Brew Retrograph Extraction Timer

By: Michael Penate

Sometimes, a brand comes along and reminds us that watches, collecting, and our fascination with horology should be fun above all else. In just a short while, Jonathan Ferrer – industrial designer and founder of Brew Watches – has brought us a handful of exciting and quirky timepieces with approachable price tags and a compelling story to tell. Several of these happen to be house favorites here at TBWS and after recently reviewing the Brew HP-1 Automatic, we were thrilled to hear about a surprise fall 2018 release from Jonathan himself. In what is arguably Brew’s most traditional design, the brand is proud to introduce the Brew Retrograph Extraction Timer, a watch Ferrer refers to as the “world’s first wearable espresso shot timer.” I’m already hooked.

Brew Retrograph on wrist

For many of us, watches serve as a kind of escape from the rigors, rush, and monotony of daily life. We disconnect from reality, get lost in design, and connect with individuals that can often times turn into lifelong friends. It’s one heck of a community, and my coffee-fueled mornings packed with catching up on watch news is a huge part of what gets me through the day. That’s why I’ve always been so intrigued by Jonathan’s designs – and the connection they make with suspended, tranquil moments one can experience with an awesome cup of coffee. Above all, it’s an attractive story that isn’t based on false heritage.

Brew Retrograph case back


 
 

Judging from the press images, the Brew Retrograph Extraction Timer appears to wear more conservatively than the flagship HP-1, which commanded a certain wrist presence a few enthusiasts weren’t too keen on. The traditional design revolves around a nice, 2-part cushion chronograph case that’s just 38mm wide and 41.5mm lug to lug. While these dimensions may seem a little on the small side, it’s important to remember that the square-ish case will still result in something substantial and wearable for most individuals.

Brew Retrograph with coat and sleeve

The dial itself is also incredibly clean – with a basic two-register layout, 6 o’clock date aperture, slick baton hands, plenty of Super-LumiNova, and a neat little trick up its sleeve. You see, timing is everything when it comes to coffee… well, almost everything. No matter what brew method you’ve chosen, your extraction time must be appropriate for your grind – otherwise, you’ll find yourself with a cup that’s either tasteless (under-extracted) or bitter and acidic (over-extracted). In the case of espresso, your extraction or “brew time” will be relatively short – around 25 to 35 seconds. That’s why – if you look closely – you’ll notice that the Brew Retrograph features very distinct graduations along the minute’s scale between the 12 o’clock and 7 o’clock positions (0-35 seconds). Is it totally necessary? Who cares? It’s fun, affordable, and not a Kickstarter dive watch.

Brew Retrograph blue dial version


 

Brew Retrograph Specs

  • Case Diameter: 38mm
  • Lug to Lug: 41.5mm
  • Thickness: 10.4mm
  • Water Resistance: Rated for 5ATM
  • Movement: Seiko VK64 Meca-Quartz Chronograph Movement
  • Crystal: Sapphire, AR-Coated
  • Strap: Italian Leather
  • Price: $350

Brew Retrograph black dial close up

As you can see here, the Brew Retrograph makes for an enjoyable watch that is lighthearted, yet stylish. It is also available with matte black, blue sunburst, and white dial options that are labeled as Remington, Cobalt, and Oxford, respectively. There will be no crowdfunding campaign and Brew will be taking orders directly on their website. Stay tuned – we’ll see what we can do about getting one in for review.

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