South African fine wine collections were recently sold as non-fungible tokens (NFTs) with one lot selling for $79,000. Immediately after the auction, two lots were paid for with bitcoin.
Many exceed estimates
Collections of fine wines made by some of South Africa’s top producers have been sold as non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in what has been described as a first for the country’s wine industry. At the auction, which was run by art auction house Strauss & Co, some lots, such as Klein Constantia’s Vin de Constance vertical collection from 1986-2027, sold for $79,000 (R1,251,800).
Other lots that exceeded estimated prices include winemaker Meerlust’s “50-year-old vertical of the famous Rubicon,” which sold for $68,000. Vilafonté Series C 2003-2027 raised over $36,000 while Mullineux Olerasay 1-20 would have raised $20,000. Kanonkop Paul Sauer’s 2000-2025 collection sold for $16,000.
Protecting South Africa’s Fine Wine Heritage
Speaking after the sale, Roland Peens, fine wine specialist at Strauss & Co, said:
This is a huge step towards securing South Africa's fine wine heritage! These pristine old bottles are now safe on the blockchain for future transactions and fun. We believe this new technology is the most powerful way to package and market vintage wines, especially when provenance is so vital.
A statement issued after the sale said that while each collection is an NFT, the individual bottles will also be “minted” as NFTs and “can be withdrawn or exchanged at any time on any NFT platform worldwide.” Immediately after the sale, two lots were paid for with bitcoin, the statement added.
Meanwhile, the release revealed that a total of $6,000 was raised simultaneously for charities that are critical to the South African wine industry.