Daniel Lam, Director of Fine and Rare Wines and Whisky at Bonham’s (pic: handout)
Hong Kong Whisky

World’s first rare whisky NFT to be auctioned by Bonhams in HK

The first-ever whisky NFT of a 72 Year Old Glen Grant Whisky will be auctioned by Bonhams this month and is expected to fetch a new world record price of HK$1 million.

The NFTs fervor has now expanded to the rare whisky world, pushing up the already sky-rocketed prices of rare whiskies. The first-ever whisky NFT of a 72 Year Old Glen Grant Whisky will be auctioned by Bonhams this month and is expected to fetch a new world record price of HK$1 million.

On 20 May, the world-first rare whisky NFT of a single bottle of Glen Grant 72 year old whisky, presented in a hand-cut crystal decanter, will be auctioned by Bonhams to commemorate the launch of the whisky in 1948. 

The rare whisky NFT also comes with the one-off NFT artwork with its original commissioned from renowned Hong Kong political cartoonist Harry Harrison. Known for capturing the unique essence of Hong Kong with his controversial sketches for SCMP, he will present his imagination of Hong Kong in 1948 in his first artwork minted as an NFT.

The rare whisky will come with NFT work created by renowned Hong Kong political cartoonist Harry Harrison (pic: handout)
The rare whisky will come with NFT work created by renowned Hong Kong political cartoonist Harry Harrison (pic: handout)

“The May auction is shaping up to be one of the most spectacular auctions of 2022,” said Daniel Lam, Director of Fine and Rare Wines and Whisky at Bonhams. 

“Headlining the sale will be two very special Japanese whiskies, the Yamakazi 50 and 55, which are must haves for any serious collector, and this Holy Grail of Scottish Single Malts, the Glen Grant 1948 which recently won “Best Cask in the World” in the 2022 Whisky Bible,” Lam said.

Daniel Lam, Director of Fine and Rare Wines and Whisky at Bonham’s (pic: handout)
Daniel Lam, Director of Fine and Rare Wines and Whisky at Bonhams (pic: handout)

Gordon & MacPhail, founded in 1895, is a UK family-owned wholesaler, managed bottler and distiller that spans four generations of the Urquhart family. With expertise in whisky trade, the company is said to have the most extensive and expensive collection of rare aged single malt casks in Scotland.

The company is currently the world record holder for releasing the oldest single malt whisky in existence – a 1940 Glenlivet bottled at 80 years old. It was recently sold at Sotheby’s in 2021 for around HK$1.5 million per bottle.  

Gordon & MacPhail 72 year old is the oldest Glen Grant whisky ever released to the market. With a limited supply of 290 bottles, a total of 200 bottles were sold before the whisky hit the shelves, proving the massive demand from connoisseurs and investors.

The historical whisky broke the world record for the most expensive Glen Grant whisky ever sold at auction when it fetched HK$421,600 at Bonhams HK in 2021.

“This time, with a world-first NFT artwork attached, we think it likely that the previous record for a single bottle of the rare Glen Grant 72 year old single malt will be exceeded and could even reach HK$1 million,” Lam added.

Market expectations are that prices may reach more than GBP100,000 (HK$983,713) per bottle traded in the secondary market after final allocation.

The 72 Year Old Glen Grant Whisky (pic: handout)
The 72 Year Old Glen Grant Whisky (pic: handout)

Premier Whisky describes itself as the whisky production specialist for Gordon & MacPhail 72 year old. Headquartered in Central, the company specialises on ‘en primeur’ single malt releases, according to its website.

The NFT minted with these rare bottles is the first project of “Meta Malts”, a new Hong Kong company founded by Nicholas Breton, CEO of Premier Whisky.

“Meta Malts” is planning to take the premium whisky market into “the metaverse” and create a Hong Kong-based crypto exchange for trading in rare whisky tokens.

“Our aim ultimately is to bring the realm of investment in fine and rare whisky to a much wider audience through tokenization, allowing many more whisky enthusiasts to own a share of the world’s rarest malts,” Breton said.

Founded in 1840 by the Grant brothers – John and James – in Rothes of Speyside, Glen Grant whiskies are considered as some of the finest whiskies today.

As the world’s Top 5 Oldest Whiskies, this remarkable 1948 cask was named the World’s Finest Single Cask and “Scottish Single Malt Whisky of the Year – 2022”. 

“We knew from day one that we had picked a great whisky. Leading the team of experts choosing the cask, Charles MacLean could not have been more fulsome in its praise, so we are especially grateful to our friends at Gordon & MacPhail, the expert creators and custodians of this special cask all these years,” says Bob McNab, Managing Director of Premier Whisky.

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