Lantenhammer was founded in 1928 as a gentian distillery. The company is now managed by the third generation. The original building at the old location in Schliersee has long since become too small. But then in 2010 the new, large company property was acquired in Hausham.
Next to the present administration building, the new distillery was built in 2014. The visitor centre with distillation plant, noble goods store and large sales room is the most modern distillery in Europe. A special feature are the large stoneware containers in which the distillates are stored for two years. Such containers have not been produced for 40 years. What is in the storage room of Lantenhammer is correspondingly valuable.
Master distiller Tobias Maier is one of the company's own growths. When he began his apprenticeship in the distillery, he was the fourth employee. Meanwhile, 80 people work for Lantenhammer and Maier can rightly claim to have played a decisive role in the company's development.
The working atmosphere is obviously good. Everyone around here is on a first-name basis with the others and it is easy going. Even the boss gets fooled around with. Usually, the employees meet for a coffee at the distillery on weekends. This is a clear sign that the relaxed atmosphere is not a show.
But not only the employees, but also the customers like it here. Although customers are as diverse as tastes, there is a common interest in specialty spirits. Maier's ambition is to pass on the subtleties of good brandy production to interested visitors of the distillery. This is having an effect: anyone who has tried a Lantenhammer brand here will in future mostly leave discounter spirits on the shelf. It is crucial for Tobias Maier that the spirits are appreciated. It is important to him that the visitors really taste the products and that they are not only bought to impress others with them. Although you could do this very well, because Lantenhammer products have already been successful in many renowned competitions.
Lantenhammer was one of the first to make whisky in Germany. That was 1999, before the great hype. As a result of the storage required for whisky, the distillery was a few years ahead of its competitors and retained its competitive edge in terms of taste: in 2014, the Slyrs was named the best European whisky. Neither the Scots nor the German competitors enjoyed this, but it naturally attracted international attention.
»Best workmanship and no unnecessary gadgets, that's how I like it.«
The newest product is a rum called »Rumult«. It is made entirely from sugar cane juice, as is customary in Mauritius and Martinique, instead of (much cheaper) molasses. Here too, the first batch was sold out in half a day.
When new, larger fermentation tanks were to be purchased in 2007, Speidel was chosen after a lengthy decision-making process. Why? Tobias Maier says quite frankly that it was not only because of the good price-performance ratio, but also because of the gut feeling.
But he postpones immediately after that, however, that he never regretted the decision. »Speidel gets involved with his customers.« he says. The advice is good and the quality is excellent anyway. For this reason, when the fermentation tank capacity had to be doubled five years ago, Maier bought the tanks again in the same configuration. »Best workmanship and no unnecessary gadgets, that's how I like it.«
If Lantenhammer continues to be so successful, the next enlargement will probably not take too long. And who will be the first choice for Tobias Maier is no question.