Something special was happening at the Robert Tino Gallery on Saturday, June 24th and I knew that I had to see it. It was the release of the Dance of the Fireflies wine label on Sugarland Cellars summer wine. I dropped by after noon and this is what I saw at the gallery.
First, I always love walking into the Robert Tino Art Gallery. To say that it is beautiful inside and out would be an understatement.
The house that holds the gallery is lovely.
It is especially beautiful in the summer.
The release party was to be held from 10:00-3:00 p.m. There would be a tasting and specials on wine and art. It is a delightful collaboration.
I walked through the front door and immediately saw the new print framed and sitting on a table. I just now noticed this special frame and may have to go back and get it. Notice the front part of the frame. The whole thing is enchanting.
This table is perfection!
I wandered into the next room and was met by Holly Jones and David Elrod. Holly serves as Director of Community Outreach and Strategy for Friends of the Smokies. David is a manager for Sugarland Cellars. He explained how this summer wine comes from 3 grapes, the most interesting being a ‘Niagra’ grape. It is the same grape used to make Welches white grape juice. I noted that it was a semi-sweet wine with a nice taste of real grapes.
A taste allowed gallery customers try it before purchase. It was very good! Elrod explained that it is a white table wine; therefore, it needs to be consumed within ten to twelve months. It does not age well. Pair it with chicken, fish, pasta, or salad.
I asked the price and it only costs $20 a bottle—including the signature of the artist! I was not expecting such a reasonable price for a collectable bottle. The print is stunning and the wine completely surprised me so I bought one for a gift. Look how beautiful the label is above! The blue bottle is perfect.
Robert Tino explained that he has gone to the mountains, mainly Elkmont and Greenbrier, many times to see the fireflies. The idea of painting the fireflies became more clear to him as his considered what to paint for the wine label this summer. In all, this is the sixth label of the series for Sugarlands Cellars. There is a limited number though—only 1,000 bottles are available.
Tino began the collaboration with Sugarland Cellars in 2012. In all, Holly said that it has contributed over $100,00 to the Friends of the Smokies through the years. A percentage of each sale adds up.
This is Ginger, a Tino fan from Knoxville with family roots in the King’s Branch Road area. She bought two prints to take home. I may have to go back and get the one on the right for myself!
I got confused for a moment about terminology, but David Elrod explained how ‘cellars’ indicates wine, while ‘distilleries’ create other spirits. Sugarland Cellars is located in Gatlinburg. The address is 1133 Parkway in Gatlinburg.
Artist, Robert Tino, signs a bottle of Sugarland Cellars wine with a gold marker.
You can see his signature on my bottle above. The gold signature complements the gold text on the label. It is exquisite.
Because it is a collectible, one must be careful not to throw the bottle in the trash just by habit when it is finished. That would be unfortunate!
I was excited to buy a signed bottle of Sugarland Cellars “Dance of the Fireflies” wine with a signature by artist Robert Tino. That is the least that I can do to be a Friend of the Smokies! After the year that they have had, we need to go the extra mile.
There are so many beautiful things to see at the gallery. I must return soon.
Remember that there are only a limited number of bottles. Get yours soon!
It was a great way to get out and about in Sevierville while helping Friends of the Smokies.