Today our friend’s at Brew watches unveiled the Retrograph, a new watch they’ve dubbed the “world’s first wearable espresso shot timer.”
Much like how “telephone timer” chronographs were used in the 1930s – with special markings on the dial every three minutes to remind the user to insert another coin to continue their call – the shot timer has markings for a range between 25-35 seconds.
Depending on the barista and the machine, 25 to 35 seconds is the ideal time that it takes to extract the optimal espresso shot, and therefore the outer ring of the dial, which features hour, minute, and seconds markings, has additional graduations to call out the first 35 seconds. Further, there are extra marks highlighting the last 5 seconds, as a warning that the shot must be extracted to achieve proper taste.
The chronograph can count elapsed time up to 24-hours using the 60-minute counter on the left and the 24-hour counter on the right.
The idea of Brew watches is a coffee themed watch company, inspired by high-end espresso machines. Now, with the Retrograph, which functionally complements an espresso machine, the tie-in to the world’s most popular beverage is even more clear.
As for the aesthetics, John Ferrer, the founder and designer, told me that he has taken the original Brew timepiece, flipped the case around, and made it both smaller and thinner (38 mm x 41.50 mm x 10.40 mm). The result is better ergonomics, and an arguably better aesthetic overall.
At launch, there are three matte dials: Cobalt (blue), Oxford (white), and Remington (a reverse Panda dial, white on black). The hands are thin and rectangular, with an open tipped circular counterweight on the chronograph seconds hand, and each has been brushed by hand.
As you might expect, considering Ferrer is a designer, the dial is clean and really looks like the result of someone with such a background, which is not often the case.
A couple of additional features that make this watch unique are the 2-piece case design that is sans bezel. Most watch cases are 3-pieces and this cost cutting feature it really cool as it does not appear to take away from the watch at all. It still has a premium sapphire crystal, which many watches at this price point forgo. And the movement, which is a hybrid caliber VK64 Meca-Quartz made in Japan by Seiko, helps keep the cost down, but it’s also very accurate (+/- 20 seconds per month), and includes a mechanical style sweeping seconds chronograph hand plus instant reset.
The Retrograph is water-resistant to 50 meters and comes on a premium Italian leather strap. Retail is $350.
Learn more at Brew.