Nft Tied To Rare Whiskey Cask Auctions For $23m
A non-fungible barrel of 1991 Macallans Scotch set whiskey auction records Friday, nabbing $2.3 million in the form of an non-fungible token .
The sale, hosted by NFT marketplace Metacask, surpasses the previous cask sale record price of $574,000 for a similar barrel at auction house Bonhams last August. This edition came bundled with digital art from Trevor Jones.
A pseudonymous buyer who goes by oldcask outbid two other bidders active in digital whiskey investments, a PR representative told CoinDesk. The company declined to identify the buyer.
The NFT serves as a digital title for the cask of the whiskey. It was minted on the Ethereum blockchain.
Co-founder Nim Siriwardana said the cask NFT was minted and auctioned to showcase the appeal of digitally transferable rights.
Buyers dont need to go to a physical auction house to acquire rare and valuable real assets like whisky, Siriwardana said in a statement.
NFT sales have become increasingly mainstream and popular during the coronavirus pandemic. Sales volumes surged to $10.7 billion in Q3 of 2021, more than eight times more than the second quarter, according to data by DappRadar.
Cons Of Selling Your Whisky With Mark Littler Ltd:
- As the price is set in advance there is no chance the price will exceed the agreed price.
- We often cannot help with brokering the sale of individual bottles worth less than £150. However, we can help consign your bottle to Whisky Auctioneer.
- As many of our clients are overseas offers can take 3-5 working days to be finalised.
Want To Sell Your Bottles Of Whisky And Fine Spirits Direct To Experts
Simply send us your photographs and well reply with a free valuation.
We are known for our incredibly wide range of exceptionally rare bottlings, particularly those from and of sought-after Scotch single malts such as Bowmore, Laphroaig and Springbank.
The Whisky Exchange is the best buyer for your old and rare spirits, no matter whether you have a single bottle or a full collection.
We are experts in our field and provide free valuations on bottles that reflect their market value. Our prices often beat those achieved at auction, even before the commission you would have paid at auction is factored in. We pride ourselves on our transparency and there are no hidden fees or commission charges to factor in the price we quote is the price we pay.
Unlike many sites, we are the direct buyer of your bottles and not a middle man. There is no chain, so well never keep you waiting while we search for someone to purchase your whisky and spirits. This also means that we can guarantee 100% confidentiality, as all your details and those of the transaction are kept securely with us.
Our team of experts is based at our head office in Park Royal, London, however we can collect your bottles from anywhere in the world.
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Selling Via Our Online Shop
In addition to our traditional private brokerage service discussed above, 2020 has also seen the launch of our exclusive shop.
This option is for sellers with a bit more time on their hands who are looking to get an above auction premium for their extra-ordinary bottles of whisky. We are able to sell whisky online as we have all the relevant licenses in place. This means we can help you sell whisky in a way that competes with retailers and as a result means we can achieve a higher price for your bottles.
If you have a bottle of whisky that you would like to sell through our shop then please send an email to and someone will get back to you to discuss the options.
Look For Oddly Sized Bottles
Today all bourbon comes in 375 mL, 750 mL, or 1 and 1.75 L bottles. Prior to 1980, though, murica didnt allow the damn metric system to infect our boozing and products came in pints, quarts, and gallons. Flask pints were particularly popular. Ever wonder why a standard 750 mL bottle is called a fifth? Because before the metric system it was indeed labeled 1/5th of a gallon . WhiskeyID is an invaluable resource for seeing how the packaging of any particular product has changed over the years.
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Go After The Stuff Thats Ignored
Im talking about products like lower-end Wild Turkey, Old Grand-Dad, Old Forester, and Old Fitzgerald. The kind of stuff thateven if its actually pretty goodis still cheap and stocked on the bottom shelf the kinds of whiskeys generally purchased by high-school kids on days they get their paycheck from Taco Bell. If they only knew how much better the older Old stuff actually was. For instance, current Old Fitzgerald is distilled by Heaven Hill and its a nice, sweet easy-drinker. But pre-1993 or so, Old Fitzgerald Bottled in Bond came from the legendary Stitzel-Weller distillery which Pappy Van Winkleyeah, that duderan until his death in 1965.
Select Your Target Carefully
Many hunters will sign up for every major retailers newsletter and join as many lotteries as possible to increase their odds. However, some veteran hunters, tired of newbies encroaching on their territory, are moving away from the crowded rooms with slim chances of owning BTAC or Pappy, aware that the competition has grown too fierce.
Like a shark finding new waters loaded with fish, theyre targeting rare bottles under the radar in comparison to Pappy, such as Michters 10 year old, High West Midwinter Nights Dram, and Angels Envy Cask Strength. These brands are still hot and you must work to find them, but they tend to be regional hits. For example, Angels Envy Cask Strength requires a raffle in Louisville, but may sit in Chicago stores for a couple days. These same hunters are also going straight to the distillery gift shops, such as Willetts, where you can find 23 year old Willett Rye, or the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience, where William Heaven Hill 15 year old Cask Strength is sometimes available. In other words, while newbies are distracted with BTAC and Pappy, veteran hunters are cleaning house with other rare bourbons.
