Malartic-Lagravière NFT magnums sell out in an hour

Malartic-Lagravière NFT magnums sell out in an hour

Bordeaux estate Château Malartic-Lagravière talks to db after the entire run of 150 NFTs tied to 2022 vintage engraved and numbered magnums were snapped up within an hour of going on sale.

Malartic-Lagravière NFT magnums sell out in an hour

To illustrate the traction of blockchain releases, the 150 NFTs were sold to a mix of crypto enthusiasts and wine lovers via Web3 wine and spirits marketplace InterCellar within sixty minutes of going on sale at 18.00 on 12 April.

InterCellar was created by Louis de Bonnecaze, a former Bordeaux merchant and founder of the Wine Bottle Club, which targets the Web3 community.

The NFTs cost €250 including VAT and include a tour of the Graves Grand Cru classé château at a time of the holder’s choice. One NFT holder will receive a ‘Golden Cap’ NFT and invited to enjoy a dinner and overnight stay at the property.

The magnums, which have been aged in lava rock-roasted Petra casks from the Maison Moussié distillery, will be available for shipping in November 2024.

The launch was timed to take place ahead of a primeur week for the 2022 vintage, which is described by db’s Bordeaux correspondent, Colin Hay, as a “fascinating and extremely promising vintage”.

Speaks exclusively to the beverage industrysaid Malartic-Lagraviere’s marketing director, Séverine Bonnie, that the project had been conceived in less than three months.

“I had a conversation with InterCellar in mid-January and met the team at Vinexpo Paris in February to seal the deal, so the whole process has been very quick. It is the first time we have done something like this and we are delighted with how the NFTs have been received. I made a lot of noise about the launch in the press and on social media, so we had a white list of Wine Bottle Club members who were interested in the NFTs, but we had no idea they would sell out so quickly,” she said .

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According to Bonnie, the buyers were evenly weighted between crypto enthusiasts and wine lovers. The inspiration for the launch came from a desire to reach a younger, Web3-savvy audience with a thirst for innovative new products.

Bonnie believes that part of the appeal of the NFTs lies in how easily they can be traded on the secondary market without the wines having to leave the château.

“The wines can have a successful life on the secondary market while they stay at the château, which means they will be protected and kept in perfect condition, and their carbon footprint will be lower,” said Bonnie, who is already thinking about the estate’s next NFT- release, which will probably happen next year.

“We’re definitely considering doing it again and need to think about the right limited edition release that fits with our DNA. It’s a great way to reach a new audience.”

Bonnie believes that both NFTs and blockchain technology have a “bright future” in the wine space due to their ability to open up an often closed-door industry to a wider, more tech-savvy audience with money to spend.

“There is definitely a market for future NFT releases and I think we will see an increasing number of châteaux develop their own limited edition collections from specific casks and blends,” she said.

As for the 2022 vintage, which will soon be tasted and rated by the world’s top wine critics, Bonnie said she was “surprised” by the quality of the wines given the scorching heat of the vintage.

“The wines are in amazingly good shape given how hot and dry 2022 was, and all the heat waves and bushfires we experienced in France,” she said.

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The estate found their vines well adapted to the heat and their deep root systems able to make the most of the moisture brought on by mid-June rains.

“The wines have great density, but are also fresh and lively with fruity elegance and refined tannins. They are very opulent with beautiful aromatics, leading to comparisons with the 1982 vintage, Bonnie said db.

With high quality and markdowns of around 40%, prices will no doubt rise, but getting the price right will be key to the success of the primeurs campaign, Bonnie believes.

“I imagine prices will rise as it is a super vintage and there is less wine available than normal. I hope the increases will not be too high, as it is important to respect our consumers and come up with a price that distributors and sellers can work well with, she says.

Malartic-Lagravière dates back to the early 19th centuryth century and is one of only six properties included in both the red and white wine categories of the 1953 Graves classification.

Owned by the Bonnie family for the past 25 years – and before that by Laurent-Perrier – the château sits on a dry gravel and clay terroir in Graves and comprises 73 hectares of vines, seven of which are devoted to white varieties.

The vineyard is managed with a minimal intervention agroecological approach, with special attention to the environment and preservation of the ecosystem around the vineyard.

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