Vermont Maple Syrup Grades
As many of you are aware, the latest USDA guidelines require all maple producers in the United States to adopt a new, international maple grading system. Vermont rolled out this new system in January 2015.
First and foremost, please know thatour syrup itself did NOT change.It is still the same Vermont Maple Syrup that we have made for years. Vermont Maple Syrup still has a lower water content and higher sugar content than other maple syrups. The new grade names are more descriptive of the maple syrup’sactual color and flavor.This change simply makes it easier for maple syrup “newbies” to find their own favorite grade of maple syrup.
This all might seem a bit confusingif you are used to ordering your favorite “old” grade of maple syrup.Let us show you about the new grades.
Grade A Golden Color/Delicate Taste
This grade hasn’t changed much except for the name. Lightest in color and has a very light, delicate maple taste.
[ OLD: Fancy ]
Grade A Amber Color/Rich Taste
Not many changes here either. A little darker in color than the “Grade A Golden Color/Delicate Taste” grade mentioned above, with a slightly heavier maple taste. When people are getting agift for a friendand do not know what grade to get them, we recommend this one.
[ Medium Amber ]
Grade A Amber Color/Rich Taste -OR- Grade A Dark Color/Robust Taste
Here’s where it gets a little tricky. If you’re a fan of the old “Dark Amber” grade, you can now choose between “Amber Color/Rich Taste” (described above) or “Dark Color/Robust Taste” (described below).
How to decide: If you like your syrup on the lighter side of dark, try “Amber Color/Rich Taste.” If you like a more intense maple flavor or you’re using your syrup in baking, “Dark Color/Robust Taste” is the way to go.
If you’re still unsure, just stop by for a free taste test. And if you can’t visit us, you could buy a small bottle of “Amber Color/Rich Taste” and a small bottle of “Dark Color/Rich Taste,” and compare them for yourself. (Our 3.4oz/100mL Vergennes bottles are great for this purpose.)
[ OLD: Dark Amber ]
Grade A Dark Color/Robust Taste
This is the darkest of the four table grades and has the strongest maple taste of them all. More and more people who sample our syrup are taking home some Dark Color/Robust Taste. These people like the strong VT maple flavor. When the color of our maple syrup darkens and we start to produce this grade of syrup, we taste every batch for the good maple flavor.
[ OLD: Grade B ]
Grade A Very Dark Color/Strong Taste
As the maple sugaring season draws closer to the end, the maple flavor will start to change. The buds on the maple trees are growing at a faster rate, because the weather is warming up and the excellent maple flavor will turn to a rancid buds taste. This maple syrup used to be called Grade C, but is now known as “Very Dark/Strong Taste.” This grade is used for cooking and also as an additive for… you know what?2% milk!
[ OLD: Grade C/Commercial ]