The Reverso is close to celebrating its 85th birthday! As a family within a Brand, this is longer than the majority of Brands last in themselves..let alone retain its relevance during that entire period.
From state of the art technology in 1931 to contemporary art deco on trend stylings, Jaeger LeCoultre’s Reverso has been a watch of the ages. It has neither gained overnight notoriety nor felt the need to piggy back the celebrity circuit. Instead, the Reverso has quietly gone about it’s business in a dignified manner, evolving with the times & technology but not moving too far away from the underlying DNA of what makes a Reverso.
In the last decade, aside from a Grand Reverso Date that we won’t speak about as it remains the only watch I regret selling…my favourite model by far has been this Reverso Duoface, specifically in steel. The dimensions are smaller than other current models offering a 26mm width & 42.2mm height. For what the model carries in terms of complication, this is all housed in a case astonishingly only 9.3mm in depth. In my opinion this case structure works well on virtually every wrist without being too small for those used to over sized watches.
As the story has been told, by better historians than me, regarding the inception of the Reverso…we always end up being asked instead why more Reverso’s do not carry a second complication on the reverse face. It seems to me that the simple answer is the models currently delivered with said reverse faces fulfil what can de created without moving into the realms of the Reverso version of the Gyrotourbillon or Triptych – both quite ridiculous creations in terms of both innovation & imagination but carrying respective price tags!
The front face is typically recognisable as JLC with the silvered guilloche finish & applied black Arabic numerals completed with a tidy & useful sub seconds dial. It is the reverse dial where the magic happens. Described in the handbook as black; the dial is really a warm grey/anthracite with beautiful hand decorated detail against a flat dial area creating the impression of depth & focus. This dial acts as not only a second face but also gives the wearer the opportunity to change the hour hand on this face independently of the silver version (triggered by the discreet pusher on the side of the case) creating a second timezone. Furthermore, given the 12 hour indication, a 24 hour counter at 6 0’clock is flanked by day & night banners ensuring an absolutely clear reading if this complication is used to act as home time or second time.
The Reverso has enjoyed automatic incarnations from the now discontinued Grande Reverao Automatique to the new Reverso Day & Night but I believe a true Reverso should be hand wound. The Duoface fulfils my preference incorporating the in-house (but not inspiringly named!) calibre 854/1 delivering 45 hours of power reserve. Still using the classic butterfly style folding clasp, the mid brown alligator strap nicely contrasts against both the steel, silver face & especially the anthracite dial making it an incredibly malleable watch, great for every day wear around the office & becoming the perfect evening accessory with a simply flick of the case.
The Jaeger LeCoultre Reverso Duoface is now in stock; UK model number Q2718410 & RRP £6,500.00 – please feel free to inquire further with us for this or any of your Jaeger LeCoultre needs!