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September 16, 2019

Downton Abbey Afternoon at Buckhorn Inn

We were proud to host a Downton Abbey event for 50 guests on September 15, 2019.  Our speaker, Dr. David Woodfine, has served as personal butler to the 11th Duke of Marlborough.  He also has been High Steward at an Oxford College and oversaw the wedding of Lord Andrew Lloyd Weber.  Guests received a copy of his memoir “When Angels Dare to Tread”.  Ticket sales benefitted reading/writing programs through the Hilliard Institute for Educational Wellness, a non-profit teaching and learning centre located in Spring Hill, TN and operating in Tennessee, North Carolina, Ireland, and England.http://www.hilliardinstitute.com

Insight into Lives of Downton Abbey Characters

Dr. Woodfine’s professional experiences shed light on the real lives of fictional characters, such as those on Downton Abbey.  His memoir shares his love of educating students.  The following story is an excerpt from “When Angels Dare to Tread”.

Dr. Woodfine shed light on the lives of characters in "Downton Abbey".

Dr. Woodfine’s new memoir is entitled “When Angels Dare to Tread”.

“One occasion I know that some of them [his students] will remember is the wedding of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Madeleine Gurdon in 1991.  A company that gave our young caterers and waiters experience of events invited us to take part in this one.  What excitement!  First, David Oswald and I attended all the planning meetings and were shown around the beautiful Lloyd Webber home, Sydmonton Court near Newbury, so that we could familiarize ourselves with the kitchen, cellar and layouts.  Then we put together two teams of students, about forty in all.

On the day of the wedding, the house was transformed as we were transported into a scene from “Phantom of the Opera”.  Chandeliers sparkled against black drapes and the hexagonal plates on the tables were glazed black.  Our students wore white gloves to that no finger marks would transfer to the crockery and I was pleased as I watched and directed them to serve Michael Caine, Jason Donovan, Elaine Paige and a host of others from the world of stage, film, and television.  I worked discreetly in the background, feeling very satisfied when my students exchanged little pleasantries with the likes of Esther Rantzen, David Frost, and Michael Ball and seemed to take it all in their stride.  Quietly, I congratulated each one on how splendidly he or she was coping with the big occasion.  They did well, and I felt that if they could just handle this situation with confidence and efficiency–and keep smiling–then a good career was waiting for them.”

September 9, 2019

You Will Want to Eat “Olive” this Bread!

Much like cilantro, the olive is a food that you either love or hate.  We happen to love the chewy, rich fruit of the olive tree and use them in many recipes.  This delicacy has a long history.  Research indicates that olives were first cultivated more than 7,000 years ago in the Mediterranean.  They were grown commercially in Crete as long ago as 3000 BC.  Spanish travelers brought olives to plant in Peru, Chile, and Argentina.  Spanish missionaries planted the tree in California, the start of a highly successful commercial crop.  

Black olive lends a rich flavor and texture to this bread.

Black olives are nutritious as well as delicious.

Oil from olives was once considered sacred, symbolizing wisdom, fertility, power, and purity.  The olive branch is still a symbol of peace.  The fruit is nutritious, too.  Olives, and their oil form an integral part of the Mediterranean diet which may help us live healthier lives. They are low in cholesterol, a good source of dietary fiber, and rich in iron and copper.  They are a good source of monounsaturated fatty acid and antioxidants.  Whether you eat them for health benefits or taste benefits, we are sure you will love this bread!

Olive Bread 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

In an electric mixer, combine:

1          Cup     All-purpose flour

1          Tbl       Dry yeast

2          Tbl       Olive oil

1          Tbl       Salt

 

Add and mix until smooth:

1 ½      Cups    Warm water

 

Add (1 cup at a time) approximately 2 ½ cups flour or until a pliable dough is formed. Turn onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl, loosely cover and let rise until double in size.

 

In a food processor, process until smooth and set

aside:

1          Cup     Black olives

2                      Cloves Garlic

1                      Shallot

1/4       Cup     Olive oil

Zest of 1 lemon

When doubled in size, press down dough. Divide

into thirds. Form flat rectangle. Spread part of

olive mixture on each dough. Roll up jellyroll

fashion. Pinch seams. Put on a greased and corn-

mealed baking sheet. Let rise until almost doubled.

Cut 2 or 3 diagonal slashes in each loaf. Bake 20-

25 minutes or until golden brown.

 

Yield: 3 loaves

September 3, 2019

Buckhorn Dinners Pair Well With Wines

You may have noticed that our online dinner menu now carries suggestions for wines that will pair especially well with the selections.  Guests routinely ask us for pairing recommendations, so our suggestions will help you take out some of the guesswork.  A member of our team is taking a certificate program at Napa Valley Wine Academy http://www.napavalleywineacademy.com so we all will benefit from what she learns.

The wines offered by the ?Buckhorn Inn are food-friendly.

The aromas of wine are even more diverse than the flavors.

A really good food and wine pairing creates a balance between the flavors of the dish and the characteristics of the wine.  Here are some basic rules of thumb:

  1.  The wine should have about the same  intensity or “weight” as the food.  A robust wine might overwhelm a light dish, while a delicate wine might be overwhelmed by a hearty dish.
  2.   Acidic wines work well with rich dishes.  For example, a zesty Sauvignon Blanc would complement the richness of macaroni in a creamy béchamel sauce.
  3.  Rather than simply matching a wine with the protein in the entrée, match it with the sauce.
  4. Off-dry wines, like a Riesling,  balance spice and are delicious with dishes featuring ginger, chutney, or barbecue sauce.
  5. Wines that may seem lean or tannic when sipped by themselves may taste very different when paired with boldly-flavored food.  Don’t be scared away!

Remember that taste is a subjective sense and what might be a “textbook perfect” pairing for one diner might not be perfect for another.  This subjective nature makes it possible to drink any kind of wine with any kind of food and have an enjoyable experience.  So feel free to experiment!

Taste Profiles for Wines Featured at Buckhorn Inn

In general, if you are looking for a pairing for a light seafood dish, try a light-bodied wine with a higher acidity, like Pinot Grigio.  Chardonnays have more body and are not as acidic and go well with fatty fish or a rich sauce..  Pinot Noir doesn’t have a lot of tannin and is a light-bodied red.  Pair it with dishes featuring mushrooms or truffles.  If you are looking for full-body and high tannin, look for Cabernet Sauvignons.  Cabs go well with steaks and chops as the tannins refresh the palate.  Try a Malbec with sweet, spicy sauces as it is bold enough to hold its own.

Sparkling wines like Champagne, Prosecco, and Cava have a faint touch of sweetness, even when they are dry.  This makes them especially good with salty foods.  

Please let us know some of your favorite food and wine pairings.  Happy sipping!

 

August 26, 2019

Buckhorn Inn featured in Paula Deen’s Magazine

Be sure to look for the October 2019 issue of Paula Deen’s magazine Cooking with Paula.  http://www.pauladeenmagazine.com  The issue’s travel section features an article “Smoky Mountain Retreat:  Good Eats and Great Views Await in Gatlinburg”.  Author Whitney Durrwachter wrote:

Paula Deen's magazine recommends the fine dining at Buckhorn Inn.

We were thrilled to be included in the magazine article.

“For a refined, fine-dining experience, visit the Buckhorn Inn bed-and-breakfast (www.buckhorninn.com).  Visitors can make reservations for the delicious four-course dinner, served daily at 7 p.m. in the inn’s dining room that features a cozy fire and views of the Smokies.  If you’re a guest, you can also enjoy the delectable breakfast and the respite of the tucked-away cottages and lovely rooms for a relaxing mountain escape.”

Paula Deen’s Feature Includes Neighbors

For “sights and bites”, the article features Anakeesta and its Cliff Top Grill & Bar.    The  outdoor family park features sweeping panoramas and a myriad of ways to enjoy them.  Once you take the enclosed gondola or open chairlift ride to the top, you can go ziplining,.  Or if you prefer, you can enjoy the view from a walk through the tree canopy or a rocking chair by the fire.  The Gatlinburg Sky Park with its 680-foot long suspension bridge is included.  In addition to Buckhorn Inn, Pancake Pantry, The Park Grill and Split Rail Eats are recommended for dining.

Of course the shopping recommendations include the Paula Deen Store!  But Savannah Bee Company, and  Ole Smokey Moonshine Distillery are recommended stops also.  You know that we love the many artists and artisans whose shops are located near us.  The article touts the Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community and give a special shout-out to Alewine Pottery.

We were delighted to see Gatlinburg promoted as a beloved vacation spot filled with attractions for all ages.  As the article says, “from the excitement of exploring downtown to the relaxation of winding through the surrounding mountains, there is something for everyone in this Appalachian destination”.  

 

August 20, 2019

TripAdvisor Has Changed Travel

Every month, 456 million people visit TripAdvisor to plan or review a trip.  That works out to about 1 in every 16 people on earth!  For almost every place there is a review, even fictional ones.  In fact the fictional Grant Budapest Hotel (from the movie) has more than 350 reviews and a 4.5 star rating.

The volume of consumer-sourced reviews has led to what some travel experts refer to as “reputation economy”.  While positive reviews can boost a business, bad reviews can be devastating.  Even before the days of print travel guides, people wanted to know everything about their destination before they got there.  Those who post on TripAdvisor are doing their best to help their fellow travelers.

