Sylva hops are bred in Australia and are on the spicy side as you would think with Saaz as a parent.
They are marketed as an aroma hop and the name means “of the forest”. I did see some sources calling them Southern Saaz but I am not sure if that was a previous brand name or just a nickname.
So you have to love the combination of continental European hops living it up in the land Down Under. Australian hops tend to have all kinds of fruity flavors but all the descriptions I have seen state that the aromas and flavors are subtle.
Here are the details of this aroma hop:
Aroma/Flavor: Aroma is refined with some floral notes. There are also phrases like “forest floor” and “fresh sawn timber” that are used to describe the aroma and flavor of the variety. It’s an herbal, woody hop. It looks like there is a strong connection to the Saaz hop profile and the terrior only contributes a little bit of difference.
Alpha Acid: Most ranges were between 4.6 – 7.0%
Typical Usage: Flavor and aroma in pilsners and pale ales. Whatever recipe you have that calls for Saaz, try Sylva hops instead. I always think Saaz are a spicy hop. The woody descriptions of this hop make me think of Northern Brewer and how that variety tastes in a California Common style. Maybe Sylva could work in that style as well.
They are available for sale online at homebrew shops around the USA. Thankfully, you don’t need to look high and low for them. Also, ask your local homebrew shop if they can order some for you the next time you are in buying ingredients.