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Selling Whisky At A Traditional Auction
We cant write a guide to selling whisky without mentioning the traditional bricks and mortar salerooms, as they were the birthplace of the resale market for whisky. Although they used to have a monopoly on the market, all of the above options have really eaten into their dominance and traditional auctions are now sadly in decline.
High commission rates for buyers and sellers and the lack of focused marketing are the main reasons for this demise.
Many of the traditional salerooms sell antiques and collectors items as their mainstay, with whisky being a small part of their calendar of sales. As such, their marketing budgets for whisky are often not as high as the online options so they do not achieve the same reach to the specialist buyers and often dont achieve the best prices.
The real nail in the coffin for the traditional salerooms though is the commission they charge both the buyer and seller. Standard selling fees are 18% for the seller AND 28.8% for the buyer. What that means is you only receive 53% of what the buyer had to pay for your bottle. The high buyers premium is taken into account by buyers and as such they reduce their bids accordingly.
The Most Experienced Old & Rare Team In The World
Our buying team is led by The Whisky Exchange co-founder Sukhinder Singh, who has been collecting and trading old and rare whisky and spirits for more than 30 years and is regularly called on to consult for distilleries and auction houses. We are passionate about fine spirits and would love to buy your bottles. Click here to request a valuation.
We Bought More Than £10 Million Worth of Old and Rare Bottles in 2018 alone
The global market for these spirits has grown significantly in recent times, with the value of rare expressions more than doubling in the past few years alone. The Whisky Exchange has an enviable reputation as a leader in this field:
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Investing In A Whiskey Company
The final option is to invest directly in a whiskey company. This is fairly straightforward as some companies are listed on the London Stock Exchange, including Diaego PLC, who own Johnnie Walker, J& B, Bells, Buchanans, White Horse, Black & White, Vat 69, and Old Parr.
There is also an exchange traded fund available which is dedicated to the buying and selling of companies that own distilleries. The fund purchases companies like Diego, Pernod Ricard , and Brown-Forman . Because this fund is diversified between several companies that own several distilleries, your risk is reduced.
Other whisky companies may take direct capital investments from investors for a share of the company. Another interesting option is to invest in a company that invests in rare whiskey. One such company is the Single Malt Fund, which buys and sells rare Scotch whiskies. There are several of these companies around now, which makes investing in rare whisky a much simpler prospect.
How much money can you make?
It simply depends on the quality of the company that you invest in. In the past year, Diageo PLC has done very well, delivering a return of more than 24% to investors. The Single Malt Fund claims to deliver an average net return of 10 percent per year during the period of the funds investment capital.
Risks of investing in a whiskey company
The company becomes insolvent
A stock market crash
Michters: The Art Of American Whiskey Tasting Set
While Pappy Van Winkle gets the publicity , if youre looking for the best drinking bourbon to start whiskey collecting, try Michters.
Its some of the best American whiskeys you can sip! This sampler features the brands retail collection, which includes:
- Michters Number 1 Bourbon
- Michters US*1 Toasted Barrel Finish Bourbon
- Michters Number 1 Straight Rye Whiskey
- Michters US*1 Barrel Strength Toasted Rye Whiskey
- Michters 10-Year-Old Bourbon
Im almost willing to guarantee that at least one of these expressions will make your collection!
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Whats Your Bottle Worth
For a free, no-obligation valuation of your bottles of whisky simply get in touch.
Send us images of your bottles on Whats App and we will get back with a valuation. Click the button above or send the images to 07852 247421
If you want to email over your images please send them to or click the button above.
Would you rather speak in person? Call the office on weekdays 9am to 5pm and we will be happy to help.
Search And Compare The Most Trusted Whisky Retailers On One Website
Its our job to find the best whiskies at the right price for you and help you to get whisky online. Try our advanced whisky finder to locate the best in American whiskey, scotch, single malt and more online. Our retailers supply Scottish whisky, Canadian whisky, Irish & American Whiskies, Japanese whiskies, and whiskies from other locations on the globe, so you can purchase whisky for yourself or buy a whisky gift online. Cannot decide which whisky to buy? We can help you by recommending a brand based on your taste and budget, or you can browse our whisky reviews on popular brands such as The Balvenie, The Macallan, Laphroaig and many others. Follow our podcasts and you might become a whisky expert, yourself.
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You Cannot Sell Whisky On Ebay Or Facebook
eBay was once a good place to sell whisky online. This changed in 2014 when eBay introduced a blanket ban on the sale of alcohol. The reasons for this were simple by allowing people without the relevant licenses to sell their whisky on eBay they were facilitating the illegal sale of alcohol and were open to litigation. In 2018 eBay allowed certain retailers to list whisky for sale once more but each retailer had to go through a rigorous screening process.
Summary: you cannot sell whisky on eBay and are liable to prosecution if caught.
