side note: i've heard if they catch you buying "log cabin" at the grocery store in maine, they take you out back and beat you with a stick.
the other day i read an article in the local paper on maple syrup etiquette, discussing the fact you should always be sure your guests receive the "good stuff" and how restaurants will actually charge you if you'd like more than the given amount. naturally this piqued my interest and i had to check this syrup situation out. as luck would have it, a few farms were going to have an early "maple weekend" on saturday; which is a whole day of celebrating this sugary sap! the next day, my fiancee and i drove an hour outside of portland to hilltop boilers to see what all the fuss was about.
i'll be honest i was overwhelmed. it was a syrup sensory overload. within seconds we had been given samples of maple fudge as well as ice cream with hot maple syrup on it! inhaling the treats we took a tour of the "sugar house," where i discovered it took 40 gallons of liquid sap to get one gallon of pure maine maple syrup. at the end of the tour they had maple whoopee pie samples; two glorious new england traditions in one amazing treat.
i ended up leaving the farm with three different bottles of maple syrup and a maple whoopie pie the size of my face. i had been seduced by the smooth sweetness of this sappy siren known as pure maine maple syrup. if that whole experience hadn't been enough to do me in, the next day we made pancakes. i'd like to say i used the syrup sparingly, but the truth is, i was basically doing maple syrup shots with a pancake glass.
well done maine, i get it now.