Blancier Grand Cru Watch With Nespresso Capsule Dial

Blancier Grand Cru Watch With Nespresso Capsule Dial

Blancier Grand Cru Watch With Nespresso Capsule Dial   watch releases

Eat your heart out Omega, there is a new George Clooney watch out there! Clooney might be a face for Omega timepieces, but Europeans are more likely to associate his visage with quick espressos as the man is always drinking Nespresso in their advertising. Watch maker Blancier has a new collection of watches called the Grand Cru which have dials made of used Nespresso capsules. Yea, that is about as appealing as it sounds.

While most people in the United States love their coffee, Europe is all about the espresso shot – and everyone loves their Nespresso machine. It uses colorful aluminum capsules (different colors are different types of ground coffee beans or flavors) for each shot of liquid energy. Once they are used, the capsules needs to be thrown away – even though you can technically recycle them. That wasn’t enough for Blancier though, they wanted to “upcycle them.”

Blancier Grand Cru Watch With Nespresso Capsule Dial   watch releases

Blancier Grand Cru Watch With Nespresso Capsule Dial   watch releases

Blancier Grand Cru Watch With Nespresso Capsule Dial   watch releases

Upcycling is a newer term for me, and I think some marketing douchebag probably invented it. It refers to when you make trash into gold. Those used paper plates and plastic utensils aren’t garbage. They are waiting to be glued to a canvas and sold as modern art. All that foam packaging isn’t trash, it is waiting to be stuffed into some luxury ergonomic pillows. Those used up espresso machine capsules shall not go to waste, let’s make luxury watches out of them! Though, you won’t hear Blancier mention the Nespresso name at all. That is because they didn’t secure rights to use the name, and no doubt Nespresso would want a piece of this solid venture if their valuable intellectual property was used to help promote it.

The name of this new Blancier sub-brand is “Grand Cru.” In French “cru” means “raw,” which is a really ‘interesting’ way of looking at this aesthetic. Remember that in addition to each watch smelling a bit like stale coffee, the dials will be different. This is because the state-of-the-art used capsule smashing process is imperfect, making for slight aesthetic differences in each piece. That my friends is true art incarnate. It does beg the question though, why not name the watch “Grand Crud…” I mean “Grand Crush.” That would be slightly more descriptive.

Blancier Grand Cru Watch With Nespresso Capsule Dial   watch releases

Blancier Grand Cru Watch With Nespresso Capsule Dial   watch releases

While there have been dozens of different Nespresso capsule colors, there are 11 current versions of the Grand Cru watch. Each uses a different color capsule for the dial, which otherwise only has lume-coated hands. While Grand Cru watches seems to mostly use the same case, there are at least two case styles to choose from, and two styles of hands. They aren’t incredibly interesting, but what did you expect? Cases made out of the capsules as well?

Each Grand Cru watch is 42mm wide with a steel case. Though at least one version has a gold-plated steel case. The pieces are matched to complementary straps given the range of dial colors. It amazes me that this Nespresso used coffee capsule project has turned into a full-on sub-brand with its own website and packaging. In fact, as an added bonus you get three random coffee capsules with each purchased watch. Those are likely to be the most expensive cups of coffee you will ever drink.

Blancier Grand Cru Watch With Nespresso Capsule Dial   watch releases

Blancier Grand Cru Watch With Nespresso Capsule Dial   watch releases

Contained inside of the Grand Cru watches are mechanical hand-wound movements. Not sure what movements, and not sure if they are Swiss. UPDATE: The movements are Swiss ETA Unitas 6748 hand-wound calibers. No idea why they aren’t automatics, but they are visible through the caseback window on the rear of the watch case.

In a sense, the Grand Cru watches are more relevant to the lives of many luxury watch owners than their typical high-end fare. Why? Well because espresso is such a dominant part of their lives. Only in Europe do I see people drink an espresso after dinner before getting to bed. As though they need that last shot to make it home before retiring for the night. I do admire the thought behind the Grand Cru concept, as it is clever and quirky. Though to me, and perhaps other people it is also incredibly silly. As is the six week waiting time required for them to build one for you if you order now. Prices from Grand Cru watches range from about 495 – 785 Euros. Get one and you’ll always know the hour when you look at the dial – which is more than likely to be “good time to get a coffee.” See more at the Grand Cru website here.

