Packed another barrel worth of Dark Syrup

Today, my brother in law and I opened another SS barrel of our 2018 crop and packed it into jugs. We may need to do another before the Christmas rush is over, maybe 2.  At this point we only have 3 more barrels in stock, but I think that will last us until the 2019 season.

Sales get pretty hectic during November and December, so I’ll see how my stock lasts.

Dark is my best selling regular syrup and I don’t like having to send a customer to a competitor, but that is possible.

Next season we plan to be back to full strength, at about 900 to maybe 1000 taps, all on good vacuum, about 80% of it on high vacuum.

I currently have a decent supply of our bourbon barrel aged maple syrup, and the next batch will be ready in about a month. At that time we will be bottling another 16 gal worth of bourbon barrel aged maple syrup into 200 ml and 375 ml bottles (6.76 fl oz and 12.7 fl oz). That has proven to be an excellent selling product.

Work at the new shop, I finished the loft this week. Now I can start putting lots of the bulkier light weight items in the loft. Then I have a wood stove I’ve been storing for about 4-5 years that will be put in the shop for heat. I just this week got all of the chimney components needed to install that. Then my next 2 projects are to finish putting power in the shop and connecting an air line between the sugarhouse and the shop. At this time the wires are in the trench and are connected to the panel box in the shop, I still need to tie the wires where they enter the sugarhouse to the main panel. From there I can run lights and outlets in the shop. The air line is simply going to need to finish the connection in both the shop and the sugarhouse. My pump for the syrup filter press is air powered. Until now I’ve had the compressor in the sugarhouse, when finished I will keep the compressor and it’s noise in the shop and it will be much quieter when filtering syrup in the sugarhouse after that.

By the time those things are done, we will then need to mount the bigger engine I bought to run the vacuum at the leased woods we tap and then we will start getting tubing repairs done in both the leased woods and my woods around the sugarhouse. Once the tubing is all repaired we start tapping. The new season will be here soon, maybe only 10-12 weeks away if it starts on the earlier side. Some years it starts mid January and one year it didn’t start until March 27. Mother nature is in charge there, it all depends on when the right weather pattern starts. It needs cold nights (best if 27 F or colder and warm days 42-48 F is best.While sap can run at other temperatures it flows best at the temperatures I show above.