Not all shoppers are created equal! Some like their maple syrup sweet with a slight caramel flavour, others prefer a more delicate or subtle maple taste. Pure maple syrup lovers are fortunate because Mother Nature provides three retail grades of pure maple syrup whose taste, colour, aroma, and level of sweetness vary depending on whether the maple syrup was made early, in the middle, or near the end of the sugaring season. The existing grading and labeling system helps consumers identify the type of pure maple syrup they are buying. Pure maple syrup is available in either a Grade A Dark, Medium, or Light Amber.
grade A Dark Amber
The most abundant grade is the late-season grade A Dark Amber maple syrup. It has the colour of a dark ale on tap, with a slight caramel taste to it. It is the sweetest of the three grades and has the most pronounced maple flavour. It is an excellent choice to pour over pancakes and waffles, to flavour ham or sausages, to sweeten coffee or tea, or as an ingredient in some of your favourite recipes.
grade A Medium Amber
The mid-season grade A Medium Amber maple syrup has a rum colour, is less sweet than the Dark Amber grade, and has a more delicate maple flavour. It is the preferred choice to accompany pancakes and waffles, fruit and ice cream. Use Medium Amber maple syrup when you want a hint of maple sweetness rather than intense maple flavour.
grade A Light Amber
The grade A Light Amber maple syrup is a first-run syrup, which means it’s made at the very beginning of the season. Its colour resembles that of apple juice or honey and it is the least sweet of the three retail grades. It has a delicate, subtle maple flavour without any trace of caramel. Choose Light Amber if you are looking for a subtle sweetener with the unique taste of pure maple syrup.