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14 comments
cshepley
cshepley

At least it isn't made using another cylindrical one-time use post-consumer product I can think of.

somethingnottaken
somethingnottaken

How about a longer hour hand, and some hour and minute markers so the watch is at least easy to read?

Zeitblom
Zeitblom

Sure, it's crap. But at least it is *cheap* crap. I was just looking at closeup pictures of the Van Cleef and Arpels ``Poetic Wish'' watches. A million bucks the pair, for something that looks like it was bought from an unusually tacky souvenir trolley while on a drunken spree in Montmartre. I think that a lot of companies like VanC&A would do well to produce products like this one, which is actually *more* tasteful than a great deal of high-end garbage.

antjay
antjay

Put it in a precious metal case , give it an obscure Franco / German sounding name  , lose the coffee reference , charge 1/2 a years salary . No one would bat an eyelid .

 Wake up folks , the emperor is not only naked , he is mooning us (or maybe it's just "art") .

DG Cayse
DG Cayse

Mr. Clooney has come a long way from his birth in Kentucky. Of course having famous relatives, Nick & Rosemary, did him no harm at all.

By the way, his movie "The American" is a rather unknown gem. Very "Euro-Pean" and all that.

As to the Nespr3esso tie-in - its all about moving product. Famous Face - Move the Product.

Coffee? I'll have a large, black...commonly referred to in the world as....... An American.

What was that about a watch? Sorry...didn't notice one.

MarkCarson
MarkCarson

On their website they gloss over the horological aspects of the 'product' for the most part. They only say:

"The Mechanical (handwind) movement is a classic caliber with a power reserve of 42 hours. This movement is in the back of the watch visible through the glass bottom."

There are no photos of the back, etc. So this pretty much says to me that this is a 'fashion watch' and not a serious time piece. There certainly is a place for that but for over half a grand U.S., these are not cheap fashion watches, no matter what you think of the dial nonsense.

They take up to 6 weeks to make an ordered watch. You'd think that after drinking the espresso (hey, ya gotta empty it) they would be able to work faster than that!!!

michaelscorrado
michaelscorrado

The brown one looks like something found in a baby's diaper.....and worth about as much.

Ulysses31
Ulysses31

Wabi-sabi this ain't.  Kris beat me to the condom reference already.  That anyone would have the effrontery to make this is just amazing.  It's not really 'up-cycling' either.  When you up-cycle you exploit some existing property of the thing that would otherwise be thrown away - some crude examples would be using a paper cup as a lamp-shade or half a coconut shell as a hanging planter.  Finding a piece of garbage, smashing it flat and using it as a watch dial doesn't count.  One might at a stretch be able to justify using, say, a bottle cap from a rare or unusual beer or wine bottle - at least it would say something about the wearer in a way this never could.

Maximilien
Maximilien

I've been drinking Nespresso for almost two years now... Excellent coffee and the machines are brilliant: no mess, easy, perfect espresso everytime... Plus with boutique stores popping up in most major cities, it's easy to get new capsules live (also online) and try the new coffee flavors before paying the ~$.85 to ~$1 per cup (capsule). If you have not tried them, just go to nearest store and do so for free. Not quite razor / blade business model since the machine will set you back ~$200 for low end model and ~$300 for mid range city model which I own... If you love coffee and want a break from local Starbucks, I highly recommend.... Now about using the recyclable aluminum capsules to create a watch and wear on your wrist... Not my bag. Looks like a POS (piece of $h*t) and likely causes more harm to the environment to create than collecting used capsules and dropping in your recycling bin or at the local Nespresso stores (they accept them for recycling with no discount).

SuperStrapper
SuperStrapper

And here I've been throwing away condom wrappers like an idiot...

JoeWelke
JoeWelke

Uh huh. "A fool and his money..."

MarkCarson
MarkCarson

@DG Cayse  

I'm also a fan of that lessor known movie. And "What was that about a watch?" is spot on.

somethingnottaken
somethingnottaken

@Kris C But have been throwing away the (used?) condoms too, or is that your secret fashion watch plan?