Runamok Maple produces some of the best maple syrup we've ever had, and we've been working on this collaboration for over a year. We narrowed the choices down to Royal Cinnamon- and Star Anise-infused maple syrups.
We couldn't decide, so we went ahead with and made one of each.
Royal Cinnamon-infused Maple Syrup: The sweet and spicy Royal Cinnamon beautifully complements the notes of caramel and vanilla in this maple syrup. Use it as a sweetener in coffee, put it on yogurt and granola, or pour it over vanilla ice cream and add chopped, salted pistachios.
Winter Harvest Star Anise-infused Maple Syrup: Our Winter Harvest Star Anise gives this syrup a rich licorice flavor with hints of smoke and citrus. (The Star Anise is smoked, after all!) It's great in herbal teas and flan, and on hot oatmeal. It's also a great addition to Southeast Asian cuisine, where anise and a sweetener like palm sugar are common ingredients.
- Origin: Vermont, USA
- Process: Maple trees are tapped; their syrup is concentrated, then infused with spices
- Ingredients: Organic maple syrup infused with Royal Cinnamon or Winter Harvest Star Anise
ABOUT RUNAMOK MAPLE
Eric and Laura are the husband-and-wife team that started Runamok Maple in Vermont over a decade ago. It all starts in the forest of maple trees (called a sugarbush!) that are tapped for their sap. The sap is then concentrated into maple syrup in their sugar house (also called a sugar sack or sugar shanty).
Runamok Maple is certified organic by the Northeastern Organic Farmers Association and Bird Friendly by the National Audubon Society. The sugarbush also makes excellent homes for migratory birds, as well as indigenous wildlife.
Want to know how the maple is made?
Maintaining a productive sugarbush requires a lot of hands-on, manual labor. The process starts in mid-winter, when the trees are tapped by drilling a small hole in the trunk of a sugar or red maple and inserting a spout. When spring finally arrives and the temperature rises above freezing during the day, the sap starts to run. It comes out as a slow drip from the tap and flows into tubing that is connected to a network that runs throughout the forest, ending in tanks. The entire network is on a vacuum system to keep the sap flowing. Each year is a guessing game as to how long the sap will run. It may go on and off for ten weeks, or it could run for just a few days before the weather warms up too much and the season comes to an abrupt end.
Once the sap comes into the sugarhouse, it is concentrated through a reverse osmosis machine and boiled down to syrup. The boiling process is intense and the hours are long. When there are roughly six weeks to make a year’s worth of product, there is no stopping and starting mid-run to catch some sleep. It’s an art of endurance and on-the-job problem-solving. Once the syrup has reached the proper concentration, it is filtered and stored in barrels, where it's ready to get infused with spices!
Serving size: 2 tbsp (30 ml)
About 8 servings per container
Amount per serving:
- Total Sugars
- star anise
- maple syrup
My family knows me as the person who famously eschews syrups, jams, and jellies, preferring to slather my waffles and pancakes in butter alone. However, the Royal Cinnamon and Star Anise infused syrups are so tasty that I am willing to dip my waffles in them. Awesome stuff!
While I want to support all collaborative efforts I’m less than thrilled with this one. I was hoping for a full maple flavor nuanced with cinnamon, but this maple flavor was overwhelmed by the cinnamon. I just finished the first bottle and I haven’t determined if the syrup is lacking flavor or the balance of cinnamon to syrup is off???
Some of the best syrup I've had! I eat it by the spoonful.
The quality of the syrup and the spice is excellent. The cinnamon flavor is strong but not overpowering A little goes a long way.
Naturally, if you take the best cinnamon I've ever tasted and add it to the best maple syrup you can buy you will get an amazing product. I'm so happy that these two friends met! I was already a big fan of Runamok. I have many of their other syrups (smoked, barrel-aged, apple brandy, oh! and the chocolate one!!) and of course, I'm a huge B&B fan. I jumped at the chance to try the Royal Cinnamon syrup. It's so delicious. I'm torn with wanting to use it on everything vs. saving it for special b/c I know I'll be sad when it's gone. I hope you keep making more!! I really wanted to try the star anise one too but as you can see I already have a ton of syrups and my boyfriend does not like licorice flavor. I'm trying to ease him into loving it. Next time. This is some high-quality stuff!