The days are finally getting a little warmer, so we were looking for a fun family activity. March and April are traditionally sugaring off season around here, so a plan was hatched. There are numerous sugar shacks in the Montreal region, pretty much something for everyone’s taste.
We chose the “Sucrerie de la Montagne”, as it was warmly recommended by friends. A little research revealed that it is designated a Quebec Heritage Site, so it was certainly going to be an authentic experience. It’s about an hours’ drive from our house, and we passed the time listening to a medley of A’s favorite songs , such as “Whoomp there it is”, “I’m too sexy”, “Jump” (Kriss Korss), “Paparazzi”, and the Barenaked Ladies’ “Snacktime”.
As soon as we left the city I felt this sense of calm descend over me. I’m always surprised to see how caught up we get in the stress of everyday life. Try as we might, it always gets a hold of us. This is why outings are so important to us.
We arrived early, so we took a walk around the 120 acre forest of century old maples, before it got too busy. It’s all old log cabins, some of which can be rented for overnight stays. They have their own bakery, where they make bread and sugar pies, and of course a distillery to transform sap and maple water into delicious maple syrup.
Brunch was served in a room warmed by a crackling fire, on long picnic tables. The waitresses wore traditional garb and we were entertained by two musicians singing French chansons. It really seems they are living life as they did years ago.
We feasted on pea soup, tourtiere (which is meat-pie, a local specialty), sausages and maple smoked ham, a delicious egg soufflé, mashed potatoes and meatballs. And as if that was not enough, we finished the meal with pancakes drenches in maple syrup and the most delicious sugar pie. I personally enjoyed the tourtiere best, A was a big fan of the ham and S though the eggs were *eggstraordinary* ( ;-)sorry, I could not resist).
The drive home left us content and lethargic, ready to nap on the couch with the sun streaming in the windows dreaming of a spring that is…oh, so close!