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sugarhouse

Posted 4/16/2015 5:53pm by The Webb Family.

We were nervous as the season started with colder than normal temperatures and a first, rather pathetic boil on March 11th. We just kept telling ourselves that we still managed to start earlier than our 2014 start date on Maple Weekend (March 22nd). The sap trickled in as the trees slowly thawed after a cold, harsh winter. Our boils amounted to 300-700 gallons at a time. Not exactly ideal.

It pays to be optimistic. Starting during the week of April 6th, the sap started to flow. Then winter made an appearance with a few inches of snow on April 9th. After that, it really started to flow. We are talking about 120 gallons per hour out of our 12 acre orchard with 1200 taps. That's a lot. 

 

The amount running out of our small tank off 72 taps was pretty amazing too!

We boiled for 18 days in a row at the sugarhouse, with 25 days total for the season. It was a long stretch with little rest. On Saturday, April 11th, we boiled approximately 2,250 gallons of sap. It was one of our biggest days ever with a daily total of 54 gallons of syrup made! 

 

We also had a few missed opportunities... when we showed up and the 1100 gallon sap tank was overflowing and trickling down the driveway into the mud. Guess we should have gotten up earlier that day!

We are very excited to finish our maple season out with 520 gallons of maple syrup, which is well above our average 450 gallons. We will need it with a record season of customer sales out of the sugarhouse.

Thank you again to all our fantastic customers, friends, and family!

We will have our syrup available directly from the farm throughout the year by order in glass, plastic, or custom wedding/special event favors. Contact us by email. 

Syrup available at several retail stores in the area - including Wild Goose Country Store, Gourmet Gardens ~ Gifts of Great Taste, Spring Ledge Farm, Kathan Gardens, Mount Sunapee Resort, and Bartlett's Blueberry Farm

Posted 4/1/2015 6:32pm by The Webb Family.

The New Hampshire Maple Weekend is a great spring tradition in our family. We love sharing what we love with so many people. It brings the locals out of hibernation to enjoy the sweet smell of steam from the evaporator, but it also brings out tourists visiting for the weekend. Some people may have never seen the process behind maple syrup... and we love to share why the pure stuff is so much better. We usually even see a few people still in their ski boots straight off the slopes of Mount Sunapee... and we did see that again this year! We truly appreciate the hundreds of people that stop in to see us each spring. 

This year, we offered our usual tours and fresh syrup samples. We also had Sanctuary Dairy Farm Ice Cream's Maple Cream ice cream on hand to serve with hot syrup on top. Kelly baked some maple cookies and offered numerous maple and grass fed beef recipes too. 

 

We had a whole crew helping out during maple weekend, including most of the Webb Family (Van, Robin, Tyler, Kelly, Sam, and Sawyer), Clark, Heather, and Jeremy. A huge thank you goes our to our friends and family who helped either by keeping the sap boiling, advertising our open house, or simply supporting what we do. 

photo credit - Donna Therrien

The weekend started off with temperatures in the 20s on Saturday with a couple inches of snow accumulating, and it ended with beautiful sunny skies and temperatures in the upper 30s on Sunday. We never get two good days in a row during maple weekend, that's for sure! While the sap did not run much over the weekend, we were able to save enough from Friday to do a slow boil all weekend. 

 

Once again thank you to all our supporters and customers! We cannot continue to do what we do without you. As we enter April, the maple season in some ways has just started this year. The weather this week has moderated into a great above freezing day/below freezing night cycle, and we are making a lot of syrup! We will be open again Easter weekend, April 4-5 from 10am till 4pm. Hope to see you there!


photo credit - Max Webb

Posted 3/22/2015 7:01pm by The Webb Family.

This morning was cold... and we had to let some things thaw slightly before getting started in the sugar house. We don't always have the time and the means to take our customers out to see our 12 acres of sugarbush. So we took the opportunity. 

A family travelled from North Carolina specifically to see the process behind maple syrup. Their relatives from Saratoga, NY joined them on a very cold and windy Sunday morning to tour our sugarbush. 

 

We walked the loop while Tyler explained our setup with tubing and vacuum lines. We also looked at the different age groups of maples we have and the challenges to sustaining a sugarbush into the future. We discussed invasive plants, the deer population, and other issues that may impact the regeneration of sugar maples.  

After a walk in the woods, they helped us get started for an afternoon boil in the sugarhouse. We put them to work firing the evaporator, setting up the press to filter fresh syrup, and of course doing some tasting (or should I say quality control) of the product. 

Thank you to Wolfgang, Christine, and the Barker's for a fun visit!

Posted 3/20/2015 7:10am by The Webb Family.

Things have changed quite a bit over the years in the Maple Syrup making business. The introduction of permanent tubing, vacuum lines, and reverse osmosis has allowed production to be a lot more efficient.

Our sugar house is old, circa at least the 1920s. We love its historic charm. We have updated it over the years with a new roof, new flooring, new stainless equipment, and reverse osmosis, but the shell remains the same. It actually is being supported by cables!

Check out this comparison... a forty year difference.

 

Those of you that stopped by the sugar house on our first open weekend may have noticed another change... two labels on our syrup containers. Maple Syrup Producers in the US and Canada pushed for a more uniform grading system, and they also wanted more of a flavor description that is easy for customers to understand. 

The state of NH approved the new grading system and the NH Department of Agriculture, Markets, and Foods was busy developing the specific rules in 2014. We now have until January 1, 2016 to implement the new system on our labels. We decided to start this year by labeling with both the old and new systems. We will stick to that until we run out of the old labels. 

Fortunately, the NH Dept of Ag also developed a great poster to describe the new system versus the old system. We hope to have a copy of it in the sugar house by maple weekend.

Posted 12/5/2014 11:55am by Kelly Webb.

Holiday Open Sugar House - Sat. December 6th 

Come join us at our Sugar House at 131 Route 103 in Sunapee. We will be having an open house to celebrate the holiday season. The whole family will be there to show off our sugaring operation and offer hot samples of maple syrup. We will also have sample grass fed burger sliders, beef stew, and beef sausage to offer. A variety of products will be available for sale, including maple syrup in plastic or glass bottles, maple candy, and our own grass fed beef. We hope to see you there!