Sugarlands Distillery

Sugarlands Earns Two Top Spots in USA TODAY’S 10Best Readers’ Choice Awards

Gatlinburg Distillery wins No. 1 for tasting room experience and Dale Jr.’s High Rock Vodka

GATLINBURG, Tenn. (July 18, 2023) – Sugarlands Distilling Co. was recently named Best Distillery Tasting Room in the U.S. while its High Rock Vodka brand co-created with Dale Jr. and Amy Earnhardt earned Best Craft Vodka in the U.S. in USA TODAY’S 2023 10Best Readers’ Choice Awards. The award-winning Gatlinburg, Tennessee-based craft distillery was nominated for three categories and took the No. 1 spot in two. Sugarlands was also voted No. 2 in the third category: Best Craft Specialty Spirits Distillery in the U.S.

“Sugarlands has always been deeply rooted in providing authentic, memorable, high-quality craft spirits and experiences for our customers,” said Ned Vickers, president and founder of Sugarlands. “To be recognized by our customers for both our products and our tasting room experience is a great honor because it’s why we are here and why we do what we do.”

Sugarlands welcomes over 1.4 million guests per year to its distillery in downtown Gatlinburg. Open 364 days a year (only closing on Christmas Day), Sugarlands’ distillery offers samples of its award-winning spirits, delicious craft cocktails and an opportunity to take a behind-the-scenes tour of the company’s original stillhouse. Sugarlands’ Distillery is consistently ranked as the No. 1 Distillery in the U.S. and the No. 1 Best Thing to Do in Gatlinburg on TripAdvisor.

“We put a lot of time, effort and pride into the distillery experience we have created at Sugarlands,” said David Kelley, general manager of Sugarlands Gatliburg distillery. “The ‘tastemakers’ who lead our tastings and engage with our visitors are truly the heart and soul of the distillery, and it’s wonderful to know that our visitors leave feeling like we’ve given them a memorable experience.”

In addition to being recognized as the best tasting room in the U.S., Sugarlands was also voted No. 1 Best Craft Vodka Distillery for its High Rock Vodka, a triple-filtered corn vodka, created in partnership with NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Earnhardt Jr. and his wife Amy.

Best known for his victories on the race track, winning has followed Earnhardt into his first foray into the spirits space. Since launching in February of 2022, High Rock has already taken home multiple prestigious awards at renowned spirits competitions across the country, tallying six Gold or Double Gold Medal wins, including:

Nabbing top honors in the USA TODAY’S 2023 10Best Readers’ Choice Awards is another feather in the cap of Earnhardt and Sugarlands for its emerging High Rock brand.

“Winning a Readers’ Choice Award from USA TODAY for High Rock means a lot to Amy, me and everyone at Sugarlands,” said Earnhardt Jr. “It shows we’ve created a product that is being embraced and enjoyed by the fans. Part of the reason we chose to partner with Sugarlands to create High Rock is their commitment to producing outstanding spirits, in addition to its great family atmosphere.”

High Rock Vodka is distilled seven times and then triple-filtered using the Lincoln County Process. Made famous by Tennessee whiskeys, the Lincoln County Process uses sugar maple charcoal to remove any impurities. The result is premium vodka that is undeniably smooth and pure. High Rock checks in at 88 proof, a nod to the number Earnhardt drove for a decade in the NASCAR Cup Series. High Rock Vodka is available at retailers across the country. To find High Rock Vodka in stores near you, visit

Founded in 2014, Sugarlands produces a full line of craft moonshines and sippin’ creams with flavors like Mark Roger’s American Peach Moonshine, Butter Pecan Sippin’ Cream, Banana Pudding Sippin’ Cream and Appalachian Apple Pie Moonshine. Sugarlands also produces Roaming Man Tennessee Straight Rye Whiskey, which won Best Whiskey in the 2019 American Craft Spirits Association Awards and has twice won a Double Gold Medal at the esteemed San Francisco World Spirits Competition (2021 and 2023).

About Sugarlands Distilling Co.

Sugarlands Distilling Company is a craft distillery located in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Producers of award-winning moonshine, rum, cream liqueurs, vodka and rye whiskey, Sugarland spirits are distributed in 42 states and made available for home delivery via Reserve Bar. Sugarlands hand-crafted cocktails can be sipped in restaurants, bars, and festivals across the country, as well as on the Back Porch located at the downtown Gatlinburg, Tennessee distillery.

The Sugarlands distillery welcomes more than one million guests each year and is rated as TripAdvisor’s number 1 thing to do in Gatlinburg as well as the world’s top-rated distillery experience. A proud supporter of the community, Sugarlands Distilling Company has donated nearly $1 million to nonprofits across the country through their giveback program, MoonShare.

For more information, please visit and follow Sugarlands on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @SugarlandsShine.

Media Contacts:

Sammy Eanes
Sugarlands Distilling Co.
[email protected]





Sugarlands Distilling Company

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Sugarlands Distilling Company


Sugarlands Distilling Company is committed to responsible drinking. You must be at least 21 to enter this site. This site uses cookies. Cookie Policy:  I agree to the terms of use and the privacy policy. This information will not be used for marketing purposes.