One of my earliest memories on the farm was seeing the steam rising out of the front of the evaporator and the aroma of sweet maple and wood burning in the firebox. You can tell that the sugar shack is the hub of the operation just by peeking in. In the height of maple season it becomes the meeting room, office, and some days even the dinner table! Every decision is planned around the flow of sap coming from the Sugar Bush and timed with the start of the fire to the last of the steam rising from the pans each day.
There is something about memory that involves all the senses; the smell of the maple syrup as it comes off the evaporator, the feel of the heat as the fire is stoked, the sound of the sap boiling in the pans and the sight of all the work surrounding the shiny, stainless steel machine.
Perhaps this is one of the reasons I chose to make this my life’s work.
Unfortunately the season of buzz in the Sugar Shack is short lived. Lasting only 4-6 weeks out of the year– even at that, not every day is steam rising from the stacks. So many of our visitors miss out on the excitement of the maple transformation. We try to make the best of it though, keeping the doors open for everyone to see where it all happens. We strive to share our passion for what we do every day with anyone visiting our farm at any time of year. Whether it’s a short visit for a passersby just tasting our maple syrup or spending the afternoon with yours truly on our Discover Maple Tour.
The past 17 months have been hard though. In October of 2019 I chose to make sharing this story my life’s work by being the 4th generation to purchase my family’s farm. Sharing creates purpose on the farm (any farm for that matter), it’s what we do. We share what we produce and with it, the knowledge we’ve gained over generations. Just 5 months after my wife and I become the official title-holders of the farm, we were forced to close our doors for what we thought would be a short 2 week shutdown in the middle of our busiest season. Fast forward almost a year and a half and the way we share our story has started to look much different and we’re learning as we go.
I can’t express how exciting it is to finally be able to open these doors again! Starting TODAY September 4th, 2021, after a 543 day hiatus, we finally invite our guests inside the heart of our operation once more. SO, of course we are ready to share — we invite you to enjoy a sampling board of 9 of our favourite and most popular flavours that we make on our farm. To start, taste the four flavours of Maple Syrup (Golden, Amber, Dark & Very Dark) then continue with a more savoury palette including our Maple Red Pepper Jelly, Maple Mustard, Maple Onion Jam, Maple Herb Dressing & Original Maple BBQ Sauce. Try each syrup on mini buttermilk pancakes and each savoury item on a multigrain cracker; I hope everyone finds a favourite on the board.