Category Archives: News

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.

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Several years ago I had a friend who only ever dressed in black. His entire wardrobe comprised slim fitting trousers, long sleeve shirts and jackets. As he was of slender build and Sri Lankan heritage he managed to own the look. However, as an artist I personally prefer an injection of vibrant colour to add an element of interest. Certainly in the modern world a discerning gentleman has the opportunity to be more adventurous in his attire. » Read more

Amazingly it is that time of the year again where the Messeplatz plays host to the world watch fair. I was fortunate to attend Baselworld last year (in a press capacity) and would highly recommend the show to anyone. However unless you are sponsored by one of the large watch groups it can be a very expensive affair. Ultimately that is why I had to make the really tough decision not to attend the event this year. So far, from social media feedback it seems a lot quieter than previous years and there are not as many new models on display. A lot of the Avant-Garde watchmakers like MB & F, Cabestan and Urwerk seem to be presenting new interpretations of existing watches. This doesn’t particularly concern me but does illustrate that the watch industry is exerting caution. » Read more

One of the hardest tasks for a watch writer is collating the relevant technical information and images required. Literally in some cases I have to send brands about four emails before I get a reply. In some instances I never even receive a response. All this makes my job more complicated and frustrating than it needs to be. One of the worst offenders over recent years has been Meccaniche Veloci. Until very recently they were owned by a fashion inspired jeweller called Cielo Venezia 1270. This perhaps explains why they were not that proactive in their marketing strategy. Fortunately this has all changed now because they have a new guardian (Executive Chairman) called Cesare Cerrito. » Read more

Even though watchmaker Xetum is only four years old they have already made a huge impact on the market. In 2009 the company was founded by the multi talented Jeff Kuo. In a quest to find a timepiece that combined both contemporary styling and Swiss mechanics Jeff decided to develop his own brand. The result has been a range of exciting and competitively priced watches aimed at the male sector of the market. » Read more

Generally as a rule I like to feature as broad a range of timepieces and watchmakers on Total Watch Reviews as possible. I feel this stays true to the prime objective of my website and gives the reader a more stimulating experience. It also showcases the enormous amount of quality timepieces available on the market. High luxury watch brand Linde Werdelin perfectly illustrates this point. » Read more

GoS Watches (Gustafsson and Sjögren) is a small independent watchmaker located in the idyllic location of Linköping, Sweden. In 2007 Johan Gustafsson and Patrik Sjögren combined a shared passion for traditional Scandinavian craftsmanship to develop their own unique brand. Even though the company was established only six years ago they have gained enormous respect throughout the industry. » Read more