The Grand Cru of Maple Syrup?
Updated: May 15
So this is not really related to wine, well maybe a little. Master Sommelier Pier-Alexis Soulière has recently gone into the maple syrup business.
Pier is one of the most down to earth Sommeliers I have come across. However when he decided to spend a few weeks in the woods to create his own maple syrup, many of his peers questioned what he was up to. The end game was to produce an artisan maple syrup from A-Z without electricity using wood fires and buckets. The trees are 300 years old and it takes 40 litres of maple sap to produce 1 litre of maple syrup. I have been lucky enough to get my hands on some of this liquid gold and it is exactly that; liquid gold. Forget the cheap chemically produced syrup you buy in Walmart which always finishes a little short, hot and just tastes of burnt sugar. This has a slightly thicker and slightly rich viscosity, fills the palate with a nutty succulent texture, toffee (Werther's Original), butterscotch along with a smooth and elegant finish. We are talking about Maple Syrup here and not wine.
He makes a range of maple syrups and also sells direct to Europe and North America. Contact him via his Facebook page if you are interested. https://www.facebook.com/Pasouliere/. Note: I am not being paid to recommend his project, I just believe this is the best maple syrup I have ever tasted. For those who still want to experience maple syrup at it's best then always look for the Grade A Maple Syrup, and support local artisans where you can, since their syrup will always taste better.
For those who are looking for ideas on how to enjoy maple syrup (apart from just drinking or pouring it on pancakes). I like my maple syrup on a simple vanilla cake.
Vanilla Cake Recipe:
1 3/4 cups (430 ml) all-purpose flour
5 teaspoons (25 ml) baking powder
2 tablespoons (30 ml) butter, softened
1 cup (250 ml) sugar
2 teaspoons (10 ml) vanilla extract
1 cup (250 ml) milk
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Butter and flour the sides of a 20-cm (8-inch) springform pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
2. Combine the flour and baking powder in one bowl. Set aside.
3. In another bowl, beat the egg, butter and sugar with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy, around 5 minutes. Add the vanilla.
4. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients alternating with the milk. Continue mixing until the ingredients are combined;
5. Pour the batter into the pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean, about 50 minutes. Let cool for a few minutes.
6. Remove from the pan and let cool to room temperature.
7. Heat up the Maple Syrup in a pan, around 1/4 cup per person