Mornings are a busy time at The Apple Valley Creamery. That’s because the staff has to rise as soon as the sun peeks over the horizon in order to prepare the day’s stock of housemade ice cream, fluffy loaves of bread, and vintage-inspired bakery goods. From the shop’s backroom, staff watch over ice-cream makers that churn out as much as 1,000 gallons per week of more than 50 flavors of ice cream, including customer favorites such as butter pecan, caramel turtle fudge, and french vanilla bean. The creamy scoops that result can be paired with chunks of the house’s signature apple-cinnamon bread or scrumptious bakery goods.
Nestled between Little Pigeon River and the myriad attractions of Apple Barn Village, Apple Barn Winery dispenses bottles of its handcrafted orchard wines. Within the pastoral building, tasting glasses stand sentinel on a polished wood bar as servers pour dry, semisweet, and sweet wines. Some varietals are matured in French, Hungarian, and American oak barrels with toasted interiors that create drier wines and exude a strong aroma of Paul Bunyan. The winery offers a wide variety of apple wines with flavors complicated by the inclusion of such fruits as pomegranate, raspberry, and strawberry.
More than 30 gourmet syrups and Ghirardelli sauces mean that customers at Gatlinburg Parkway Coffee can completely customize their drinks, choosing from flavors such as peppermint, salted caramel, pumpkin spice, toasted marshmallow, and pomegranate. In addition to a full menu of hot and iced coffees and lattes, the baristas pour hot apple cider and hot chocolate into waiting mugs. For those in search of a chilled treat, frozen lemonade and heaping portions of shaved ice cool off tongues on hot days.
Since 1950, Dunkin’ Donuts has roused sleepy customers with steaming cups of coffee and more than 50 varieties of freshly baked donuts. Available for a limited time, heart-shaped donuts fuel amorous appetites with vanilla-buttercream or bavarian-cream filling, swirls of chocolate or strawberry icing, and sprinkles precisely positioned to resemble the constellation of Cupid. Baristas splash to-go cups with 20 ounces of regular or decaf coffee, available in three flavor blends—original, french vanilla, or hazelnut. Alternatively, patrons can assemble a box of one or two dozen assorted donuts to liven up a morning picnic or coax a police horse into the building.
The bakers at Kitts Café fill their glass display case with house-made cakes, pies, and cobblers as cooks sizzle up platefuls of Kitts Café's homestyle diner fare. The kitchen staff fires up the griddle at 7 a.m. each morning, sizzling up fresh-cooked eggs and breakfast sandwiches before forging classic burgers and frito chili pie for lunch. To protect taste buds from fits of ennui, the café team whips up a rotating lineup of daily specials that changes each week.
A Knoxville business since 1993, Kitts Café keeps strong ties to the community with Kitts Market, a monthly event that transforms the restaurant into a trendy boutique with the work of local artists and crafters. The market's lineup of handmade gifts includes seasonal decor and enough children's clothing to dress an entire village in Loompaland.
Smoothie King co-founder Steve Kuhnau began mixing fruit, nutrients, and proteins in the late 1960s, in a successful attempt to assuage his own health conundrums. By 1973, he?d begun selling vitamins alongside his health-boosting concoctions, and soon, more than 600 Smoothie King locations were operating worldwide. Today, the shop?s patrons customize real apple, mango, and banana smoothies with sundry health-bolstering mix-ins. More than 70 blendable multivitamins, minerals, enzymes, nutrients, and amino acids fortify frosty smoothies, helping bodies to stay healthy or lift semi-trucks. Snacks, such as veggie chips and high-protein cookies, augment shakes in both health and deliciousness.