A pancake shaped like a ram’s head at the Davenport Maple Farm Restaurant in Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts
Photos by Cheryl Landes
Vermont is the best known for maple syrup production in the U.S., but it isn’t the only state in New England in the industry. In fact, every state in the region has maple farms.
When the sap starts flowing in late February or early March, farmers tap the trees, collect the sap, and boil it down into syrup in large evaporators. Many of the farms open to the public for this maple sugaring season, and some serve homemade pancakes with fresh syrup and sell bottles of maple sytup. A few have gift shops or small markets selling locally made products.
Here are seven of my favorite maple syrup farm restaurants in Massachusetts. All of these farms are located on the west side of the state. Most are open from late February or early March through mid-April, depending on the weather. Hours vary.
Davenport Maple Farm Restaurant, Shelburne Falls
Davenport Maple Farm Restaurant serves homemade pancakes, waffles, French toast, Finnish pancakes, eggs, bacon, sausage, and home fries. It sells maple syrup. If anyone is available after you eat breakfast, they’ll give you a free tour of the farm.
Davenport Maple Farm Restaurant
Inside Davenport Maple Farm Restaurant
Paula Bray browses the menu at Davenport Maple Farm Restaurant.
Finnish pancake and sausage served with a personal-sized bottle of Davenport Maple Farm’s syrup
From left to right: Me, Paula Bray, and Rachel Rice pose for the first bite of our breakfast.
A cow pancake crafted from a page in a coloring book
The farm tour at Davenport Maple Farm
Davenport Maple Farm has won many ribbons for its high-quality syrup.
Fresh maple syrup comes in a wide range of grades at Davenport Maple Farm.
The sap’s journey at Davenport Maple Farm
Gould’s Sugar-House Restaurant, Shelburne
Gould’s Sugar-House Restaurant, located on the Mohawk Trail (Route 2) in Shelburne, is a favorite stop for locals and travelers who heard about the delicious pancakes. Usually it’s open during maple sugaring season and for a few weeks in October during peak fall color.
The restaurant is small and so popular that unless customers arrive when it opens, they’ll land on a waiting list. Waits often range from 30 minutes to two hours, but most customers were patient. They wander around the sugar house, watch videos of the maple sugaring process, browse the gift shop, and munch on maple snow cones. They know the wait is worth it.
The Gould family announced in February that the restaurant would not open in 2020. No reason was given. In an interview for the Greenfield Recorder in February, the family hasn’t decided whether they’ll reopen the restaurant in 2021. Fans everywhere, including me, hope they’ll return.
High Hopes Farm, Worthington
The sugar house restaurant at High Hopes Farm serves a breakfast buffet weekends during maple sugaring season and from late September through early November. The farm sells maple products and other handcrafted items year-round.
A barred owl hangs out in the trees behind the restaurant. He seems to enjoy watching people come and go.
Maple Corner Farm, Granville
Maple Corner Farm has been in operation since 1812 above Cobble Mountain Reservoir in the foothills of the Berkshires. The family-owned farm produces maple products, hay, and blueberries. In the winter, 20 kilometers of groomed trails open for cross-country and skate skiing, as well as separate trails for snowshoeing. Skis and snowshoes are available for rent.
The Maple Sugar House is open mid-February through mid-April for visitors to explore and watch the evaporator boil maple sap into maple syrup. Pancakes, French toast, ham, bacon, sausage and eggs are served in the cafe on the weekends.
The farm is also open daily from mid-July through mid-September. U-pick blueberries are available in July and August.
Maple syrup, maple candy, maple cream, and homemade jam, jelly, and fruit butters are sold year-round.
North Hadley Sugar Shack and North Hadley Market, Hadley
The North Hadley Sugar Shack is open in the spring and fall, where you can watch and learn about the maple sugaring process and how apple cider is made. Breakfast is served in March and April, during maple sugaring season.
The North Hadley Market is open year-round. The farm store sells produce, maple products, dairy products, apple cider, and other cold beverages. There’s also a bakery and deli, where you can grab a sandwich for breakfast or lunch, soup, and salads.
Williams Farm Sugarhouse, Deerfield
Williams Farm Sugarhouse has been family-owned and operated for more than 150 years. The maple products made there are sold at the sugarhouse and online.
The Williams Farm Sugarhouse restaurant is open weekends late February through early April and serves pancakes, French toast, Belgian waffles, maple frosted doughnuts, and English muffins and toast with maple cream. Fresh Williams Farm maple syrup comes with the pancakes and waffles. Other treats include sugar on snow, maple cotton candy, maple cream cones, and maple waffle sundaes.
Windy Hill Farm Sugar House, Worthington
Windy Hill Farm Sugar House gets high reviews on their pancakes and bacon. Their specialty is the pumpkin pancakes and waffles. Anything on the menu there is delicious. Although some reviewers say they had to wait for a seat, I’ve been able to get one as soon as I walk in. Maybe my timing is right!
The sugar house serves breakfast on weekends during maple sugaring season and in the fall. In the summer, an outside eatery is open Thursday-Sunday, which serves burgers, chicken sandwiches, hotdogs, salads, and 24 flavors of soft-serve ice cream. Pulled pork, ribs, and beef brisket are smoked at the eatery every Saturday and Sunday.
Looking for more maple farm restaurants in Massachusetts? Check this maple syrup directory.