From maple sprinkles to farm-style sriracha, these three unique twists on Northern Michigan maple syrup will have you celebrating the start of the March tree tapping season Up North.

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Farm-Style Sriracha, Harwood Gold

230 Bridge St., Charlevoix | Harwood Gold Website

The Parsons are a sappy bunch. The family has been making maple syrup since the late 1800s from the trees surrounding Harwood Lake in Charlevoix County. Today, fifth-generation sisters Amber and Katie are at the helm and continue to develop the brand to include gourmet products like maple peanut butter, black fig maple spread and—a staple for every northern pantry—farm-style sriracha. This 2021 Good Food Award winner is made with five different peppers, but the heat is balanced out by the addition of maple syrup. Pizza, breakfast tacos, mashed potatoes—put it on everything. For a spicier kick, try the ghost pepper-infused maple syrup. “It’s definitely not for everyone, but those who love it are die-hard fans,” Amber says. She suggests drizzling a little over grilled salmon or mixing it into a pork marinade.

Home-style sriracha from Harwood Gold

Photo by Michael Murphy IV

Related Read: Searching for more maple-related content, recipes or local recommendations? Visit our Northern Michigan Food & Drink page.

Maple Blackberry Wine, Maple Moon Sugarbush & Winery

4454 Atkins Rd., Petoskey | Maple Moon Website

Michigan’s only maple winery is especially fun to visit in March when proprietors Todd and Christi Petersen are in the thick of tapping. If you’re picturing bottles of thick, syrupy wines, expect to be pleasantly surprised. The Petersens make a range, from dry to sweet. (Yes, a maple wine really can be dry.) Their fruit wines—blueberry, cherry, peach and blackberry—work especially well with maple. “It’s amazing how it will pop out fruit flavors,” Christi says. Dry red drinkers, try Christi’s fave, the Maple Blackberry. You’ll find a few wines at Olsen’s in Petoskey, but for the full lineup, head to the tasting room. Tip: Call ahead and schedule a tour—the Petersens love sharing what they do.

Maple Sprinkles, Michigan Maple Farms

11866 W. Thompson Rd., Rudyard | Michigan Maple Farms Website

To make maple sprinkles, syrup is simply boiled and then continuously stirred until all the steam is removed and granulated sugar begins to form. These sweet, small bits are delicious on ice cream, oatmeal, yogurt or in your morning coffee for a burst of maple. Owner Mike Ross started tapping as a hobby in the 1980s and has since grown the operation into a generational business. The Ross family also sells maple-making equipment, for others who want to try it at home with buckets and those who have larger enterprises. Stop by, or place an order online.

Photo(s) by Michael Murphy IV