All photography provided by A Lee Photography
Our Production Facility & Method
Producing Pure Connecticut Maple Syrup since 1984
Our New England Family Tradition To Your Table Worldwide
What Makes The Sap Flow?
Production of our pure maple syrup normally (weather permitting) begins in February and continues until the first of April. Days need to be above 32 degrees F, nights need to be below 30 degrees F in order to get a "run" of sap.
Collection of Sap
Maple Sap is like milk in that it needs to be kept cool, and processed (boiled) as soon as possible for the highest quality. Maple Sap, is a clear, water like liquid. The sap has very little maple flavor when sampled from the tree, it will take 40-50 gallons of pure sap to produce 1 gallon of Our Pure Connecticut Maple Syrup.
The maple sap is gathered from buckets or tubing by pumping it into tanks.Then delivered to our sugar house via a tanker truck. It is then pumped off into one of many storage tanks and filtered
The sap being held in the storage tanks will be processed (boiled) in our evaporator within 12-24 hrs after being brought into the sugar house. The sap can be boiled as is or put through a reverse osmosis (R.O.) unit which, under high pressure can filter the sugar molecules from the water molecules, changing the ratio of 40:1 to 20:1. Boiling is still required, yet less fuel (we use a wood fire evaporator) and time will be required.
The evaporator does just that, boils off the 39 (or so) gallons of water per gallon of syrup. This is a semi-continuous process, going through many channels within the stainless steel deep pans. The smell of maple is in the air and steam, yet the steam is just water and not sticky. Once the maple syrup is getting closer and closer to the final product its gravity (the sugar makes it heavier than water at this point) becomes larger moving the concentration to the last chamber in the pan. The "finish pan" (left photo) is where most of difference in sugar makers takes place. Much like a great chef, some things here are not discussed. We check the specific gravity with a maple hydrometer and check for sheeting (viewing the sugar "sheeting" off the scoop). Once it is reached the syrup is drawn off and put through filtering to take out naturally occurring mineral deposits that make the syrup gritty and unclear.
Once Our Pure Connecticut Maple Syrup is filtered it is checked for its grade. US has a standard in maple syrup grading. This grading system has recently changed mostly in its wording. The chart here shows the old wording on the right and the new term on the left. The new wording is a bit more descriptive of the flavor.