In the next few weeks, my ‘Independent Watchmakers’ book will be released globally. To publicise its release, I did an in-depth Skype interview with a renowned freelance journalist who was doing an article for the New York Times. Originally we had designated 30 minutes for the meeting but it ended up taking over 2-hours. The book features many unusual timepieces (including my own ‘Pure Carbon’) that needed a comprehensive explanation. It was also important to emphasise the reason for writing this type of book. As a watch designer myself I realised the challenges small independents are confronted with and wanted to highlight this. Read more
Category Archives: News
Recently I have been seriously considering returning back to University to do an Honours (Masters) or PhD in industrial design. Over the last few years and in conjunction with several books I have written this subject has become highly appealing. I conveyed these thoughts to a few tutors and they connected me with some local talent. Even though Australia hasn’t really exploited the luxury market there are some innovators in this region. For example, Lee Gray established a high-end audio company called Kyron, which he has successfully globalised. When we met recently I told him about a visionary mechanical engineer called Paolo Mastrogiuseppe. This creative powerhouse invents the most extraordinary Espresso machines and is an inspiration to aspiring designers. Read more
Last month I published a review featuring Urwerk’s magnificent UR-111C. The timepiece is engineered and designed to the meticulous standards you would expect from the brand. It also is bang on trend because of the futuristic aesthetic, which was inspired by Science fiction movies. Certainly, anyone who is passionate about fine horology would love to own a watch of this calibre. However, respected industry specialist Sophy Rindler (in response to my post) posed the question about the relevance of these novelties in the modern world. Ultimately I feel she was alluding to the $134,370 price tag that is beyond the realms of most people’s budgets. In contrast, many renowned Swiss labels are launching stylish affordable timepieces on crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter. A great example can be found in Louis Chevrolet Watch Classic 8. Read more
Every morning after the school drop of I visit my local library and peruse through various magazines. One of my favourites is ‘Men’s Health’ because the content is quite diverse. Even though there is general advice on how to develop muscle mass it also great nutritional advice. The consensus these days is that a low carbohydrate diet is an effective way to stay healthy. That is why a lot of the recipes are high protein and devoid of processed ingredients. Most of the experts say that the right fats (Monounsaturated and Polyunsaturated) are also crucial to general well being. Certainly, I subscribe to that philosophy and the results over the last few years (since being diagnosed with Coeliac disease) have been profound. Read more
Over the last few months, I have written several articles about craft gin makers. This subject has really captivated me and many hipsters on a global level. For this alcoholic drink to be certified as Gin it has to have a juniper berry base. That is why I could only include certain products in my recent series of editorials. However, in many regions of Australia, there are several micro distillers that are producing other interesting beverages. Ultimately this prompted to publish another review to shine a light on the fine talents of these four amazing companies. Read more
Every morning I like start the day with a long 10km (6 mile) walk around our local lake. Not only does it release those crucial endorphins but it also helps me devise concepts for books, articles, jacket and watch designs. I find good music is a great relaxer and is an integral part of my routine. As well as favourite tracks from Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye etc. I also listen to really a cool music collective called Brooklyn Funk Essentials. In my opinion their 1995 album called ‘Cool and Steady and Easy’ is phenomenal and epitomises the mood (at the time) in this emerging city. Certainly 20 years ago Brooklyn was the trendy and vibrant hub it is today. However, Henry Fischer chose this location to establish his global watch brand Stührling Original. Read more
Even though Australia is a comparatively expensive country to live in there are certain advantages. For example, mobile phone plans are phenomenally competitive and this enables me to frequently call the UK. Recently I spoke with one of my best friends in England and told her about a series of forthcoming articles I am writing entitled The ‘Magnificent Taste of Mānuka Honey’. Amazingly she had never heard of this variety of honey which is exceptionally popular in Australia and New Zealand. However, now that I have explained what makes this product so special she is seriously interested.
Up until very recently I had only tasted a few varieties of Manuka honey and probably (like most novices) thought it all had a similar flavour. However, I have been massively surprised at the range of different floral flavour profiles available. Here are five more New Zealand based companies that perfectly illustrate this point. Read more
Over the last few months I have been doing extensive research for a book about dark chocolate. Prior to this project I would have considered Swiss or Belgian made as the world’s best. However, I now appreciate that there are several other geographic regions that are producing amazing products. There is also a prestigious global award ceremony (International Chocolate Awards) that honours their talents. One of the techniques that seems very popular with the judges is called ‘Bean to Bar’. Normally this involves roasting and grinding beans then adding raw cane sugar (or another organic natural sweetener). Certainly this movement is big in the United States as you would expect. However, within Asia there are numerous companies that are yielding some really exciting results. Here are four micro craft brands that I would highly recommend.