Madava Farms in Dover Plains NY (Duchess County) is the perfect place to go on a fall afternoon for a day of fun and for something a little different. This beautiful property is home to Crown Maple Products and is a great stop to take their one hour tour of the facility.
The tour takes place in a gorgeous building known as the Sugar House
and there you will learn all about the maple syrup process from tapping of the thousands of maple trees on the property to the production of some of the finest syrup you will taste anywhere.
The tour also includes tastings of their products in the Tasting room . Here in this wood paneled room that looks like a bar in a fine inn, you will sample maple sugar and four of their different syrups, Amber, Dark , Extra Dark and a syrup that is aged in bourbon casks for a special taste. Crown Maple Syrup is one of the finest and cleanest tasting syrups I have ever had the pleasure to taste, and they are recognized as being one of the finest maple syrups produced in the world!
And it is locally made right here in the Hudson Valley. Pour some on your pancakes and believe me you will taste the difference.
Upon entering the Sugar House you find yourself in the lobby which reminds me of fine ski lodge with its stone floor, stone walls and timbered ceiling. Here you will find a gift shop where you can purchase not only products from the farm, but numerous products produced locally and in New York State.
There is also a cafe in the Sugar House where I had the pleasure to dine. There is seating inside and out on the stone deck in front of the building. I started with a home made soup, mushroom barley which was delicious and warming on a cool fall afternoon. Many of the entrees use maple syrup in the recipe to give them a unique taste. I had the chicken wrap with pesto, NY State cheddar cheese, sun dried tomatoes and maple syrup. My friend loved the grilled cheddar foccacia panini with drizzled maples syrup. Both dished came with a side salad with a homemade maple balsamic dressing. I really loved my lunch and it was all served in delightful ceramic pottery.
Outside the Sugar House is a fire pit and a fire was roaring on the day of my visit and the sweet smell of maple smoke wafted through the fall air. There were sticks and marshmallows for the guest to toast and apple cider with maple syrup was served.
The grounds of the farm are beautiful with meadows, ponds, and of course forests filled with maple trees. The grounds include a network of hiking trails and a map can be picked up at the Sugar House. With a little advice from the friendly staff, you can find the trail head and take a nice hike through the woods. We took a hike of approximately 1 1/2 miles on the Pond Trail
which takes you past several ponds and through a nice stretch of forest to an overlook with views of the Taconic hills. Another trail was the Overlook Trail which was a bit steeper but its payoff was a wonderful view west toward the Catskill Mountains on the other side of the Hudson River.
This is a great place to go for a interesting and unique learning experience. Tours are $10 and include the tasting. Do make sure to purchase some of the great products for yourself or to give as a special gift.
There are also recipe cards for different dishes and cocktails using Crown Maple Syrup. I cant wait to try a few!
Madava Farms -Crown Maple Syrup
47 McCourt Road Dover Plains New York 845-877-0640
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