An “exceptionally rare” expression of one of the world’s most popular single malts is being made available to whisky lovers and investors in digital form.
They each correspond to a real bottle of 46-year-old Armagnac cask finished Glenfiddich, worth more than £13,200.
NFTs are collectible digital assets that hold value both as a form of cryptocurrency and as a token of ownership, perhaps of art or culture.
Glenfiddich and BlockBar say their “trailblazing” collaboration “bridges physical and digital marketplace, enabling consumers to directly purchase, authenticate, and redeem a limited edition Glenfiddich 1973 46-year-old single malt Scotch whisky finished for 21 years in an Armagnac cask”.
A joint statement announcing the NFT launch said: “The tokens are offered exclusively through BlockBar’s innovative NFT platform, which enables Glenfiddich to digitise and sell exclusive spirits products as NFTs directly to consumers, whether for personal consumption, collecting, or investment purposes.
“Upon purchasing the NFT, the buyer can then become the owner of the real-world physical product.
“The buyer has the choice at any time to resell or transfer the NFT through the BlockBar platform or to redeem it for the physical version. The benefits of purchase doesn’t stop there; BlockBar is also responsible for storing the product and, upon request, delivering it to the buyer.”
Glenfiddich, distilled in Dufftown, on Speyside, is one of the brands of William Grant & Sons.
Doug Bagley, the group’s chief operating officer, said the single malt “continues to push boundaries in whisky innovation.
Mr Bagley added: “This mindset transcends to those we partner with. We are proud to be the first luxury spirits brand to be available on BlockBar at the time of the launch.
“BlockBar brings a heightened level of authenticity to our brand via its proprietary NFT platform and creates an elite club of distinguished collectors with whom we’re excited to build long-term relationships.”
Glenfiddich malt master Brian Kinsman added: “This is an exceptionally rare example of 1973 Glenfiddich, a 46-year-old whisky which has spent more than two decades in an Armagnac cask and is a fitting spirit for the launch of Glenfiddich’s first and exclusive NFT release on BlockBar.”
The spirit was distilled in 1973 by former malt master Hamish Roberson and laid in American oak.
In 1998, Mr Robertson’s successor, David Stewart, selected the whisky for an experiment, finishing it in seldom-used French oak casks that previously held Armagnac.
It continued to develop for 21 years until Mr Kinsman selected it for bottling in 2019.
The first series of Glenfiddich NFTs will launch on Tuesday (October 19) on a first-come, first-served basis. Buyers may purchase the NFTs from Blockbar with Ethereum cryptocurrency or by credit card.
BlockBar chief executive Dov Falic said: “Our partnership with Glenfiddich, the pinnacle of high-end spirits, is the perfect partner to mark the launch of our mission to bridge the physical and digital worlds of luxury.
“We’re extremely proud to be providing the very first direct-to-consumer, fully authenticated wine and spirits platform via an NFT marketplace.
“This is an exciting and momentous time for the crypto, NFT, and luxury wine and spirits communities, and we can’t wait to announce many more exclusive releases in the near future.”