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Ottawa Ontario celebrates maple syrup in March with sugarbush tours, maple syrup making demonstrations, maple sugar festivals, dishes made with maple syrup recipes and maple beer.

Fulton's Pancake House & Sugar Bush

The Maple Syrup Capital of Ontario is Lanark County, located a 40-minute drive west of Ottawa. From late-February to late-April, Fulton's Pancake House & Sugar Bush, in Pakenham, hosts a maple festival.

There are many things for families and kids to do at the sugar bush. Sugaring off activities include watching maple sap boil down on a campfire, Aboriginal maple song performances and dancing, self-guided maple tours, nature trails and horse-drawn sleigh and wagon rides.

Visitors can enjoy maple taffy on snow and buy maple syrup, maple butter, maple salad dressing, maple fudge and maple cotton candy in the Gourmet Maple Shoppe.

Group activities

Fulton's Pancake House offers the Aboriginal Maple Adventure for groups larger than 25 people. Besides a tasty pancake meal, participants enjoy horsedrawn sleigh or wagon rides through the maple bush, campfire Aboriginal musical performances and story-telling along the Maple Trail.

During the Tree to Table Culinary Experience, group members ride a horse-pulled sleigh, enjoy a sugar bush and maple syrup tour and learn how to make maple sugar.

Temple's Sugar Camp Restaurant

In March and April, Temple's offers all-day breakfasts in a handcrafted timber frame restaurant with a stone fireplace. Maple treats include banana nut French toast with maple syrup and maple baked beans with peameal bacon.

After the hearty meal, visitors can wear off the calories on the walking trails at Temple's 5,500-tap working sugar bush in Lanark.

Vanier Sugar Bush

Located just 10 minutes from Parliament Hill, in Richelieu Park Ottawa, Vanier Sugar Bush has Canada's only city sugar shack. During the annual Sugarfest, in late-March and early-April, visitors can sample maple syrup and take tours. A maple flavoured dinner features live entertainment.

Restaurant maple menus

Executive chef Christopher Marz, at Crowne Plaza Hotel in Ottawa, created a March Maple Madness menu for his restaurant. Dishes include St. Albert blue cheese with roquette and Belgium endive, toasted walnuts and maple dressing and grain-fed chicken with Oka cheese and maple bourbon glaze. Maple bread pudding is a delicious dessert.

Le Cordon Bleu Bistro @ Signatures, in Ottawa, uses Godbout maple syrup in an appetizer of seared foie gras on smooth cranberry and vanilla polenta. Dessert is hazelnut crisp, with creamy maple sauce.

Maple Beer

Every spring, Heritage Brewing, an Ottawa-area craft brewer, makes Maple Bush Lager with maple sap instead of water. The sap comes from Fortune Farms in Lanark County. The beer has a maple aroma, flavour and colour.


Ottawa Tourism at www.ottawatourism.ca