Syrup Season in Cottage Country: Everything You Need to Know

Warmer days and cold nights mean maple syrup season has arrived in the great Canadian wilderness just north of Toronto! Discover wonderful spots to experience maple syrup production, and check out incredible recipes featuring this iconic sweetener.

 

There’s no doubt that Ontario’s cottage country is a hotbed of maple syrup adventures once the warmer weather returns. Read on to learn about the tree-to-table-process, how to find up close harvesting experiences, and some seriously tasty recipes from the region’s famous sugar shacks.

maple syrup collection

How is it made?

The harvesting season takes place anywhere from late February to April, when temperatures are below zero during the evening and above zero during the day. This fluctuation in temperature creates pressure inside the maple tree that forces the sap upwards from the roots to the crown, and when you drill a small hole in the trunk and insert a spile, you can start collecting the sap that’s flowing through the trunk.

The waiting game begins once the spile and bucket are attached to the tree; it takes 45 liters of sap to cultivate just one liter of syrup… drip, drip, drip! The next step after sap collection is to boil it down to a roughly 66% sugar content, then bottle it and enjoy.

Just how good is the maple syrup produced in this neck of the Ontario woods? Being home to the 2019 Royal Agricultural Winter Fair champs – Clapperton’s Maple Syrup in Port Loring, Ontario – that should tell you a lot about our extra special maple trees. Check out all the amazing producers in the region (list below), how to visit a sugar shack, and learn more about cooking with Mother Nature’s golden elixir.

tapped maple tree

Where to Buy 

Almaguin Highlands

Bella Hill Maple Syrup Powassan
Golden Treasure Maple Trout Creek
Hubbert’s Maple Products Sundridge
Long’s Maple Syrup Trout Creek
Matthew’s Maple Syrup Powassan
Sugarstone Farm Trout Creek

Loring-Restoule

Clapperton’s Maple Syrup Port Loring

Muskoka

Brooklands Farm Bracebridge
Deerhurst Resort Sugar Shack Huntsville
Maple Bluff Farm Huntsville
Maple Orchard Farms Bracebridge
Muskoka Lakes Farm & Winery Bala
Muskoka Lodge Maple Syrup Bracebridge
Sugarbush Hill Maple Farm Huntsville
Sweet Muskoka Huntsville
Sweetwater Maple Syrup Supplies & Sugarbush Bracebridge
Windy Acres Maple Farm Utterson

Parry Sound

Trillium Maple Farm Arnstein
Wasauksing Maple Products Parry Sound

maple syrup bottle

Recipes from the sugar shack owners

Maple syrup is so much more than a condiment fit for pancakes and waffles – its potential is endless and you can quite literally ‘put that stuff on everything’. Here are some recipes from the region’s producers, who certainly know a thing or two about sweetening regular dishes for some extra panache.

Bella Hill Maple Syrup Powassan:

Maple Syrup Cake
Maple Sugar Shortbread Cookies
Cranberry Maple Baked Oatmeal
Maple Peanut Brittle
Maple Garlic Chicken
Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette

Maple Balsamic VinaigretteBella Hill Maple Syrup: Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette

Golden Treasure Maple Trout Creek:

Wild Blueberry Pancakes
Maple French Toast Cups
Maple Syrup and Mustard Salmon
Maple Syrup And Balsamic Vinegar Roasted Brussel Sprouts
Easy Maple Vinaigrette
Kicked-Up-A-Notch Maple Marinade For Vegetables
Maple Syrup Glaze For Ham
Maple Banana Smoothie
Maple Blueberry Smoothie
Maple Chocolate Smoothie
Maple Syrup Magic Sauce Cake
Maple Syrup Gingerbread Cookies
Golden Treasure Maple Mist (Tea)

Maple Bluff Farm Huntsville
Maple Pecan Pie
Maple Pumpkin Loaf

Maple Pumpkin LoafMaple Bluff Farm: Maple Pumpkin Loaf

Long’s Maple Syrup Trout Creek
Maple Carrot Soup
Swimmer’s Maple Granola
Busy Day Elegant Maple Breakfast
Jo-Ann’s Maple Chili
Tangy Maple Meat Balls
Maple Chicken With Napa Salad
Maple Baked Beans
Pineapple Maple Rice
Maple Squash Bake
Maple Mustard Dressing
Spicy Maple Syrup Dressing
Maple Oat Squares
Maple Oatmeal Cookies
Maple Cheesecake
Maple Creamy Fondue
Maple Sabayon
Steamed Apple Maple Puddings
Maple Syrup Fudge
Maple Snow Taffy

Maple Carrot SoupLong’s Maple Syrup: Maple Carrot Soup

Maple Orchard Farms Bracebridge
Maple Cappuccino
Maple Cinnamon Rice Pudding
Maple Pecan Pie
Maple Chocolate Cake with Ganache

Windy Acres Maple Farm Utterson
Blender French Dressing
Maple Granola
Maple Barbecued Spareribs

Maple Barbecued SpareribsWindy Acres Maple Farm: Maple Barbecued Spareribs

Please adhere to all federal/provincial/municipal regulations regarding Covid-19 travel.
Visit the region when it is safe and legal to do so.

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