The extremely rare 48 Year Old Masters release coincides with the brand’s first foray into digital art and Web3, allowing NFT holders to redeem brand experiences of a lifetime

A series of exciting firsts are taking place at Johnnie Walker, the world’s top Scotch whisky brand which counts 200 years of craftsmanship behind it.

The highly-anticipated Masters of Flavour 48 Year Old marks the third and final release of a remarkable trilogy that began with the John Walker Masters’ Edition (commemorating founder John Walker) followed by Master’s Ruby Reserve (celebrating Jim Beveridge’s 30 years in whisky). The link is and always has been the passing down of generations of Scotch knowledge and craft, currently stewarded by master blender Jim Beveridge.

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The occasion is accompanied by Johnnie Walker’s, and parent company Diageo’s, very first foray into the future through digital art, comprising a once in a lifetime collection of seven pieces by Kode Abdo, a.k.a. BossLogic. The artist is known for his fancasts, and more recently, teaming up with footballer Lionel Messi to release his well-received NFTs. The “taste of generations”, as Abdo terms it, inspired him to create seven pieces celebrating the “souls of life”.

Mastering the four stages of whisky craft

For the Johnnie Walker Masters of Flavour release, of which only 288 bottles are made, Beveridge pays tribute to the four steps of whisky making, and the true masters who lend their hands to each crucial stage—malting, distillation, cask ageing and blending. They are malt master Donna Anderson, cask master James Carson and distillation master Douglas Murray, bringing a wealth of flavours at each stage.    

The precious liquid itself is older than many of the drinkers today—laid to age at least 48 years ago, they comprise the remaining expressions from the shuttered, legendary “ghost” distilleries of Glyn Albyn, Port Dundas, Brora and Glenury Royal, with balance coming from distilleries of Cameronbridge, Blair Athol and Dalwhinnie.

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With a recommended pricing of GBP 20,000 (S$34.6K), the edition is presented in a striking green Baccarat crystal decanter within a bespoke oak cabinet. At the ABV of 41.8 per cent, this mature dram has a soft, gentle smoke with rich dried fruits on the nose. The elusive peat is attributed to Brora, a rare Highland peat, while the autumnal character of cinnamon-infused apples and baked caramel is a trait of Glenury Royal. Touches of spice, crushed peppercorn and rich butterscotch suffuse the palate, culminating in a gentle and warming smoke in the finish.

A step into the new world

As incredible as the whisky is, Johnnie Walker has decided to create an even fuller experience around the brand, offering just seven customers the chance to purchase seven pieces of digital art by BossLogic, which includes an invitation to Johnnie Walker Princes Street, staying at the palatial Gleneagles Townhouse and touring the iconic Glenkinchie Distillery, as well as being guided on a tour of the Diageo Archive and a VIP tasting of rare and collectible whiskies from the Diageo collection.

The Johnnie Walker Masters of Flavour NFTs are offered on BlockBar, the world’s first direct-to-customer NFT platform that allows consumers and collectors to connect securely with luxury wine and spirits brands. The seven pieces of NFT will drop at 10.30am EST, 31 May, priced at US$35,000 which can be purchased with Ethereum cryptocurrency or via pre-approved wire transfer.

Customers have the option to burn the NFT to redeem the Johnnie Walker Masters of Flavour limited edition, resell it through BlockBar’s marketplace, or gift it through the proprietary platform. And don’t worry—the accompanying benefits will be transferred accordingly to any successive NFT owner. Check out more details of the drop here before the launch on May 31.

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