Sugar and Spice sits on part of the old Ripley estate where for many years Brigadier General Edward H. Ripley
and his descendants spent many hours and days making maple syrup, candy and cheese.
Rutland, Vermont was once known as, “The Marble Capital of the World.”
Many presidents visited Rutland in its early years, and it was through the marble industry
that the Ripley’s acquired their wealth.
General Ripley served as commander of the first brigade of Rutland’s Light Guards during the Civil War.
He led the Light Guards into Richmond astride his favorite horse, “Old John.”
Old John returned with the General after the war, and his grave is directly in front of the large rock near the old sugar house. Engraved on the stone are the words,
“The Grave of Genl. Edw. H. Ripley’s ’Old John,’ A Gallant War Horse of the Great Civil War 1861-1865.”
The rock, old sugar house, small horse barn and the larger maple trees are all that is left of the old Ripley estate.
As you sample the delight of our maple syrup, you might imagine the words of the General’s nephew, Tom:
”…Uncle Ed jumped us out from under the buffalo robes in the sleigh, and we swarmed into the sugar bush, dashing about among the maples. Peering into buckets, tasting the sap from a tin dipper, smelling the warm, damp earth patches emerging from under the grimy snow. Tin pans and earthen bowls were packed with snow, and we dipped hot syrup and sprinkled it in varying patterns on the snow, preferably forming the initials of lady-love or boy swain. How good it tastes."
The Way We Are
We are a family run operation and have brought together some of the traditions of Vermont.
We serve home style cooking using local ingredients whenever possible.
We make our own Maple ice cream and Maple Sugar candies right on site.
In the springtime, you watch us 'boil' the sap to make Maple Syrup and are invited to tour the sugaring area for a close up look and perhaps chat with the sugarmaker. (He may even be able to draw off some warm syrup to bring back to your table!)
Whether it's enjoying a home cooked meal, watching us make maple syrup, candies or ice cream, or just browsing the gift shop for Vermont crafts, local foods, and other gifts, we are sure that you will enjoy the experience.
U.S., Vermont, and Canadian maple syrup grading
Maple syrup is divided into two major grades named Grade A and Grade B.
Grade A is further broken down into three subgrades;
Grade A Light Amber (sometimes known as Fancy),
Grade A Medium Amber
Grade B is darker than Grade A Dark Amber.
Grading standards are the same for most of the United States.
The U.S. state of Vermont Department of Agriculture uses a similar grading system of color and taste.
The grade "Vermont Fancy" is similar in color and taste to U.S Grade A Light (Fancy).
The Vermont grading system differs from the U.S. in maintaining a higher standard of product density.
Vermont maple is boiled longer for a thicker product.