Facebook then took over as the place to sell whisky online. Dozens of specialist groups soon sprung up and until July 2019 thousands of bottles were sold each month. You could list your bottle for sale with an asking price and people would contact you to complete the sale.
Summary: you cannot sell whisky on Facebook and are liable to prosecution if caught.
We hope you have found our guide to selling your single malt whisky useful. Mark Littler Ltd. offer free valuations and can source offers for you bottle from our network of national and international buyers. Please fill in the form and attach a picture of your bottle to receive your free valuation.
The Dalmore Constellation Collection
The Dalmore likes to posit itself as a luxury single malt, and that case can certainly be made with its Constellation Collection. This is a set of 21 releases distilled between 1964 and 1992, so were talking about some pretty old whisky here.
Each expression comes in a hand-blown crystal decanter and in very limited numbers. As you may have guessed, the Constellation Collection usually demands astronomical prices but serious whisky hunters with the means can try to snatch them all up online.
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Choose Your Hunting Grounds
Rare bourbons are meted out like genie wishes to top retailers, a process known as allocation. The distillers and distributors do not make allocation information public and employees are often kept in the dark to prevent leaks and to limit frustration levels within consumer ranks.
Barrell Bourbon owner Joe Beatrice, whose releases have drawn a significant following, says the most logical way to handle who gets what is top-level allocation, where major markets get the bulk of the product and high-volume accounts are rewarded for selling their products. In this system, the Chicago retailer that sells the most Four Roses Yellow Label will receive more Small Batch Limited Edition bottles than a low-volume account. Sometimes, there is more insidious stuff, like the allocation is based on deals or favors or trying to leverage something. The motivation isnt always pure, Beatrice says.
Despite the doom-and-gloom allocation stories, retailers are receiving bottles and you increase your chances of obtaining one if you know which stores receive them. On underground social media forums, where you may need to know someone to participate, bourbon lovers throughout the country share the latest rumors and release dates of the coveted whiskeys.
Illustration by Ed Fotheringham
What Is Scotch Whisky
A question often asked is what makes it a Scotch?
It quite simply means a whisky that has been distilled, matured and bottled in Scotland. Scotch Whisky is made in a range of styles, but they are all produced from the same three humble ingredients, grain, water, and yeast. All Scotch Whisky is matured in oak casks for at least three years, yet usually most producers age them for considerably longer.
Single Malt Scotch Whisky such as The Glenlivet is produced at a single distillery, and is made entirely from malted barley. These exceptional Whisky brands are distilled in small batches in traditional copper pot stills, and are typically aged for many years before being bottled as a Single Malt Scotch Whisky.
Here at Hard to Find Whisky we have the most in-depth and detailed descriptions for all our products, to help with your selection.
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Peated Irish Whiskey: Teeling Whiskey Blackpitts
Irish whiskey is usually an approachable gateway whiskey. Not here. Triple distilled from malted barley, dried over peat fires and matured in both bourbon and sauternes French wine casks, Blackpitts is a deceptively light-colored tipple that brings together a fruitiness, butterscotch and smoke. Its like a campfire dessert.
How to get: Admittedly more rare as a concept than rare in quantity, you can find this one on ReserveBar for $86.
Buffalo Trace Antique Collection
Every year, the Buffalo Trace distillery releases its Antique Collection of limited edition bourbon and rye. And every year, whiskey fans go completely apeshit for this set, scouring liquor stores and websites to snap these bottles up before they land on the secondary market.
This years collection is a strong one, featuring the heady 129.2 proof George T. Stagg bourbon, the excellent wheated William Larue Weller bourbon, the bold Thomas H. Handy Rye and softer Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old, and Eagle Rare 17 Year Old, which is an improvement on an already excellent bourbon.
Go directly to the source to find out where to buy these elusive bottles.
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Whisky Hunting: 20 Rare And Incredibly Hard
If youre in tune to the world of spirits , itd be impossible to ignore an Instagram account and website independently managed by Vancouver-based Nathaniel Ganapathi, who is better known as Nate Gana. Single Malt Daily regularly features images that would probably be best described as spirits porn. You see, Nate is a true believera real collector who has somehow managed to get his hands on incredibly hard-to-find bottlings, from limited-releases to expressions from lost distilleries such as Brora and Port Ellen, and then some.
I got into this a few years ago. I’m officially 34 now and I would say the obsession started at 29, so I’m definitely a late bloomer compared to how early others are starting out these days. Some of my favorite people in the industry are so young and so in tune to the world of whisky, Nate says. When I started, I felt that there were all these people taking photos of beautiful bottlesjust in terribly lit environments, which wasnt doing justice to the whiskies. So I just wanted to make whisky look sexy. But then, the account took on a life of its own and I was getting 500 to 600 followers a day. That sort of forced me to turn this into my full-time job because of all the love and support I was getting from so many people around the world. It was truly crazy!
Nathaniel Ganapathi is a Vancouver-based whisky specialist who has… turned his Instagram account, Single Malt Daily, into one of the most influential spirits-based platforms.