Last May I tasted the second work in progress (the grey one). And now have a look. Here comes my friend Erik who has the third work in progress with him. I still have the second one on my lecter so I will try both of them head to head. There are rumours there are two batches of this third Kilkerran. I have one here with 11/219 on the back of the label, but there is also word about another batch: 11/314. For the completists the 6yo has: 10/220 on the back of the label. 10 is probably the year 2010, 11 the year 2011. 219, 220 and 314 could be the 219th, the 220th and the 314th day of their consecutive years. If this is true the first batches of the 6yo and 7yo are both bottled on a sunday!
Color: Light gold, marginally darker than the 6yo.
Nose: Fresh, sea air. Soapy and oily. Some smoke. The 7yo seems to me to be less fatty that the 6yo. The 7yo is more refined, but definitively from the same family as the 6yo version. Also some peat and clay. More sea freshness in this one. Lemon curd. In the nose this one has more of everything when compared to the 6yo. The 6yo is more meaty and musty.
Taste: Wood, and powdery. A bit of sour oak. Oily peat. Spicy wood. A bit thin on the finish. The 6yo was definitively fattier and thicker. The finish of this 7yo has more acidity to it, and more wood.
Strange enough this almost scores one point less and the culprit is the finish. The younger expression has a more meatier finish, more body and less acidity. Dirtier, something I liked a lot when tasting the 6yo alone. I guess this is only detectable when tasted head-to-head. Both are safe bets and show a lot of potential. The 6yo is obviously slightly simpler. Both score the same, but I like the 6yo better, I hope this transition into less dirtiness doesn’t continue in the 8yo that was released earlier this year. The 6yo seems stronger too.
Thanks go out to Erik for bringing this bottle.