FLASHBACK: Sugar Bushes: Sand Road Maple Camp

It's maple season! We've had some great posts in the past about sugar bushes so will be re-posting some.  If you've had a wonderful sugar bush experience we'd love to hear about it! By Rebecca

Today we took the kids on our annual sugar bush trip. We go for pancakes, running around outside, real maple syrup and maple sugar candy.

Sugar bushes (or camps, or shacks or pancake houses or farms depending on where you go) is nothing new for me. I grew up in Eastern Ontario, near Quebec and was surrounded by them. School trips were always planned and I went to a prom at one. Seriously. I've written about this and my love for maple syrup in the past.

I am excited that my children get to relive my love for the sugar bush (and they certainly share my love for maple syrup). There was a huge maple tree on the property of one of my homes growing up. It flowed with sap each year. We would sometimes put a bucket on it for fun, but there wasn't enough to make syrup.

My grandfather, a farmer, tapped some trees on his property and would boil the sap and make syrup. It was a dark syrup as I remember it and it was delicious. We would dip buttered bread in it or pour it over bananas. Maple syrup over white rice is still a favourite snack of mine.

This picture was taken at the sugar bush today, but my grandpa had a pot just like it!

Today's trip was to the Sand Road Maple Camp. It's near Moosecreek, about a 50 minute drive East of Ottawa. It's worth the drive.

First, the drive doesn't seem that long (although, remember we are often taking drives like that with the kids!) and once you get there the food assures you that it was worth it.

Oh, the food. We decided on the buffet for all of us. $14.95 for each adult and $4.95 for the kids. If you prefer you can order off the menu, single items etc. But since our kids love pancakes and the trimmings, plus they got juice, it was worth it.

The choices were pancakes (of course!) with unlimited delicious syrup, scrambled eggs, hashbrowns, baked beans (these were amazing), sausages and bacon. Not just any bacon, but deep fried smoked pork jowls. I know. But it was so so good! ( I don't have a good picture of the food because we were eating it plus when I took pictures of the kids, I dropped my phone in my beans!)

My 2 year old ate beans and a huge pancake. My son had nearly 2 pancakes and some bacon. When I asked him how he was liking it, he simply said 'it's AWESOME!'.

As for the syrup, it was wonderful. Had that traditional smokey, sweet flavour a sugar bush syrup should have. Incredible. I left feeling very satisfied.

The ground was a little muddy, and the weather turning so we didn't stay too long after but did walk around for a bit. There is only a small play structure for the kids, so don't expect a lot of play time that way, but mine were happy to walk around exploring the trees for a bit.

Naturally, I also left with maple sugar candy.

Go to enjoy the drive, stay to enjoy the amazing food!

The camp doesn't require reservations, is open Tuesday-Sunday 9-4 and until April 25. Take the drive and enjoy!

Rebecca blogs about family and motherhood, is a self-professed foodie, and dabbles in online engagment and community giving.  She has a strange love for maple syrup that can possibly only be matched by her love for chocolate and coffee.
Enhanced by Zemanta

Flash Back: It's Maple Syrup Time

by Natasha

Spring is just around the corner, I can almost see the sunshine at the end of this icy winter.

One of my favourite things to do when the snow begins to melt is visit a sugar bush.  Maple syrup season “officially” starts in late February, and I’m just going to wait a little bit before heading out with my family.

We love visiting Stanley’s Olde Maple Lane Farm.  It is a wonderful way to spend a beautiful day, and is short distance from Ottawa. Parking is free too!

If you head down early, you can enjoy a delicious all-you-can-eat-pancake brunch before you start exploring the farm.  The brunch is nothing short of a feast that includes pancakes, french toast, beans and sausages served. They have a few other items on their menu as well for those looking for some variety.

My favourite part about Stanley’s Olde Farm - besides brunch- is the number of activities available to help pass the day and enjoy the outing.

For example, you can ride in a horse-drawn sleigh through the farm to see all of the maple trees. This is an especially enjoyable activity around the last few days of snow, as you get to see the trees and hills covered in white. The ride will set you back $4.75 per person.

Stanley’s farm is of course, still a farm. So it’s natural that they have animals around for little children to visit and see. The barns are filled with horses, pigs, cow and sheep and is free to visitors.

And of course the point of visiting a sugar bush is to see how the sap turns into syrup, and eventually ends up on your pancakes. Stanley’s not only let’s you see the the process, but also has some delicious taffy in snow for you to try at $2.50 per serving.

Don’t sit too long on the idea of visiting the sugar bush, as maple syrup season ends in early April. You have just over a month to get your fill of winter-fresh maple!

Details: Stanley’s Olde Maple Lane Farm 2452 Yorks Corners Road Edwards, Ontario K0A 1V0 613-821-2751

It’s open on weekends from 9am to 3pm and they are open most of March Break (closed Monday) from 10am to 2pm.