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About No. 3 maple syrup... again! Made in Quebec but no sold here?

I'm in Montreal only for a day more. I spent the whole day hunting for No. 3 dark maple syrup and no one seems to have it . I checked out the IGA in Complexe Desjardins and Atwater and they have only the No. 1 medium as the darkest.

I saw some organic No. 3 dark ones in Vancouver when I was there last week (I'm travelling through from Europe and went to Vancouver first). I saw a shop in Granville Island that sells a brand called L.B.Mapletreat that makes maple syrup in all grades from Quebec. I called the head office in Vancouver and found out that although they make the syrups in Quebec, the company does not have a distributor in Quebec. Go figure. Made in Quebec but not sold in Quebec!

So where oh where can I find No 3 dark maple syrup in Montreal? Jean Talon area? Where?
Any help appreciated !

Merci!

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  1. Check out the Marché des Saveurs at the Jean-Talon market, they have a huge array of maple syrup of different grades. It's in the southeast corner.

    FYI, you may want to check out the provincial syrup grades - scroll down here: http://www.siropderable.ca/Afficher.a...

    Not sure you'll be able to find what's called "Dark" here - according to this, "The provincial regulations require that Dark maple syrup be used only for industrial purposes."

    3 Replies
    1. re: kpzoo

      Thank you. I will try that place this morning.

      "Dark" is classified as No. 3 grade. I don't know it to be used for 'industrial' purposes only as I have bought many in Vancouver at local organic supermarkets when I lived there. I just found it ironic that I can't seem to find it in Montreal when the stuff is tapped from the trees in Quebec!

      1. re: HealingBlu

        There are usually some maple-syrup stands throughout the market as well - you could ask one of the producers directly what the deal is with those darker grades. Report back if you find out anything!

      2. re: kpzoo

        My last trip to the Marché des Saveurs at the Jean-Talon market, (we visited Quebec in September) was especially to buy gifts to take home. Guess what?

        I looked carefully at the labels and there were a number of "Made in the USA" origins for the maple syrup products!
        So be careful what you choose. I'm not saying all the maple syrup was American but I sure didn't see a division of the provincial products from imported.

        If HealingBlu is headed to Quebec City, I can recommend a traditional grocers that carried a lot or nice Quebec maple products: J.A. Moisan's,
        http://www.jamoisan.com/epicerie.htm

      3. The 'only' place in Montreal where I have found the No 3 dark maple syrup is the Canadian Maple Delights establishment in Old Montreal(I have looked & looked looked everywhere). It's located at 84 St-Paul East. They don't always have it, as almost all the dark syrup maple syrup are destined for industrial purposes from what I've heard. Kpzoo suggested Marche des Saveurs, but I've never seen the No 3 dark maple syrup grade there.

        3 Replies
        1. re: BLM

          Hi BLM, thanks for the info but I did go to the Canadian maple Delights in Old montreal and they don't have it either. Plus all the other syrups there seemed to be packaged for tourists ie it costs more than at regular shops.

          I did go to marche des saveurs this morning and yep, they DON'T have it ! Not the No 3 dark ones anyway. The closest I can get is the No 2 Amber which will do for now.

          Apparently Quebec sells only the No 2 Amber as 'dark' and the real 'dark' syrups are all exported to other parts of the country but not Quebec!

          1. re: HealingBlu

            Sorry you didn't find what you're looking for! Perhaps other provinces don't have the law that Quebec does vis-a-vis that grade. (i.e. the one I got from the maple-syrup producers' site that says: "The provincial regulations require that Dark maple syrup be used only for industrial purposes.")

            1. re: HealingBlu

              All the Canadian Maple Delights maple syrup is organic(that would at least partly explain the higher cost). I previously asked them if they carry No. 3 Dark maple syrup(above is what they told me).

          2. Hi again. To make things more confusing..., I found out that the US, Canada and Quebec have different standards in grading maple syrup!

            I ended up with Quebec No 2 Amber which is supposed to be the same as US Grade B. US Grade C is also considered to be Grade B ! But No 3 Dark exists - just not in Quebec. This can be found in far flung regions like Ontario !

            But I heard that 2008 was a bad producing year and hence many places have run out of stock!

            1. So you think you have problems. While I was in Toronto last year I filled a suitcase of Grade 3 organic Maple Syrup bought at the 'Big Carrot'. I gave most away as presents to family. One year on and we still suffer withdrawal symptoms as it's impossible to find anything even resembling this grade of maple syrup in the UK!

              1. I think we've discussed this here before, but my memory is drawing a blank.
                I've heard of people going to the ends of the earth for dark/lower grade maple syrup. Can someone please explain to me why? The lower grades (federal grade 3 & qc grade 2) are permitted to have flavourings, sap, and caramel added. Why would that be desirable? A family friend runs a small organic sugar farm, and he goes to great lengths to produce high grade syrup that's as light/clear as possible.

                From my understand, the syrup does get darker as the season progresses, but the quality syrup is still rated as category 1. Please forgive my ignorance since it seems obvious to some people - but why exactly are lower grades better?

                2 Replies
                1. re: grillit

                  The darker, lower grades are cheaper so if you are planning to use it instead of sugar in your kitchen, the price is more tolerable. Some people also say it is more flavourful. I don't know yet....because I can't seem to find it. There is a health food store in Toronto that sells the lower grades (Bathurst and St. Clair area).

                  1. re: Limin

                    The "lower grades" do not actually allow additives, although they are described as having "flavors" of caramel, licorice, buds, etc. Canada No. 3 is not authorized for sale in small containers (=non-industrial) in Quebec, but it is elsewhere in Canada (see http://www.inspection.gc.ca/english/f...).

                    I also found this info helpful in making sense of the various grading distinctions across the two borders: http://www.christiesmaplefarm.com/FAQ...
                    although they quote the less-common "AA" for Canada No. 1, "A" for Canada No. 2 and "B" for Canada No. 3.

                    P.S. I'm new to the boards so please forgive me if the links aren't live!