Winter & Jude Mead
Canaan Valley, CT 06018
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Maple Time Begins
It is the time when whiffs of warm air sail through the days and cold nabs the nights. It is the time for bluebird sightings and crocus viewing. It is the time pussy willows explode and snow melts. But most importantly, it is the time when sap fever strikes and we begin making maple syrup. At the first hint of spring, we tap the sugar maples. Producing maple syrup is labor intensive but well worth the effort.
It takes approximately forty gallons of sap to produce one gallon of syrup. Each step must be carefully monitored from the gathering of the sap to the packaging of the syrup. The grade of the syrup depends on the content of the sugar in the collected sap and the evaporation time. This means more sugar in the sap, less water. The result is a Grade A light or medium amber. The Grade A more favorable dark amber comes later in the season. The final product is pure natural syrup and delicious on pancakes, ice cream, cereal, and the many other uses for this natural sweetener.