Enter the enchanting crimson world of the new Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso One Red Wine: a detailed review
The Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso needs no introduction. Not only is it one of the most iconic watches of the Maison, but it has cemented its legacy in the annals of watch-design history. This 1931 Art Deco-inspired watch has been turning heads (and swivelling dials) for nearly a century now. Admired by both men and women seeking class and elegance, the Reversos are a sub-genre of watches in their own right. It then comes as no surprise then that the Maison decided to release for the feminine market, the new Reverso One Red-Wine, for this year’s Watches & Wonders 2020.
Watches & Wonders 2020
Before we go into depth reviewing this release, a brief note on Watches & Wonders 2020.
As we all know the world is somewhat shaken and stirred by the whole COVID-19 issue. And the watch industry is no different. Reeling under the pressure of isolation, this year’s Watches & Wonders (previously SIHH) will now be online.
It may not be a usual in-person-in-Geneva-physically-looking-at-new-watches fair, but Watches & Wonders is launching an online platform where we will be seeing a bunch of brands telling us all about their 2020 Novelties.
Launching at 12 pm CET on 25th April (8pm AEST), so today, is a new dedicated online platform for all things watches that will feature dedicated landing pages for brands that have traditionally been a part of SIHH. This amazing offering must have been pulled together in no time at all, and for that it looks to be a great job.
We are expecting an insane amount of content from the brands and FHH (Foundation de la Haute Horlogerie) themselves, so prepare yourselves for an absolute overload of watchalicious content.
Excited? So are we. Finally, we have a watch fair!
Now, let’s venture back to the new Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso One Red-Wine.
Originally designed for Polo players, it features a reversible solid caseback with a blank metal flip side initially designed purely for functional reasons.
Over the years this has seen many iterations, but one of the most commonly revered versions of Reverso is the plain caseback that acts as a canvas to an owner’s desires. Originally designed for Polo players, Reversos typically featured a reversible solid caseback that was designed to help protect its dial glass face from damage.
Coming hot on the heels of last year’s Reverso Tribute Small Seconds in a very similar burgundy red colour, the new JLC Reverso One Red-Wine is a beauty of a watch.
Like the new Reverso One Red-Wine, the 2019 Reverso Tribute Small Seconds was a vivid display of a stunning burgundy or aubergine coloured dial. It was a fairly pared-down iteration of Reverso, simply enhanced by its shimmering, satiny exterior that framed the iconic gadroons, Dauphine hands, and hand-applied hour-markers.
Again like the new release, it featured a solid reverse side that as typical for the brand, offers a blank, fully customisable space for your emotions.
While aesthetically it was fairly similar to the new Reverso One Red-Wine, there are some differences.
For starters, in the new Reverso One Red-Wine, the unmistakable three grooves on the case, that characterize the Reverso, are covered in diamonds. Second, it is missing the usual Chemin de fer (railway) minute track in white.
Then, the Reverso One Red-Wine is also sans the small seconds aperture at 6’o clock and to me is more architecturally balanced as a result.
But the most significant difference is that the Reverso One Red-Wine features a quartz movement while the 2019 version featured a mechanical movement in the form of the Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 822/2 that was entirely designed, produced, and assembled in-house.
Now I know purists and snobs might not like this idea and not read the review further, but you gotta realise that sometimes there are certain designs such as the Reverso and Cartier Tank that even if they don’t feature a technically advanced mechanical movement, they are still tour de force of watchmaking industry.
Now if we compare this to the existing Reverso One in steel, REF. 3288420, the new release is bolder and visually emphatic in your face, but not in a loud or uncouth manner but rather a subtle gesture to the iconic wrist presence these watches offer.
I know, I know, it’s quartz but it still deserves a mention; it does make the watch tick after all, doesn’t it?
The reference Q3288560 has an analog display quartz movement — Calibre 657 — that comprises of 43 components, 4 jewels, and measures in at 2.15mm height offering a 30m (3 ATM) water-resistance.
The movement is cased inside a 40mm x 20mm x 7.9mm stainless steel case with a closed caseback that offers a free space for engravings.
As a side note, if you need any inspiration for engravings, check out our article here that talks about the engravings on personal watches of celebrities such as Amanda Seyfried, Ni Ni and Nicholas Hoult.
Mamma Mia! The Dial
The watch face shows the traditional functions of hours & minutes only — luxury brands have a tendency to skip the seconds if the movement is quartz — on a beautiful red-wine guilloché lacquered dial.
Playing havoc in natural lighting, this dial has a rich glow that is achieved by applying multiple layers of lacquer over a subtle sun-ray guilloché pattern.
This burgundy dial sits shining within the elongated case that was first seen in the Reverso Lady model of 1931. Architecturally, the best defining feature of the dial are the finely drawn lines that define the four corners of the dial.
Framed by these, almost like a work of art, are the light and airy applied Arabic numerals have a unique hand-sketched look. This ‘casual’ look of the numerals adds a certain sense of playfulness and fun to an otherwise very matured look of the watch.
Defining the gadroons, the dial is framed on top and bottom with a row of grain-set 27 diamonds totalling ~ 0.3ct.
Watch Ya Gonna Do About It
The new Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso One Red-Wine ushers you to this year’s Watches & Wonders with a colourful bang.
It is a classic, ageless design that on one hand is the everlasting symbol of the Art Deco era and on the other hand, a youthful and extroverted expression of femininity with a bold wrist presence.
In addition to looking very beautiful, I think the dial also features exceptional legibility. The white colour of the numerals set against the bold Burgundy red background makes the dial simply a pleasure to read under any lighting conditions.
If you spot this in the wild, or should I say at an elegant affair, the colour and the high legibility of the dial will surely make you look twice.
Add to these features the inherent virtue of swivelling and exposing a solid case-back that’s ready to take the form of the depths of your imagination and what you have here is a watch worth admiring.
So let the enchanting crimson world of the new Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso One Red-Wine usher you to the new watches of 2020.
For more information on this watch and other Jaeger-LeCoultre watches, head to their website here.