March is Maple Month in Massachusetts and Franklin County sugarhouses are yielding the first taste of spring as the maple sap begins to flow. Whether you kick off spring with breakfast at a sugarhouse or pick up fresh maple products including syrup, candy, spread, or other maple items, there are delicious options awaiting.
491 Greenfield Road, Deerfield, MA 413-773-5186
Open Sat & Sun 8 am – 3 pm through early April
Sugarhouse and store are open but the restaurant will be closed for 2021 season.
Davenport Farm Sugarhouse
111 Tower Rd, Shelburne, MA 413-625-2866
Sugarhouse open weekends 8am-3pm starting March 6th
In existence since 1770, this scenic farm has 2500 tree taps. The warm homey restaurant is set up with patrons seated together at large tables for the opportunity to strike up conversations with new friends. The “from scratch” menu features a full breakfast including their popular Finnish pancakes, an oven cooked custardy cross between Yorkshire pudding and pancake. After putting your name in for a table, the lower level offers viewing of the working evaporator and a chance to ask questions about the syrup process. Be sure to find the stained glass window of maple samples. They are limiting capacity to 6 parties or less at a time so get your name in early.
Hager’s Farm Market
1232 Mohawk Trail (Route 2) Shelburne, MA 413-625-6323
Market, Mon-Sun: 7:30am – 6:00pm
Grill, Mon-Sun: 7:30am - 1:00pm
Hager’s Market has a nice selection of products from their maple farm including syrup, maple coated nuts, dips, popcorn and more. You can even get breakfast including french toast, Maple Breakfast Sandwich – Egg, Sausage, Cabot cheddar cheese topped with Hagers own Maple Syrup grilled to perfection served on Hagers Maple Oat Bread - and cider donuts with maple cream. During Mass Maple Weekend, March 20-21, they feature fried dough with maple cream, host boiling and cooking demonstrations, and offer kid friendly activities. Be sure to check ahead for activity status and Covid precaustions. While there, you can pick up other local products including Hager's own beef, pork, fresh bread, frozen pies, spices, local beer and wine, produce and more. If you prefer to stay home, you can shop their maple products online.
Find a complete list of Massachusetts sugarhouses and facts about sugaring on the Massachusetts Maple Association website.
Cook with Maple
1 Quart Milk
1\3 cup cornmeal
1\4 teaspoon cinnamon
1\8 teaspoon ginger
1\8 teaspoon nutmeg
2\3 cup molasses
1\3 Maple syrup
1 ounce butter
Heat milk in a double boiler until skin forms. Whisk in cornmeal, sugar, and spices. Cook until thickened, stirring occasionally, Add molasses and maple syrup, heat thoroughly.
In a separate bowl, beat eggs, whisk in egg mixture to original mixture. Add butter to the mix. Pour mix into the baking dish.
Bake at 350 in a water bath until set 1 - 1 1\2 hours. Baking time is determined by the size of the baking dish.
While you are here, take some time to enjoy the private and relaxing intimacy that New England has to offer plus add some beer to the mix. The Deerfield Inn March Special - Here for the Beer Package: 40% OFF your room, including a beer tasting at Champney’s Restaurant & Tavern featuring award-winning local craft breweries. Must book Reservations by calling the Deerfield Inn Directly at 413-774-5587 and mention the code RELAX 2021. Discount not applicable to existing reservations.
Work off your maple breakfast with some winter adventure in Franklin County.