Road Trip Idea #26: Mad for Maple in Western Mass
M is for Maple and March is maple month in Western Mass! As a matter of fact, we’re just mad for maple! It’s a great time to get out and about to get your fill of fresh maple flavors. Take a ride to one of the many sugar shacks where you can enjoy fluffy pancakes topped with the freshest maple syrup you’ll ever find! Take a scenic nature walk on one of our many hiking trails to commune with our sugar maple trees and see the source of our delicious syrup up close.
Looking for more of an indoor experience? Here are some other ways to enjoy maple in March.
Located in the lovely Longmeadow Shops, Max Burger serves up delectable burgers, entrees and drinks in a fun, relaxed atmosphere. Check out their maple whiskey burger – an 8 oz. beef burger, arugula, caramelized onion, blue cheese, applewood smoked bacon, maple-whiskey sauce on an artisan roll. Yum!
Richardson’s Candy Kitchen
Grab a growler of Williams Farm local maple syrup, maple mousse truffles, maple drops or dark chocolate maple candies. Whatever you choose, it will be filled with local, luscious maple goodness.
Yankee Candle Village
Keep the maple scent in your home year-round by stopping at Yankee Candle Village to pick up a bunch of New England Maple scented candles. This scent is only available at the South Deerfield Village store! This 90,000 square foot super store is filled with all things Yankee Candle but also features a large Home Store filled with jams, dips, baking mixes and more. You’re sure to find even more maple in the Home Store.
Old Sturbridge Village
“Maple Days” is when Old Sturbridge Village’s working sugar camp demonstrates maple sugaring as it was done in early 19th-century New England. See the entire sugar-making process, from tapping the trees to “sugaring off,” and learn why maple sugar was more commonly used than maple syrup in early New England. Costumed historians will also cook period foods made with maple products and the potter and cooper will make maple related items.
Well-known for their homemade ice cream, the Scoop has not one but two maple flavors! Maple Bacon is made with local, pure maple syrup & pieces of their own farm raised crispy bacon stirred in. Maple cream is maple walnut without the nuts! Either way, you can’t go wrong!!
The maple syrup selection at Atkins is the largest in New England with many of the finest from the local area. Maple syrup can be found in all sizes from 1.7 oz. nips to gallon jugs. They also have maple sugar, pure maple sugar candy, creams and butters.
If you’re interested in learning about maple and not only consuming it, check out Culinary Traditions: Maple Syrup, Honey, and Other Syrups with the Springfield Museums on March 20th. This class is about maple, with notes on other sweet liquid treats — honey, agave, and golden syrup among them. They will have dishes centered on maple, honey and other syrups to taste and recipes to take home. Register here.
Maple cocktails are all the rage in Western Mass – especially in March. Here are some maple libations to warm you up:
At Johnny’s Bar and Grill in South Hadley, they’ve modernized the traditional Old Fashioned by adding maple to the bourbon and lemon for a New England take on a classic cocktail.
Another twist on an old favorite is found at the Chandler Steakhouse at MGM Springfield where the Maple Manhattan is found. Featuring bourbon, maple infused sweet vermouth and Angostura Bitters. You might need a big, juicy steak with this one!
Whatever you choose, you’re sure to find plenty of maple in Western Mass! And rest assured, our hospitality community has adopted enhanced cleaning protocols and safety measures to keep you safe and happy while you’re here! Hope to see you in Western Mass this March!
Best of Western Mass
Exclusive info and promotions sent directly to your inbox monthly.