Sugarlands Distilling Co. of Gatlinburg, Tennessee, and Wahlburgers, the Hingham, Massachusetts-based gourmet burger restaurant and bar founded by Chef Paul Wahlberg alongside his brothers Donnie and Mark Wahlberg, are collaborating on a limited-time offer (LTO) menu item available at Wahlburgers nationwide.
Inspired by a recent visit to Tennessee, Chef Paul crafted Apple Rye BBQ Pork Sliders featuring a scratch-made BBQ sauce made using Mark & Digger’s Rye Apple Moonshine, an unaged rye made by Sugarlands Distilling in collaboration with Mark Ramsey and Digger Manes, stars of Discovery Channel’s Moonshiners. Each order of Wahlburgers’ new Apple Rye BBQ Pork Sliders includes three sliders with succulent, slow-smoked pulled pork, house-made Apple Rye BBQ sauce and freshly prepared coleslaw, served with a stack of onion rings.
During his visit to Tennessee, Chef Paul spent time with Mark and Digger, who showed Paul the secret world of moonshining in the Great Smoky Mountains before giving him a tour of Sugarlands’ distillery in Gatlinburg. Camera crews captured the interactions with Chef Paul, Mark and Digger, with footage released on Sugarlands and Wahlburgers’ social media channels over the next month.
“I’m always searching for new ideas to bring to the kitchen, and my latest trip to Tennessee was full of unexpected stories, people and flavors that inspired me greatly,” said Chef Paul. “Mark, Digger and everyone at Sugarlands were fantastic hosts, and I left with a new understanding of the rich history of moonshine and the area’s devotion to slow-cooked barbecue. I can’t wait to share my interpretation of this southern staple with Wahlburgers guests this fall.”
To accompany its Apple Rye BBQ Pork Sliders, Wahlburgers will also serve a specialty Bootlegger Apple Cider craft cocktail for a limited time. The Bootlegger Apple Cider combines Mark & Digger’s Rye Apple Moonshine from Sugarlands Distilling Company with the crisp refreshment of apple cider, the perfect fall complement to Chef Paul’s Apple Rye BBQ Pork Sliders.
The Apple Rye BBQ Pork Sliders and Bootlegger Apple Cider cocktail will be available at Wahlburgers locations from September 5 through November 2023.
“We’re always exploring new ways to share our product offerings and reach new customers,” said Patrick Sullivan, Sugarlands chief revenue officer and Boston native. “Partnering with Wahlburgers offers an exciting and unique avenue to do that. We’re intentional about whom we collaborate with, and the family values and a commitment to quality of Wahlburgers align perfectly with Sugarlands. It’s been a tremendous experience working with Chef Paul and the entire Wahlburgers team to bring these menu items to life, and we’re excited for what the future could hold for our two brands working together.”
Sugarlands has a long-standing relationship with Mark, Digger and other moonshining icons from the Moonshiners television show. Along with Mark & Digger’s Rye Apple Moonshine, Sugarlands also produces Mark & Digger’s Hazelnut Rum, Jim Tom Hedrick’s Unaged Rye, Mark Rogers’ American Peach and Tickle’s Dynamite Cinnamon, which are all part of Sugarlands’ Legends Series.
In addition to its relationship with Moonshiners, Sugarlands boasts strategic partnerships with the Boston Red Sox, Atlanta Braves, Baseball Hall of Famer Chipper Jones, Grammy-nominated country superstar Cole Swindell, platinum-selling recording artist O.A.R., 2023 Daytona 500 Champion Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and JTG Daugherty Racing, JR Motorsports and multiple Speedway Motorsports properties. Sugarlands partnered with Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Amy Earnhardt to launch High Rock, a premium line of handcrafted vodka, last year.
To find a Wahlburgers near you, visit www.wahlburgers.com/locations, or to find Wahlburgers at Home at a retailer near you, visit www.wahlburgersathome.com To find a Sugarlands retailer near you, visit www.findmoonshine.com.
Sip Wisely! Mark & Digger’s Rye Apple Moonshine is produced and bottled by Sugarlands Distilling Company, Gatlinburg, Tennessee. 40% alc/vol, 80 proof, available in 750 ml jars. Must be 21+ to purchase.