TripAdvisor Comments

At Buckhorn Inn we are fortunate that 865 reviews from our guests have given us and overall rating of 5 out of 5 stars and made us the #1 B&B/Inn in Gatlinburg!   http://www.tripadvisor.comHere are some of our recent comments: 

We have received many positive guest reviews on TripAdvisor.

The view from Bebb House is spectacular.

Judy B said.  Chef Allen was incredible with his selections for dinner. I must admit there was so much food I couldn’t eat it all. Well, I had to leave room for the dessert didn’t I?

According to Relax164989.  Just a beautiful, happy place to unwind…with beautiful views…wonderful food and a very helpful and absolutely lovely staff.It’s in a great location right in the 8 mile loop of all the galleries, potters and cute restaurants and bistros.Will definitely return and experience a different season.

marcus1248 wrote. This was a most unforgettable experience. The drive down the entrance with the lush forest trees on each side of the road, the greeting by the owner Lee, as if we were long loss family, and sitting on the screened in porch of our cottage with a breath taking view of the Smokies, all created memories that will last forever. The entire staff was friendly and very accommodating. The breakfast and dinner meals were absolutely divine. This was our first trip, but definitely not our last.


August 16, 2019

Roasted Tomato-Crab Bisque with Cheddar Toasts

Organic ripe tomato cluster in a greenhouse

What says Buckhorn Inn dinner more than a flavorful bowl of soup?  And what says summer more than fresh ripe tomatoes from the garden?  With end-of-summer tomatoes so plentiful, now is the time to make this soup and transport yourself back to Buckhorn Inn—if only for dinnertime.

Heat oven to 400 F.

4                      Tomatoes, cut in half

1          Cup     Celery, diced small

1          Cup     Onion, diced small

1          Tbl       Garlic, minced

2          Qts      Clam or chicken broth

8          Oz       Lump crabmeat

1                      Bay leaf

1          Tsp      Thyme

1          Tsp      Fennel seeds

1          Cup     Heavy cream

Salt and pepper to taste

Roast tomatoes drizzled with olive oil in 400 F. oven until starting to blacken, about 30-40 minutes.  Let cool and remove skins.  Puree in food processor.  Sauté celery, onion and garlic in butter until tender.  Add clam or chicken broth, crabmeat, bay leaf, roasted tomato puree, thyme, fennel seeds.  Bring to boil and simmer until vegetables are tender.  Thicken slightly with flour and butter roux.  Add 1 cup whipping cream.  Salt and pepper to taste.

Cheddar Toasts:  Slice French bread into ½ inch thick slices.  Top with sharp cheddar cheese slices and chopped parsley.  Toast until cheese melts.  Serve bisque topped with Cheddar Toasts.

 

Yield:  10-12 servings

Join Us for a Downton Abbey Afternoon

August 6, 2019

Loop Lope Registration is Now Open

The Friends of the Smokies has announced that online registration for the 3rd annual Cades Cove Loop Lope is open.  The race will be held on Sunday, November 3.  Participation is limited to a total of 750 runners for the 5k or 10 mile event.  The 10 mile race begins at 7:30 am and the 5k begins at 7:35 am.

This is the only run taking place within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, so it is a not-to-miss experience.  Runners will enjoy the splendor of Cades Cove while raising funds to protect the park for future generations.  Walkers, joggers, and individuals with strollers are welcome to participate.  Please be aware that there is a low water crossing on the 5k course where a creek crosses the road.  Both courses are certified by USATF.  

Cades Cove is a beautiful setting for the Loop Lope.

The morning fog adds to the beauty of Cades Cove.

In addition to the two course options, their is also a Virtual Race option.  This option allows runners to sign up to run the distance at the time and place of their choice and still support the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Virtual runners will receive a t-shirt and a finisher’s medallion.  Registration and additional information may be found at the organization’s website http://www.friendsofthesmokies.org

You should know that Cades Cove Loop Road will be closed until 11 am on Sunday, November 3 due to the race.  Cars without a vehicle pass will not be permitted past the Townsend Wye.

Loop Lope Organized by Friends of the Smokies

Friends of the Smokies is an official nonprofit partner of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  The group has raised more than $65 million to support critical park programs in Tennessee and North Carolina.  

Generous support has been provided by sponsors, including:  Fleet Feet Knoxville, Little Arrow Outdoor Resort, DENSO, Rocky Top Tours, Townsend Gateway Inn, and Unlimited Training Systems.

July 2, 2019

Blackberry Season is Here!

In the U.S., Oregon is the leading commercial blackberry producer.  Here in eastern Tennessee, we find them at local farmers’ markets as well as in the grocery store.  Their deep, purple sheen attracts our eyes.  The soft, juicy berries fill our mouths with fresh, sweet, and slightly tart flavor.  Blackberries are not technically a berry, but rather an aggregate bramble fruit.  Did you know that blackberries have been used for medicinal purposes by the ancient Greeks, native Americans, and other peoples worldwide? 

