In my world, Vermont means maple syrup.
And while, no, we haven’t finished the gallon of maple syrup we purchased last fall, a trip to Vermont is a trip to Vermont.
Meaning we needed to visit another sugarhouse.
Sugarbush Farm is the place to be in Vermont. They have pamphlets galore at rest stops and hotels, but both times we visited Vermont they happened to be too far from where we were staying.
This time, we were in their neck of the woods and decided after my last class at King Arthur to give them a try.
In addition to being a sugar house, they also make cheese.
So, basically, Hubby had to pry me away or else I would have tried to move in.
Their farm is open to the public and cheese and syrup samplings are available from 9-5 everyday. Naturally, we participated in said samplings.
Where cheese is concerned, they are producing some high quality stuff in not only consistency, but also flavor! I’m not a spicy cheese kind of gal, but their jalapeno and cayenne pepper cheddar impressed me. Yes, it was too spicy to eat more than one cube at a time*, but the flavor sang of the natural spice of jalapeno. Also quite incredible was the smoked cheese with bacon. Now, I know you’re thinking, Of course, everything is better with bacon! But sometimes the bacon flavor added to things is simply that: flavoring. Not the real thing. Even the bits sometimes are imitations**. Not with this cheese. It had a smooth smoky flavor and real pieces of bacon scattered throughout.
*I purchased a block to share with the family and my mouth was steaming!
**I’m looking at you, Bacon Bits.
I keep telling Hubby I’m ready to pack up and move to Vermont, but there is one thing holding him back.
Can you guess?
At first I wasn’t sure what this stick was, in my Jersey naivety I thought it was a flood level marker. I quickly realized this isn’t a typical place where floods develop.
On closer inspection, I realized it was the snowfall accumulation for the past seven winters.
Any chance I could convince Hubby that the 2015-2016 accumulation is the norm?
33 inches is bearable, right?
The farm offers a short video which takes the viewer through the maple syrup process on their farm. They also allow visitors to view equipment used for making maple syrup.
The little bottles above the firebox sign were especially interesting to me. The different grades of sugar produce different tastes with varying descriptors such as delicate, rich, robust, and strong. After tasting their cheeses, we sampled their four different grades of syrup. Most places sell three grades: Golden, Amber, and Dark, however, the fourth, Very Dark, isn’t always available.
It was our favorite.
And though we might still have an open gallon of Amber from another sugarhouse trip, we purchased a quart of Very Dark because maple syrup is that important.*
*Did you know? Maple syrup will keep for over two years unopened. After opening, it will keep for another two years in the refrigerator!
As we made our way to leave, we noticed the farm animals which made it even more difficult for Hubby to pull me away.
Why can’t I have this in my backyard?
Sugarbush Farm, Inc
591 Sugarbush Farm Rd
Woodstock, VT 05091