Maple Syrup

Posted on in Todd Talks by Todd Johnson

A good morning should always begin with a little bit of maple syrup. I’m not talking about that imitation junk that is really just artificially flavored corn syrup. No, no, no. I mean the genuine article.

The process of making maple syrup starts in the cold of late winter and early spring in the Northeast U.S. and Eastern Canada, where people drill small holes in the trunks of mature trees (those usually at least 30 to 40 years old) and place a tap or spile into the hole. A bucket is often hung from the spile to catch the sap as it flows from the spile. Larger productions use hoses to connect all of the tapped maple trees together and run the collected sap to a single point. The buckets or barrels are emptied frequently because a single tree can produce up to three gallons of sap per day during ideal conditions. The sap is then refined into syrup in several ways. The classic way is by evaporation. With this method, the sap is strained and poured into pots or vats, and the sap is boiled over a fire until the sugar content is concentrated enough to reach the consistency of syrup. Newer operations use reverse osmosis systems that evaporate the bulk of the water before boiling. This reduces the time required to process the sap considerably. When all is said and done, it typically takes about 40 gallons of sap to make a single gallon of syrup.

Around here, the syrup-making process is a chance for friends and family to get together and have a little fun, share stories, and make delicious syrup to enjoy for the rest of the year. Nothing can dress up a hot stack of pancakes or waffles like fresh, authentic maple syrup. And boy does it taste great with sausage or bacon too.