Our blackberry coffee cake is only one way to use this delicious berry.

Blackberries capture the sweet taste of summer.

Chewing the leaves was a remedy for mouth ailments and a tea brewed from the leaves, roots, and bark was used to treat pertussis.  The fruit, high in vitamin C, was used to treat scurvy.  A 1771 document recommended a tea of blackberry leaves, stem, and bark for stomach ulcers.  https://en/wikipedia.org/wiki/Blackberry  

They are rich in vitamins A and C, iron, calcium, and dietary fiber.  They also are anti-oxidant rich.  The fruit also has been used to dye fabric and the stems to make rope.  The wild plants have sharp thorns, so have been used as barriers against large animals.  The berry is often used in desserts, jams, jelly, wine, pies, and crumbles.  We use it is this delicious coffee cake.  What a way to start your day!

Blackberry, Walnut, Bran Coffeecake

 

Pre-heat oven to 350 F.

 

Grease or spray 9X13 baking pan

 

Mix together the following ingredients:

 

1          cup                  sugar  

½         cup                  vegetable oil

2                                  eggs

¼         cup                  molasses

1          tsp                   vanilla 

1          cup                   oat bran

2          cups                all-purpose flour

1          tbsp.                baking powder

1          tsp                   salt                 

1          cup                  fresh blackberries 

1          cup                  chopped walnuts

 

Bake 35-40 minutes (or until top is brown and tester comes out clean)  

Yield: 18 squares

To get this delicious taste of summer year-round, you can substitute frozen blackberries.  This recipe is also a treat when made with blackberries, raspberries, or your favorite berry mix.

 

June 18, 2019

A Trip to the Cabin Dolly Parton Called Her Home

Dolly Parton is arguably this area’s most famous person.  She is a singer, songwriter, instrumentalist, record producer, actress, author, businesswoman, and philanthropist.  And she was born right here in Pittman Center, Tennessee!

Our recent guests, Herb Galbreath and his family, have seen the replica of Dolly’s cabin at Dollywood.  While they were here they decided to track down the original cabin that Dolly had called home.  She was born in a small cabin near the Little Pigeon River on January 19, 1946.  http://www.memory.loc.gov/diglib/ihas/html/dollyparton  Dolly’s childhood home was rural and isolated.  She wrote about it in song:

Megan Galbreath gets photo credit for this picture of the Dolly Parton statue in Sevierville.

This photo of the Dolly Parton statue in Sevierville was taken by Megan Galbreath.

 

In my Tennessee mountain home

Dolly Parton entitled an albumn "My Tennessee Mountain Home".

Dolly Parton’s cabin is featured on the cover of her 1973 album.

Life is as peaceful as a baby’s sigh,

In my Tennessee mountain home

Crickets sing in the field nearby.

The Road to Dolly Parton’s Cabin

As the Galbreath family drove in search of the cabin, they reflected on the fact they were backtracking on a road that ends in Hollywood, having come from Nashville, Knoxville, Sevierville, and which starts in Caton’s Chapel.  They started their journey on Caton’s Chapel Road and followed GPS directions to get to Locust Ridge Road.  The houses became fewer and farther between and the roads narrower.  The road twisted up and up through the mountains. 

Finally, they saw a little tin-roofed house.  That was the Tennessee Mountain Home.  The road that leads to it was gated off, and the house appeared to be unoccupied, but well-tended.  The family speculated on the effect that growing up in a setting so majestic, but also inaccessible and lonely, must have had on Dolly.  This remarkable Appalachian woman acquired a unique view of life in these hills.  The Galbreaths felt they had gained a new insight into the mindset of this national treasure.

Replica of the Dolly Parton Cabin at Dollywood

A replica of Dolly’s childhood home can be found in the Dollywood theme park.  Visitors enter from a front porch.  A hallway runs along the cabin’s interior and a glass wall separates visitors from the two-room home.  Guests marvel that Dolly, her parents, and 10 siblings lived in this small space.  The kitchen walls are covered with floral wallpaper and old newspapers.  The table is set and a kettle sits on the stove.  By the stove are a broom and a butter churn.  In the bedroom lace curtains hang in the window and there are wooden toys under the bed.  Several photographs of her parents are in the bedroom. 

The sign in front of the cabin reads:  “This cabin is a replica of the Parton Homeplace where Lee and Avie Lee Parton raised Dolly and her 10 brothers and sisters.  The replica cabin was constructed by Dolly’s brother Bobbie, and the interior was reproduced by her mother Avie Lee.  Most of the items on display are original family treasures.  The original cabin still stands at its location in Locust Ridge.”

Our guests loved the scenic drive to the cabin, and we are sure you will as well.