Piedmont winery, Vigneti Massa, is launching the 2018 vintage of its wines with near-field communication (NFC) and blockchain-enabled caps. As reported by The Drinks Business on Jan. 22, Vigneti Massa is the first winery in Europe, and the second globally, to adopt Guala Closures Nestgate technology.

Guala developed the technology with Luxembourg-based software company, Compellio. By tapping an NFC-equipped smartphone against the bottle’s screw-cap, consumers can get information about the wine-growing region, the vineyard, and the vine that the wine came from. The platform also provides tasting notes and expert reviews.

Additionally, the authenticity of the wine can be verified as the connected closures are linked with a blockchain platform that provides a unique identification code for each bottle. Winery co-owner Walter Massa explained the importance of this feature:

“One phenomenon that is not talked about much is the counterfeiting of great wines […] As well as providing a new experience for the consumer, the NFC system guarantees the fight against counterfeiting and the ‘black market’ for these pearls of nature, assuring their authenticity and traceability.”

Technology not just for high-end wines

The NFC-closures will be applied to Vigneti Massa’s Derthona wine, along with three of its most prestigious cru: Derthona Costa del Vento, Derthona Montecitorio and Derthona Sterpi.

Previous vintages of these wines are available from between $25–50 per bottle online, so this is far from a feature that is only available for the super rich, and over time the technology could filter down to even more affordable price points.