Here we are at the last instalment of Dining on a Dime’s Montreal series — we’ve covered bagels, Portuguese chicken, Caribbean curry, Jewish fare both classic and modern, and some wild fusion — now, here’s something oh-so-Québécois.
This week, host Lucas Peterson heads 45 minutes outside the city to Sucrerie de la Montagne, a sugar shack near Rigaud.
Owner Pierre Faucher (and his woodsman look) has overseen the maple-tapping operations here for some 40 years, having taken apart old barns and repurposed historic farm buildings to create a rustic dining hall that operates year-round, complete with cabins for overnight stays.
Peterson learns the whole maple syrup-making process, from sap-tapping through to bottling — with every 40 litres of sap yielding about a litre of syrup. It’s little surprise then that the farm no longer uses unwieldy hand-operated devices, instead going to electric drills. (“I’m not going to lie,” laughs Faucher.)
But aside from the drills, Faucher tries to keep his maple syrup production less industrialized, to preserve the atmosphere of the farm.
“I keep it the old fashioned way, it’s really important for me, for the kids, for the people who come here to walk through the maple forest.”
Then comes the classic sugar shack feast — pea soup, back bacon, sausage, maple-glazed ham, omelette, and more — hearty food that also allows the taste of maple syrup to shine through.
This is Dining on a Dime’s final Montreal episode — click here to watch all previous episodes.