There’s no denying that we all love free stuff. If you’ve never been to Gatlinburg, you probably have no idea what’s waiting for you inside some of the shops. Yes, this tourist attraction serves up a vast array of tasty treats welcoming you to try for free. I’ve decided to compile a list of some of the best shops in Gatlinburg to do some grazing. Who knows? Maybe you’ll come home with more than you had planned due to some savory and sweet sampling selections!
1. All Sauced Up
All your favorite kitchen fixins and gadgetry and more are here at All Sauced Up. Jellies, dressings, salsas, dip mixes, and hot sauces are among the many, many samples that you can freely fire up the taste buds with. I would say they have the widest and biggest selection of samples out of all the shops in Gatlinburg. There’s a little bit of everything in here, even if you didn’t find anything for your kitchen. In our case and probably yours too, that’s unlikely to happen.
2. Chocolate Monkey
While we don’t take home any fudge from this shop in Gatlinburg anymore, we still think they have some of the best fudge and ice cream around. As a matter of fact, if we could take home the delicious Ashby’s Ice Cream in pints, we certainly would. Unfortunately, we have to settle with coming in to try the free samples before ultimately buying a cup of our favorite. The nice folks behind the counter are super friendly and won’t hesitate to offer up a bite to try—it normally results in a sale, especially for us.
3. Tennessee Homemade Wines
We previously have done free samples here, but we never bought any until our last vacation. Here, you can sample at least a dozen different varieties of their sweet wines. After some deliberation, my wife and I decided on the Niagara as our favorite. Just like any of the other places that offer free samples of alcohol, just show your ID and enjoy the experience of tasting some fantastic wines!
4. Tennessee Cider Company
No, I didn’t just repeat myself. In fact, this is the newest alcoholic beverage that’s sweeping the area—hard cider. They only have about 6 flavors at the moment, but that’s sure to grow if the popularity of the wine, whiskey, and moonshine shops are any indicator. Step in to sample some fruity cider drinks (for free of course!) and decide for yourself if you want to hop on the band(cider)wagon. So far, they only have a Facebook page, but be on the lookout for more ways to find them. By the way, my favorite is the Red Apple.
5. Pepper Palace
There are Pepper Palaces popping up all over Gatlinburg now. When we first visited in 2011 there was just one—located in the Mountain Mall. Now you can find one in The Village and another in the Ober Tramway Mall. The one in the Mountain Mall has the biggest and best selection, and you can meander your way around the display cabinets to sample the hottest sauces, salsas, and dips around. To put it simply: It’s nearly impossible to miss these omnipresent Gatlinburg shops.
Those are my picks for the very best shops in Gatlinburg to get all sampled up. Stay tuned for more great vacation tips from this little Burg next to those Great Smoky Mountains. Thanks for reading, everyone!