Slyrs is a new name on Malt and a distillery that is probably unheard of by the majority of readers until now. Thanks to those devilish chaps at the Boutique-y Whisky Company, we have a single cask release from this distillery to sit down with and experience what’s happening in outer Bavaria, or the town of Schliersee to be more precise.
Slyrs itself started life originally in 1999 and enjoyed let’s say a variable reputation for its produce. The inspiration for its founder Florian Stettler was a trip to Scotland in the early 1990’s. Enthused by what he had discovered, the next step was to start distilling whisky. Initially this was achieved by utilising the fruit stills at the family distillery called Lantenhammer that had been used to produce brandy. Things began to change for the better in 2007 with a revamp of the distillery that improved the overall quality of its output including a new set of stills. Throughout its lifespan, the aim has been to create a whisky that is a representation of its local environment. This means using local crops and resources wherever possible.
The altitude of Schliersee means that unpeated barley needs to be bought in from the nearby town of Bamberg. The stills at Slyrs are of a modest size, but remain distinctive with a shape to increase reflux. Interestingly, the distilling practice is only to use the heart of the run with the foreshots and faints being disposed of rather than re-distilled. This new found confidence is now being seen in the well received 12 year old Slyrs whisky. Unfortunately due to the small nature of the distillery, releases are very limited and snapped up by enthusiastic locals. However, it’s a distillery to look out for with some interesting experiments underway regarding maturation at higher altitudes thanks to the mountainous environment.
This release from Boutique-y is an outturn of 691 bottles and was released in 2016 and is still available for £64.95. I suppose this shows us how under the radar Slyrs is and arguably its previous reputation. However, whisky consumers are a fashionable lot, chasing certain brands and vintages. The fact a 3 year old whisky from Bavaria is available probably doesn’t even figure on their radar. Bottled at 52.5% – Slyrs apparently fill the casks at a reduced 55% strength – this will be an ex-bourbon cask with a rounded up 70cl price tag of £90.93 which seems consistent with Bavarian prices. Given there isn’t much Slyrs reaching the shores of the UK whatsoever, this is possibly your only opportunity without having to go on a road trip.
By good fortune, Adam also had a sample of the Slyrs so we’ve got another of our joint tasting notes here at Malt and individual scores…
Slyrs 3 Year Old – review
Jason’s tasting notes
Colour: peach stone.
On the nose: interesting arrival almost mossy and herbaceous. Butterscotch brings some sweetness and depth followed by orange and a knob of butter. I’m thinking hemp as well, its quite an interesting and distinctive set of aromas. A flash of cinnamon, some subtle apples and a light honey round off an encouraging nose.
In the mouth: it’s the texture that grabs my attention and then leaves a syrup-like finish. Bit of a peach melba aspect to it with gentle fruits, vanilla and cream. Plenty of oak it must be said as well, but not giving us the forceful and limited flavour spectrum we see in many of today’s Scotches.
A young 3 year old whisky from Bavaria; on paper I was fearing the worst. However, it just goes to show you that the days of badly distilled and frightening whiskies are thankfully coming to an end. There’s a standard and dedication to the craft that’s taking root across Europe. The end result is whiskies such as this, which even at 3 years offer promise and stimulation.
Slyrs 3 Year Old – review
Adam’s tasting notes
On the nose: Couldn’t be more malt-forward if it tried. Flapjacks, sweet pie crust and – bit obvious – malt loaf. Slightly farmyardy too; slept-in hay. Caramelised sugars and lots of vanilla. Actually, make that lots and lots of vanilla. Actually, make that lots and lots and … well, you get the picture. Some stewed apple. It’s basic stuff, but it’s quite assertive. Don’t need to dig your snout in far here.
In the mouth: A little upfront fire and astringency before the malty flavours kick in again. Honey on wholegrain toast. Custard Creams. It’s quite spicy, particularly towards the finish. A little jalepeño. Quite a nice texture, though not mind-blowingly so. Flavours, though decently expressed, are a bit entry-level. A bit malt whisky 1.0.
It’s probably unfair to expect your mind to be blown by a three year old, even a three year old that’s obviously pretty well made. Just no real USP. Could do with a bit more time to develop into something interesting. But then three year old people are pretty uninteresting too. And at least this whisky isn’t screaming or weeing in anyone’s shoe.
Adam’s Score: 5/10
Jason’s Score: 5/10
Our thanks to the Boutique-y Whisky Company for the sample and photograph. Any commission links help with our hosting costs and do not influence our views.