Another of one of things I am absolutely certain about is if it is “real” maple syrup. Growing up on the border of New England and having gone to school in Connecticut I learned very early the difference between real and fake maple syrup. The fake stuff that many people call “maple syrup” or “real syrup” is just high fructose corn syrup, water, fake flavor, carmel color, and a bunch of other stuff I can’t pronounce. REAL Maple syrup is made from the sap of sugar maple, red maple, or black maple trees. I have seen the process first hand – you tap a tree by boring a whole into the trunk at hip level and collecting the sap the tree stored in it’s trunk and roots for winter. Once collected it is heated to evaporate the majority of the water and you are left with the delicious the concentrated syrup.
There was a place growing up my brother and I always use to go in Massachusetts called Grey’s Maple Sugar House. Every year we definitely did not care that they served food – we went to get the pure 100% New England Maple Syrup. Sure, we brought a gallon and brought it home but the real treat was to sit down at one of the long picnic tables and order maple sugar, straight. You received a small, steaming metal pitcher and a bucket of packed snow. To enjoy properly you poured the steaming syrup on the snow, watched it harden, and then ate it with a fork. True story. Apparently most people thought it was too sweet, so they served it with pickles but that was just not going to happen (and I still hate pickles). Just look at this deliciousness: