Day 1: Maitres du Temps & Jean Daniel Nicolas (aka Daniel Roth)

In the afternoon, I headed over to another section of the Basel fair to meet up with a couple of friends of mine Steve Holtzman & Flip Horowitz, in order to check out the most recent developments from Maitres du Temps and also the micro brand Jean Dunand, that produces only unique pieces for discerning clients.

Steven Holtzman and his team of amazing watchmakers, have created some new variations on the theme of their superb Chapter 2, the calendar watch with rollers for the day and month, a grand date and sub seconds. Two new dial options a silver version for the white gold and a deep blue for the rose gold. As a fan of blue dials, I was very happy to see the second version. I have to say though, that the new white gold piece with the silver dial and black hour ring is superb.

This collaboration between watchmakers, Peter Speake-Marin, Daniel Roth and Roger Dubuis & Steven Holtzman, is just stunning.

Last year, I was able to see them for the first time in Basel, this year it was a reminder of what lovely creations MDT is bringing us.

Another dial version, this time blue, cased in RG:

With a gold/copper dial:

A diamond cased MDT Chapter Two in RG with a sharply contrasting white strap:

The mighty Chapter One is a tour de force in complicated watchmaking circles, Chapter Two is a somewhat more available watch for collectors. It has its own charm. A rather stealthy Chapter One was revealed to me in a Titanium case with both high polished and brushed surfaces. Sporting blue anodised Ti rollers together with the silver dial, it is a great addition to the previous versions released last year.

The Ti Chapter One:

A view of the back:

Getting to meet Daniel Roth this year was a tremendous treat for me, as he is one of the greats in the Independent watchmaking circles. My only handicap, was my poor French, as Daniel does not speak English, luckily there were several able chaps who could translate for me. 

A prodigious watchmaker, whose work is quite well known, as the original designer of the Breguet wristwatches back in the 80's, when they came back into the mechanical wristwatch business in a big way. His namesake brand Daniel Roth, is now part of the Bulgari group, and Daniel has moved on, back to his roots of hand making exquisite watches, such as the Two Minute tourbillon pictured below, under the Jean Daniel Nicolas brand name:

This is one of the most stunning Tourbillon watches available today by a legend in watchmaking circles. A second version of this amazing movement, was to be found in an elegant case, as seen below:

His joining of the Maitres du Temps Chapter 2 team is a huge asset, and for Peter Speake-Marin, a fabulous opportunity to get to know one of the living Masters, and hopefully pick up a few tips, as he forges his own way into watchmaking history books with his micro-mechanical horological art.