Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 25

In the Blue R

Mountains, th

DEBORAH KOPPER

explosive g

Bloomery Sweetshine (above) infuses corn-based
moonshine from Kentucky with flavors to create sweet
cocktail liqueurs. Left: Several mountain brewers use
locally grown hops for their beers.

the most explosive growth has been seen in Asheville,
proclaimed Beer City USA in 2010.
Asheville's first brewery of the renaissance was
Highland Brewing, founded in 1994, with the name
chosen to honor the area's Scottish heritage.
Highland's founder Oscar Wong is considered the
"Godfather" of Beer City. His persistence and attention to quality contributed to building positive attitudes towards craft beer in the area, paving the way
for the two dozen breweries now in Western North
Carolina.
In Tennessee, one winery weaves area history
throughout their business. "From the beginning,
Sugarland has worked to showcase the local history
and heritage of Gatlinburg and the Smokies," says
Jonathan Ball, VP of Operations with Sugarland
Cellars. "Most of the names for our wines tie very
closely into that history, a person important to the
area, or something that is very unique or iconic about
the Great Smoky Mountains." The 1802 red wine was
named for the year William Ogle chose Gatlinburg as
home; Martha Jane Rosé for first settler Martha Jane
Huskey Ogle, who survived her husband William and
completed the cabin in his chosen spot; and Baskins
Creek Blanc for the local waterway, whose name
results from local dialect for "bear skin" creek.
"We also used local barn wood from some really
old barns to construct the interior of our winery," says
Ball. Besides telling visitors about their wines, he adds,
winery tour guides are known to talk about local
history.

FOR ONE NORTH GEORGIA COUPLE, wine was the
means of saving their historic, five-generation family
farm. Tiger Mountain Vineyards co-founders and
co-owners John and Martha Ezzard returned to the
farm when John's father could no longer maintain the
land.
With guidance from Dennis Horton of Horton
Vineyards in Virginia, John began by planting Norton
grapevines. He planted other grapes that were not
especially well known but were well suited to the
region, like Tannat, Viognier, and Touriga Nacional,
including only European vinifera grapes suitable to
the climate and soil.
Tiger Mountain uses old-world methods to create
handcrafted, traditional European-style dry wines-
wines that have claimed more than 165 awards.
"The Appalachians and southern Blue Ridge turns
out to be a great place to grow fine wines," says Martha
Ezzard. "It's all about a taste of the earth, and every
region has something different to offer."
At the café in their 75-year-old renovated red barn,
order a glass of Tiger Mountain Norton, Viognier,
Cabernet Franc, or another 100% Georgia-grown
wine. One sip will assure you that they've captured the
mountain terroir.
In West Virginia, Bloomery Sweetshine has kept
alive the spirits of a storied Jefferson County property.
The central structure is an 1840 two-story log cabin
formerly used as Willowdale Plantation's slave quarters, now the distillery building. Other buildings were
built for farm help in 1870, constructed from
reclaimed wood from C&O canal boats.
"We really wanted to have a place that would be an
experiential visit," says Rob Losey, national sales and
distribution manager. "We would be a very different
business if we were in a brand new building."
The name "Bloomery" derives from the iron processing business that was on the property. "Some of
the struts and iron that Lewis and Clark needed for
their tour west came from here, I've been told," says
Losey, adding that the area was reputedly the state's
most active for moonshining.
Starting with moonshine from Kentucky, Bloomery
infuses the base with flavors to create sweet cocktail
liqueurs. Their modern twist on historical liquors
has expanded to include raspberries, ginger, and
pumpkins, with flavors like hot pepper and black
walnuts slated for future shines.
As we go about life in these ancient Blue Ridge
Mountains, it's important to remember those who
have crafted the present. Tasty tributes such as these
make the history lessons easy. 

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Asheville,

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MARCH/APRIL 2014 | 25

USA in 2010.



Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014

Cover
Table of Contents
From the Editor / Worth a Click
From the Farm
Digital Help Guide
Creature Feature
The Hike
Mountain Report
Great Home Buys in the Mountains
Festivals & Events
Country Roads
Sip the Best: Mountain Wines, Brews and Spirits
Experience North Georgia
Wild Ponies of the Grayson Highlands: The Photoessay
‘Favorite Restaurant in All The World’
Sadie, Ace Baseball Dog
Sleeping in the Museum (No, on Purpose! In a Bed!)
Mountain Garden
Cabin in the Woods: The Expansive Welcome of Primland
Guest Column
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Intro
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Cover1
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Cover2
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Table of Contents
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 4
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - From the Editor / Worth a Click
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - From the Farm
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 7
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Digital Help Guide
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Creature Feature
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - The Hike
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 11
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Mountain Report
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Great Home Buys in the Mountains
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Festivals & Events
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 15
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 16
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 17
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Country Roads
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 19
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Sip the Best: Mountain Wines, Brews and Spirits
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 21
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 22
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 23
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 24
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 25
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Experience North Georgia
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 27
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 28
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 29
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 30
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 31
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 32
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 33
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Wild Ponies of the Grayson Highlands: The Photoessay
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 35
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 36
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 37
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - ‘Favorite Restaurant in All The World’
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 39
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 40
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 41
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 42
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 43
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Sadie, Ace Baseball Dog
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 45
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Sleeping in the Museum (No, on Purpose! In a Bed!)
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 47
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 48
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 49
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 50
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 51
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 52
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 53
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 54
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 55
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 56
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 57
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 58
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 59
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Mountain Garden
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 61
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Cabin in the Woods: The Expansive Welcome of Primland
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 63
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 64
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 65
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Guest Column
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Cover3
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Cover4
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