My previous blog post described the first day of our January weekend trip. I didn’t realize that I would have so much to say about this trip–even though there’s plenty to say about staying in Gatlinburg–but once you get going, sometimes it’s difficult to pare things down. This post takes us to Day 2 where we weren’t going to be deterred by the cold that swept through the Friday overnight hours and blanketed Gatlinburg with a light dusting of snow.
Crockett’s Breakfast Camp
There’s no doubt that Crockett’s Breakfast Camp is one of our favorite places to eat in Gatlinburg for plenty of reasons–my choices have been different each time–but this time we had to walk quite a way to reach our destination. We bundled up and were a bit pleased that we didn’t need to wake up as early as the weather caused Crockett’s to open one hour later than their normal 7 a.m. time. Upon entering we were promptly seated on the other side of the restaurant for just the second time out of about a dozen visits now. My wife had been looking forward to having pork chops, which is a bit strange for breakfast, but hey, it’s vacation. I decided to eat rather light, opting for some bacon and a fruit bowl, because I figured I would have to share some of my wife’s meal–which I did. While the size of the meal wasn’t as large as expected, the flavors were great as usual, and I have to admit, it was nice leaving without feeling like I had to be wheeled out of the restaurant from over-eating.
After leaving Crockett’s, a few shops had opened on the Parkway, and we caught a break from the cold by going inside a few and looking at some things that were new, and some that were familiar from our last trip. When we returned to our room at Zoder’s we got a little too comfortable, staying for a bit longer than anticipated by watching a terrible movie and a few shows that just provided for noise. We’re a little spoiled by staying in the middle of downtown, so it wasn’t just that we could wander about; we needed to make a plan and didn’t really have one at that moment, especially since the cold was another variable to consider, and our original Anakeesta plan for the day ended up on the to-do list for tomorrow instead, due to the…you guessed it, cold and snowy conditions.
Smoky Mountain Brewery
The change in our plans made way for new ones to emerge in the afternoon hours. My blog has opened my world up quite a bit, and I’ve been very thankful for a few people that live in nearby Knoxville to have given me some advice on proceeding with my newfound passion for writing–and tweeting–about Gatlinburg. It was at Smoky Mountain Brewery that we met in-person for the first time. I’m not a naturally outgoing person–a bit introverted, in fact–so I was a bit nervous meeting these fine individuals, but even small amounts of alcohol made me a little more relaxed, so I opened up more about what I hoped to accomplish–which at times can be a bit sketchy and muddied. I enjoyed getting to talk to them, as I had only previously known them through the lens of their social media profile. Time went by fast, and I’m sure my wife enjoyed some alone time shopping on the Parkway.
No Way Jose’s Cantina
This trip can probably be best described by the number of times our itinerary changed on this particular trip. We had originally planned on a visit to Best Italian in a different location–on the Parkway–but after getting some advice, we decided to scrap that and go to No Way Jose’s, which we visited for the first time on our last trip. The Arroz con Pollo I ordered on this occasion topped my last dish and probably will definitely be something I get again the next time we visit this fantastic Mexican restaurant that has several locations in the area. I recommend you give them a try if you haven’t already; the margaritas are a nice little compliment to the meal as well.
Doc Collier Moonshine
If I remember correctly, I believe the wife and I separated again (don’t worry, we do this often when go out shopping) and while she went back to the hotel, I decided to stop in at a very underrated moonshine distillery, Doc Collier Moonshine. The spirits here are much less fruity overall, and sometimes less is more even though we enjoy the experience and shine at Sugarlands Distilling Company too. Of course, I sampled the moonshine again just in case it was how I remembered (wink, wink, nudge), and I kept my eye on a few things I was interested in purchasing–surprisingly, not any of the moonshine even though the Naner will most certainly be obtained in June. I was eyeing a few hooded sweatshirts for my Gatlinburg apparel collection that included a couple from the other distilleries, but the one at Doc Collier’s was my favorite looking one. Unfortunately, on this trip, we didn’t have as much money to spend so budgeting was something to consider.
Well, that’ll conclude Day 2 of our Gatlinburg weekend. I hope you learned something about where you’d like to go if you ever have the opportunity to visit this beautiful mountain destination. For those of you that follow me, you already have an idea on where to go, whether that be from your own experiences, or from reading some of the tips I’ve given in my blog in the two-plus years I’ve been writing about Gatlinburg. I also hope you’ll stick with me as I write about the last part of my weekend in Gatlinburg with my wife, as I’ll be writing about some of the shops we enjoyed visiting while here, where else we decided to eat, and what we took home with us on Monday when it was time to say goodbye to the place we love the most. Thanks for reading and stay tuned!