

Doc Collier is named after William “Doc” Collier who developed the moonshine recipe using corn, sugar, and spring water. In the store, you taste the moonshine, purchase different flavors with different alcohol levels and even get moonshine infused cherries.

Photo of the outside window of Doc Collier Moonshine

They do tasting for a small fee and then you can apply the fee toward the purchase. It is a lot of fun and the tour guides through moonshine were entertaining and would add little nuggets of history. We tasted flavors such as green apple, cherry, but we settled on our favorite – blackberry and bought a small bottle.

A bottle of Doc Collier Blackberry Moonshine

Gatlinburg Cotton Candy Wine

702 Parkway Drive Gatlinburg, TN 37738

As we were strolling through the little downtown area, we came across this small shop called the Gatlinburg Wine Cellar. It specializes in flavored wine, including its most famous Cotton Candy wine.

Gatlinburg Cotton Candy Wine sign featured a bear drinking wine.

We got a free tasting of 3 different flavors of wine, and both of us chose the cotton candy wine. It was sweet, and we usually don’t like sweet wines, but this one was very light and tasted really good.

Bottle of Gatlinburg Cotton Candy wine

No Way Jose’s Catina

555 Parkway Gatlinburg, TN 37738

When we first got to Gatlinburg on Friday, we were hungry for dinner after the long drive. We found parking downtown over by the Mountain Mall and starting walking. We saw this Mexican food restaurant and decided to try it. The food was good, nothing special over typical chain Mexican food, but what was great about this restaurant is the view. If you can (can’t have children with you), have a seat in the bar where the windows open up to the river. It was so lovely to have a margarita and look out at the people fishing and the river flowing by (you feel like you are on an island) — a great place to stop and get drinks too.

Outside photo of No Way Jose Mexican Cantina surrounded by water in Gatlinburg.
No Way Jose Mexican Cantina

Crawdaddy’s Restaurant and Oyster Bar

762 Parkway #5, Gatlinburg, TN 37738

On Saturday, we went back to town for lunch and wanted to ride the chairlift up to the bridge. The line for the chairlift was long (there are two lines – one for tickets and one for the actual ride) and saw this restaurant across the street named Crawdaddy’s. We are always a sucker for seafood and especially Cajun based seafood so we decided to try it out. If you can get a seat outside, I would highly recommend it. It overlooked the street right by Ripley’s Believe it or Not so it was entertaining to people watch.

One of us went inside to get a table and order food (it is nice that we know after 25+ years of marriage, what the other one would order at pretty much all times) and the other went to get the initial tickets for the lift.

Stairway up to Crawdaddy's Restaurant and Oyster Bar painted with a crawfish
Crawdaddy’s Restaurant & Oyster Bar

We both got the crab stuffed shrimp wrapped with bacon with vegetables and garlic bread. It was amazing and a lot of bread! Everything they had looked good, and we were happy we made this choice – perfect lunch.

Plate of bacon wrapped crab stuff shrimp, vegetables, and a very large piece of garlic bread.
Bacon wrapped crab stuffed shrimp and sides at Crawdaddy’s

Three Jimmy’s

1357 East Parkway, Gatlinburg

On our last night – Saturday – dinner, we wanted to stop by a place we had heard of called Three Jimmy’s on the way back to the cabin. This restaurant is not right in downtown, but over towards the craft areas of the Gatlinburg area. We had heard of their blackberry chipotle sauce and knew it was something we wanted to try.

Outside photo of Three Jimmy's restaurant
Three Jimmy’s

For an appetizer, we got the fried pickles. The portions were more than generous, and they were so good! For dinner, we shared a pulled pork pizza with the blackberry sauce, and we are sorry to say we did not get a photo of it since we just dug in and demolished it. It was so good.

Bowl of fried pickles with sauce
Fried Pickles at Three Jimmy’s

Three Jimmy’s also does live music and it has a great atmosphere. It is a highly recommended stop for a fun dinner.

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References

3 Responses

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  3. No trip is ever complete without the perfect dining experience especially when you are visiting Gatlinburg.

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